Irrespective of whether you have been to Thailand or not, you must have heard about the full moon parties. And it is those crazy parties that have made Koh Phangan famous among tourists. However, this beautiful island dotted with pretty white beaches and coconut trees has a quiet side too. There are a lot of viewpoints, diving spots, waterfalls, and trekking trails besides the pristine beaches. You can also go boating, kite surfing, join a cooking class, and explore many other opportunities to do something different every day while you are in Koh Phangan.
The 5th biggest island in Thailand and a tropical paradise, Koh Phangan is located 70km from the mainland between Koh Samui and Ko Tao. A part of the Samui Archipelago, Koh Phangan has an overall area of 167 square kilometers. This gulf isle can be explored the best during its quieter months, i.e., from April to June, when there are no full moon parties. However, if you also wish to attend a beach party in Koh Phangan and avoid the crowd, choose a time during the half moon parties.
There is no airport in Koh Phangan, and so, you have to fly or take a train to Surat Thani or Koh Samui and then take a ferry from these places or the mainland to reach the island. Thongsala and Hat Rin in Koh Phangan are the primary disembarkation points. ‘Song Teaows’ are the pickup trucks that you will find in the roads of Koh Phangan. However, you can also hire a taxi, or rent a bike or jeep to go around on the island.
Top 10 Koh Phangan Beaches
So, if you are done partying all night and want to spend the rest of your vacation exploring the pristine white sand Koh Phangan beaches, here is the Koh Phangan beach guide that might come handy in your vacation, help you save time and energy!
1. Malibu Beach
The Malibu beach in Koh Phangan is a tourist’s favorite due to its lovely surroundings, turquoise water, and the terrific view of the Koh Phangan mountains. The beach is a part of the Malibu Beach Resort and is situated up north in the Chaloklum village. The coastline is lined with palm trees, and small bright green trees can also be found on the beach, which is quite an uncommon sight, boats fill up the shore since the Malibu beach is perfect for snorkeling, diving, and other activities.
Best For: Beach bungalows
Best Time To Visit: June to September
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2. Thong Nai Pan Yai Beach
The Thong Nai Pan village is located in the northeast of Koh Phangan and is divided into two crescent-shaped beaches: Thong Nai Pan Noi and Thong Nai Pan Yai. The former is the smaller but more crowded beach, while the Thong Nai Pan Yai beach in Koh Phangan is the bigger and less populated beach. It is one of those quiet beaches in Koh Phangan that is surrounded by rain forests and mountains and is popular for breathtaking sunrises. There are a lot of attractions nearby, and you can hike or bike your way to them. There are restaurants and bars on the beach where you can treat your tummy after a swim, sunbath or yoga class.
Best For: Village bars and restaurants
Best Time To Visit: December to February
3. Bottle Beach
Bottle beach, also known as Haad Khuat is one of the popular, yet least accessible beaches in Koh Phangan. In order to reach Bottle beach in Koh Phangan, you need to take a long tail boat from Chaloklum or trek your way through rainforests. The beach earned its name due to the plastic bottles that mark the hiking trail to the beach. It is also considered the best swimming beach in Koh Phangan since the beach is never too crowded, the water is great, and the sand is fine and smooth. There are certain places to eat and stay but no amusements to entertain you.
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Best For: Motorbike Tour and Relaxation
Best Time To Visit: Late December to March
4. Haad Khom Beach
Also known as Coral Bay, the Haad Khom beach in Koh Phangan, is the perfect leisure destination for the tourists. If you just wish to soak in some Vitamin D while watching the clean blue sea lying in the soft white sand, head over to this beach. It lies on the north coast of Koh Phangan and is not very far from Chaloklum village. Restaurants and hotels are available in close proximity to the beach.
Best For: Snorkeling
Best Time To Visit: December to May
5. Salad Beach
Known as the Haad Salad beach, the salad beach in Koh Phangan is considered as the best beach by many tourists. Though it is a relatively quiet beach, you will find many families, couples, and other tourists on this beach. The beach is dotted with palm trees and a few small restaurants that overlook the pristine green and blue water of the sea. It is a great beach to unwind and relax.
Best For:Resorts and views
Best Time To Visit: February
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6. Zen Beach
If you are looking for a place to go and relax after a day full of activities, head over to the Zen beach without a second thought. This lovely laidback Zen beach in Koh Phangan is a perfect place to unwind and watch the sun go down beautifully. You will find a lot of families, musicians playing their instruments, children running around, people swimming in the cool and calm water or singing – all adding to the magic of the evening. Also known as the Naked Beach, it is one of the popular beaches of West Koh Phangan. Reach the beach by 5:30 pm to watch the sky in a riot of colours as the sun descends.
Best For: Swimming and Snorkeling
Best Time To Visit:July and August
7. Haad Rin
The town of Haad Rin is home to two of the most talked about Koh Phangan beaches: The Haad Rin Nok and the Haad Rin Nai. The Haad Rin Nai is also known as the sunset beach in Koh Phangan, and the Haad Rin Nok is known as the sunrise beach in Koh Phangan, but it popular among tourists as the Full Moon Beach. The Haad Rin Nok is the Koh Phangan full moon party beach where all the infamous full moon, half moon, and black moon monthly take place. Once a month, you shall find the little town lit up beautifully, crowded with all sorts of people, and plenty of music and dance all night long.
There are many resorts and hotels in the area, including the popular Beach Village in Koh Phangan. However, most of them, including the Koh Phangan beach huts are all booked during the parties.
During the times when there is no party, you can stroll along the soft, fine white sand, swim in the blue water, watch a fire show, shop in the markets, or grab some food in the numerous restaurants.
Best For: Nightlife
Best Time To Visit: March
8. Leela Beach
This lovely white, sandy beach is also known as Haad Seekantang and is still one of the less discovered beaches in Koh Phangan located in the Haad Rin village. It is a quiet, less crowded beach that has tourists mostly from the Leela Beach Resort in Koh Phangan, a beautiful resort on top of the beach. There are other beach bungalows in Koh Phangan that are built directly on the beach. You can catch a breathtaking view of Koh Samui from this beach.
Best For: Some quiet time
Best Time To Visit:December and January
9. Haad Yuan
This quiet and tranquil beach lies on the south-east coast of Koh Phangan. It can be reached on foot by hiking your way from Haad Rin or by a boat ride. There are quite a few places to stay- from rustic beach bungalows to sophisticated hotels. This beach is a perfect place to return to after a crazy party, where you can sit, relax, and read a book on the white sandy beach or watch the sunrise in the morning from the beach or your hotel room.
Best For: Swimming, speedboat and snorkeling
Best Time To Visit:July and August
10. Mae Haad
And we saved one of the most interesting Koh Phangan beaches for you for last! The Mae Haad is one of the most extensive beaches that is popular for a lot of reasons. The beach is one of the best snorkeling beaches in the Koh Phangan island. Mae Haad is also connected to the Koh Ma island that houses a marine park and nature reserve. You can walk over to the island for a little adventure. There are many beach bungalows on the shoreline, massage parlours and other shops where you can drop by.
Best Time To Visit:December to March
So, while you are in Koh Phangan, follow the Koh Phangan map of beaches and visit the best of the lot or all the beaches in the beautiful island by planning your next trip to Thailand with the loved ones!
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