Phuket is the largest island in Thailand and is one of the most popular holiday destinations in the country, along with the Phi Phi Islands and Bangkok. Phuket is best known for beautiful and breathtaking beaches that are ideal for swimming, scuba diving and snorkelling, but also for sights such as the James Bond Rock and the exciting nightlife. A holiday on Thailand’s most beautiful island is perfect for people looking for peace and quiet. There are countless, sometimes very luxurious hotels, diverse restaurants and numerous leisure facilities.
In addition to the island’s most popular beaches, which are world famous for their azure waters and white sand, there are many other bays and beaches where you’ll be almost alone. Whether for families with children, divers, sailors or golfers, the Thai island of Phuket is guaranteed to have something for everyone.
Hardly any other island can boast such an extensive abundance of sandy beaches with crystal clear water as Phuket. The winding roads lead along the coasts and thus offer a great view of the sea and the magnificent bays. If you want to visit a beach that is very popular with tourists, access is usually possible without any problems and there is good signage.
Whether you want to be there in the middle of the hustle and bustle of Patong’s beach or rather crave solitude on a remote sandy beach in the northern part of the island, there’s something for every type of holiday. Most of the larger beaches have small snacks or restaurants, so there is also culinary catering. For all Phuket holidaymakers who come to the island because of the beautiful beaches, we have put together information and tips on the most amazing beaches and bays of Phuket in this article, so you certainly don’t miss a highlight.
Most Phuket connoisseurs are likely to think of Bangla Road first when the name Patong drops because the party street is in this place. However, Patong is characterized by much more. Patong Beach is definitely worth seeing. It is about 3.5 kilometers long and runs along the entire western side of the village of Patong. It is not without reason that the beach is the main holiday destination of the island, which is why many holidaymakers in Patong are looking for a hotel. The beach is picturesque and beautiful.
There are many shops nearby, cultural attractions, countless opportunities for activities and excellent restaurants. In Patong, both luxury lovers and price-conscious holidaymakers get their money’s worth. If you love parties and like to have everything centrally without a lot of driving, Patong is sure to be the holiday destination for you. However, you should know that Patong Beach is a very busy and bustling beach. Those seeking peace or quiet, or travellers who want to get to know Thailand from its traditional side, are therefore not properly advised with this beach. In addition, Patong Beach is comparatively noisy due to traffic.
Karon Beach is the third longest beach on Phuket. It is located on the west coast and is located between Kata to the south and Patong to the north. Quite rightly, Karon Beach is one of the island’s most popular holiday destinations. The village of Karon can be divided into three areas:
- Karon Center: A lively, small town with an extensive range of shopping, nightlife and restaurants
- Wat Karon: A Buddhist temple with a weekly market twice a week on whose grounds
- Luang Poh Chuan Road: A street at the southern end of Karon Beach with excellent restaurants and all sorts of bars
The Karon Beach Street is perfect for an evening stroll when the sun is setting. Directly opposite you will find magnificent hotel resorts, unique shops and eclectic restaurants. It is only through the well-known Karon Bazar that the road is interrupted. Sun-seekers and beach lovers get their money’s worth at Karon Beach, as do people who want to feel a little Thai flair on their trip to Thailand. In addition, the place offers a good compromise between tranquility on the beach and varied nightlife. However, we would like to point out that Karon is quite a big place. Therefore, if you want to explore the entire city, you need to resort to a taxi. Baderatten should know that the sea at Karon Beach can be very rough in the period from May to November.
Nai Harn Beach
Nai Harn Beach is a quiet and quiet place, which is why the locals feel very comfortable here. The small village is located in a narrow bay and is lined with mountains. Accordingly, there is also a lack of space for too many hotels. Visitors will find a good selection of small bays and beaches in Nai Harn Beach, which are particularly sought after by snorkelers, divers and sailors. There are some good local restaurants on site, but there are few sights or shops. The Windmill Hill and Promthep Cape viewpoints are definitely worth seeing because you can enjoy wonderful views from here. Nai Harn Beach is ideal for a relaxing holiday in the middle of nature. Still, you don’t have to be afraid that you’re completely isolated. Nature and beach lovers definitely make a good choice with Nai Harn Beach. With few shopping options and no exciting nightlife, holidaymakers looking for action and adventure should be more likely to switch to other beaches and regions.
Rawai Beach is located on the southeastern tip of Phuket. Historically, this was the island’s first real tourist beach. It is particularly popular because this is where the sea and a gypsy village meet. On the coast you will be able to observe many long tail boats anchored to the 2.5-kilometre peer. They belong to the local fishermen. Rawai has a port that is well suited to explore other islands such as Bon Island, Racha Island or Coral Island. Compared to Patong, the atmosphere in Rawai is very quiet. There are only a few nightlife options and shops, but thanks to the bars and restaurants on the beach, there is still no boredom. Nearby are Chalong and Nai Harn, so you can visit some attractions such as the Promthep Cape or the Phuket Big Buddha when you’re on holiday in Rawai. If it’s important to you to enjoy a real Thailand atmosphere while on holiday, you should definitely prefer Rawai Beach compared to Patong. Rawai Beach is also suitable for holidaymakers who are not happy in crowded tourist areas. If, on the other hand, you are looking for an exciting nightlife and lots of shopping opportunities, you will not get your money’s worth in Rawai.
Kata Beach is a long and lively beach that is particularly popular with diving students and surfers. Between the beach and Pu Island there is a beautiful reef that can be explored. The nightlife in Kata is not too rough, but it is still fun. There are good restaurants, viewpoints, leisure activities and shops. For this reason, Kata is considered very family-friendly, making it an often chosen destination for young couples with children. The range of attractions is well stocked around Kata Beach. For these reasons, this beach is also the classic among the holiday destinations on Phuket. With Kata Beach you will definitely make a good choice,
- If you love parties
- If you like to dive or surf
- If you like to have everything centrally in one place and want to save yourself long taxi rides
- If you’re looking for a budget holiday
- If you love luxury
- If you are travelling with children
Kata Beach is definitely one of Phuket’s most beautiful beaches. If you choose an inexpensive or mid-range hotel, however, you will have to expect a further distance from the beach as from the luxury hotels. The latter are located in the immediate vicinity of the beach.
Chalong is on the east coast, which is unfortunately rather muddy. That’s why Chalong Bay isn’t so well suited for swimming either. But this natural place is perfect as a pier for boats, ships and yachts. That’s why Chalong is also a center for all boat activities. The busiest time in Chalong is early in the morning, because then excursion and diving groups celebrate the boats. Even in the late afternoon, when the boats will leave again, traffic in Chalong Bay is high. The Ao Chalong Yacht Club regularly organises regattas and has its base in Chalong. It also has a bar popular with sailors. Chalong’s most striking feature is the seven-foot-wide and 720-foot-long jetty. There is a parking lot and some restaurants, kiosks, shops and open-air waiting areas, so there is no boredom at Chalong Bay. Divers in particular are drawn to Chalong, but also fitness fans, as the place has the famous Muay road that runs around the Tiger Muay Thai. The many local restaurants invite you to pass the time until the boat trip. The fish restaurants in particular are top notch. Chalong is also a good base from which to explore other islands near Phuket.
Surin Beach is one of Phuket’s most exclusive areas, thanks to its impressive natural beauty. That’s why celebrities especially like to come to Surin Beach. Many of the big houses belong to multi-millionaires. Nevertheless, Surin Beach is open to the world and welcomes holidaymakers and guests. There are various boutiques and high-end shops close to the beach. There are also a few beautiful beach clubs. Only in terms of activities is the offer in Surin Beach a bit limited. The village with the stunning beach is well suited for holidaymakers who want to escape the stress of everyday life and just relax. If you’re lucky enough not to have to look at every euro on your Thailand getaway and if you’re looking for an exclusive destination, Surin Beach is perfect for you. You can relax on the beach during the day and take part in one of the popular beach parties in the evening. From May to November, the sea off Surin Beach is also perfect for surfers. In high season, you can snorkel well at the northern end of the beach.
Kamala Beach is long and bent. Behind it is a small town. The beach is just a stone’s throw from Patong, but still the exact opposite of the buoyant tourist magnet. Kamala is known for its tranquil atmosphere and has none of the bustle of Patong. That’s why families and the elderly prefer to come to Kamala. The city offers numerous villas, first-class hotels and spas, so there are no wishes left unfulfilled. The nightlife is present, but very subdued. If you’re not looking for a hustle and bustle and not exactly the best parties on the island, but a place to relax and feel good, Kamala Beach is the ideal beach for you. The dreamlike and quiet beach offers many places to relax and unwind. Kamala Beach is also very popular because of its sense of community, because everything is very different here. Recut-conscious holidaymakers are also definitely making the right decision with Kamala. A special feature of Kamala Beach is that it is one of the few places in Phuket where there are many restaurants directly on the beach. As a surf spot, the northern part of the beach is ideal from May to November. In addition, the choice of affordable, yet very high-quality hotels is good.
Bang Tao Beach
Phuket’s second longest beach is Bang Tao Beach. It is considered a place of contrasts because the southern part is surrounded by a small fishing village and is home to many cheap and middle-class hotels. The middle area, on the other hand, is occupied by the Laguna complex, that is, a whole group of luxury resorts located between the lagoons. The northern part ends at Layan Beach and is still quite underdeveloped. There are only a few five-star houses here and otherwise plenty of green hills. Bang Tao Beach is a rather quiet holiday destination, but there are also some excellent restaurants and beach clubs. Most are at the entrance to the Laguna complex on or near Tinley Plaza. Wealthy travellers who want to escape the stressful everyday life will be happy all around at Bang Tao Beach. In addition, there is everything here in one place, so that the place is also suitable for people who do not want to drive around on holiday all the time. The beach is a total of six kilometres long and offers excellent conditions for long, long walks. However, the nightlife and shopping left something to be desired. Only in Patong, 15 kilometres away, nightlife rages, so night owls had better look for another location.
May Khao Beach
With a total length of eleven kilometers, Mai Khao Beach is the longest beach on the island of Phuket. The long beach offers a panorama similar to that of the 350-kilometre coastal area between Phuket and Ranong on the border with Myanmar. Mai Khao Beach is a dreamlike sandy beach lined with tropical almonds, palm trees and pines, as well as unique tropical coastal plants. Mai Khao is secluded from it all, there are only a few luxury resorts and the Splash Jungle Water Park, which sparks enthusiasm among young and old. The largest section of the beach is part of Sirinath National Park. This is the only place on Phuket where the giant Ridley sea turtles lay their eggs every year between November and February. If you’re looking for a holiday where you can switch off and leave it all behind, Mai Khao Beach is perfect for you. Especially the following people are drawn to this beach:
- Luxury holidaymakers
- Wedding couples on their honeymoon
By the way: May Khao Beach is only five kilometres from the airport, so you’ll be spared a long journey, but there’s no noise pollution. The only drawback of the village is that there are only a few restaurants and shopping facilities, which also leaves the nightlife on the way. For night owls, Patong, 30 kilometres away, is therefore better suited.
Nai Yang Beach
With Nai Yang just a five-minute drive south of the airport, it is very popular with holidaymakers. But it also goes down well with the locals. Here you can still feel what real beach life means. There are casuarine trees that offer picnic spots for holidaymakers and locals, but also shady spots for souvenir and food stalls. In Nai Yang, holidaymakers will find absolute relaxation and relaxation.
For families and people looking for peace and quiet, Nai Yang Beach is ideal. The water is very shallow, which is why this place is especially suitable for families with smaller children. Despite the seclusion and tranquility, there are some restaurants and beach bars, so there is no boredom in culinary terms. For people who love party life, though, Nai Yang Beach is certainly not the right thing to do.
Panwa Beach was named after a nearby Muslim village. It is located in the southwest of the island. The beauty of Panwa Beach is that despite years of construction in the immediate vicinity, the beach is still the same: It is still very quiet and quiet, which is why it turns out to be a real paradise for restless people. Eight kilometers east of Phuket city is Khao Khat, which covers the west coast of Cape Panwa. The sand of the beach is rather rough and the water here is very shallow. Nevertheless, this beach is popular with tourists, which is certainly also due to the fact that you can enjoy a charming view of Chalong Bay and Lone Island from here. Almost the entire beach is lined with condos and luxury villas. In between there are fishing huts and at the far west end of the beach there is a mangrove swamp. Most people love the quiet and original atmosphere on Panwa Beach. Party lovers and families with children who are looking for the perfect starting point for a beach holiday, but should rather look around other places, because the nightlife is not really varied and the beach is only partially suitable for swimming.
Yanui Beach is located right between Nai Harn and Laem Promthep, the southernmost point of Phuket. The southbound road passes directly past Yanui Beach. Even so, the beach would be easy to miss, not numerous parked vehicles would indicate that there is something nice to see here. The beach is quite small, but has beautiful sand and a rocky cape. Directly opposite is a small island in the sea. Yanui Beach is perfect for snorkelling, but kids get their money’s worth here, too. The problem is that the small beach is quickly very crowded in the morning. That’s why it could be difficult to get a place in the shade, especially for late risers. So the best time to visit is early morning or late afternoon, because then there’s not quite as much going on. Meals are catered for because there are still some beaches and restaurants in the immediate vicinity.
More information about Yanui
Laem Ka Beach
Actually, the most beautiful beaches of Phuket are on the west coast. But there are still some good beaches that are located in the east of the island. This clearly includes Laem Ka. From Chalong, this beach is just before Rawai Beach. There is a driveway across from the Phuket Seashell Museum, which is a little inconspicuous. The beach is framed by some large rocks, so you will find ideal conditions for snorkelling here. As the beach is located on the east coast, it is also very protected in the low season. Unfortunately, Laem Ka Beach has no direct sunset views. But it is particularly nice here early in the morning. Only around 4 pm you should not visit the beach, because then countless speedboats come back from the nearby islands, so that usually many Asian tourists actually flood the beach.
More information about Laem Ka
Nui Beach is located between Kata and Nai Harn. If you come from Nai Harn, a gravel road leads to the beach just before Karon Viewpoint.
The effort is worth it, because below you will be rewarded with a great bay, which attracts with the finest sandy beach. The numerous rocks invite you to snorkel. However, you pay a small entrance fee here, for which you will receive a drink and a lounger. There is also a restaurant and a bar, where the prices are very high. This is mainly because the beach is simply glorious and never crowded. Only in the low season is the restaurant not occupied, so you won’t have to pay admission.
Learn more about Nui
Sapan Hin is an open park located right by the sea. Located a bit outside Phuket Town, it is a very popular meeting place for locals. They exercise here, go for a walk or let dragons climb. Especially in the early evening there is a lot going on here, because then there are a lot of stalls where food is sold. Sapan Hin is also known for regular events, such as the Vegetarian Festival or concerts. Of course, there is also a beach in the Sapan Hin, which is not exactly inviting for swimming. The water is shaken up and sometimes very cloudy. Nevertheless, it may be worth visiting the beach in Sapan Hin to observe the local life and get to know a whole new side of Phuket. A lot of birds can also be observed in the coastal area, because it is home to numerous species of birds. That’s why Sapan Hin is also a popular place with (hobby) ornithologists.
Learn more about Sapan Hin