Crystal clear waters, miles of white sandy beaches, stunning coral reefs and year-round sunshine have made Koh Phangan one of Thailand’s most popular destinations for decades.
Digital nomads, expats and tourists who visit the island can now experience some of the finest accommodation options Thailand has to offer, from short stay hostels all the way to luxury rentable villas. With so much on offer and so many stunning beaches to choose from, we thought you might need a little help finding the right beach to spend your time on.
First Phangan’s top 10 beaches on Koh Phangan, Thailand
At First Phangan, our business is knowing the Gulf of Thailand’s number one tourist destination inside out. So, we have put together this handy guide of the top 10 beaches on Koh Phangan, Thailand ensuring you can make the most of your time in the sun. Although there are WAY more than just 10 to choose from, we narrowed it down into bite sized chunks to get you started. Don’t forget, we don’t like to play favourites, so in no particular order here’s our top 10 –
Nestled up in the North of the island you will find Haad Khuat or bottle beach as it is commonly known. For those looking for a taste of traditional Koh Phangan living, bottle beach is a great choice. Its secluded location offers visitors a tranquillity that is hard to beat and though accessing this beach can be tricky, once you arrive you will never want to leave.
It's direct translation from Thai ('Haad' meaning beach and 'Kuat' meaning bottle), derives from the bottles that line the trails leading you through the jungles to the crystal clear shores. Thanks to it's sheer remoteness, this natural jewel has remained so quiet and idyllic to this day. Only accessible by taxi boat, hiking or 4x4 truck, Bottle beach has reserved much of the same aesthetic as it did long before the Full Moon Party ever became a thing.
With only a couple of quaint family resorts along the shoreline you can easily escape the rest of the world and feel like you stepped back to a time free of pandemics, politics, and over population.
Thong Nai Pan Noi & Thong Nai Pan Yai
Tranquil Thong Nai Pan is located in the remote Northeast of Koh Phangan, far away from the busy port of Thong Sala and the beach party mecca of Haad Rin. It is split into two villages – Thong Nai Pan Yai and Thong Nai Pan Noi.
The neighbouring coves of Thong Nai Pan Noi and Thong Nai Pan Yai offer the full Koh Phangan experience between them. Both bays are surrounded by mountains and tropical rainforest which makes them a picture-perfect slice of paradise.
Both villages are small beach settlements, each with a number of beachside resorts, a dusty main street, and a good assortment of restaurants to choose from. Thong Nai Pan Yai and Thong Nai Pan Noi are only a 25-minute walk or a 5-minute scooter trip apart, but they have quite different vibes.
Thong Nai Pan Noi is considered to be the more modern of the 2 coves and offers numerous premium quality accommodation and entertainment options. Whereas, Yai gives visitors a more laid-back experience with locally run bungalow resorts and restaurants.
The drive to the Northeast side of the island is enough to sell us on its own. Cruising over rolling mountains, through lush rainforest protected by the national park, you can literally hear the theme song for Jurassic Park whispering to you through the breeze.
The town of Thong Nai Pan makes you feel like you have traveled to an entirely new island all together!
Haad Yuan has long been one of Koh Phangan’s best kept secrets. Despite only being 2 Kilometres, as the crow flies, from the infamous Haad Riin, this rugged tropical beach has maintained a sense of isolation due to only being accessible by foot or boat.
The beach offers some incredible bungalows, hotels, restaurants and bars right next to the water and even hosts a weekly popular party for those looking to blow off some steam.
Haad Yuan beach is the stuff dreams are made of. With it's fine white sandy beaches, crystal clear waters and an atmosphere unmatched anywhere else in the world. Only accessible by boat or 4x4 truck, it gives the bay a secret and magical feeling as you step away from the hustle and bustle of the rest of the world and straight into a hidden paradise.
You can also hike to Haad Yuan from Haad Rin Beach. This is one of the most picturesque trails on the entire island.
Haad Yuan is a sacred place to many travellers and locals alike, famously known for its Eden Garden parties held every Friday night, followed by the newly renovated Barcelona Resort after-parties on Sundays.
During the weekdays, the beach is very quiet and you can relax in the sun and grab a bite to eat from one of the local restaurants dotted along the shoreline.
Have you ever been to Haad Yuan? If not, it is definitely a spot you should add to your Thailand bucket lists!
For those looking for some real natural Koh Phangan style then Than Sadet is perfect. Located on the edge of the islands Namtok Than Sadet national park this beach gives visitors the opportunity to experience what the whole island was like 20 years ago. Coupled with a gorgeous waterfall trek and untouched rainforests, the adventures never end here at Than Sadet.
Isolated in amongst lush rainforest vegetation and with stunning views of the sunrise; Wai
Nam (swimming beach in Thai) gives many visitors the perfect antidote to modern everyday life. Ideal for a quick visit on a boat tour or a long-chilled stay, this beach will take your breath away the moment you step foot on the sand.
The lovely, small bay of Wai Nam is one of the more unknown beaches of Koh Phangan and is in the east of the island, off the beaten track. To get to it is not easy, as there is no road leading here, but you can book a boat at one of the neighbouring beaches to take you to Wai Nam. Those staying at Haad Tien or Haad Yuan can also reach this lovely beach in ten minutes by walking through the jungle.
The atmosphere at the beach of Wai Nam is relaxed and friendly. Many holidaymakers know each other and come to this remote beach every year to spend a few nice days. Travellers particularly enjoy the alternative lifestyle and the hippy flair, especially during their weekly festival events.
The beach has a very special charm and the restaurant together with the surrounding bungalows are brightly decorated and painted and there are also ornaments hanging in the trees. Yoga, meditation and all kinds of workshops are becoming more and more popular here, as is healthy food and detox programs.
Haad Rin Beach
Even if you have never stepped foot on Koh Phangan you may well be familiar with Haad Rin Beach. After gaining notoriety for hosting its monthly full moon party, Haad Rin has become the most famous bay of all the top 10 beaches on Koh Phangan, Thailand.
Although the full moon party can be a little too much for some, Haad Rin has plenty more to offer than cheap drinks and loud music. Haad Riin is full of modern amenities, top quality accommodation options and excellent eateries. Meaning a visit to this beach is not so much a choice as much as a necessity.
Since the pandemic, sadly the majority of the businesses lining it's shores are now closed or extremely quiet. But on the plus side, this has given the surrounding nature the time to rebound, and it has reminded locals why this area became so famous in the first place.
The beach itself is one of the biggest on the island, filled with sunbathers and lots of activities including, jet skiing and skimboarding by day, and a chilled out bohemian style atmosphere featuring stunning fire shows at night.
The sunrises from this side of Haad Rin town are something you must witness at one point or another in your life. As the sun sets behind you in the evenings, it Illuminates the beach in pinks and purples that make you feel like you are in a dream.
The Fullmoon Party is slowly making a come back, but with upgrades making it a more high-end event than in the past. We are welcoming these changes with open arms and think its the best way forward to preserve the natural beauty of this beach and still keep the party vibes we all have come to know and love.
Looking for a beach that has it all? Then Haad Yao might be just the place for you. Just a short 15 minute drive from Koh Phangan’s main port, this beach has some of the island’s finest accommodation, dive centres, massage parlours and restaurants all located on half a mile of luxuriously soft sand. Haad Yao’s location makes it a great spot for those looking to enjoy the islands stunning sunsets and explore the isle’s other beaches.
As one of Koh Phangan’s most unique tourist spots, Mae Haad is a must see for those visiting the island. Just off of the deep sandy main beach you will find the gorgeous nature and marine preserve of Koh Ma.
Koh Ma island is covered in rich vegetation and is fringed with blue waters, all of which is
easily accessible via a short walk from the Mae Haad beach across a beautiful sandbar in low tide which itself is a great place to snorkel and take in some sunset views.
On the western coast of the island you will find what is quickly becoming one of the islands most treasured tourism spots. Hin Kong beach is home to some of the best sunset views, has dozens of fantastic bars, restaurants and accommodation options to suit travellers of all styles and budgets.
Hin Kong Beach, although not the best spot for swimming on the island as it is encased in a large sand bar, boast some of the best sunset views on the island.
This beach is perfect for sun lounging, playing frisbee or other beach sports with friends whilst you watch the sky turn from blue to magnificent shades of orange, yellow, pinks and purples.
Chaloklum, and Malibu beach have something for everyone. As the island's northern most fishing village this beautiful beach blends authentic Thai life seamlessly with modern tourism.
The area boasts quality accommodation options and bags of entertainment in the form of lively bars, dive schools, trekking trails and restaurants, making it a popular destination with day trippers, tourists, adventure seakers and expats alike.
Koh Phangan, so much more than the full moon party...
If reading our top 10 beaches on Koh Phangan, Thailand has got you packing your suitcase and booking the next available flight out of your country, be sure to contact First Phangan when you arrive.
Whether you’re looking to book your dream holiday, rent a private chef for your villa or even relocate to the island forever, the First Phangan team is dedicated to helping you achieve your island ambitions in as affordable, efficient and stress-free way as possible. For more information about how we can make your tropical dreams come true, check out our website where you will find everything from Koh Phangan parties and tour services all the way to buying your dream villa on the island.