Find out what the best beaches in Thailand are as awarded by millions of real travelers.
Ko Phi Phi Don, Thailand
Most of this limestone island is a protected marine reserve… which means you’ll enjoy unspoiled beaches, as well as fantastic diving and snorkeling. Several local dive shops get great reviews from our travelers. When you’re back on dry land, chill out even more with a session of yoga on the beach.
Ko Lanta, Thailand
Ko Lanta is a gorgeous island where you'll be certain to find an uncrowded beach. Located in the Krabi Province, one of the southern provinces of Thailand, Ko Lanta offers fantastic scuba diving with exotic marine life and grand coral reefs. The sunsets, too, are legendary—watch one over a glass of wine with someone you love.
Koh Phangan, Thailand
We're guessing they don't have a werewolf problem in Ko Phangan, because every month on the full moon, thousands of people take part in the Full Moon Party's all-night festivities, including music on the beach. By day, you'll find a lovely island with coconut trees and plenty of sandy white beaches. If you're a diver, visit Sailrock for a spectacular wall dive.
Koh Tao, Thailand
Drifting serenely in the Gulf of Thailand, the palm-fringed island of Ko Tao takes its name from the abundant sea turtles that reside on its shores. The scuba diving and snorkeling here is sublime, allowing for close encounters with black-tip reef sharks, abundant tropical fish and a wooden shipwreck. Busy Sairee Beach is bursting with bars and nightclubs, while palm-lined Haad Thien (or Rocky Bay) is a quiet escape from the chaos.
Kata Beach, Thailand
Just to the south of Karon lies Kata, a laid-back town with two stunning beaches. Kata Yai is the bigger beach, and if you’re not the type to lounge on the sand all day, you can rent practically any type of water-sports equipment here. Kata Noi, on the other hand, is quieter and smaller—ideal for a lazy day.
Paradise by day, party central by night, Chaweng is a favorite destination for sun-seekers and night owls alike. Choose Central Chaweng if you love nightclubs, music and fireworks. Head toward North Chaweng and Chaweng Noi for a more peaceful stay. Sands are fine and white, and the water is warm year-round.
Bophut is a beach village undergoing the development of new hotels and villas. It is becoming popular due to its optimal white sandy shoreline, swaying coconut palms and traditional Sino-Thai environment. The Fisherman’s Village, located on the east side, remains unspoiled, with quaint wooden shops and ancient buildings. The main road is lined with pubs, fine eateries, spas and trendy shops. Manicures, pedicures and Thai massages are inexpensive attractions for many visitors, as are the hypnotic sunsets.
At nearly three miles long, Karon’s beach stretches on and on and on… this might be the perfect spot for travelers who want as much space as possible around their beach blankets. And while plenty of other beaches on our list have fine, powdery sand, Karon’s sand is so fine it actually (and amusingly) squeaks when you walk on it.
Krabi Town, Thailand
The southern Thailand town of Krabi serves as base camp for exploring the province of the same name, a lush region of jungles, limestone cliffs and idyllic isles floating just offshore in the Andaman Sea. Buddhist shrines still used by local monks are tucked into the chambers of the town's top attraction, Tiger Cave. The riverside pier links travelers with ferries and longboats to the best scuba diving, rock climbing and white sand beaches on the coast.
Party-hoppers flock to the wide and whimsical sands of Patong Beach. Mere minutes from the glittery chaos of Patong's many nightclubs, bars and discos, the golden beach is ideal for sunbathing, jet skiing, kayaking and parasailing. Lovers of leisure can spend the day relaxing on a sunbed under a colorful umbrella, lingering over treats from one of the vendors who stroll the sands.