The 7 Most Beautiful Beaches of Phuket

When you picture Phuket, a beautiful tropical beach is likely one of the first images that comes to mind. After all, our stunning island home in Southern Thailand is renowned for its impressive collection of white and gold sand beaches overlooking crystal-clear water. It’s only natural, then, that you want to visit the most beautiful of them on your visit!

At Phuket Elephant Nature Reserve, we love helping visitors make the most of their time in the place we call home. This typically comes in the form of our ethical elephant activities in Phuket — but in this blog, it’s through our picks for Phuket’s most beautiful beaches!

Of course, this is not an exhaustive list — our island has more than 30 beaches! And, as always, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. But we hope our recommendations provide plenty of inspiration for planning your days out at Phuket’s beaches.

If any questions come to mind while you read, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Bangtao Beach: Phuket’s Second-Longest Beach

Nestled along the island’s western coast lies the serene expanse of Bangtao Beach. Stretching over six kilometres, this picturesque shoreline offers a more tranquil escape from the bustling crowds of its famous neighbour to the south, Patong Beach. As such, it’s perfect for those seeking solitude while surrounded by gorgeous scenery.

The southern end of the beach is populated by some of the best beach clubs in Phuket. The Laguna Complex is here too, home to some of the most luxurious resorts on the island where you can indulge in world-class amenities. You can enjoy a whole host of watersports at the beach, and there are great shopping destinations and restaurants a short walk away. Just some options for your consideration are Boat Avenue, Porto de Phuket, and the Fun Friday Avenue Market.

The further north you go, however, the more likely you are to find a peaceful place to kick back and relax. Given the west-facing location, Bangtao Beach is also an amazing spot to watch the sunset over the Andaman Sea.

And best of all, it’s only around a 15-minute drive from Bangtao Beach to our ethical elephant sanctuary!

Layan Beach: Beauty and Serenity North of Bangtao

At the northern end of Bangtao Beach, you can find a little-known bay called Layan Beach. Blessed with pristine shores and dazzling waters, this hidden gem exudes an air of tranquillity loved by locals and the expat community. 

Despite its somewhat off-the-beaten-path location, the Layan area is home to numerous luxury resorts, including Anantara Layan Phuket Resort, Avadina Hills by Anantara, and Layan Residences to name only a few.

The Kala River reaches the Andaman Sea here, marking the end of Layan Beach. There’s also an island named Koh Kala sitting between the beach and the ocean beyond. This topography has created a naturally secluded and picturesque bay where fishing boats bob on the turquoise water.

We also chose both Bangtao and Layan beaches in our list of the best places to stay in Phuket for families.

Surin Beach: A Gorgeous Spot on Millionaire’s Row

As we journey south from Bangtao Beach, we arrive at the enclave of Surin Beach. This part of the coast is calm, clean, and beautiful, setting the scene for a memorable day at the beach. But with plenty of food and entertainment on offer too, there’s also a welcome lively atmosphere here.

While we can say the same of all our picks for the most beautiful beaches in Phuket, the scenery here is postcard-perfect! Imagine white, soft sand and the most inviting azure water. There are plenty of shops, street food stalls, and restaurants here, so you can easily immerse yourself in local life.

Surin Beach is also close to Phuket Elephant Nature Reserve! It’s around 25 minutes away by car. To help start planning your visit, check out our blog How to Pick an Ethical Elephant Sanctuary in Thailand.

Kamala Beach: Embrace a Calmer, Slower Pace

Venturing further south, you’ll discover the charming allure of Kamala Beach, a quaint coastal village steeped in local culture and hospitality. Here, traditional longtail boats bob gently on the twinkling waters, painting a vivid picture of Phuket’s rich maritime heritage. 

Kamala Beach is renowned for its laid-back atmosphere and family-friendly vibe, making it a popular choice for visitors of all ages. Explore the bustling local markets, visit beachside restaurants, or elevate your experience at a local beach club. Whatever your preferences, you have ample opportunities to sample delectable seafood delicacies.

Of course, you can also simply unwind beneath the shade of a swaying palm tree, swim in the sea, or partake in some watersports  – the choice is yours at Kamala Beach!

Looking for more budget-friendly activities? Check out our picks for the best fun and free things to do in Phuket, Thailand!

Patong Beach: Far More Than the Nightlife!

While the raucous nightlife of Bangla Road may take most of the spotlight in Patong, you shouldn’t forget that there’s a beautiful 3km stretch of golden sand here too! A row of coconut, palm, and almond trees separates the shore from the main road, creating a cooler area where you can find stalls selling drinks and food alongside beach massage parlours.

This iconic beach destination offers a kaleidoscope of experiences, from exhilarating water sports (including parasailing and jet skis) to lively beachfront bars and restaurants. Away from the beach, you can also indulge in retail therapy at the nearby Jungceylon Shopping Mall or sample authentic Thai street food from bustling markets.

For the latter, head to Malin Plaza at the southern end of Patong Beach, one of our recommendations for the best night markets in Phuket.

Mai Khao Beach: Phuket’s Longest Beach!

Prepare to be mesmerised by the beauty of Mai Khao Beach, Phuket’s longest stretch of sand and a sanctuary for nature enthusiasts. This beautiful beach runs for 6.2 miles (10km) along our island’s northwest coast.

Part of this pristine shoreline is within the Sirinat National Park, ensuring its preservation for generations to come. Marvel at the sight of endangered sea turtles nesting along the beach, or embark on a thrilling adventure through the park’s lush mangrove forests and tranquil lagoons. You can also head out to sea and snorkel on the nearby coral reef.

Phuket International Airport is close to Mai Khao Beach’s southern end too. Join the small crowds who gather here to watch the planes coming in to land while taking truly unique photos!

Thinking of spending some time exploring Northern Phuket? Read our blog about the best things to do in Mai Khao, Phuket for ideas and inspiration.

Mai Khao Beach aerial view

Freedom Beach: A Secluded Spot Accessible by Boat

Last but certainly not least, we unveil the hidden gem of Freedom Beach, a secluded paradise nestled amidst lush tropical foliage and towering cliffs. Accessible only by longtail boat during the high season (typically December to June), Freedom Beach offers a true escape from the ordinary, where pristine sands and azure waters beckon travellers to unwind and rejuvenate. 

The shortest route is from the southern end of Patong Beach, by Amari Phuket. You may get a little wet on the journey, so keep this in mind if carrying sensitive electronic equipment. You will also disembark the boat straight into the warm, gorgeous water before walking onto the beach.

But from here, you can spend your day soaking up the beauty of this picturesque paradise. Freedom Beach epitomises the essence of tropical bliss.

As we near the end of this blog, let us point you in the direction of another useful resource for your trip planning — What Should I Know When Planning a Trip to Phuket?

Don’t Miss Out on Our Phuket Elephant Activities!

We hope our choices for the seven most beautiful beaches in Phuket have inspired you to start planning fun-filled days out on our island home. And when you’re ready for another quintessential Thailand experience, look no further than our ethical elephant activities in Phuket!

Our experiences range from the Short 90-Minute Elephant Adventure to the Half-Day Elephant Adventure. If you have any pre-booking questions for us, please feel free to get in touch for the answers you need.

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