There are few places that are as fortunate as Phuket in terms of the amount of fantastic beaches that are available. Granted, there are plenty of other islands out there, but due to the sheer size of Phuket you have everything from busy party beaches to completely remote beaches available within a short distance of one another and there is a myriad to choose from.
The best beach for snorkelling
If you are looking for an extraordinary beach to go snorkelling on, there are plenty to choose from on the island; however our absolute favourite choice is Ao Sane Beach (near Nai Harn). This beach is a well kept secret on the southwest side of the island and is small, measuring a mere 200 meters in length. If you want to explore the water, get your snorkelling gear ready and prepare to see unbelievable fishes in countless colours in the stunning clear water. Don’t forget to put sun cream on your back while you snorkel – the sun is extremely strong and you won’t feel the heat while in the water!
There is plenty of shade to enjoy throughout the day due to the beach being surrounded by trees, but unfortunately there are no sun beds or chairs. There are however a few restaurants along the beach where you can enjoy some nice cool refreshments or a bite to eat after a long day in the water.
To get to this beach, you have to drive towards Phuket Yacht Club and follow the road below the hotel – the road signs are quite clear. You can drive fairly far down towards the beach, however most people park further up and walk down.
The best beach for socialising
Patong Beach could be your perfect beach if you are looking for a beach with a constant buzz as well as activities and water sports going on throughout the day. Due to the fantastic nightlife and number of hotels and holiday rentals in Patong, there are always people around during the day too. Whether you just want to meet new people or you simply want to enjoy some activities while on the beach, Patong Beach has it all.
Due to new regulations, there are no sun beds or umbrellas available for rent on the beach like there used to be, so bring your if you want to have some shade!
Patong Beach is accessible by foot from Patong and stretches 3000 metres along the coast!
Photo credit: Luke Ma
The best beach for relaxing with friends
Looking for a beach that is large with stunning views of the ocean and perfect white sand? Freedom Beach may be the perfect choice for you. Regardless of the purpose or the company on your trip, this beach is one that should be experienced during your time on Phuket as it truly is spectacular. There are no jet skis or banana boats available meaning that although it is a large and popular beach – it is more peaceful than a lot of the other beaches in the area (this is also due to the fact that it is only accessible by boat.) There is a volleyball net and a selection of restaurants along the beach where you can enjoy a nice beverage or a snack during the day.
The beach is accessible by boat only, however it is only a short ride from Karon, Tri Trang and Patong beach. The boats can be privately hired, or you can get a ride on a long-tail boat for around 1500 baht return.
The best beach for families with children
If you’re looking for a beach with shallow waters and plenty of sand for the kids to run around on, you should try Kata Beach on Phukets southwest coast. This famous beach is in fact made up of two separate beaches. If you want the softer sand and turquoise waters, Kata Yai is the better option. The waters are shallow and lovely in the high season and there are beach vendors selling snacks and refreshments all day long.
If you are looking to bring your teens here for a surfing session in the low season, make sure you go with a surfing school and do not disobey the warning signs as the rip tide can be extremely dangerous out of season.
Another great option for families is Kamala beach; this beach is located north of Patong and is a quiet beach.
Photo Credit: iris
The best beach for couples
When looking for a beach to enjoy on a couples holiday, you may be more interested in the more secluded beaches on the island. There are many well kept secret beaches on Phuket, however if you are looking for somewhere easily accessible and less crowded, we recommend Mai Khao Beach. This beach is the longest in Phuket (11km), yet there are still some entirely deserted areas which are perfect if you’re looking for complete peace and relaxation. Parts of the beach are by the National Park which is one of the reasons why it remains as untouched as it is. If you are looking to enjoy a meal and refreshments on the beach, you will need to bring your own. At the moment, there are no restaurants or cafes near the beach.
To get to the beach, you need to drive to the north of the island. There is a road parallel to the beach making it easily accessible; however you will have to drive along and look to see if you can find some roadside parking.
This beach is not ideal for children due to a drop in the sea quite quickly as you enter the water. In the high seasons the water is great for swimming, but be aware and always take the flags on the beach seriously as the currents can get strong, especially in the low seasons.
Photo credit: Greg Strosaker
We hope that this has given you some options on which beaches you should spend your time on during your stay. This guide is subject to opinion and is of course only what we recommend from personal experience. Please be aware of the fact that this is a guide for the high season and we by no means advise anyone to swim on any of the beaches if there are warning signs or a red or yellow flag up. We advice everyone to take these warnings seriously and please understand that the rip currents can get very strong and extremely dangerous.