Chalok Ban Kao is a sleepy village at the south of the island with a gorgeous lengthy beach stretching for just over half a kilometre. Smaller and quieter than its counterpart beaches in Sairee and Mae Haad, Chalok Bay has a relaxed and unhurried atmosphere and is a nice place to chill out and spend some time.
Accessing Chalok Bay is easy and there are plenty of places to park for those arriving by scooter. From Chalok Bay you can easily walk to other nearby beaches such as June Juea Beach, Freedom Beach, and Shark Bay (Thian Og), making it one of the best Koh Tao beaches for checking out multiple bays on the same day. John Suwan Viewpoint is also close by.
There are no charges for using Chalok Bay, however, if you decide to relax on one of the deckchairs or loungers at one of the beach bars, you will be expected to purchase some refreshments or food.
Services & Facilities
Mask and snorkel sets are available to rent from many shops, tour agencies, and dive centres, and it is possible to rent kayaks at some of the beachfront businesses too. There are a few diving schools located along Chalok Bay, so if you are staying locally and want to book in for some dive trips on Koh Tao, you have a choice of about 10 dive centres where you can ask about diving courses and fun diving schedules.
Longtail water-taxis are available for private hire, should you wish to take an excursion to some of the other nearby bays and coves once you have spent some time at Chalok Bay.
The length of the bay itself is flanked by beachside cafes as well as dive centres and resorts. Serving Thai favourites as well as catering to western palettes, you won’t struggle to find great food, including some great healthy options like ’I Love Salad’ and ‘Big Bite Cafe’, both of which are located just a couple of minutes’ walk from the beach.
Swimming and Snorkeling
As it is so wide and shallow, Chalok Bay is great for snorkeling. Plus, as there are fewer diving centres and no pier traffic, there are not as many boats coming and going as there are in at Sairee Beach or Mae Haad Bay. Do be careful of shallow coral formations though, especially at low tide.
With easy entry and incredibly shallow water for some distance out, Chalok Bay is perfect for families with children. On a clear day, you can see all the way out to Koh Phangan, Koh Samui, and Ang Thong Marine Park.