The beach just goes and goes
Published/Last edited or updated: 24th April, 2016
The tan sand and teal water doesn’t hold a candle to Ko Samet and other islands, but it tops the charts when it comes to long walks at sundown.
Clusters of pine-like casuarina trees stretch immediately behind the beach in many places, providing top-notch places to chill out on a beach chair while ordering grilled squid and som tam from the makeshift seafood shops. Nudging up to the Khao Laem Ya headland, the scenic eastern corner is quite wide, even at high tide, making it a great spot for some late-afternoon soccer or frisbee. The far western end sports a public park with large seaside pavilions. On a few different visits we’ve noticed people surfing and windsurfing here.
Unfortunately most of the tidal garbage doesn’t get picked up; the beach’s narrower eastern section looked particularly shabby when we last passed through in 2016. A couple of large building projects have been abandoned across the beach road, leaving eyesores on the landscape.
You’ll find quite a few functioning hotels with names like “Nice Beach” along with high-rise condominiums where many expats live, explaining the Italian and German restaurants found here. White Stone Resort is a centrally located flashpacker-range spot with bungalows built in the shape of boats. At the eastern end of the beach, the tiny M.M. Villa offers rooms starting at 300 baht a night.
Haad Mae Ramphueng’s east end is located six kilometres southwest of downtown Ban Phe while the western end is just 10 kilometres from Rayong town. It’s sometimes referred to as Rayong Beach. While the roads that run here from Ban Phe are pleasant, coming from Rayong requires a stretch on busy Route 3. The beach can be combined with Khao Laem Ya and Rayong Aquarium for a fun day out.
From Ban Phe, head straight west on Liap Chai Fang Road and keep straight when the road narrows and becomes Sukkhaphiban Soi 2/8. After passing through the seafood market, take a right (keeping straight here will lead to Rayong Aquarium) and after about a half-kilometre, take a left on Kon Ao Soi 1. From here it’s a quick ride to the eastern end of Haad Mae Ramphueng. Along the way you’ll pass the national park gate for Khao Laem Ya.
David Luekens first came to Thailand in 2005 when Thai friends from his former home of Burlington, Vermont led him on a life-changing trip. Based in Thailand since 2011, he spends much of his time eating in Bangkok street markets and island hopping the Andaman Sea.
These tours are provided by Travelfish partner GetYourGuide.