Shooting films in Thailand-Patong Beach

Thailand today still remains a popular place to film movies. The main reason being that a lot of story lines involve Thailand and the Thai people-indeed a lot of story lines involve Thailand simply because she is one of the few countries in the world that hasn't been spoilt by colonization, globalization-a country that still holds a certain mystique and spiritual treasure.

Shooting in Thailand started almost a century ago when the first movie called Chang was filmed. From then on the likes of Bruce Lee in Big Boss, James Bond (Roger Moore) in Man with the Golden Gun to mention a few have graced the Thai shores.

Off-set gossip

Getting "extra" work on some of these movies was not so difficult either. Back in the 90s when Michael J.fox and Sean Penn were filming Casualties of War, a good friend of mine managed to get the job as Michael's stand-in. He spoke English and was short enough which was all that was required.

The gossip here was that all three spent a lot of time off the set or in the hotel drinking and smoking some of the locally brewed vegetation! Watch the movie again sometime and see if you can spot the highs! For this job food and accommodation was laid on at the Idyllic havens of Patong beach and other regions of Phuket. Rambo III was another story-a backpacker in the hotel I stayed in at the time was refused extra work on this set just because he was taller and better looking than Rambo, not too difficult perhaps.

Meanwhile Hugh Grant in a Bridget Jones sequel was said to have been chased back to his hotel by bar girls-this is entirely untrue. He was the one who did the chasing... DiCaprio's Beach on the other hand drew some controversy for another reason. Apparently Fox Studios had decided in their infinite wisdom to re-design the beach at Phi Phi to their own natural Thai image. Environmentalists ran amok- as indeed they were entitled to-and tried to have production suspended.

Compensation was paid, the movie went ahead and restoration of the area was conducted. It may be interesting to note that according to the Lonely Planets' guide to the area, the beach was much improved by effects of the 2004 tsunami.

Thai Style

Of course plenty of Thai movies are also being shot all over Thailand and some require western extras to help out. If interested, you may want to ask some staff at the accommodation you are staying at-they would be able to inform you of which and where the latest movie is being shot.

You may want to watch the shooting or even earn a little extra cash by taking part! Patong Beach in Phuket has been the scene of many and various movie sets. Accommodation is plentiful in the area and the natural beauty of its palm fringed beaches and its hidden coves would add to the enhancement of any movie.


When thinking of accommodation in the Patong area. Horizon Patong Beach Resort and Spa comes to mind. This idyllic haven nestled near to the beautiful Patong west-beach offers a choice of 160 rooms, two swimming pools and a fitness club.

Tropical botanical gardens that surround the hotel offer a taste of paradise and tranquillity. Surely a fitting movie set where the guests are the stars and the staff are surely the extras.

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Khaolak Beach is on the Andaman Sea just 80 Kilometers North from Phuket International Airport. It locates on Km 56-57 heading to Takuapa town. There are many beaches all the way from Phuket to Takuapa such as Thai Muang Beach, Bangnieng Beach, Khaolak Beach and Bangsak Beach. But Khaolak beach is the most popular beach for many tourists because the beach is clean and long with golden sand where most of the resorts are located. Khaolak Beach is well known for tourists who love to stay in a remotely area because the beach is very quiet and no bars or entertainment close to the beach. Tourists can also get to Similan and Surin Islands by chartered boats leave from Thap Lamu Pier in Thai Muang District (30 minutes from Khaolak beach) and take about 3 hours to reach the islands.

Getting There

By Air from Bangkok : A flight into Phuket International Airport, followed by a road trip of a further 80 kms to Takuapa town. Most hotels and resorts there have an airport transfer service.

By Bus from Bangkok : take a bus from the Southern Bus Terminal to Takuapa heading Phuket but don't forget to tell the bus to get off at Khaolak which is on Km 56-57 heading to Phuket.

By Car from Phuket : use route 402, pass the parallel spans of Sarasin and Thao Thepkrasatri Bridges. You are now in Phangnga province and heading to Koak Kloy town and Thai Muang and then Takuapa. Khaolak is on Km 56-57 heading to Takuapa town.

By Car from Takuapa : Heading South to Phuket town about 50 kms from Takuapa to get to Khaolak Beach

Backpacking In Thailand

Planning a trip to Thailand appeals to travelers of all shapes, sizes and budgets because it is quite easy to navigate about the different cities and main attractions. The travel is also inexpensive, leaving you with more money to explore the booming silk industry, as well as the delicious cuisine. Thai food melds a combination of mind, body and soul into their spicy and sweet balanced meals, offering some of the best dishes in the world.

Why Thailand is So Popular

When planning a backpacking trip to Thailand, you may have heard of what attracts tourists to the various areas about the country. In the North, trekking through the mountains is quite popular. More than 300 temples can be located in the beautiful natural surroundings of Chiang Mai. Top-notch quality and inexpensive stays can be found at every corner, offering flavorful food and interesting shopping outlets.

As a backpacker, you will find an abundance of places to stay at in the area, including Julie's Guesthouse. At this establishment, you will be able to sign up for a couple of days trekking through the jungle that features lovely views and a first-hand look at how the locals thrive. To avoid getting hit by the monsoon rains, plan an adventure for this area between the months of October and April.

Central Thailand brings the allure of Bangkok, which overflows with shopping, addicting cuisine, palaces and temples. The Chao Phraya River provides a great scene to explore. Main attractions to consider include the Royal Palace, the Wats and Chinatown, as well as the Chatuchak Weekend Market.

Notable festivals can be experienced in Ayuthaya, where scenic riverside gardens await in Sukhothai. The endless possibilities for exploration are mind-boggling. The islands of Southern Thailand bring you closer to white sands and warm waters. The largest of the bunch is called Phuket, where other notable selections include the Phi Phi Islands and the waterfalls of Krabi.


Many tourists enjoy the overall aspect of Thailand nightlife. This is one of the main reasons a large amount of travelers backpack throughout the country: nature, culture, food and fun. If it's a good time you're looking for, try the many go-go and beer bars in Pattaya, as well as Chaweng Beach (Ko Samui) that parties into the wee hours of the night.

Koh Phangan is the site where thousands of locals and tourists gather to celebrate by the light of the full moon. It's a world famous beach party that never seems to end, offered once every month. It is one of the best places to experience the food, drink and dance of Thailand island life in an event that literally rocks the senses.

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