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Having had to choose the best beaches in Thailand, we selected three top destinations: Phuket, Koh Samui, and Krabi. All of them have stunning beaches, with white sands and pristine waters. They are quiet and not too crowded, ideal for families and couples.
In Phuket, the two main beaches are Khao Lak and Bangtao, which are quiet and not too far from the main town, perfect for relaxing. In Koh Samui, Bophut is very close to an amazing marine park; while Choeng Mon is secluded and virtually deserted. Klong Muang and Koh Lanta (both in Krabi) offer a wide variety of activities for you and your loved ones.
Read our short articles and learn more about the top beaches in Thailand!
Thailand has thousands of beaches and islands, so listing all of them would be impossible. We chose some of those we think are the best beach destinations of the country, trying to select the ones that are unique, beautiful, and not too crowded.
All the beaches below offer luxurious resorts (some of them with private beaches) and they are well connected with the airport of the main towns; they can all be reached in less than a one-hour drive. Kayaking, scuba diving, and snorkeling are widely available for visitors to explore the region.
Usually, the best time to visit is from November to April. It is recommended to avoid the monsoon season (August and September).
|Beach||Khao Lak||Bangtao & Surin||Bophut||Choeng Mon||Maenam||Klong Muang||Koh Lanta|
|Location||1 hour drive from Phuket||25 minutes from Phuket Airport (and 15 minutes from each other)||10 minutes from the airport||15 minutes from the airport||30 minutes from the airport||North of Ao Nang||70km from Krabi Airport|
|Known For||Tranquility||Luxury and nature||Easy access to Ang Thong Marine Park||Isolated beach||Quiet beach with a wide range of accommodation||Luxurious and quiet retreat||Water sports, scenery|
|Popular with||Locals and travelers||Travelers||Water sports, scuba diving, snorkeling||Locals||Mostly locals, but increasingly popular among tourists||Different kinds of travelers||All travelers|
|Get there by||Private car or cab||Private car, cab, mini-van||Private car or cab||Private car or cab||Private car, cab, mini-van||Private car or cab||Ferry, speedboat|
|Crowd levels||Least crowded||Crowded during high season||Moderately crowded||Least crowded||Not crowded||Least crowded||Crowded, especially during high season|
|Visiting times||Nov-Feb||Year-round||Year-round; June to August best months for scuba diving||Year-round||Jan-Nov||Year-round||October to April|
Khao Lak is the perfect place to avoid big crowds and enjoy some peace. It is a relatively new beach, and is home to many resorts located directly on the shore, making this place a paradise for families and honeymooners.
Being so quiet, Khao Lak doesn’t offer too many activities. What you can do there is relax, swim, and sunbathe; or enjoy a good meal in your resort just a few meters away from the sea. Restaurants and bars are limited as well. It is recommended to bring some snacks.
The beach is an hour drive from the city of Phuket, and the best time to visit is between November and February, when temperatures are not too high and there is little to no rain.
Bangtao is a long stretch of sand where you will find the beautiful Laguna Phuket, with some of the best resorts of all southern Thailand. Each resort has its own private beach, and they are perfect for couples or families. Surin, on the other hand, is packed with villas and celebrities but, even though it is a touristic spot, it is not too crowded.
In Bangtao, the whole family can learn how to ride a horse, or play golf or mini-golf. Surin is perfect for kayaking (there are not a lot of boats), and from May to October surfing is also popular.
The best month to visit Bangtao is November. During low season, on the other hand, you can find lower prices. Surin can be visited all year round, but waters can be dangerous during the monsoon season.
Bophut is a popular starting point for many diving tours in the Ang Thong National Marina Park. It is also the perfect beach for your kids to play, with a close-by water park and a go-kart venue. You will find many excellent hotels and resorts there.
Besides the aforementioned activities, you can walk to the Big Buddha Temple, head to the Fishermen’s Village for some shopping (especially on Fridays), or take a boat tour to the nearby islands for some snorkeling.
June to August, despite the high temperatures, are the ideal months for scuba diving. However, the beach is nice all year round, and it is the closest beach to the airport, just a 10-minute drive away.
Choeng Mon is the most isolated beach in Koh Samui. It has just basic facilities, clear water and clean beaches, creating an ideal spot to enjoy some quality time with your family.
Being so secluded, there is not much to do on this beach. You can relax and swim, and if you wish to get to more crowded areas, you can easily rent a bike or a car, and visit the Big Buddha Temple or other beaches. You can also visit the city of Koh Samui and watch life of the locals.
The beach is easy to reach from the airport, and it can be visited all year round.
Each sunset at this narrow beach on the north coast is wonderful. The sea is calm, the sand is clean, and the high-end resorts offer a good environment for families with children and for couples wanting to enjoy a private beach.
In Meanam, there are many water activities, like kayaking, kite-surfing, snorkeling, etc. If you love hiking, you can visit the nearby rainforest. At night, you can enjoy an outing to the walking street.
The beach is located 30 minutes from the airport, in the north of the island. The best time to visit is from January to November, as the weather is almost always nice and the beach is never too crowded.
From Klong Muang, you will have a privileged access to Koh Hong Islands, a beautiful marine park, and to some stunning views of the Andaman Sea. Klong Muang is the place for you if you are looking for a luxury break away from the crowds. All the hotels are on the shore and have private beaches reserved for their guests.
The most popular activity is diving, as the water is pristine and calm. Paddle-boarding and snorkeling are popular as well. You can also easily reach the National Park from there.
The beach is north of Ao Nang, and it is recommended for visiting all year round. You can get there by renting a private car or by getting a cab.
In front of Krabi you can find this stunning island, with dozens of relaxing beaches, where your kids can have fun building castles or playing volleyball. There are also many shops and restaurants for the grown-ups. It is really a nice, family-friendly environment.
A popular activity is visiting the National Park in the south of the island. You will see wild monkeys roaming around in the rainforest, and a small, quiet beach with shallow waters. In the National Park you can also visit the lighthouse, featured on many postcards.
To go to Koh Lanta, you have to get a boat from Krabi (there are two boats every day), or you can get a ferry from Phuket, Koh Phi Phi, or Ao Nang. The island can get really crowded during peak season.
While in Thailand, the beaches are the favorite part of many travelers. We can’t blame them; such wonderful paradises deserve to be fully explored and enjoyed by anyone ̶ you can be the next one! Start planning your next trip to Thailand now with the help of Asia Highlights. Our knowledgeable staff will assist you in crafting a hassle-free vacation for you and your loved ones.
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