Restaurant Tips - The Beach Bar (Cape Panwa)
We are always looking for quiet, out of the way places to eat (preferably with sea view), and I know there are more to find yet! I should note that the restaurant tips on this blog are not necessarily the "best" (i.e. the fanciest and most expensive) restaurants in Phuket, they are places that we like. Many of them we visit regularly, and The Beach Bar might become one of our favourite lunch spots. We tend to look for places which are off the tourist beaches and won't cost a kings ransom for a meal. Now there are a few places in Patong Beach that I like, and I should add a little section for these in the near future - even there you can find little hideaways - but in general we keep off the main beaches.
The Beach Bar is located in Cape Panwa, just 100m along the beach from the Panwa Beach Resort. To get there, take the road from Phuket Town to the Aquarium (Sakdidet Road), and turn off onto a small side road on the right which has a sign to the Novotel. It’s a narrow road going through a quiet Muslim village and you may wonder if you took a wrong turn, but keep the faith… You pass a road heading up to Khao Kad viewpoint and will pass a small restaurant overlooking the sea on the right (we have also eaten here and it’s decent). Then you come to the Novotel, and just after this there’s a right turn onto a steep dirt road down to the Beach Bar.
Now, it’s not the fanciest of places, but we found it friendly and it’s right by the sea, and the food is good and inexpensive. We went on New Years Eve for lunch and decided to go again today! The location is very quiet. There’s not much traffic down Cape Panwa and most of what there is sticks to the main road rather than the side roads. The beach is, shall we say...uncrowded… but is not really any good for swimming as it’s way too rocky (see photos). I guess the place gets some customers from the Novotel who have taken a walk along the beach. We noticed the same Australian couple in there yesterday and today (so they must agree with us!)
< We ate Tom Yam, Fried chicken with garlic, mixed vegetables, sweet and sour chicken, 2 lots of fried rice (hey, we’re 2 hungry adults and my 5 year old daughter normally eats a full adult portion), sank down half a dozen cokes, and the bill today was I believe 460 Baht (I think that could have fed 4 adults, but hey! It’s New Year!) Happy New Year from Phuket!
Update: February 2007. We've been to the Beach Bar quite a few times in the last 2 months. It really is a relaxing, unpretentious, friendly place. The owners are so nice (it's a family thing) and the last couple of times Ali, a friend of the owner, has been there playing guitar - things like the Pogues and Cat Stevens. I had to blink when I heard him singing songs like "Dirty Old Town"! The owners son worships the guitar man, and when we were there this last weekend, his dad had just bought him a guitar - see below. Apparently he always wanted to be a football player, now he wants to be a singer...
Update: November 2007 - after being closed for ages, The Beach Bar is now open again, just moved about 20 meters along the beach closer to Novotel. We just went again on 24th November (See entry on Phuket Weather Blog).
** This blog page is from 2007 - for an updated page on this restaurant see The Beach Bar, Cape Panwa