More Phuket secret beaches

What we say: 3.5 stars

Lining the coastlines of Phuket are more than 30 beaches, so it’s easy to find a peaceful stretch of sand if you travel beyond the island’s popular west-coast beaches. We’ve already highlighted some of Phuket’s secret beaches, but we have more to reveal. So get your beach towel ready and read on …

Think Phuket’s too crowded? Think again. Here's Khao Kad beach.

Think Phuket’s too crowded? Think again. Here’s Khao Kad beach.

One of the quickest ways to escape the crowds of Phuket is to head to the east coast. Just minutes away from Phuket Town is Cape Panwa and the beaches of Khao Kad and Ao Yon.

Khao Kad, found near the Panwa Beach Resort by Marcopolo (formerly a Novotel) along the northwestern side of the Cape is a soft sandy beach offering sunset views across Ao Chalong. Though not ideal for swimming since at low tide it’s a mud flat, most come to enjoy the tranquility and fresh seafood and cool drinks served up at the Beach Bar. If you turn up here in the morning, when the bar is closed, you’ll likely have the beach to yourself.

Ao Yon, good spot for sailing and SUP.

Ao Yon, a fine spot for sailing and SUP.

Further south along the coastal road that winds around Cape Panwa is Ao Yon, a small beach with just a smattering of rustic restaurants and a sailing school. It’s rarely busy here, with the most activity happening on the Sunday family sailing days. Early risers will be treated to spectacular sunrises on this east-facing beach. Standup paddle boards and kayaks are available for rent at the sailing school.

A cheerful stretch of sand. Pleumsuk means 'happiness' in Thai.

A cheerful stretch of sand. Pleumsuk means ‘happiness’ in Thai.

Another east-coast beach that has yet to welcome the tourist hordes is Pleumsuk beach on Ko Siray. Lined with a few excellent Thai seafood restaurants and not much else, with views out to Phang Nga Bay, Pleumsuk is a top spot to soak up some local atmosphere. Swimming is possible during high tide, though the water’s a bit murky.

Even the dogs are lazy at Laemka beach.

Even the dogs are lazy at Laemka beach.

Laemka beach and Ao Sane on Phuket’s southern end are tiny beaches that see far fewer visitors than the popular Rawai and Nai Harn beaches nearby. Laemka is not visible at all until you reach the end of the narrow lane leading to it off Viset Road, the main road linking Chalong to Rawai. With a few rental chairs and vendors selling snacks and drinks, you could easily park yourself here for a whole lazy day.

Ao Sane, beach bliss at the end of a secret road.

Ao Sane, beach bliss at the end of a secret road.

Ao Sane, found only by passing through the covered car park of the Phuket Yacht Club resort on Nai Harn’s western end, is a small white-sand beach with decent snorkelling around the rocks just offshore. Ao Sane Bungalows offer beachfront dining, sun beds and rooms for rent, with Baan Krating resort further down the road providing a more swish place to stay.

On the west coast, just a few minutes away from the popular Kamala beach, is Hua beach, a small stretch of sand at the end of a narrow, tree-lined lane. Found along the road dubbed the “Millionaire’s Mile” because of the luxury resorts and villas in the area, it’s surprising that the land approaching Hua beach has not yet been bought up by a billionaire seeking a private hideaway. For now, happily, it’s a public beach with free parking and few visitors.

The rustic Hua beach is hidden away in a luxury enclave.

The rustic Hua beach is hidden away in a luxury enclave.

If you’re planning to stay awhile at Hua beach, packing your own lunch is recommended since the one restaurant here, populated only by a few listless souls, didn’t look too promising on our visit. At the southern end of the beach, catch a glimpse of the luxurious lifestyle with a peek into the edge of the Laemson villa estate. Or if you have a spare 50,000 baht in your backpack, go ahead and book a night’s stay there.

To get to Hua beach, take the main road through Kamala (Route 4233), and just before it curves uphill on the way to Patong, take a right at the road with the large billboard for Andara resort. Follow along here for about two kilometres, and you’ll see a small white hand-painted sign for Hua beach on the right.

Last updated: 27th April, 2015

About the author:
Lana Willocks is a freelance writer from Canada based in Phuket. Her love affair with Thailand (and, ok, a Thai man) began on a university exchange programme in Bangkok, then she returned to Phuket on the auspicious date of 9-9-1999 and never left.
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