Today the fifth annual Kathu Street Culture Festival kicks off, just over the hill from Patong.

If you’re interested in finding out more about the history of Phuket, this is well worth a look. Kathu was once the centre of the tin mining industry and the festival highlights the huge contribution the area and people of Kathu have made to Phuket, and their wonderfully diverse culture and traditions.

Expect to find loads of stalls lining the streets selling locally made products and delicious Thai food, as well as displays and performances where you can learn about the heritage of Kathu.

The opening parade starts at 5.30pm at the Kathu market and the festival will be on every evening until Wednesday 24 July.

Today and tomorrow are also public holidays here in Thailand – today is Asarnha Bucha day and tomorrow is Khao Pansa, the start of Buddhist Lent. As with all Buddhist holidays here, the retail sale of alcohol will be banned until midnight on Tuesday. Patong Language School will be open and classes will continue as scheduled.