The lighthouse that gives this bay its name is now unused, but can still be seen clearly jutting out from the jungle foliage looking out over the cove. Lighthouse Bay is a favourite stop for operators offering round the island snorkel trips. The beach itself is incredibly small and made more of shale than the golden sands you’d typically find at other Koh Tao beaches. So it’s not a good choice for sunbathing, but it is a great place to escape the crowds and be surrounded by nature.
It is possible to hike to the lighthouse from the road leading over to Mango Bay, but neither the lighthouse or Lighthouse Bay is directly accessible by car or bike so the only other option is to get there by longtail taxi boat. The best way to get there is to drive partway and hike the rest. There is a part built resort around 200 metres from Lighthouse Bay where the track stops, so you’ll need to do some clambering over the rocky coastline to reach the swimming and snorkeling area.
There are no fees to access the hiking trail, visit the lighthouse or go from a swim or snorkel in the bay. However, it is possible you may be charged an access or parking fee when you pass by Jim’s bar on the Mango Bay road.
Services & Facilities
Be sure to take plenty of water and any snacks you want with you, as there are no shops or services along the way, except for Jim’s bar which is where you’ll need to park your rental scooter to begin the hike. There are no functioning resorts at Lighthouse Bay where you can buy refreshments and food, so you’ll need to take everything you want with you.
Swimming and Snorkeling
Lighthouse Bay is one of the best snorkeling spots on Koh Tao as this area is home to some of the healthiest sections of coral reef you’ll see around the island. You will find various species marine life, and if you are lucky perhaps a turtle too. As it is not visited as often as other beaches on Koh Tao, you are more likely to see some of Koh Tao’s rarer fish species here.
Recommended for… Hiking
This is most certainly one of the least trodden tracks on Koh Tao and is ideal for those who really want to explore the island on foot and see as much as possible. If you love hiking, then this is definitely the right section of Koh Tao for you, as you can also hike down into Mango Bay, or across to Grape View Viewpoint for the most amazing lookout to Koh NangYuan Island. 180 Viewpoint Bar and Summit Viewpoint Bar are also nearby, and Fraggle Rock Viewpoint is easy to visit for sunset on the way back if you take a small detour.