Koh Tao Beaches
You do not need to be a certified diver to enjoy the beautiful tropical waters or golden sandy beaches and bays that surround our island. Koh Tao beaches and bays are plentiful, most are easily accessible, and all offer excellent swimming and snorkeling opportunities as well as having plenty of space to lay down your towel or sarong to relax. One of the main benefits of the island being so heavily used for scuba diving is that even the most popular beaches remain relatively quiet throughout the day as such a large number of island visitors are out on dive boats completing scuba diving courses or taking fun diving trips.
With shallow coral reefs surrounding the island, a fantastic array of marine life awaits just steps away from the shoreline of any of the Koh Tao beaches you visit. Thanks to a temperate climate and weather system, Koh Tao beaches and bays are blessed with clear waters and calm conditions almost all year round, and the benefit of being on an island is that if there is wind coming from one direction, the other side of the island will still be sheltered by the land. There are always options when it comes to beaches and bays to explore on Koh Tao. All you need is a mask and snorkel. Please do note that as part of island-wide conservation measures, many beaches do not allow the use of fins to protect the shallow corals from damage.
There is more diversity than you’d think when it comes to Koh Tao beaches and bays. The bigger and more popular beaches tend to be along the western and southern coasts. In between the main towns and villages, however, you will find some hidden gems. There are smaller bays tucked into pockets between coastline resorts. The eastern and northern parts of Koh Tao are much less inhabited and developed It is here where you will find more deserted Koh Tao beaches and bays. Small patches of sand on rocky shorelines, some just a few metres wide. It can feel like you have your own private Koh Tao beach!
Some beaches are wide sandy stretches, some are tree-lined so they offer some respite from the tropical sun. At many beaches, you have the option to rent snorkeling gear, kayaks, or even go stand-up paddleboarding. While many beaches are easy to get to, some do take a little more effort. Be aware that some of the more remote Koh Tao beaches and bays involve steep drives or some hiking. So if you are not comfortable renting a scooter on Koh Tao, then these may not be ideal for you.
The most popular Koh Tao beaches are those within easy reach of the main town areas of Sairee, Mae Haad, and Chalok Baan Kao, where most visitors find their holiday accommodation. So if you only explore those options, you won’t be missing out. These are still some of the best Koh Tao beaches, with the bonus of not involving much travel. Some may even be just a short walk from the doorstep of your accommodation!
Away from the bustle of the main village areas lie some smaller and quieter beaches and bays. All of these are easily accessible by foot or scooter, but some involve some steep hills, so do be careful. While these beaches tend to be on the quieter side compared to the most popular bays. They often still have services and amenities available on-site, mostly in the form of small rustic bars and beach cafes. This makes them a popular option for those who want to get away from the crown a little, but without straying anywhere too remote.
If you want to see a completely different side of the island, there are also some remote Koh Tao beaches. You can get away from the crowds and relax in ultimate peace. At some, you may even get a stretch of golden sand all to yourself!