Published: June 2019
Phuket is one of the most popular beach destinations in Thailand.
Most of the best beaches in Phuket are found on the West Coast of the island with the beautiful Andaman sea lapping on its sun-kissed shores.
Phuket won’t disappoint if you looking for a beautiful beach to unwind, read a book, sip a cocktail or just soak up the sun.
Searching for the Best Beaches on Phuket?
There are over thirty beautiful beaches in total and each one has something unique to offer. Clearwaters, white sand and sunshine – you are guaranteed to get a few Instagram shots. Some of these beaches have been used in famous Hollywood movies.
It is no surprise why thousands of visitors from all over the world visit this island every year. Before you hit the beach make sure you read our tips about visiting Phuket to make your trip even more memorable.
Below we have listed some of Phuket’s best beaches:
Set in the heart of Patong which is the main tourist area. This beach is always buzzing with life and tourist. Many consider it one of the best Phuket beaches because of its exciting vibe.
Patong beach is one street away from the popular Bangla road. Even though it is popular, it’s crescent shape and size boasts enough space for everyone to use it at their leisure.
Activities on Patong beach
Water sports are very popular on this beach. You can hire jet ski’s and go parasailing behind a boat. It is also popular with early morning and late afternoon joggers.
The beach itself is flat with soft fine sand which is great for families letting kids build endless sandcastles and play in the gentle waves.
There are lots of vendors on the beach which offer tourist different services like massages, even manicures or pedicure. You can get your hair braided while people watching and the rates are much cheaper rate than the salons around Bangla Road.
Some loungers and umbrellas are available to use at your leisure at no charge if you buy an outrageously overpriced beer or cocktail. If you walk a little further along the beach and bargain then you can rent a lounger and umbrella for the whole day.
Sunsets on Patong beach is a must!
The best thing about Patong beach has to be the famous pink sunsets that spread across the sea with longtail boats floating in the distance.
Go for a swim, play ball with the family or just enjoy a late afternoon sundowner while watching the sun go down.
Getting to Paradise beach
Paradise Beach is just 8 minutes away from Patong Beach. There is a free shuttle service that runs to and from different points in Patong throughout the day. You will easily find the shuttle at the Patong Beach Sign outside the police station, next to the Hard Rock Cafe or outside Junction Mall on the opposite side of Bangla Road.
Paradise beach is a privately owned beach that is run by a popular beach club. They host Phuket’s Full moon, half moon and new moon beach party’s as well as a wide range of sports and recreational activities.
Times, Prices & Food
The beach opens at 9:00 am and the entrance fee is approx 200 Baht, alternatively, you can get a ticket online if you don’t want to worry about tickets on the day but it is a bit more.
Be warned that you may not take any food or drink onto the beach and bags are checked. There are restaurants and bars on the beach where you can get food, drinks and cocktails.
What to do on Paradise beach?
The beach itself is beautiful with white sand and crystal clear waters. There are Palm trees along the shore and a swing rope where you can drop right into the ocean.
Paddleboards, kayak and snorkelling rentals are available to keep the whole family entertained for the day.
If you walk a little further to the left along a path or depending on the tide you can walk on the sand you come to another small beautiful beach. Enjoy lapping in the waves and admiring the view of Patong bay.
For Instagram lovers, there is a full swing with a beautiful ocean background which makes the perfect Instagram picture!
Phuket Full Moon Party
We went to a Full Moon Party at Paradise beach in October 2018. There was spectacular fire dancing and we drank cocktails out of buckets and danced the night away barefoot on the beach. It’s a really cool experience for couples and friends. You can buy Phuket Full Moon Party Tickets here
The event was very well organised, security was tight so there was no trouble. The shuttle took us back to Patong in the early hours of the morning.
Karon Beach is the second largest beach on the West Coast. It lies between Patong and Kata beach.
Karon is not as busy as Patong but is just as beautiful. Its long stretch of sand is perfect for talking those early morning walks.
There is not a lot of tree coverage so it’s a good idea to hire an umbrella or two because in peak summer the sun can be brutal.
There is a main road that runs parallel to the beach, most of the hotels are found along this road but not on the beach side. In the high season, this road can get very busy and noisy. During Monsoon Karon beach is known to take a bit of a bashing, you have to be more careful the waves do get big during this time.
Elephants on the beach in Phuket
In the Northern part of the beach, there is a local village with endless restaurants, shops and a Buddhist monastery which is worth checking out.
Occasionally, if you lucky you may see elephants on the beach. There are elephant camps in the area and they come from the hills behind Kata and Karon.
Kata Beach is one of the best beaches in Phuket for families. The whole area is kid friendly but the only drawback is that there are not a lot of beachfront hotels. Most hotels are set further back in the hills which is a little inconvenience with small kids in tow.
The beach is perfect for swimming in peak season. The water is almost always clean and there is plenty of shade provided by the trees at the top of the beach. You can also take stand up paddling lessons or hire a SUP board.
Kata Beach has loads of things to do for children of all ages. Dino Park Mini golf and restaurant is very popular featuring a Jurassic theme mini golf course and fire breathing volcano.
The elephants are nearby in the hills where you can go feed them. Please be considerate and do not ride them.
The Centara’s water park is close by with ATV’s for the older kids to ride and Paintball to keep them entertained. There are also many shops in the area for shopping and buying everyday essentials.
Nai Harn Beach
This is one of my personal favourite beaches. It is quiet, found on the Southern end of Phuket, there are only a few hotels and restaurants.
If you are staying around Patong area you have to take a taxi here but it makes a great day out to soak up some sun and swim. From November to April it is the perfect swimming beach the water is crystal clear and you can do a little snorkelling around the left-hand side of the bay.
There are a few rocks and a few trees to get some shade. During peak season it does full up though so please don’t forget your umbrellas. During Monsoon season this beach does get dangerous, there are really strong currents so swimming is replaced with kite-boarders and surfboards.
A little further south there is Ya Nui Beach which is great for snorkelers and divers.
Ya Nui Beach
This sandy cove as mentioned above is great for snorkelers and divers, there is plenty of beautiful coral surrounding this area. The beach is also great for sifting through the many tiny shells that wash up on shore.
There is also an island 700m out to sea called Koh Keyao Noi where yachts drop anchor during peak season.
To get to this beach you have to catch a tuk-tuk which is easy from Patong beach.
We spent hours here, grab your flotation device and a hat and you can float in the water for hours. On most days there are not many waves and the water can be really crystal clear, it reminded us of some of the beaches on Trincomalee in Sri Lanka.
The vendors here I found were really friendly and accommodating. You can order really yummy cocktails and they bring them to you on the beach. You will find some great Thai restaurants nearby.
You also hire umbrellas, chairs and buy some really cool lilos of all shapes and sizes.
Other Awesome Beaches in Phuket
A quiet, unspoiled beach, but its quite difficult to get to. You would either need to take a hike through the jungle or hire a fishing boat to take you.
Its just South of Kata beach but not as popular. Its only 700m long and perfect for day trips to the beach. The sea here is ideal for activities such as snorkelling and surfing. Kata Noi is the perfect place to take surfing lessons in Phuket.
Bang Tao Beach
Bang Tao Beach (or Bangtao) is one of the longest beaches of Phuket. Famous for some of the best beach clubs in Phuket and great boutique shopping
This is one of the quieter Phuket beaches compared to Patong beach or Kata beach. Swimming conditions are excellent during high season and there and lots of trees to find a shady spot on hot days.
You can take a day tour to Banana beach & Racha Yai on a speedboat. The scenery is breathtaking and the beaches won’t disappoint. You can also pre-book parasailing and renting a glass-bottomed kayak for Banana beach.
Known for its calm, shallow waters. Great beach for families with small children to play.
The first tourist beach on Phuket but today Rawai beach is a launching point for boat excursions. Many tourists still flock for the scenic views and just to relax.
Laem Singh Beach
Previously Laem Singh was only accessible by boat, however, in 2019 a new walkway has opened but it’s not easy and requires a bit of a climb over some rocks to reach the beginning of the path.
Although it was once a secret remote beach and hard to access, Laem Singh has become an essential attraction to many tourists. There is a Thai restaurant built on a wooden terrace on the rocks of Laem Sing offering a fantastic view.
Nude beach in Phuket?
Yes, you read right. Phuket has its very own nude beach. Nui beach is towards the southernmost tip of Phuket. Its situated in a private cove where you can tan topless, swim naked or even kayak and surf… yes naked.
The beach has a 120m strip of sand dotted with large boulders. You will need to drive about 3km through the jungle after Kata-Karon Viewpoint to get to the beach.
If you want to spend a couple of days on the beach then you can book into the naturalist hotel on the beach – Lemon Tree Resort.
Best Day Trip – Beach Tours From Phuket
Phang Nga Bay
Karst rock formations, mangroves, caves and beautiful sights that will take your breath away. The ideal conditions makes the bay home to a wide range of marine life, including manta rays, sharks and plankton.
Phang Nga Bay is home to the famous landmark James Bond island (aka Ko Ta Pu) The island became famous after being featured in a James Bond movie ‘The Man with the Golden Gun’.
Phi Phi Island
If you have enough time then we strongly recommend spending at least 2 or 3 days on Phi Phi island. The island offers a great ambience to young travellers and a fantastic nightlife too.
Alternatively, you can book a full day tour to Phi Phi islands from Phuket. This will give you an opportunity to explore PhiPhi Leh, Maya Bay (featured in the movie the beach), Bamboo island, Phi Phi Leh Lagoon and Phi Phi Don where you can climb to the top of the beautiful viewpoint. The trip includes views of Viking Cave and a visit the monkey beach. You also get ample time to snorkel the crystal clear waters.
NOTE: Maya bay is closed to tourist. You can no longer go to Maya Bay, however, you can still get close enough to snap a few pictures. Occasionally the boat will stop outside the restricted area, let you jump in and let you snorkel in the nearby waters.
The island offers fantastic snorkelling with incredible underwater wildlife such as the colourful coral, clownfish and giant clams, just to mention a few.
The island has a fantastic viewpoint, with views of Phuket, Phi Phi, and Phang Nga Island.
Best beachfront hotels in Phuket
Still looking for a place to stay? Here are some of the top rated beachfront hotels in Phuket. We advise booking in advance during peak season as most of these hotels sell out quickly.
Budget hotels by the beach
Family beach hotels
Luxury hotels and resorts
When is the best time to visit Phuket and its beaches?
When planning your trip to Phuket keep in mind that the best time to visit its beaches is between November to April.
Monsoon hits the island between May and October where swollen seas can become a little dangerous. Snorkelling is also not advised as visibility will be very low.
Best diving spots around Phuket
There are dozens of stunning diving spots in and around Phuket. Many people come to Thailand to complete their PADI diving qualification so they can Scuba Dive and explore Thailand under water.
Hin Daeng and Hin Muang dive sites are both listed among the best dive spots in Thailand and in the world. Both areas are known as the best sites to see whale sharks in the world.
Koh Phi Phi and Koh Lanta are two of the most popular diving spots from Phuket.
Mantra rays and turtles can be spotted in Racha Noi and Racha Yai during peak season, however, these sites are only recommended for experienced divers.
You may also want to check out a Phuket diving tour that goes to Siam Bay and Patok Bay. Both are known for their crystal clear waters.
Many divers also choose a Liveaboard experience to meet other divers, save on accommodation and maximise their time in the water.
Best time to go diving in Phuket?
The best time to go snorkelling or scuba diving in Phuket is between February and April. Giant manta ray sightings tend to peak during this time especially at Koh Bon.
Phuket Beach Tips
- Many of the beaches that have water sports such as jet ski’s, it’s always advisable to swim between the designated flags.
- Stay hydrated and pack your favourite beach hat, sunglasses and sunscreen.
- Never go swimming when drunk. The most common cause of drowning is alcohol intoxication.
- You can read some of our best travel tips for some more advise during your travels and visiting the beach.
Other cool stuff to do in Phuket:
Have you been to Phuket? Which beaches in Phuket would you like to visit?? Let us know your thoughts and comments in this post below.
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