Stretching thinly down to Malaysia, it is southern Thailand that gives you the choice of seas. Every land mass is surrounded by water and deciding which Thai islands to visit can be a daunting task. Whether you are looking to party, relax or dive, Thailand is surrounded by plenty of islands, just waiting to welcome you. While every island is unique in its own way, they all share one common trait: they are breathtaking! So narrowing it to the top 7 islands in Thailand can be tough, but one can try!
So here are the 7 most beautiful islands in Thailand that you should definitely visit.
1. Phuket Island (pronounced as Poo-ket)
The island of Phuket is one of Thailand’s top destination for beaches and luxurious hotels, in addition to snorkelling, sailing and the nightlife. It offers plenty of sandy beaches and attracts millions of tourists every year. While you are in Phuket, do visit the beautiful tropical beaches like Nai Harn Beach, Kata Noi Beach and Surin Beach. Besides, Phuket also has sporadic waterfalls and caves which you can surely enjoy on the island.
2. Patong Beach
Located 15 km west of Phuket Town, Patong Beach is a party lovers haven. Famous for its countless numbers of restaurants, nightclubs and Go-Go bars, Patong beach attracts millions of people throughout the year and is usually crowded and loud. However, don’t just be blinded by the lit nightlife of Patong, as it also has many things to offer for couples and families. If you love adventure, you can try Ziplining through the forests and other similar activities. Before you hop to the next beach/island, do not forget to shop at the Jungceylon Shopping Mall in Bangla Street or attend the splendid Simon Cabaret Show.
3. Koh Phi Phi
Koh Phi Phi is a cluster of 6 islands situated between the island of Phuket and the western side of the Strait of Malacca Coast. Koh Phi Phi islands is a beach lover’s dream come true. Just a 45-minute speedboat ride from Krabi or Phuket, the good news is that Phi Phi Don and Phi Phi Leh are two of the main islands from the clusters. Phi Phi Don is developed, lively and touristy whereas Phi Phi Leh is undeveloped with bleached beaches sans the crowd. You can also engage in adventure activities such as snorkelling, cliff diving etc at Phi Phi Leh or go for a shark tour at Phi Phi Don.
4. Koh Samui
With virgin rainforests, palm beaches, and pristine blue water of the sea, with accommodation available in expensive resorts to cheap bungalows, Koh Samui is one of the largest islands in Thailand. It can be the most luxurious island for a spendthrift tourist, yet doesn’t burn a hole in the pocket of a budget traveller. There are a plethora of things to do in Koh Samui. Also, with its close proximity to the Ang Thong National Marine Park, a wildlife enthusiast will fall in love with the place. For a spiritual traveller, the 12 meters tall Buddha statue at the Big Buddha Temple is a sight to behold. Not convinced yet? Pay a visit and let us know what sets it apart!
Also read: The ultimate Koh Samui Travel guide
5. Koh Phangan
Koh Pha Ngan is a divers paradise! With almost 50 diving sites this island is rich in natural beauty. Just 12 km from Koh Samui, Koh Phangan is an abode of lush, tropical forests, granite hills and of course the white sand beaches. Apart from its full moon parties, the island is worth spending some time to visit the night market in Thong Sala. Mostly a food market, do not miss sampling the lip-smacking seafood here. For the adventurous soul, you have the options of Sailing, Windsurfing and Kayaking.
6. Ko Tao
A part of the Chumphon Archipelago, Ko Tao literally means Turtle Island. Another diving paradise, Ko Tao is an island teeming with shops offering experiences to witness the underwater world. Snorkel among the black tip reef sharks on Haad Tien island or get a mesmerising view from the John Suwan viewpoint at the southern tip of the island – Ko Tao has a broad appeal for everyone.
7. Ko Tapu/Khao Phing Kan
As you look up to the limestone tower karsts, you will find yourself in awe of nature and its creations. Khao Phing Kan and Ko Tapu are these mesmerising karsts. These islands got their fame from the James Bond movie ‘The Man With The Golden Gun’ and since then have been swarmed with tourists. And you know what? Khao Phing Kan is the perfect postcard memory you can take back home 🙂
So which of these islands appeal to you? Have you visited them or others? Tell us in the comments section below.
Island lovers can read more about other island destinations here.