Exploring Koh Phangan beaches

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. The first time I was on the island was in 2018 and I had a twisted ankle from a motorbike incident in Koh Tao so I basically didn’t explore a thing back then. That’s also why I decided to go to Koh Phangan again.

This time I dedicated more time to getting to know this island that I underestimated. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan really for the Full Moon party, just like me in the past. It felt like the island wasn’t that deeply explored. People come for a few days during the party and leave. I stayed before, during, and after the full moon party and I can tell that the island lives around the full moon party schedule. The island loses most part of the travelers 2 to 3 days after the party and only gets all the tourists back 4 days before the next party or so. The hostels empty out and it is surprising to see how things revolve around this iconic party. If you think this is an overcrowded island think again.

I was volunteering at WET- a party hostel, and I could witness the difference in guest numbers during those days. I spent around 10 days on the island this time and besides beautiful viewpoints near Haad Rin Beach, I had also time to explore more beaches around Haad Rin on foot and also venture a bit further.

Sunset Beach

Let’s start with Koh Phangan beaches near Haad Rin Beach. There are several within walking distance from Haad Rin. My route started near Coral Bungalows at Sunset Beach. Very beautiful views here! The water reveals many shades of blue as the island seems to be surrounded by a coral barrier on this side. It is easily observed as the light shades of blue progress into a deep darker blue signing the end of the corals. Dead ones though. Because of this thick rock/coral part, this beach is not that good for a swim. The water is too shallow and it is not that clear too. Until Princess Paradise Hotel, the beach didn’t look very “swimmable” but the views were beautiful. I kept on walking along the beach until this abandoned hotel.

 

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

Le Palais Hotel

This is an abandoned hotel that already had its polemic. It became some sort of attraction too. This hotel resembles Angkor Wat in Cambodia and there was a polemic around it and how it was offensive for Cambodian culture to make a replica of Angkor and turn it into a profitable business. Polemic aside, the truth is that the hotel didn’t operate long apparently. It is closed and abandoned now and tourists take a chance to have a glimpse of what this 5-star hotel looked like. If you have never seen Angkor Wat yourself, this is a good example of the temples you will see in Siem Reap. Seriously, the place looks dope to me. The architecture is beautiful, the location is nice and the views from the top are actually really good! I’m sure this is a good sunset spot.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

I have been there more than once, one on my own and one to show to a friend. But never for sunset. I sneaked in and was able to explore the hotel when I was on my own even though I listened to people inside the corridors. I think they were cleaning it because I saw buckets and mops. I was walking around very cautiously avoiding being seen by anyone. This place is forbidden to visit. You are not supposed to go inside and wander around haha. But I didn’t damage a thing I just walked around and took pictures, and admired the views. The second time I was there we heard a guy shaking some keys and we ran away as soon as we heard the presence of someone else haha. There are some Burmese people who look after the place. We didn’t talk to anyone but we could see the guy looking at us from the top as we were jumping the wall to get out haha worth the adrenaline.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

From here I walked and walked along these Koh Phangan beaches that stretch for a long while. I walked away until I could go no longer as the beach turned into rocks. On this stretch of beaches, I walked across beautiful areas lined with coconut trees. These Koh Phangan beaches here are absolutely empty! What a surprise. This is why I say, dare leave the touristy part and you’ll experience another island. I even found a beach with black sand!! So beautiful!! The black sand is shiny and looks amazing. I took some with me as a souvenir haha

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

If you are looking for empty beaches with some shade, this area is a good one. Simply walk along the coast until you find a spot you like.

 

Koh Ma

On another day, in the afternoon, we rented a motorbike and decided to go further. There is this islet called Koh Ma that seems like a good spot to me as it is connected to the main island of Koh Phangan by a sand bar. Usually, this topography offers quite a scenario. To get there by motorbike we rode across beautiful landscapes!! There is this stunning downhill near the Monkey Corner that is breathtaking to look at! Woooow what a stunning view from the street. We also rode along streets lined with coconut trees that gave a true paradise vibe to the ride. These smaller streets were empty which made an even more pleasant ride.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

Once at Koh Ma, I wasn’t that impressed honestly haha. There isn’t any viewpoint to see this sandbar from above, which I believe would be the best way of admiring this area, and the blue shades of the water are not that special. There were many people here at the beach though. Lots of dead corals on the sand, and restaurants too.

Mae Haad beach

Just in front of the islet the beach has another name: Mae Haad beach. Quite touristy! And no shade besides a paid one.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

We walked through the sand bar until Koh Ma itself which provides lots of shade, unlike the Koh Phangan beaches in front. It was nice to see the area but not the best you will get from Koh Phangan. This way, after eating, we proceeded to the next beach further on the map.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

Chaloklum Beach

Our next stop was Chaloklum beach where we discovered a bustling night market. I didn’t know about it. Ended up being a good surprise. The market was very touristy with lots of foreigners walking among stalls. The market isn’t very big but has a good food selection and cute things for sale.
This was the beach we chose to spend most part of the afternoon even though it didn’t provide any shade! The beach was not very crowded the further we walked from the center where the market was happening. The sun was a bit covered so we managed to handle the heat even though we had no shade at all. The water temperature is perfect and appealing so we spent most time in the water anyway. The views of the surrounding mountains are beautiful here. We even made a sandcastle. There was no one near to judge us anyway haha

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

koh phangan

Haad Khom

For sunset, we moved to another of Koh Phangan beaches not far away called Haad Khom. This beach was smaller and didn’t look like much from below but once I got a glimpse of it from above I regretted I didn’t see it earlier. I’m sure the water colors here are gorgeous as already in the shade I could see beautiful green shades shining through. The beach has some nice boulders and a good vibe to it. Seems less touristy and more cozy.
We found some high rocks with a nice 360º view and that’s where we watched the sunset with no one else in sight, which proves the beach is not that busy. The sunset was stunning even though the sun set behind the hill. So quiet here! Was a lovely end of the day with this pink sky. Someone said it was the best sunset ever… Nothing can beat island sunsets I’m sure!

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

This was not my first time in Koh Phangan but it was my first time exploring Koh Phangan beaches a bit. Seems like many just come to Koh Phangan for the party.

And that was all the Koh Phangan beaches I’ve explored. Even though the streets are very steep and winding at times, I think the island isn’t hard to ride through. I have seen way worse, and I think Koh Tao is a worse place to ride along honestly. Still, lots of foreigners with bandages are a constant sight. I met a guy who crashed because he hit some sand on the street at night. He didn’t see it. Just be careful and you will be fine!

You can also read about more Koh Phangan beaches I have explored HERE!

Buy your tickets to Koh Phangan HERE!

Apply for a Thai Visa HERE!

 

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