Ko Pha Ngan is a big island with plenty of beaches – so please use these links to jump down through the list. We commence at Thong Sala and go around the island counter clockwise, heading along the south coast beaches of Ao Thong Sala, Baan Tai and Baan Kai. Followed by Haad Rin sunset side, off beach and sunrise side (where the Full Moon Party is) with Haad Saikantang rounding out the southern beaches. Heading up the east coast, we have Haad Yuan, Haad Thian, Haad Why Nam, Than Sadet, Thong Nai Pan Yai and Thong Nai Pan Noi. Over the north coast, we have Bottle Beach, Haad Khom and Chaloklum, then we take a left at Mae Haad and head down the west coast. The west starts with Haad Salad, then Haad Khruad, Haad Thian, Haad Yao, Ao Chaophao, Ao Seethanu, Ao Hinkhong, Ao Plaay Laem and Ao Nai Wok and there we go – back at Thong Sala.
We have 88 places to stay in and around Ko Pha Ngan.
The district capital has an underrated beach running east behind the main road towards Baan Tai. Backed by the main south-coast road, it’s a convenient location with good views to Ko Samui. Like the rest of the south coast, the water is often very shallow for a long way off shore. A few kite- and wind-surfing outfits soar over the bay for much of the year
Extending over much of Pha Ngan’s south coast, Baan Tai Beach is named after a village of the same name. You’ll find plenty of choice, from dirt-cheap dorms and rustic bungalows to flash beach villas. The area hosts a bunch of restaurants and has a far less cramped feel than Haad Rin. While the beach isn’t spectacular, the late-day views are sublime.
Moving further east along Pha Ngan’s south coast, sedate Ao Baan Kai shifts the vibe down into an even lower key than neighbouring Ao Baan Tai. A creek running just east of Mac Bay Resort marks the border between beaches, but there’s little to differentiate one beach from the other in this area, which is filled with cheap and laid-back bungalow joints. Head further east and the road cuts uphill, with side lanes leading down to secluded patches of sand.
This area is crowded with restaurants, cafes, bars and a few places to stay and will really only appeal to those wanting to stay very close to the party. Accommodation includes a bunch of interchangeable hostels that cater to the Full Moon crowd but are often closed outside of then.
Chaloklum’s beach can be muddy at low tide and is partly sheltered due to the offshore retaining wall that was built to protect some of the fishing boats. This is a very quiet area and the resorts tend towards being quite spacious. The centre of the bay has a pier for the fishing fleet and this is also where you’ll find many of the best eating options.
This narrow strip of sand stretches straight north from Thong Sala town, offering a quiet atmosphere within a 10- to 20-minute walk of the ferry piers, night market, Old Chinese Street and all of the other conveniences found in town. You can also walk from here up to the next beach, Ao Wok Tum and Plaay Laem, which hosts Amsterdam and some other popular bars.