While there is no shortage of sandy shores available around the so-called Pearl of the Andaman, relatively few of the 30+ beaches have good Phuket beach resorts available, and even fewer have the ideal mix of facilities to make a perfect beach holiday.
The star beaches of Phuket are Patong, Karon, Kata, Kamala, Bangtao and Mai Khao. Patong is the best known because it is where you will find the majority of the island’s nightlife, as well as many other attractions and a vast selection of hotels. All of these are along the island’s west coast and all have a good selection of Phuket beach resorts to choose from.
The quality of the sand is obviously a major factor in finding the best beach. It is a peculiarity of Phuket that the sand on the beaches gets finer and softer the further south you go. Mai Khao, Phuket’s largest and most northern beach, has quite coarse sand. It gets nicer as you go further south, through Bangtao, Kamala, Patong, Karon and Kata (in that order).
What To Look For
The sand is obviously an important part of the beach experience, but it is not all. There are other factors to consider, including the availability of places to eat, things to see and do and, of course, hotels. Relatively few Phuket beach resorts are right on the beach – a quirk of Thai law, which states that the beach is public property, prevents this – but there are some places with more options within a few metres of the sand than others.
Another important consideration should be space. The beach holiday idyll is to have an entire desert island to yourself and, while that’s not particularly likely on Phuket, it isn’t impossible to at least find a nice big stretch of sand to yourself.
While the pick of the best beach in Phuket will naturally vary from person to person, depending on your needs and desires from the coastline, there is one beach which provides a good all-round solution: Karon Beach. The third longest on the island, there is plenty of space to enjoy some peace and quiet, but the town itself has a modest nightlife and a good choice of restaurants, with the attractions of smaller and busier Kata to the south or Patong to the north, both easily reached. Being a southern beach, the sand is also fine and soft – perfection.
Thavorn Palm Beach Resort is among the best places to enjoy this wonderful destination. It is situated just metres from the beach, slightly to the south of dead-centre along its 6 km length. It has an expansive selection of restaurants, facilities and even swimming pools, with no less than five in its large and verdant grounds. Cosy and quiet, but never far from excitement, it is the ideal base for your Phuket beach holiday.