Most of us picture deserted beaches, low-lying mangroves, aquamarine waters and rocky limestone adorning the horizon when we think of an island. When it comes to a beach, most beaches in Thailand are crowded.
But, where in Thailand are the quiet shores? Are there hidden beaches? How to find secret islands in Thailand?
Perhaps you wanted to stroll a quiet beach on a secluded island where there is no one but you. It’s possible, fellow nomad. For affordable costs, thrill-seekers can trek jungle trails, snorkel the reefs, or read a George R.R Martin novel without distractions. It’s not a myth.
We are listing the ten best beaches in Thailand where serenity comes to brood. I promise it will blow your mind.
1. Koh Phayam/Ao Khao Kwai
Considered the best place to swim owing to its low tides, Northern Ao Khao Kwai is a dream come true. What’s more, it’s not as shallow as the south too. That’s why this is the perfect island for snorkelers. Koh Phayam is Thailand’s Hippie Island and not the party capital. It becomes beautifully quiet filled with bird songs instead of electronic sounds when the sun goes down.
Basking on the shore of Ao Khao Kwai beach from dawn to dusk is my favorite thing to do when I am around. The beach is so vivid you will wonder when did you travel back to Thailand in the ‘90s.
I recommend kayaking with your partner to explore the low-hanging mangroves around Ao Khao Kwai beach to truly take in its beauty. Explore the pirate-ship-shaped bar called Hippy Bar or pamper your lover with a romantic walk along the beach at twilight.
How do you get to Koh Phayam?
Set around the lazy coastal town of Mueang Ranong District, Koh Phayam can be reached via a boat from Ranong. This takes about three hours on an ordinary boat and much faster on speed boats. To reach Ranong, take an overnight bus from This is perfect because you can then take the morning boat to Koh Phayam directly.
There are multiple boats throughout the day to Koh Phayam so you don’t need to hurry either.
2. Koh Kood/Kluai Beach
Anchored boats sway in peace while shoreside restaurants and bars sans giant gazebos and bring the island to life. The mountainous island Koh Kut or Koh Kood is surrounded by hidden beaches, cliffs, caves, jungles, and waterfalls along the west coast.
A beach-lover’s paradise, you should visit Kluai beach for its serene and unmarred beauty. This fifth largest island in Thailand is known for its laidback beaches with amazonite waters and white sands with inhabitants less than 1,500.
Koh Kut is best explored on a scooter rather than on foot due to the lack of public transport options. Just lounge on any beach chair and let time pass with a tropical drink melting in your hand until the sun sets when in Kluai.
How do you get to Koh Kood?
Several boats leave from mainland Laem Sok Pier, which is located 30 minutes from Trat. You can reach Trat via flight from Bangkok. The boat journey to Koh Kood takes four to five hours, so I’d suggest travellers prepare ahead to avoid inconveniences.
3. Chumphon/Pha Daeng Beach
Let me warn all the swimmers ahead that this is not a swimmer’s hotspot and our next suggestion is for scenic entertainment only. Picture-perfect for nature lovers and jam-packed with adventures for backpackers, this is a one-of-a-kind island in Thailand.
The red-sand beaches of Southern Thailand adorn Pha Daeng, which means translates to red (daeng). This Chumphon beach is flecked with red rocks under the orange sky that stretches merely 300 meters. Besides being the best backdrop for romance, you will love the gorgeous 8-meters-high stone arch at one of the best beaches in Thailand. It’s just perfect for snapping pretty pictures.
Enjoy a swing above the red rocks or doze off to the lashing waves at this beach, you will feel sumptuous. The Pantaraphat beach is located 2Km away, if you feel like doing more.
How do you get to Pha Daeng?
Chumphon is an island 450Km away from Bangkok. You can take morning or afternoon trains that take over 8 hours to reach Chumphon Railway Station. Another option is the 3.5-hour ferry from Koh Tao to Chumphon. It is available 6 days every week from the Songserm ferry service.
Located 14Km away from Chumphon town, you can reach Pha Daeng in 30 minutes by scooter.
4. Koh Hong/The Chamber
The dreamiest beach in Thailand, the Chamber is set around the scenic Koh Hong island off the coast of Krabi. From kayaking to snorkeling and swimming, travelers can explore varieties of water sports here. Truth be told, I just go crazy every time I’m in Koh Hong. There’s so much to do, y’know!
Get to Koh Hong beach to see its gigantic limestone formations often carpeted by lush greenery known for exciting thrill-seekers. The surrounding emerald waters of the uninhabited island are no joke either. The name ‘Hong’ in Thai refers to the high cliffs around the lagoon seen in the interior of Koh Hong.
As Koh Hong is part of the National Marine Park, it is open to visitors only during the day. Overnight accommodation is not present here.
The lagoon of Koh Hong can only be accessed by a kayak at low tides to appreciate the color change from emerald to turquoise. Enjoy it solo or with your loved ones.
How do you get to Koh Hong?
To reach Koh Hong from Phuket, take a 30-minute ferry from Phuket Bang Rong Pier to Koh Yao Nai, which is 20 minutes from Koh Hong.
You can also take a bus ride for 12 hours from Bangkok Mochit Bus Terminal to Krabi Bus Station. Then take a ferry to Railar East (30 minutes) and another ferry to Manow Pier Koh Yao Noi (1 hour).
An easy-to-reach destination, Koh Hong is just 20 minutes away from Ao Nang on a speedboat. If you take the longtail boat, you’re looking at a 45 minutes ride.
5. Koh Phangan/Malibu Beach
The Koh Phangan beach Malibu stretches over the northwest coast of Thailand overlooking the majestic mountain of Khao Ra. It will make you feel like you’re on the set of a Beach Boys video production.
While you might think this beach is named after the LA city, Malibu beach in Koh Phangan gets its name from the only hotel on the beach- Malibu Beach Bungalows. BBQ, fruit shakes and Malibu Beach Breeze cocktail are the grand attractions to gorge on when you’re in Malibu, Thailand.
Filled with tropical paradise clichés like coconut trees, fine white sand, azure waters, and sparkling waves, Malibu is good for elephant trekking and horse riding too. I personally know this beach is the best place for full-moon parties. It just lights up with a thousand lights during one such party. So, expect crowds during full moon dates.
How do you get to Koh Phangan?
You can take a flight from Bangkok to Koh Samui and a 3 to 5 hours ferry to reach Koh Phangan.
Set around the western end of Chaloklum Bay, all you need to do is get to the north coast of Koh Phangan to find Malibu beach. Follow the signage from the village that says ‘Malibu Beach’ and walk into the Malibu Beach Resort to reach the beach via the footbridge. It’s even more adventurous when you’re there!
6. Koh Phra Thong/Phra Thong Bay
Adrenaline-seekers will love Koh Phra Thong because it is the best place to enjoy the serenity of blue skies reflecting even bluer waters. Soaking in the lush breeze of the Andaman Sea, Phra Thong Bay beaches are known for their coral reefs. This is why snorkeling and scuba diving are the best things to do here.
So the story goes that a golden statue of a monk was found and lost in Koh Phra Thong years and decades ago. That’s why it’s called the Golden Buddha Island. Casuarina trees line the shores of this coastal jungle stretching over 50 acres.
When you’re exploring Koh Phra Thong, make sure to carry extra water bottles because most shops around this island don’t sell any.
Wake up to the warm sea while having your oceanfront breakfast on lounge chairs or watch rare animal sightings like pangolins. . You will fall in love with the sunsets that paint a vivid hue to the mangrove wilderness here. It’s a heavenly escapade not to miss when in Thailand.
How do you get to Koh Phra Thong?
One can get to Khuraburi (closest to Koh Phra Thong) from Bangkok by air, train or bus. The train is the most convenient option that takes over 13 hours. I personally suggest you go for this if you want to enjoy the beauty of Thailand up close.
There are two ways to reach Koh Phra Thong from the town of Khuraburi. You can take a boat from the Saphan Pla pier or the Mangrove Pier.
7. Koh Muk/Emerald Cave and Sabai Beach
Quaint and quiet, unlike Thailand’s famous beaches and islands, Koh Muk or Koh Mook boasts affordable-to-modest accommodations even though it is quite under-developed. I fell in love with the wooden bungalows and the beach huts that seep into the ocean here and I know you will too.
Koh Muk is infamous for its hidden beaches and my favorite is the Ao Sabai beach. Why do you ask? See the grand entrance of this beach opening up with an Emerald Cave or Tham Morakot, and you tell me.
Adventurers can admire the Emerald Cave with a swim or by boat. When I did the trip, we swam 80-meters to the small bench in the Emerald Cave too. Legends say that this cave was once (perhaps centuries ago) a getaway option for pirates. Ao Sabai boasts bluffs from ancient tales surrounded by the reddish-amber sand too.
With one ATM and a handful of supermarkets, planning ahead is a must when you’re going to this part of the Tran archipelago.
How do you get to Koh Muk?
You can get a flight from Bangkok to Trang at your convenience. Alternatively, buses to Trang are available too. You don’t need to book ahead to get these bus tickets.
There are direct pickups that take 2 to 4 hours from the Airport to Koh Muk Pier. You can also get to Ko Lanta from Trang and take a speedboat to Ko Mook Pier from Saladan Pier. There is an option of a van plus a ferry from Tran Railway Station to Koh Mook Pier that takes about 2 hours as well.
Keep in mind that Sabai is a low-key beach and it is accessible strictly by long-tail boats.
8. Koh Pu/Luboa Beach
If you want an adventure-some island trip that boasts two terrains in one stop, you need to head to Koh Pu. If others call Koh Pu by Koh Jum, don’t be surprised. This island has two names- a name each for its northern and southern parts. The northern part is called Koh Pu and the southern region is Koh Jum!
A hidden beach straight outta movies, Luboa is not a party hotspot. Adventure-fanatics will love the trek to the Pu mountain summit and kayaking on the emerald waters surrounded by lush rainforests here.
Thailand’s most deserted beach, Luboa is often called the ‘north beach’ by the locals. Luboa is pure joy after sunset. Designed for private trips, most of the bungalows around the beach are secluded. Relish authentic Thai dishes when you’re here because it has a unique taste of the terroirs.
Here’s my tip after a dozen trips- stay in the beachside bungalows of Koh Jum and stroll Koh Pu for sunsets. My favorite part of the trip is walking on the land bridge to reach Koh Pu from Koh Jum.
How do you get to Koh Pu?
Located between Koh Lanta and Krabi, you can reach Mutu Pier, Koh Jum in 45 minutes via a from Leam Kruat Pier, Krabi.
9. Koh Larn/Ta Yai Beach
An eastern island away from the Pattaya coast, Koh Larn is called Koh Laan, Ko Lan or the Coral Island too. This tropical paradise is dotted with hills and rocky beaches besides crowds. If you want a hideaway beach from the crowd, I have a perfect choice you will love.
While there are eight main beaches on this island, my favorite is the quietest Ta Yai beach. This is a small beach secluded and forgotten by almost all the tourists.
When you’re on Koh Lan, approach songthaows and motorbikes for getting around.
How do you get to Koh Larn?
You can get to Koh Larn from Pattaya’s Bali Hai Pier within 15 minutes via speedboat. From Bangkok, travellers can catch the minivan at Eastern’ Ekamai Bus Station to reach Koh Laan within 2 hours.
10. Koh Bulon Leh/School Beach
The best aquamarine waters in Thailand mixed with boastful tranquillity is the highlight of Koh Bulon beaches. Some of you might get goosebumps seeing how deserted this island of white sand with dancing green casuarinas is.
Absolutely no ATMs, folks. So, withdraw and carry your cash ahead of reaching your island trip!
Along the southeast of Koh Bulon Lae is the most photogenic beaches of all School Beach. A thousand shades of blue pop to the surface with its waves. Embraced by the warm breeze of the Andaman Sea, this beach is good for swimming and snorkeling. Expect low tides and reefs within walkable distances.
While most nature trails are no longer maintained here, you can explore the forests around with long hiking trousers and strong trekking shoes. Hire a guide and carry bug repellants because getting lost and getting bitten by mosquitoes is the norm here.
How do you get to Koh Bulon Leh?
You can fly to Trang or Hat Yai and get to the Hat Yai Talad Kaset Station to reach Koh Bulon Lae.
Another alternative is doing a to Koh Bulon Leh. It’s definitely more adventurous too.
Thailand Beach Insights
Thailand has a beach for every person. If you want to see a vibrant, go to the party beaches of Thailand. However, if you want the hidden, getaway, secret beaches that you often see pictures of, then the above ten are the best of best.
Start by adding one of your favorites to the itinerary!