Surat Thani is a city in Amphoe Mueang Surat Thani, Surat Thani Province, southern Thailand. It lies 651 km south of Bangkok. It is the capital of Surat Thani Province. The city has a population of 128,179 (2009), and an area of 68.97 square kilometers. The city's population density is 1,858.47 inhabitants per km². Surat Thani is near the mouth of the Tapi River on the Gulf of Thailand. The city offers no major tourist attractions in itself, and is mainly known to tourists as the jumping-off point to Ko Samui, Ko Tao, and Ko Pha Ngan. It is the regional commercial center, with a seaport dealing in the main products of the province, rubber and coconuts.
Phuket is one of the southern provinces (changwat) of Thailand. It consists of the island of Phuket, the country's largest island, and another 32 smaller islands off its coast. It lies off the west coast of Thailand in the Andaman Sea. Phuket Island is connected by the Sarasin Bridge to Phang Nga Province to the north. The next nearest province is Krabi, to the east across Phang Nga Bay Phuket Province has an area of 576 square kilometres (222 sq mi), somewhat less than that of Singapore, and is the second-smallest province of Thailand. The island was on one of the major trading routes between India and China, and was frequently mentioned in foreign ships' logs of Portuguese, French, Dutch, and English traders, but was never colonised by a European power. It formerly derived its wealth from tin and rubber and now from tourism.