World-famous Phuket is not a beach. It is Thailand’s largest island-province that is home to 17 amazing white-sand beaches, including Patong Beach, Karon Beach, Kata Beach and other Phuket beaches. You need to make several visits to this Thai island Paradise before being able to enjoy all its amazing beaches, not to mention its other attractions such as waterfalls, mountains, bays and towns, as well as man-made wonders such as the Big Buddha on top of Nekkerd Hills and the FantaSea cultural complex.
The most popular and overly crowded beach is Patong. It offers a 2-km white-sand beach and magnificent dive spots. But what is really attracting thousands of tourists every month are the all-night parties in its hundreds of bars, restaurants and go-go clubs. Nightlife and adult entertainment here is phenomenal. European tourists can’t seem to get enough of the beautiful Thai lady-boys and transvestites. Patong’s is a kind of tourism that is unique in the world.
The second most popular beach is Karon, although its 5-km white-sand beach is obviously more spectacular than Patong’s. Both beaches are very crowded and, in fact, the crowding itself has become one of their attractions. People come here to meet other people and to simply enjoy seeing and showing off beautiful beach bodies. Another thing that they have in common is the presence of the many beach vendors and shops selling all kinds of beach necessities and souvenirs.
If not for the wild parties in Patong, Karon could easily be the best beach in Phuket because its water and sand are perfect for swimming, snorkeling, windsurfing, scuba diving, sunbathing, and beach bumming.
Next is the enticing Kata Beach, which is just a few minutes to the south of Karon. This is a popular family get-away beach for its white sands, crystal blue water, palm trees, restaurants, and accommodations near the beach.
Also well-known among surfers for its challenging waves from May to October, Kata Beach is divided into two: the Kata Center to the north, which is near Karon, and Kata South, where there are a number of resorts, shops and mini-marts. The most popular and affordable resorts here are the Peach Hill Resort, Mom Tri’s Boathouse, and Centara Kata Resort.
Other beaches in Phuket that deserve a visit are Kamala Beach for its tranquility and calmness; the small but beautiful “secret” Laem Singh Beach that is hiding under a steep promontory and surrounded by palm trees and giant boulders; the 6-km long Bang Tao Beach, which is home to the Laguna Phuket Resort Complex, Cherngtalay Temple, and Canal Village and its silk factory; and Pansea Beach, which is a private beach of Amanpuri and Chedi resorts.
Tourists may visit two or three of these beaches in a day on board a long-tail boat or by simply going by foot. Each beach has something unique to offer. Perhaps what’s common among Patong Beach, Karon Beach, Kata Beach and other Phuket beaches are the blissful sandy shoreline, clear water, friendly people, and the many local vendors offering all kinds of beach items.