several tourists crowded on Banana Beach, a secluded tranquil beach in Phuket with turquoise waters and several palm trees / where to stay in Phuket for couples and first-timers

Where To Stay in Phuket for Couples: 7 Best Areas

Are you planning a trip to Phuket with your partner and looking for where to stay in Phuket for couples? This Phuket beach area guide covers the seven best beach areas for couples!

Phuket is the largest island in Thailand, and because of this, there are several different areas to consider when looking for where to stay. It can get overwhelming when deciding where to stay.

All beach areas mentioned below are also excellent for where to stay in Phuket for first-timers who would prefer to avoid Patong, Phuket’s busiest area, known for its nightlife.

This guide covers the seven best areas in Phuket, things to do there, what each beach area is known for, and the best hotel recommendations for each budget!

When deciding which beach area you should choose, consider the atmosphere you’re looking for, the location on the island, and the highlights of the beach area you’re favoring!

Karon Beach

colourful skies at sunset at Karon Beach in Phuket, Thailand

Karon Beach is one of the best areas for not only couples but families as well. The beach area is most well-known for its stunning extensive beach shoreline and clear turquoise waters.

Karon has two main streets, one along the beach shoreline, which is full of restaurants, shops, and bars. The other street enters the main town area, full of many seafood restaurants, Italian restaurants, local Thai spots, and more!

There are many things to do in Karon besides the beach, such as visiting Karon Park, a beautiful park with a large pond, Karon Temple Night Market, and much more!

In the evening time, you’ll find some bars offering live music and bars serving drinks, but that’s about it when it comes to the nightlife here. Karon Beach is best described as a calming, lazy beach town.

Karon Beach is the obvious choice if you’re looking for a mix of the best beach and the quietest, relaxing area in Phuket.

Another advantage to staying in Karon Beach is that it’s very close to Kata Beach. It’s only a 5/10 minute drive between the two areas. Staying in Karon means you have quick access to a second beach!

Best Hotels in Karon Beach

Le Meridien Phuket — Luxury

JonoX Karon — Mid Range

Karon Sino Hostel — Budget

Kata Beach

several beach lounge chairs and umbrellas lined up next to one another at Kata Beach in Phuket, Thailand

Kata Beach is popular amongst all tourists, despite most visitors being couples and families. But there are some solo travelers who stay in Kata Beach as well. It is the second most popular beach area in Phuket after Patong.

There are many things to do in Kata Beach, and it’s most known for its surfing because of the friendly beginner waves on its shores. The beach in Kata is breathtaking, surrounded by palm trees and mountains, it’s very tropical.

The Kata Beach area is very walkable, unlike most beach areas in Phuket, which primarily consist of one or two main beach roads congested with locals/tourists. Kata Beach has several streets, so it’s easier to get around, but all roads are close in proximity.

Kata’s restaurants are diverse, from Turkish to Japanese, Italian, and local cuisine. Kata also has two different night markets, one operating as a food court during the day and one at night!

If you’re looking for a quiet area with more things to do during the day/night, Kata Beach is an excellent choice.

An advantage to staying in Kata Beach is that you have a beautiful beach, and Karon Beach is minutes away.

Also, you’re in a great location because there’s a main crossing road by Kata that leads into the other side of the island where Old Phuket Town is.

Best Hotels in Kata Beach

Katathani Phuket Resort — Luxury

Blu Pine Villas — Mid-Range

Nonnee Hostel — Budget

Kamala Beach

a woman under a few palm trees on a sunny clear day in Phuket, Thailand

Kamala Beach area is located in the middle of Phuket’s west coastline. With a beautiful, extensive shoreline full of lots of space, several shops, and restaurants right on the beach, Kamala Beach has plenty of perks.

Kamala Beach has plenty of things to do, including night markets and beach activities, and it is home to the famous Phuket FantaSea theme park.

The hotels in Kamala consist primarily of large hotels and resorts, but there are a few boutique-style hotels, too!

Local Thai cuisine and seafood are well represented in Kamala Beach, but besides that, the cuisine here could be more diverse. My favorite restaurants in Kamala Beach are Marush Kamal and Duck Spicy.

Overall, the area is calming and laid back, with most restaurants/shops being nearby, so it’s easy to get around in Kamala. If you’re looking for an even more secluded beach to visit while staying in Kamala, check out Haad Laem Sing and Hua Beach!

A significant advantage to staying in Kamala Beach is its great location. It’s 10 minutes away from Patong Beach, so you could always visit Patong party there and come back. Also, Surin Beach is five minutes away and another excellent beach to visit!

Best Hotels in Kamala Beach

InterContinental Phuket Resort — Luxury

Novotel Kamala Beach — Mid-Range

Bodega Phuket — Budget

Bang Tao Beach

stunning colourful sunset with various shades of orange in the clouds at Bang Tao Beach in Phuket Thailand

Looking for a romantic beach area with a calming atmosphere and several fine-dining restaurants to choose from? Bang Tao Beach is the best option for you in Phuket!

This beach area has the most 5-star hotels and resorts on the island, with many options for restaurants/bars and opportunities for shopping.

When it comes to Phuket honeymoon hotels, Bang Tao has the most ideal honeymoon-style hotels/resorts. It’s the perfect area for couples looking for a more romantic beach area.

Bang Tao Beach itself is one of the best beaches in Phuket. The extensive narrow beach shoreline seems like it goes forever sometimes when walking along it, perfect for romantic evening beach walks with your partner.

Consider visiting the Catch Beach Club in Bang Tao. They’ve got pools, spa treatments, and plenty of room to have everything you need to enjoy a luxurious beach day. Some nights, they host a show with several fire performers, which is fun!

The crowd here consists mainly of mature adults, young couples, and a few families, though some hotels are adult-only.

If you’re looking for romantic things to do in Phuket for couples, a luxurious beach area with a laidback atmosphere, Bang Tao Beach is the best area for you!

Best Hotels in Bang Tao Beach

SAii Laguna Phuket — Luxury

Hilton Garden Inn — Mid-Range

ChillHub Hostel Phuket Budget

Surin Beach

many rocks on the beach shorelines at Surin Beach in Phuket

The main attraction for Surin is its beach. It’s breathtaking: the shades of turquoise, the palm trees surrounding it, and the soft sand. Surin Beach is easily one of the best beaches in Phuket.

One of the best aspects of Surin Beach, besides its natural beauty, is that there is no other beach in Phuket with a broader variety of street food near its shores.

Surin Beach has countless stalls serving various types of foods all day, and this made Surin Beach my favorite beach in Phuket to visit for the day.

Surin Beach is a quieter area with limited restaurants and shops and things to do besides the beach.

If you stay here, you will spend time in neighboring beach areas, Kamala Beach, Bang Tao Beach, and Patong Beach.

Overall, the beach area consists mainly of accommodations, making it extra laidback. Staying here means you’re far away from most of the tourist crowds.

Staying in Surin Beach comes with many advantages. The beach is one of the best in Phuket, and you’re neighboring two significant beach areas, Kamala and Bang Tao. Also, Phuket Airport is nearby for when it’s time to leave.

Best Hotels in Surin Beach

The Surin Phuket — Luxury

Outrigger Surin Beach Resort — Mid-Range

ChillHub Hostel Phuket — Budget

Nai Han Beach

turquoise waters with clear skies and an empty Nai Han Beach in Phuket

Nai Han Beach is the last main beach area along the West side of Phuket. The best part about it is that it’s less popular than most beach areas in Phuket and has more of a local feel.

The shoreline here isn’t the largest, but it’s not tiny. There are several beach chair rentals for the day, but if you plan on renting one, come early!

Nai Han Beach area is known for its countless viewpoints that surround it, perfect for those who love trekking/hiking on a hot afternoon for a workout. Ban Han Park has a large pond and is lovely for a walk in the evening.

Near this beach area is Rawai Beach, another beach area where most locals and expats reside. If you stay in Nai Han Beach, you may often be in the Rawai area because most shops and restaurants are there.

Make sure to eat some seafood at Rawai Beach. The many seafood restaurants there are known for being the best seafood restaurants in Phuket!

Overall, the area is tranquil, has limited nightlife, and mainly attracts families and couples. Also, Nai Han Beach is one of the cheapest beach areas in Phuket to stay in!

Best Hotels in Nai Han Beach

The Nai Harn — Luxury

Wyndham Grand Nai Harn — Mid-Range

Naiharn On The Rock — Budget

Old Phuket Town

pastel sino-Portuguese buildings along the streets in Old Phuket Town

Old Phuket Town is a fantastic area for those looking to experience the authentic local side of the island.

With it’s many Portuguese Sino-style buildings, excellent restaurants, gyms, and shops. But, you should know, it’s not near any beaches. It will take you around 15 to 20 minutes to get to any beach on Phuket’s west side.

But despite not being close to any beaches, there are plenty of things to do in Old Phuket Town, and staying there has its many advantages.

You’re close to many excursions in Phuket, such as the waterparks, elephant sanctuaries, and the two best night markets in Phuket: the Naka Weekend Market and the Old Phuket Sunday Market.

Also, minutes away from Old Phuket town is the Rassada Pier. This pier is the best way to get to the famous Phi Phi Islands and other islands, an absolute must-do while in Phuket!

Overall, staying here has more of a local atmosphere. Locals and expats are going by their day-to-day commitments.

Lastly, the local Songthaew Blue Bus is another significant advantage to staying in Old Phuket Town. All the buses depart from Phuket Town to other areas on the island, and it’s the cheapest way to get around!

Suppose you’re looking to stay in Phuket long term or perhaps for a short period but want to work during the weekdays. I would highly recommend staying in Old Phuket Town. It’s my favorite area to stay in if I’m not visiting Phuket for a holiday.

Best Hotels in Old Phuket Town

Blu Monkey Hub Hotel – Luxury

The Memory at On On Hotel – Mid-Range

The Dorm Hostel – Budget

Several tourists walking on Thalang Rd for the Old Phuket Town Sunday night market

How to Get Around in Phuket

Besides renting a scooter, here are the most efficient and cheapest ways to get around Phuket.

Phuket Smart Bus: This local white bus operates on the West side of the island, driving and stopping at all the popular beach areas, including Surin, Kamala, Patong, Karon, and Kata. The bus also reaches the Phuket Airport.

Each beach area has designated stops, so make sure to wait there. The bus stops around every hour and costs 100 Baht/$2.88 US – Check the Schedule.

GRAB: You can download the app and find a ride quickly. It is safe, efficient, and one of the best ways to get around in most places in Thailand, including Phuket.

Songthaew (local Blue Bus): The local blue bus picks you up and drops you off anywhere you want along the route. Stand on the side of the road and wave for the driver to stop. Once you’re at your destination, press the button and pay the driver 30-50 Baht (they’ll tell you).

This bus has several different routes on the island. It operates from Old Phuket Town and outwards from 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM. The bus frequents each route approximately every 30 minutes (sometimes slightly longer).

Tuk-Tuk/Taxi: The fastest way to get around Phuket is by taking one of the many red tuk-tuks you can spot all over the island. While they’re convenient, the only downside is that you must prepare to negotiate with the drivers because sometimes they inflate prices.

TIP: If you need to know what to pay for a taxi/tuk-tuk, use the Grab/Bolt apps to look up your trip and negotiate based on the price you see in the app!

Get as close as you can to that price, and even if you pay slightly more, the convenience of not waiting for a Grab or Bolt is worth the small extra cost.

views of condos and hotels, the ocean, and many trees from a Kata Viewpoint in Phuket, Thailand

Where to Stay in Phuket for Couples — Final Thoughts

There you have it, those are the best areas for where to stay in Phuket for couples, families, or any solo travelers looking for a laidback beach holiday on the island!

Here are a few things to consider when deciding where to stay in Phuket. Consider aspects that are important to you for your ideal beach area.

Are you guys big beach people? How lively would you prefer the area to be? Are you not a beach person but would like to visit the beach some days?

The best places to stay in Phuket depend on your preferences. Kata Beach is my favorite area because of its laid-back atmosphere, and Karon is my favorite beach, which is conveniently only five minutes from Kata.

For a romantic getaway, Bang Tao takes the #1 place. Location-wise, Kamala Beach is the most centrally located beach among all considerations on this list!

Are you planning to visit Krabi as well during your Thailand trip? Here’s a helpful guide for where to stay in Krabi!

Is Phuket good for couples?

Phuket is excellent for couples. Areas like Karon, Kata, Bang Tao, and Kamala Beach are the perfect laidback setting for couples visiting.

Avoid Patong Beach, Phuket’s most popular area known for its nightlife and shopping. However, if you’d like to be around nightlife every night, you may like Patong.

Which is the nicest part of Phuket to stay?

Karon Beach and Bang Tao Beach have the most excellent beaches in Phuket. Kata Beach will be ideal if you prefer a slightly lively area with a lovely beach.

How many days in Phuket is enough?

It would be best to spend at least 5 days in Phuket. There is so much to do on the island. It’s one of the most popular places in Thailand for a good reason!

Patong Beach is the most popular area in Phuket, known for its lively nightlife and shopping.

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