10 BEST BEACHES ON KOH TAO – THE ULTIMATE GUIDE

10 BEST BEACHES ON KOH TAO – THE ULTIMATE GUIDE

Koh Tao Beaches are some of the most beautiful beaches in the world that I have so far come across. Turquoise waters, colourful coral reefs and palm tree fringed shorelines are just some of the things you can expect to discover at the beaches on Koh Tao.  I have put together the Ultimate Guide of the 10 Best Koh Tao Beaches, including how to get there and what to expect!

10 BEST KOH TAO BEACHES

#1 FREEDOM BEACH 

Freedom Beach Koh Tao is my favourite beach on the island and it is rated one of the best Koh Tao beaches by locals and tourists! Freedom Beach Koh Tao is located on the south coast of the island.

HOW TO GET TO FREEDOM BEACH KOH TAO

Freedom Beach Koh Tao is a short 10-minute drive from Sairee Beach, the main tourist hub of Koh Tao. Freedom Beach has decent road access and when I visited there were no parking or entrance fees. Freedom Beach Koh Tao is a short 2-minute walk to the beach from the car park.

WHAT TO EXPECT AT FREEDOM BEACH KOH TAO

Freedom Beach Koh Tao is one of the smaller Koh Tao beaches but the beauty and scenic vibes make up for its size. Freedom Beach is a must-see location on your list of things to do in Koh Tao! This fine white sandy beach is tucked away under a shady palm tree and mangrove jungle with some of the clearest, bluest water on the island.

A shallow reef can be found just off the shoreline at Freedom Beach Koh Tao with an abundance of corals and schools of fish which is known to be one of the best Koh Tao snorkeling spots!

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Full blog post: Freedom Beach Koh Tao

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#2 SAIREE BEACH

Sairee Beach is the biggest, busiest and the most popular of the Koh Tao beaches. Sairee Beach is the main tourist hub on Koh Tao and it seriously has it all, from beachside bars & restaurants to dive shops and night markets. Oh, and I forgot to mention – Sairee Beach Koh Tao is one of the best locations on the island to watch the sunset!

HOW TO GET TO SAIREE BEACH KOH TAO

Sairee Beach is a 5-minute drive from the Mae Haad Pier. Sairee Beach Koh Tao has easy road access and when I visited there were no parking or entrance fees. Sairee Beach is a stone’s throw from the car park to the beach.

WHAT TO EXPECT AT SAIREE BEACH KOH TAO

As I mentioned earlier, Sairee Beach is the biggest beach on Koh Tao, stretching 1.8km along the western coastline of the island! So it is up to you where you want to park along the road and stroll down to the beach because once you are down on the sand it is very easy to explore the entire Sairee Beach.

During the day, Sairee Beach Koh Tao has a few fun things to do including tree swings and beach volleyball and of course sunbathing and snorkelling out on the reef. Another great thing about this spot is that you don’t have to go far to get some lunch or drinks as there are restaurants and bars all the way along Sairee Beach, each with stunning views of the bay and neighbouring islands.

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The nightlife at Koh Tao Sairee Beach is always buzzing and it is the best place to be on the island for all things happening! Night markets, streetside food vendors and beach bars line the streets and I guarantee you will be far from bored during a night out on Sairee Beach.

For the diving enthusiasts, all the dive shops on Koh Tao can be found here at Sairee Beach. Just pop your head in, say hello and organise your dives in advance.

Full blog post: Sairee Beach Koh Tao

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#3 SHARK BAY

Shark Bay Koh Tao, also known by the local name Thian Og Bay, is rated one of the best Koh Tao snorkeling spots on the island. Shark Bay Koh Tao aptly gets its name from the frequent blacktip reef sharks that enter the bay.

HOW TO GET TO SHARK BAY KOH TAO

Shark Bay Koh Tao is a 15-minute drive from Sairee Beach, the main tourist hub on the island. Shark Bay Koh Tao can be accessed through the Haad Tien Beach Resort. Park out the front of the resort and then follow the signs pointing the way to Shark Beach Koh Tao.

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WHAT TO EXPECT AT SHARK BAY KOH TAO

When I visited Koh Tao Shark Bay I actually paddled into the bay on my kayak that I rented from my accommodation, Sai Daeng Resort, which is just right around the corner. I beached my kayak on the shore and I was blown away by the bright turquoise waters and the fine white sand at Shark Bay Koh Tao!

There is lots of exploring to do at Shark Bay Koh Tao and you MUST go snorkelling to try your luck at spotting a blacktip reef shark. The sharks are harmless so you don’t have to worry about being bitten, just be sure to give them their space to move around. Also, keep a sharp eye for some green sea turtles that frequently get around Shark Bay – one of the best Koh Tao beaches on the island.

Full blog post: Shark Bay Koh Tao

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#4 SAI NUAN BEACH

Sai Nuan Beach is one of my favourite, most unspoilt beaches in Koh Tao. Located on the south-west coastline of Koh Tao Island, Sai Nuan Beach is the perfect hideaway from the more popular Koh Tao beaches.

HOW TO GET TO SAI NUAN BEACH KOH TAO

Sai Nuan Beach is a 15-minute drive from Sairee Beach, the main tourist hub of Koh Tao. Sai Nuan Beach has decent road access and when I visited there were no parking or entrance fees. Sai Nuan Beach Koh Tao is a short 2-minute walk to the beach from the car park.

THE 2 BEACHES AT SAI NUAN BEACH KOH TAO

There are actually two beaches to be explored at this location, Sai Nuan Beach 1 and Sai Nuan Beach 2.

If you happen to park in the first car park on your left at the end of the road, follow the walking trail down from here and you will emerge on Sai Nuan Beach 2. To get to Sai Nuan Beach 1, follow the shoreline around the corner, walk through the restaurant beneath the palms and you will arrive in less than 2-minutes.

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WHAT TO EXPECT AT SAI NUAN BEACH

I visited Sai Nuan Beach around 2pm one afternoon and I was stoked to have discovered this tropical paradise that is isolated from the more touristy Koh Tao beaches. I first arrived on Sai Nuan Beach 2 and took some photos of the beach and seaside restaurant before following the shoreline around to Sai Nuan Beach 1.

Sai Nuan Beach 1 is my favourite pick of the two beaches because of the awesome tropical vibe about it. A cozy bay is shaded by a coconut palm tree forest with a slack line and a tree swing between the palms! Sounds fun right?! Sai Nuan Beach is the perfect spot to enjoy a day out with friends and family to soak up some sun, snorkel around the rocks and enjoy the sounds of the waves and coral wind chimes about.

Full blog post: Sai Nuan Beach Koh Tao

#5 KOH NANG YUAN ISLAND & BEACHES

Koh Nang Yuan is a unique tropical island in southern Thailand and one of the best day trips to be had from the nearby Koh Tao Island. Experience the ultimate serenity and tranquillity on Nang Yuan Island, where you’ll some of the most beautiful Koh Tao beaches, panoramic viewpoints and some of Thailand’s best scuba diving sites.

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HOW TO GET TO KOH NANG YUAN

Koh Nang Yuan Island is only accessible by taxi boat and the most popular route to get to Nang Yuan Island is by organising a day trip from the nearby island, Koh Tao. The boat trip to Koh Nang Yuan from Koh Tao takes approximately 15-minutes across the channel.

Here are a couple of options to book a day trip to Koh Nang Yuan listed below:

Option #1: Ask a local 

I found the easiest and cheapest way to get over to Koh Nang Yuan is to head down to the northern end of Sairee Beach where all the boats are lined up and find a local who has a boat that is willing to take you over to Nang Yuan Island. My friends and I did exactly this and we were able to barter a price of 1000 Baht between the five of us (200 Baht per person) for a return trip.

Option #2: Tourist Office

You can book a day trip to Koh Nang Yuan from any of the tourist information offices dotted around the Mae Haad Pier and Sairee Beach areas. Expect to pay between 250-350 Baht per person if you book with this option as the tour companies charge more so they can make a commission.

WHAT TO EXPECT AT KOH NANG YUAN BEACH

Koh Nang Yuan Island is open 7 days a week from 10am – 5pm. I recommended spending at least half a day here to enjoy exploring as much of Koh Nang Yuan as you possibly can. Make sure to arrange a time with your taxi boat driver for when you want to be picked up again to make the return trip back to Koh Tao.

There is a 100 Baht entry fee per person to visit Koh Nang Yuan and you must leave at no later than 5pm unless you are staying at the Nangyuan Island Dive Resort. Also, plastic water bottles and the flying of drones are prohibited on Nang Yuan Island.

Koh Nang Yuan is very popular nowadays, so you can expect for there to be quite a lot of tourists on the island. Regardless of the herds of people, I still had a fantastic time swimming at the unique sandbar beach and hiking to the famous Koh Nang Yuan Viewpoint.

Full blog post: Koh Nang Yuan Island & Beaches

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#6 TAA TOH BAY

Taa Toh Bay is a magnificent cove hidden under a palm-fringed forest on the south coast of Koh Tao Island. Taatoh Bay is the ultimate spot to relax on the beach for some peace and quiet away from the more popular Koh Tao beaches.

HOW TO GET TO TAA TOH BAY

Taa Toh Bay a 15-minute drive from Sairee Beach, the main tourist hub of Koh Tao. Taa Toh Bay has decent road access and when I visited there were no parking or entrance fees. Taatoh Bay Koh Tao is a short 2-minute walk to the beach from the car park.

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WHAT TO EXPECT AT TAA TOH BAY

Taa Toh Bay was the last stop of the day on my beach hopping adventures around the south coast of Koh Tao. I made it to Taa Toh Bay at around 5pm to do some exploring and then caught an unforgettable sunset at the beach.

I could have easily spent an entire day at Taa Toh Bay. There is so much to do including snorkeling, kayaking, beach volleyball, hiking and hammock chills! When I visited Taa Toh Bay there were only four other people on the beach, which surprised me as it was peak season on Koh Tao. So if you’re looking for one of the best beaches on Koh Tao to have all to yourself, then look no further!

Full blog post: Taa Toh Bay Koh Tao

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#7 CHALOK BAAN KAO BAY

Chalok Baan Kao Bay is one of the biggest and best Koh Tao beaches, perfect for an entire day of exploring and relaxing. Chalok Bay Koh Tao can be found on the southern coastline of the island.

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HOW TO GET TO CHALOK BAAN KAO BAY

Chalok Bay Koh Tao is a short 10-minute drive from Sairee Beach, the main tourist hub of Koh Tao. Chalok Baan Kao Bay has great road access and parking spots are available all along the beach. There are no parking or entrance fees at Chalok Baan Kao Bay and it is a stone’s throw from the road to the beach.

WHAT TO EXPECT AT CHALOK BAAN KAO BAY

I visited Chalok Beach Koh Tao at around 4pm in the afternoon and the long white sand beach was practically empty. There are a number of beach bars, bean bags and restaurants along the Chalok Baan Kao Beach where you can enjoy some afternoon drinks at sunset.

I explored Chalok Baan Kao Bay from one end to the other, stopping numerous times to take photos of the palm trees and the boats bobbing around in the shallow waters. Chalok Baan Kao is definitely one of the more quieter Koh Tao beaches and with the convenience of food and beverage options right there too.

Full blog post: Chalok Baan Kao Beach Koh Tao

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#8 TANOTE BAY

Tanote Bay is one of the more popular Koh Tao beaches, surrounded by rolling hills and large boulders. There is also a rock formation at Tanote Bay beach that is well known as the best rock jumping spot on Koh Tao Island.

HOW TO GET TO TANOTE BAY

Tanote Bay Koh Tao is located on the eastern coastline of the island. It’s a short 15-minute drive from Sairee Beach, the main tourist hub on the island. Tanote Bay has decent road access and when I visited there were no parking or entrance fees. Tanote Bay is a short 2-minute walk to the beach from the car park.

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WHAT TO EXPECT AT TANOTE BAY

Tanote Bay is the best place to watch the sunrise on Koh Tao island as this bay faces east over the Gulf Of Thailand. I visited Tanote Bay around 10am to explore the beach and the rocky points before going for a swim and of course some rock jumping. Koh Tao weather was very overcast on the day that I visited Tanote Bay but I still had an amazing time exploring this coastline.

There are a couple of beachside restaurants and resorts along Tanote Bay beach, the perfect spot to get something to eat and drink without having to leave the beach. Also, I highly recommend snorkeling in Tanote Bay as it is said to be one of the best Koh Tao snorkeling spots on the island, with a variety of colourful corals and reasonably large fish just a few steps into the water.

If you are game to do some rock jumping you can easily swim or walk out to the large boulder in the ocean at Tanote Bay. There is a metal chain on the front side of the rock to help you climb to the top and then from here there is only one way down 😉

Full blog post: Tanote Bay Koh Tao

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#9 SAI DAENG BEACH

Sai Daeng Beach is one of the best beaches on Koh Tao and a place where ultimate paradise can be found. Located on Koh Tao’s south coast, Sai Daeng Beach is the perfect spot to spend a day snorkelling the reefs, kayaking in the bay and working on your tan!

HOW TO GET TO SAI DAENG BEACH

Sai Daeng Beach Koh Tao is a 15-minute drive from Sairee Beach, the main tourist hub on the island. Sai Daeng Beach can be accessed through the Sai Daeng Resort. Park out the front of the resort and then follow the signs pointing the way down the stairs to Sai Daeng Beach. There are no parking or entry fees to Sai Daeng Beach.

WHAT TO EXPECT AT SAI DAENG BEACH

I stayed at the Sai Daeng Resort for 3 days and 3 nights and was lucky enough to visit Sai Daeng Beach every morning for a swim and snorkel. Some of the clearest, turquoise waters can be found here at Sai Daeng Beach and colourful coral reefs are only a stone’s throw away from the palm tree fringed shoreline.

Sai Daeng Beach is the closest bay to Shark Island, the best Koh Tao snorkeling spot on the island. There are kayaks and snorkel sets available to rent from the restaurant located down on Sai Daeng Beach. Paddling out to Shark Island Koh Tao in a kayak takes approximately 10-minutes and there is a floating buoy to tie off your kayak before jumping in the water for a snorkel.

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There are clusters of beautiful large boulders at the eastern end of Sai Daeng Beach, perfect for rock hopping and exploring the around the headland. This is also where various kinds of colourful corals can be found and a common spot where blacktip reef sharks and green turtles like to reside.

If you plan to spend a good part of the day at Sai Daeng Beach, there is a restaurant on the beach that is attached to the Sai Daeng Resort, serving up delicious western and Thai cuisines at a reasonable price. This will save you the hassle of hiking back up the hill and driving into town for some lunch.

Full blog post: Sai Daeng Beach Koh Tao

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#10 HIN WONG BAY

Hin Wong Bay on Koh Tao Island is a beautiful beach surrounded by large boulders and crystal clear waters, offering one of the best Koh Tao snorkeling spots. I perused my Koh Tao map in search of a beach away from the more popular Koh Tao beaches and I discovered Ao Hin Wong Beach on the eastern coastline of Koh Tao.

HOW TO GET TO HIN WONG BAY

Hin Wong Bay is a short 10-minute drive from Sairee Beach, the main tourist hub of Koh Tao. Hin Wong Bay is very easy to access as the main road leads all the way down to Ao Hin Wong Beach and there is a small carpark at the bottom. There are no parking or entrance fees at Hin Wong Bay and it is a short 2-minute walk to the beach.

WHAT TO EXPECT AT HIN WONG BEACH

When I arrived at Hin Wong Bay the first thing I did was traverse across the large boulders that lined the southern end of Ao Hin Wong Beach to see what I could find. Apart from a local fisherman on the rocks trying to catch his lunch, there wasn’t much to do at this end of the beach and I couldn’t go much further across the boulders as it was more difficult than what I had intended.

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I headed back along the trail between the palm trees to the north end of Hin Wong Bay and found a beautiful patch of sand to perch up and go for a quick swim. I was surprised to see no more than 10 people down on Ao Hin Wong Beach knowing that there were thousands of tourists on Koh Tao during this holiday season.

If you’re looking for a quiet beach away from crowds and one of the best Koh Tao snorkeling spots, head to the east side of Koh Tao Island and discover the beauty of Hin Wong Bay, where the jungle meets the sea.

Full blog post: Hin Wong Bay Koh Tao

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WHERE TO STAY IN KOH TAO

Koh Tao has hundreds of accommodations to choose from, so I have narrowed it down to a few of my personal favourite places to stay in Koh Tao to suit budget backpackers and luxury travellers. See the list of accommodations below that I personally recommend:

Luxury: Sai Daeng Resort Koh Tao

Mid Range: Wind Beach Resort

Budget: Koh Tao Central Hostel

For all other accommodations in Koh Tao, you can click HERE to search on booking.com

GETTING AROUND KOH TAO ISLAND

The best way to get around Koh Tao is to rent a scooter for 150 Baht per day to explore all four corners of the island. There are dozens of scooter rental stores in and around town and most accommodations offer scooter rentals too.


If you have any questions about Koh Tao Beaches please drop me a line below and I will get back to you as soon as I can 🙂

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