Phuket FantaSea show

Cabarets are very popular
Cabarets are very popular

Think 44 elephants on a stage, a huge menagerie-like cast, perfectly choreographered illuminated acrobatics that seem suspended in mid-air, and a hilarious Siamese twins comedy act, and you have yourself a family fun-filled evening that has been voted Thailand’s top attraction several times in recent years.

The Phuket FantaSea theme park showcases the beauty and charms of Thailand with the help of a little high-tech magic. This 140-acre entertainment complex located near the water at Kamala Village is packed to the gills with things to see and do, from a Las Vegas-style show that will leave your jaw hanging, to a unique shopping experience in a recreated Thai village.

FantaSea isn’t just a place for kids. The special effects in the shows use the latest technology to create a truly amazing visual experience that will also suitably impress adults, too.

Unlike most theme parks, FantaSea only puts on one show a day. The gates open at 17:30 daily (except Thursdays), giving visitors time to look around the grounds before a buffet dinner is served. The Golden Kinnaree Restaurant floats majestically in the middle of a blue lake under the Golden Pavilion and as many as 4,000 guests can dine like kings on traditional Thai and international dishes.

After you’ve been fed and watered, head over to Festival Village; an enchanting collection of various forms of Thai architecture. Shopping is the main activity here, as each different building focuses on a Thai product, including Thai silk, leather, handicrafts, jewellery, souvenirs, and lots more.

Send the kids over to the village’s Hanuman’s Lair, where they can play games and get entertained by the friendly staff while you browse elsewhere. Although it may appear like one big gift shop designed to empty your wallet, there are various impromptu performers to warm up the crowd and you needn’t buy anything to enjoy the evening.

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The gates open to the main attraction at 20:30, with the big show kicking off at 21:00, so get here early and grab a good seat. The Palace of the Elephants is the setting for this visual extravaganza, and this state-of-the-art theatre can seat 3,000 spectators amid its Sukhothai-era stone palace recreation. A creative melange of elephant sculptures dot the arena, lending a distinctively Thai atmosphere to proceedings.

The Fantasy of a Kingdom culture show is nothing short of an over-the-top bombardment of Thai-flavoured eye candy. International experts and local designers were brought together to create a performance that rivals most shows in Las Vegas even

Nine stunning themes are incorporated into the main event, weaving Thai culture, acrobatics, aerial stunts, incredible four-dimensional illusions, indoor pyrotechnics and elephants into one of the most unique displays in the country.

The main show lasts 75 minutes. However, the FantaSea complex stays open until 23:30 so guests can check out the unique shopping environment at the Festival Village, play a few games at Hanuman’s Lair or just wander around the expansive grounds after the main performance.

You will likely need a few moments to consider whether what you saw was real or fantasy. The Kamala Beer garden may help to put things back in perspective but, either way, you’ll walk out of Phuket’s FantaSea with a lasting memory.