“One of the longest, dreamiest beaches on Phuket. This slice of pearlescent sand is just asking for you to laze around on it and do nothing.” Lonely Planet
Bang Tao Beach is a large open bay on the Andaman Sea located on Phuket’s west coast. This 8km stretch of pristine white sand is one of the longest beaches on the island.
Post-pandemic, the area is just starting to come back to life with a handful of beach bars open for business offering fresh coconuts, cocktails and traditional Thai food. We loved the daily happy hours at The Beach Bar Crafted, a small rustic bar with great service and excellent cocktails. Grab one of their beanbags, sit under a palm tree and enjoy the sunset.
You can relax in peace on the secluded Bang Tao beach without being disturbed by pushy vendors or noisy water sports like other busier areas. The southern end is more developed and where most of the hotels are located but the northern end is much quieter.
The southern end backs onto the large Laguna complex and luckily for us was just a short walk from the perimeter gate of the Banyan Tree Phuket where we were staying. Previously the hotel had their own stretch of beach here but sadly that no longer exists. The Angsana Beach Resort, which is also part of the Laguna complex, backs onto the beach where some watersports and beach volleyball is available. Xana Beach Club is also here but it was still closed when we were there due to Covid-19 restrictions. One of the popular activities on this stretch of beach is horse riding which can be orgainsed via Angsana.
The Northern end of the beach is more pristine and peaceful. As the tree lined beach curves round it merges with Layan beach. Take a walk along the beach to the northern end but be aware there’s no shade so don’t go in the middle of the day like we did. It’s a popular spot with tourists who like to run but is mostly frequented by a few locals from the village who are fishing or enjoying food with their families.
I much preferred this area of Phuket to Patong where we stayed last time as it’s much quieter, less brash and felt very safe. The nearby Boat Avenue has plenty of options for restaurants, traditional massages and some shops including the best stocked supermarket I’ve seen on my travels. Laguna resort guests can use the facilities of any of the hotels within the complex and there’s free shuttles available to ferry you from one place to another. I highly recommend staying at the luxurious Banyan Tree Phuket if you are looking for a stylish villa stay and top notch service.
**In order to travel to Thailand visitors need an approved Thailand Pass. All travelers are required to have a confirmed SHA+ accommodation booking, hotel airport transfer and a pre-paid Covid-19 on arrival test (taken at the airport). I would advise only booking accommodation that is fully refundable just in case your Thailand Pass is not approved, or the approval doesn’t arrive in time to travel or you have a Covid-19 related emergency (November/December 2021).**
Unless otherwise stated all photos © Jo Brett 2021. All rights reserved.