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Phuket Adventure Ultimate Guide to Monkey Hill

Phuket Adventure: Ultimate Guide to Monkey Hill

Monkey Hill in Phuket is a once-in-a-lifetime adventure that will get you up close and personal with an army of macaques. Ah, the friendly monkeys with large pouches in their cheeks and the hill’s panoramic views are nothing short of mindblowing. 

In this ultimate guide, we’ll show all the nitty-gritty you need to know to navigate Phuket’s Monkey Hill skillfully. Plus, learn to be on your best behavior around the primates and unravel the unique adventures that await. 

Things to Know

Time Zone: Indochina Time (UTC/GMT+7)

Currency: Thai Baht
(Check the current exchange rate)

Language: Thai (Central Thai)

Calling Code: +66

Location: Ratsada, Mueang Phuket District, Phuket 83000, Thailand

Nearest Airport: Phuket International Airport (35 km)

Operating Hours: 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. (daily)

Admission Fee: Free

Amenities: Restrooms, concrete benches, parking spaces, small shops

Monkey Hill, known as Khao To Sae locally, is a 2.7 mile ascent to the home of macaque monkeys. Being one of the highest mountains in the area, the hill houses various TV and radio stations, and towering antennas will greet you at the summit. 

At about 20 inches tall, macaques are the major draw of this tourist attraction. They’re a friendly breed, and records of dangerous behavior amongst humans are few and far between, but still practice due diligence when around these monkeys.

Best Time to Visit Monkey Hill Phuket

The best time to visit Monkey Hill is during the island province’s peak season between November and April. During this time, the clear and sunny weather invites you to go hiking up the hill’s viewpoint.

Try to avoid visiting during rainy seasons, as the wild monkeys in the area won’t be active, and the viewpoint will be cloudy. For the best views, it’s best to visit in the daytime.

In addition, you can climb in the morning and afternoon to avoid the scorching heat during midday. This way, you can enjoy a pleasant 3.5-kilometer ascent (about 6000 steps) from the hill’s base to the viewpoint without working up too much sweat. 

Reaching the viewpoint during the afternoon can be a timely decision, too. That means you can witness the sun go down on the charming Phuket Town, a most romantic moment when shared with someone. 

How to Get to Monkey Hill Phuket

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On Foot: Climbing Monkey Hill on foot is a challenging but unrestricted way to reach its viewpoint. This 3.5-kilometer walk can be the most fulfilling, letting you enjoy the scenery best while watching the wild monkeys.

The hill’s base point begins at the Urban Forest checkpoint, where two golden monkey statues sit on the side. You’ll recognize this spot because of the traffic cones, small metal gates, and a humble Chinese shrine a few steps ahead.

Bicycle: The uphill climb to Monkey Hill Viewpoint is perfect for cycling enthusiasts because it serves as an excellent exercise in the morning. It’s faster than climbing the hill on foot, but a warning: the road’s steep incline will be a challenge.

Motorbike: Since the road to Monkey Hill Viewpoint can be challenging on foot, a motorbike or scooter is recommended. Doing so will make your ascent easier, faster, and safer since you don’t have to worry about aggressive monkeys.

Reach the hill’s base point from Phuket Town by traveling through Montri Road, Narrison Road, Surin Road, and Soi To Chae. From this point, you only need to keep following the road until you reach the hill’s peak, so there’s no way for you to get lost.

Car: Due to the accessibility of rental cars in Phuket, it’s a reliable transportation option when visiting Monkey Hill. But vehicles can only travel on the hill between 7 a.m. and 8 a.m. or 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. to give way to foot traffic. 

Follow the previous route to reach Phuket Town’s northern area and find Monkey Hill’s base point.

Taxi: If you’re unfamiliar with the roads in Phuket, book a taxi so you can find this spot without any issues. Ask the driver to slow down while ascending the hill if you want to watch and take photos of the wild monkeys on the side of the road.

Also, tell the driver to take you to Monkey Hill Phuket’s base point entrance beforehand. Otherwise, you can ask him to drop you off at Phuket City Hall, which is only 800 meters away from the checkpoint.

Another great alternative for you is to try Grab. You can book a ride right from your smartphone, and the rates are fixed and transparent. 

Tuk-tuks: Because tuk-tuks are everywhere in Phuket, they’re a reliable public vehicle for getting around. Like taxis, you can ask the driver to take you to the Monkey Hill Viewpoint’s base point or a nearby landmark, like the city hall.

What to Do in Monkey Hill Phuket

Go hiking at the hill

Following the same approach, you’ll miss the challenging hike up the hill’s steep incline. Hiking here is a good opportunity to exercise while enjoying nature in Monkey Hill.

The uphill road is also ideal for cycling enthusiasts who want to build their stamina. Plus, there’s no bigger adrenaline rush than feeling the wind on your cheeks when riding a bicycle while descending from the viewpoint’s peak.

Visit the shrine

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Address: 34133 Soi Muensri, Ratsada, Mueang Phuket District, Phuket 83000

Opening Hours: 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. (daily)

A modest sight along the hill’s steep road, Pho Ta Toh Sae Shrine is home to the figures of three sacred spirits—Toh Sae Dang, Toh Sae Dam, and Toh Sae Kaow. You can check out the ornamental tiger statues throughout the shrine.

Here’s the exciting deal about this shrine: visitors come here to pray for good luck. Many locals commonly pay their respects to the shrine and ask for a winning lottery number combination.

Watch the sunset

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Although most people visit Monkey Hill Phuket for the wild macaques living around the area’s rainforest, there are other captivating things to see besides these primates. For instance, the scenic view of the cityscape tops that list.

You can witness the charm of Phuket Town thanks to the designated viewing deck at the summit. Off the bat, it’s the perfect spot for taking beautiful images, especially during good weather conditions where clouds float in the blue sky.

But wait until sunset. During this time, you can catch the breathtaking golden hour dial up the charming town’s beauty, and oh my, it’s a sight to behold!

Feed wild monkeys

When you arrive at the Urban Forest checkpoint, you’ll notice small roadside shops selling bananas, nuts, and carrots. Since this is the only place selling these snacks, you must shop before hiking to feed the wild monkeys.

The monkey population living in Monkey Hill Phuket isn’t afraid of human visitors, especially when they know you’re carrying food. Chances are, they’ll snatch food from your hand before reaching the designated feeding area.

If possible, we recommend hiring a local guide so they can assist you as you climb to the hill’s feeding grounds. Remember, these wild animals can get aggressive at a moment’s notice and attack, so be careful not to agitate them when feeding.

Capture beautiful photographs

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If you have a soft spot for animals, it’s understandable why you want to visit this place and interact with its wild macaque population. After all, the cuteness and curiosity of the small monkeys are irresistible.

Since they’re no strangers to human visitors, you can even get close to them to take heartwarming photographs. But you must be careful when interacting and playing with these animals, especially younger monkeys, as their mothers can be protective.

Certainly, there’s no need to invite disaster. This is where a zoom lens is your best friend because these monkeys can get pretty playful. 

Watch the monkeys perform tricks

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Lucky visitors can sometimes meet Pae Hog, a famous local man who’s friends with the monkeys in this area. He feeds the monkeys during his free time, and is approachable, so don’t hesitate to say “hi.”

But here’s the kicker: due to Uncle Hog’s good relationship with the monkeys, he can make them perform fun tricks. Whenever you’re visiting Monkey Hill Phuket, be on the lookout for him if you want to watch one unforgettable monkey show.

Where to Stay in Monkey Hill Phuket

Grand Supicha City Hotel

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Address: 48 Narrison Road, Talad Yai, Mueang Phuket, Thailand 83000

Contact Number: +66 76 684 0689  

Check-In & Out Time: 2:00 PM to 12:00 PM

Costs: ฿฿

Along Narrison Road lies the pretty Grand Supicha City Hotel, within a 1-kilometer walking distance from Monkey Hill Phuket’s base. This hotel gives you the quickest access to the viewpoint, so it’s perfect if you enjoy early morning or evening walks.

This strategic location provides easy access to other hotspots in Phuket Town, making getting around more manageable. And the best thing is the hotel features large, clean rooms that don’t cost as much as the most luxurious places in town.

The Arbern Hotel X Bistro

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Address: 54 Suthat Road, Tambon Talat Yai, Mueang Phuket District, Phuket 83000

Contact Number: +66 97 021 9340

Check-In & Out Time: 10:00 PM to 12:00 PM

Costs: ฿


About 500 meters past Narrison Road, you can find the small Arbern Hotel X Bistro along Montri Road. Like most hotels and inns in the area, this establishment offers affordable accommodations, with its lobby serving as the bistro dining area.

The bistro is the highlight is this hotel, apart from the spacious rooms—they serve European breakfast and Japanese food! If you’re a ramen lover, you’ll enjoy the selection of ramen bowls they serve, which goes well with a small plate of gyoza.

Where to Eat in Monkey Hill Phuket

Monkey Hill Cafe

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Address: Ratsada, Mueang Phuket District, Phuket 83000

Contact Number: +66 81 892 5354 

Operating Hours: 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. (daily except Tuesdays) 

Costs: ฿

The small Monkey Hill Cafe is a few steps before the hill’s base point, making it this location’s nearest food place. Here, you can enjoy authentic classic dishes like pad thai and seafood tom yum soup for an affordable price.

What’s notable about this roadside cafe is the view from its dining area, featuring the lush greeneries surrounding it. It’s the perfect spot for relaxing after a tiring hike to the hill’s viewpoint, with fresh coconut juice to rehydrate yourself.

Since this cozy cafe is at the base point, you can start your visit to Monkey Hill Phuket with a hearty meal and a friendly chat with the old couple running it. They speak fluent English, so you can ask for helpful tips before leaving.

Baan 109 Restaurant

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Address: 109 Thalang Rd, Tambon Talat Yai, Mueang Phuket District, Phuket 83000, Thailand

Contact Number: +66 95 421 1827

Operating Hours: 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. (daily) 

Costs: ฿

Sitting on Thalang Road, Baan 109 can be your go-to eating place before or after your Monkey Hill climb, as this is about 12 minutes away. Cherish the owner’s vintage collection as you sip your coffee and enjoy sumptuous Thai food. 

The space is casual but adds a touch of a homey vibe. The best part is you can save some money here as prices are reasonable compared to top-tier fine dining options in Phuket. 

Reminders When Visiting Monkey Hill Phuket

Monkey Hill is fraught with visitors daily, so that tells you that coming to this macaque home should be a breeze. Still, certain things will help you navigate Phuket’s monkey paradise safely.

  • Never feed the monkeys by hand. As friendly as these primates are, they can sometimes become irritable, and they might mistake your hand as a free food. 
  • Never let things dangle out of your bag or your pockets. A swinging keychain may be too hot to pass for a monkey seeking adventure. 
  • Don’t act recklessly around wild monkeys, especially younger ones. It’s to avoid agitating their protective mothers, which can lead to a terrible attack. 
  • Never show aggressive behavior as monkeys, especially the alpha male, may view that as a challenge to their dominance. So, no shouting or looking at them angrily in the eye.
  • Unless you’re ready to feed the monkeys, don’t carry items or food in your hand to prevent them from bothering you.
  • Wear comfortable hiking shoes because the steep incline gets more challenging to climb as you go higher.
  • Carry water bottles to rehydrate yourself while hiking to the summit. You can buy from the shops at the hill’s base point.
  • Bring a camera with an excellent zoom lens to take pictures at a safe distance.

FAQs about Monkey Hill Phuket

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