Best Koh Phangan Beaches
The best Koh Phangan beaches are on par with the best in Thailand, if not the world. With comments from previous visitors such as “Breathtaking”, “Stunning” and “Energising”, you get an idea why. The best Koh Phangan beaches stand out from beaches on its neighbouring sister islands, Koh Samui and Koh Tao, due to the number that are still untouched by development. The surrounding mountainous landscapes, remoteness and unforgettable views make the best beaches on Koh Phangan a ‘must see’ activity during your stay here. We have given you detailed information and guides for 30 of the best beaches on Koh Phangan.
North East Beaches
The best Koh Phangan beaches for remoteness, rugged mountain scenery, dense jungles and spectacular views can be found on the north east coast. This remote area has some of the most beautiful, untouched scenery on Koh Phangan. Giant boulders and tropical fauna surround many of the beaches. Due to the remoteness there’s plenty of wildlife, including monkeys, tropical birds and reptiles. Many of the best beaches on Koh Phangan are deserted and totally untouched by development. If you are looking for pure paradise, peace and tranquility, then visit some of the beaches on the north east coast, they’re simply beautiful!
Bottle Beach is on the northern coast and is one of the best beaches on Koh Phangan. It’s a popular beach for day trippers. Due to its remote location, Bottle Beach is often very peaceful with very little people around to disturb your relaxing afternoon sunbathing. This tropical hideaway is the perfect location for lazing around, playing some beach sports or taking a dip in the crystal clear waters. Of course you don’t have to just visit Bottle Beach for the day, you could always book to stay at one of the beautiful beach front resorts, such as Haad Khuad Resort, Smile Bungalows and Bottle Beach 1 Resort.
The areas of Thong Nai Pan offer some of the best beaches on Koh Phangan for 5 star quality resorts. Thong Nai Pan Yai and Thong Nai Pan Noi are two equally beautiful bays that are great for swimming with pristine white powdery beaches. The area has retained its laid back Phangan village vibe but now offers a range of accommodation to suit every budget. If you are looking to stay on Thong Nai Pan Noi consider booking with Panviman Resort, Santhiya Resort & Spa or Anantara Resort & Spa. Should you prefer instead to enjoy your holiday whilst over-looking Thong Nai pan Yai, we highly recommend checking out Starlight Resort, Dreamland Resort, Havana Beach Resort or Dolphin Bungalows.
One of the best beaches on Koh Phangan for getting away from it all is Than Sadet Beach. It’s set within a gorgeous bay where you are guaranteed peace and tranquillity. There are only a couple of places the stay here, all which are very basic bungalows. There are no additional restaurants and bars other than those provided by the resorts, but Than Sadet is very easy to reach, so you can always head further afield for food and drink if you wish.
North West Beaches
The best Koh Phangan beaches for snorkelling and scuba diving can be found on the north west coast. The island’s most diverse coral reefs are alive with colourful fish, soft and hard corals and other amazing marine life. Turtles have been seen at Haad Salad Beach and Mae Haad Beach on many occasions, so keep your eyes open! The coral reefs are all within easy swimming distances from the shore and most are in shallow waters. If you love to watch stunning sunsets then get yourself down to any of the beaches here at around 5:30 pm. Relax on the beach with a chilled drink and get the camera ready! You get the best sunset views from this area of Koh Phangan.
The beaches on the north west coast are much more developed than the east coast. There’s a huge choice on accommodation options to suit all budgets, many right on the beaches. In areas such as Haad Salad, Haad Yao and Srithanu you will find most amenities required, such as shops, bars, restaurants, cafes, motorbike rentals and travel agents. For scuba diving enthusiasts, the majority of Koh Phangan’s dive centres are here.
The best Koh Phangan beaches this part of the island are far enough away from the big parties not to notice, but still close enough it you want to go and party. The area attractions every type of traveller and holiday maker. Whether your travelling alone, with friends, a couple or family, the east coast has something for everybody.
South East Beaches
The south east beaches on Koh Phangan offer something different to the rest of the island. Despite one of the beaches along this coast being the venue for the world famous Full Moon Party, in complete contrast, this area also offers many small secluded bays ideal for total relaxation, where you will feel as though you are on a desert island.
The waters along the south east beaches on Koh Phangan island are crystal clear, deep and cooler than other areas – perfect for swimming. Haad Rin in the past was mainly aimed to accommodate the backpacker crowds with low cost dorm style hotels but now also offers more boutique style resorts for couples and families. Haad Rin town in the main hub for the south east beaches on Koh Phangan and has a good variety of restaurants, cafes, shopping and bar options for any type of holiday maker or traveller to enjoy.
The opposite side of Haad Rin Nok Beach you will find Haad Rin Nai Beach which is well away from all the beach party action, yet only a few minutes walk away. Relax on the beach here and watch the stunning sunsets most evenings while enjoying a tasty cocktail. Along this beach there are plenty of quality resorts to suit ever type of budget.
Some of the best Koh Phangan beaches to get away from the crowds and enjoy that desert island atmosphere can be found on the south east coast. Haad Yao East Beach, Haad Wai Nam, Haad Yuan Beach and Haad Tien Beach are top choices for the perfect retreat. Small secluded beaches with steep cliffs and dense jungle surroundings make up the coastline here. The rugged mountain terrain and lack of concrete roads make it virtually impossible to access by motorbike or normal car to this part of Koh Phangan. Instead you must take a taxi boat from Haad Rin Nok Beach or 4 x 4 car. There are also some great walks and hiking routes in this area where you can enjoy amazing views over the bays and view some stunning untouched jungle scenery.
South West Beaches
For the best Koh Phangan beaches close to the main town with top quality restaurants and trendy bars are in this area. Thongsala is at the heart of Koh Phangan; a bustling principle town with dozens of attractions and shops catering to your every need. Around the area of the south west beaches on Koh Phangan is developing at a sustainable pace but still allows it to retain its charm and character. This is evident in Thongsala, which is more than just an administrative centre and is becoming an interesting place in its own right.
All the usual services are available like travel agents, banks, hospitals, post office and convenience stores. Food shopping has improved with the opening of major supermarket brands and the daily fresh market sells an abundance of fresh produce including locally caught seafood. Unique boutique shops are springing up to cater for the more discerning shopper and there are plenty of handicraft shops to keep the tourists happy.
The main ferry terminal for Koh Phangan is situated in Thongsala, so naturally it acts as a gateway for those arriving and departing from the island. There are obviously beaches surrounding the town, but they are rarely used by sun worshippers as the area is frequented by many different boats coming and going from the pier, and so some of the south west beaches are not kept particularly clean.
Hin Kong Beach and Wok Tum Beach sit on the west coast, just south of Srithanu. Here the beach is narrow and long. The shoreline runs parallel to the coastal road, hugging every bend. Bars and restaurants such as Freeway, Cotton Beach, L’Alcove Bistro and One Love Bar are popular choices for many who pass by this way during the day or night. All are situated along the shoreline and offer spectacular views out across the ocean; a true delight come dusk when the sun is setting on the horizon.
The best Koh Phangan beaches this side of the island offer uninterrupted views out across the ocean and to Angthong National Marine Park, stop by Plai Laem Beach. This peaceful hidden bay is easily overlooked by many as it is not sign posted or very obvious to those driving past. Plai Laem Beach is at the base of Khao Hin Nok, a granite mountain that dominates and transforms the landscape, making it a fairy tale of rounded boulders and hillside views over the national park. The bay is fairly shallow most of the year, ideal for those who love to lie in the warm clear water with the sun on their face. This stretch of beach is certainly a beautiful setting for those who enjoy capturing those picture perfect photos of paradise. Book a stay at Kupu Kupu or Grand Sea Resort and you’ll be able to enjoy this beach and wake up to the views every day.