Phuket is one of the oldest cities in Thailand. This old town used to be the important port on the west of the Malay Peninsula where Chinese immigrants first landed. Phuket used to be ruled by both Portugal and Holland.
The old buildings in Phuket town certainly represent its former prosperity. These old buildings were constructed when mining was an important Phuket industry. The architectural style, called "Sino-Portuguese", is European mixed with Chinese modern. Characteristic is a single or two-storey building with a narrow front compensated for by considerable depth. The tiles, doors, perforated windows and other details are all influenced by Chinese and European styles mixed together.
The major religion is Buddhism. The Buddhist temples in the city are attractive destinations for national and international tourists. Along the streets some Hindu temples depicting the statues of Lord Ganesha and Lord Brahma can also be seen.