4 Phuket Beaches Not To Miss

Not sure which Phuket beaches are the best?

Are you thinking, I can’t go to Phuket and miss out on Patong? Well, first of all, let me tell you a little secret.

“There are better Phuket beaches than PATONG!”

Who knew?

Not me, apparently, considering it took me three visits to Phuket to get out of Patong.

Having just returned home from my third visit to Phuket, over a ten day period, I’m happy to say I didn’t set one foot in Patong.

By all means, if you’re looking for tourism on steroids including a packed beach, jet ski city, tons of accommodation, loads of shopping and restaurants, endless bars and nightlife, Patong is where it’s at!

On my previous two visits to Phuket in 1999 and 2002 it was all about Patong – I was younger then and looking to party – but this time as a family we were looking for something much different.

Which Phuket Beaches Did We Like?

Our four favourite beaches were Layan Beach, Karon Beach, Kata Beach, and Surin Beach.

Personal photos and tips on these beaches are down below, but firstly, how much does a day at a Phuket beach cost?

Lets start with the essentials:

2 Beach chairs, umbrella and table = 200 Baht ($6.70) per day!

phuket beaches
Layan Beach

Singa Beer = 80 Baht ($2.70)

Fresh Coconut = 50 Baht ($1.70)

Phuket Beaches

Bottle of water = 20 Baht (65 cents)

1 Hour Massage = 300 – 400 Baht ($10 – $13)

Lunch (Pad Thai, Green Curry, Tom Yum Goong) = 120 – 150 Baht ($4 – $5)

phuket beaches

Looking for some water sports action?

  • 30 Minute Jet Ski Hire = from 800 Baht ($27)
  • 5 Minute Parasailing = from 800 Baht

Now, let’s get back to our four preferred beaches.

Layan Beach

Our favourite beach, and we stumbled on this beach almost by accident.

It was our first stop on our Phuket beaches discovery drive with Mr Dam. We were in the Bangtao Bay area, and if we didn’t ask for a coffee stop, we may have never visited Layan.

We pulled up at the end of a narrow beach road, stepped out of the car, and there in front of us was our Thai bliss.

phuket beaches

Easily the quietest and most beautiful beach we visited.

I can’t believe we almost had this piece of paradise all to ourselves, in peak season! No jet skis, no touts, the water was crystal clear, the sand soft and white, and a super chilled vibe.

phuket beaches

phuket beaches

Layan Beach is just north of Bang Tao Beach and we were at the southern end of Layan. We picked a spot in front of a hand full of quiet restaurants, such as Sabays, and this location was PERFECT for our family.

We had access to all the essentials: good food, beach chairs, beer, coconuts and a fresh water shower. This beach made our Phuket holiday!

phuket beaches

phuket beaches

phuket beaches

phuket beaches

phuket beaches

phuket beaches

Karon Beach

We spent the most amount of time at Karon, as we were staying across the road at Hilton Phuket.

phuket beaches

We enjoyed Karon. The water and sand is nice, and it’s a long beach which is great for walks. Although there is quite a few resort developments, and plenty of restaurant options, it’s nowhere near as developed as Patong!

phuket beaches

On most days we could be found enjoying a sunset beer, or a cocktail, and the vibe is great for families, couples, or a solo traveller.

phuket beaches

phuket beaches

phuket beaches

phuket beaches

If you’re standing in front of the Hilton, head left or right and you will discover plenty of eating options.

The Night Temple markets were a hit, and we loved the location as far as exploring the rest of Phuket.

phuket beaches
Night Temple Markets

You can walk to Kata Beach, and if you need the crazy mental party scene of Patong, it’s in close proximity.

Kata Beach

Kata is one beach further south from Karon, and probably a bit more scenic as it’s more of a cove shaped beach. And whilst it was busier than Karon, it didn’t feel like it and still had a nice relaxed vibe, again, perfect for families.

phuket beaches

We liked the tree lined street running adjacent to the beach which also provided some nice shady spots on the sand – it’s HOT in Thailand – even under big beach umbrellas!

phuket beaches

phuket beaches

phuket beaches

After a day on Kata we recommend you head up the hill for a sunset drink at the “After Beach Bar”. Just don’t do what we did and choose the cloudiest day of your trip to watch the sunset.

phuket beaches

phuket beaches

Surin Beach

On arrival I didn’t take to Surin much, but it grew on me. It’s the smallest of the four beaches and whilst full of beach chairs and umbrellas, it’s quite scenic actually with lots of colours going on.

phuket beaches

phuket beaches

We ended up spending a whole day at Surin swimming in the ocean, chilling on the beach chairs, getting a great Thai massage (400 baht), and grabbing a delicious cheap lunch from the street carts nearby.

phuket beaches

Karon Beach, Phuket, Thailand

phuket beaches

In the early evening we found a nice restaurant on the beach, Pla Seafood, and enjoyed a good quality, reasonably priced dinner, whilst watching an amazing sunset.

phuket beaches

 Are you a beach person?

Which of these Phuket beaches do you like best?

 

Disclaimer: We travelled to Thailand courtesy of Tourism Thaialnd

Craig
Craig Makepeace is the founder of yTravel Blog and has been traveling the world since 2002, first with his wife Caz, and now with his two daughters. Get his free email series on the 4 best ways to reduce travel costs. Follow him on Google+

27 Comments on “4 Phuket Beaches Not To Miss”

  1. Our favorite was Mai Khao beach in the northwest of Phuket. Depending on the season, it’s less of a swimming beach, as there’s a steep drop off, but it’s gorgeous, not developed and you can have the place virtually to yourself.

    Reply
    • Hi Tamara,

      That’s one we are unfamiliar with, so thanks for bringing it to our attention. Always good to learn about new spots. Cheer!

      Reply
  2. James Ward

    Hey Craig,

    Nice job dude. I really liked the Layan Beach. We have been planning a vacation. So it might be any of these..

    Reply
  3. Patong has never appealed to me so I have written Phuket off as a destination. Not any more – now I have seen the variety of other beaches available.

    Reply
  4. Layan seems the most appealing to me.

    If I’m at the beach I like it to be as quiet an calming as possible!

    Reply
  5. They are all so beautiful! LOVE your tans and smiles!!!

    Reply
  6. Always HAPPY to be in Thailand :-)

    Reply
  7. Wow, what some amazing beaches you’ve picked. Has totally rekindled my desire to go back to Phuket – amazing photos.

    Reply
  8. My sister and I are going to Phuket next month so this is very helpful – thanks! Do you have any recommendations for places to snorkel? We’re going to be staying on Coconut Island and prefer calm to crazy (we provide the crazy).

    Reply
  9. Hi Craig,
    I’ve been going to Phuket for a few years now and our favorite beach is Nai Harn at the very south (west) of Phuket in Rawai. Gorgeous cove and pretty quiet compare to Kata and Karon. Really nice to have a cold beer at the end of the day watching all the little lights from the hotel on the hill. Some little restaurants nearby. Enjoy the rest of your trip, I’m counting the days to my next trip in Phuket next April. Bye!

    Reply
  10. dymasaditiya

    Hi what the best beach to lesson surf?

    Reply
    • I am not really sure there are any good beaches for surfing in Phuket. We didn’t see any or hear of any surfing there

      Reply
  11. Hey,

    the beaches at phuket are really nice but nowadays it becomes difficult to find a quiet place. So we decided to try one of the small islands around and found a very nice one. Its called Koh Yao Noi and we stayed at http://www.hillhouse-kohyaonoi.com It fells like in adiffernt world, clocks are ticking slower and everyone is freindly. Check it out. We will go there again for sure.

    Reply
  12. We are going to Thailand in the Spring. We are going to be staying at the Hilton at Karon Beach so it was nice to see a picture of it. Where are the other beaches in relation to Karon? We are going to rent a car so we can drive. Thanks!

    Reply
    • They are not far from each other, about an hour from one end to the other. All on the west coast

      Reply
  13. Hi Sherry,

    Kata beach is the next beach south from Karon, you can actually walk if need be, so very close. Surin and Layan beaches are to the north, not too far away, depending on traffic, but you will need a car.

    P.S. judging by your email address I’m guessing you’re from North Carolina?? We used to live in Raleigh :)

    Reply
    • Allan Cameron

      Kata Beach is pretty but the water is not clear or clean. In fact the sea is no cleaner than at Patong Beach. Too many plastic bottles, bags and crisp packets floating around.

      Reply
  14. If we were interested in water activities (jet ski, parasailing, scuba diving or snorkelling), which beach would you recommend?

    Reply
  15. Amazing sunset, and the Beach looks really pretty, seems like you guys had lots of fun! :)
    Polaris Jet Ski Guy recently posted..Miami Boat Rental Story
    Polaris Jet Ski Guy recently posted..Miami Boat Rental Story

    Reply
  16. Destiny

    My husband and I are going on vacation there in August. We are not sure if we are beach people or not LOL…we have never really stayed on a beach before. We really like a quiet and relaxed feeling but don’t want to miss out on the Jet Ski’s and other fun things….so I am not sure where we will stay.

    Reply
    • I would go Surin Beach. It has the jet skis but a more quieter relaxed feel.

      Reply
  17. Lindsey

    Looks amazing!!! Can you recommend a good place for an elephant safari in Phuket?

    Reply
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