Karon Beach is the second largest beach in Phuket, and loved by tourists. It is three kilometers long and while the beach itself is popular, the town is actually 20 kilometers from the town. Also of note is the fact that Karon is pronounced ‘Garon’.
Karon Beach has pristine white sand and actually makes a squeaking noise when you walk on it. Towards the southern part of the beach there is a coral reef that heads towards Kata and Bu Island. The beach itself is almost entirely public thanks to the fact that all of the hotels and resorts are situated across the street from the beach.
There are many good places to eat at Karon Beach. Most of the restaurants and bars can be found at the north central end of the beach, near the traffic circle. Alternatively, there are also restaurants near the south end of the beach, along Bangla Road.
Restaurants primarily feature traditional Thai cuisine, but many have international flavors as well. Karon Beach is actually very popular with Scandinavian tourists and as a result, many restaurants cater to their tastes.
Karon Beach is NOT really known for its night life. Most of the partying can be found in restaurants late at night of at some of the local bars. There aren’t many clubs and most people that visit tend to prefer good food and company to all night parties. Patong Beach is the center of nightlife on Phuket and a nice contrast to the serenity of Karon Beach.
While Karon Beach lends itself to relaxation it is also designed to keep you moving. There is a wide path for both pedestrians and cyclists along the beach side of the road that runs the full three kilometer length of the beach.
At the north end of the beach, just a bit inland is a small lake called Karon Lake. Around this a path great for either cycling, jogging, or other forms of exercise.
Travel to Karon Beach
When travelling to Karon Beach, most people opt to fly to the island of Phuket. Phuket Airport is only 50 kilometers from Karon Beach and many hotels will offer you direct transportation for 1000 baht.
Another option from the airport is a taxi cab which can cost about 650 baht. Make sure you take a metered taxi, which will be yellow in color so as to avoid price gauging.
Taking a mini bus is very cheap, but can be lengthy as it will take many stops to drop off other passengers. If you happen to be staying the farthest away, your trip on the mini bus will be the longest. The cost is about 200 baht.
If you have a lot of time and not much money, the airport bus is the best deal. For only 100 baht, you can be transported to Karon Bach. The bus leaves about every hour, but only goes to Phuket Town. From there you will have to find a transfer to Karon Beach itself.
Travel in Karon Beach
The best way to travel around Karon Beach is to actually rent a motorbike which can accommodate up to two people. There are many shops that rent out motorbikes and cost 150 to 200 baht per day. If, however, you do not feel comfortable on a motorbike, stay away as the mountain roads can be a bit treacherous for inexperienced drivers.
Another option for travel within Karon Beach is the tuktuk. This is great if you just need help with short journeys, like to the beach or to a restaurant.
Travel from Karon Beach to Patong
Patong Beach is just 10 kilometers from Karon Beach, and most people that visit Karon Beach will make a half or full day trip to this livelier area.
To get to Patong from Karon Beach, most people end up taking a tuktuk. A one way ride will cost about 300 baht, but this price is very negotiable. If you turn down a driver enough times, he will eventually agree to 250 baht for the journey. When returning from Patong to Karon Beach, the price is actually cheaper as there are more tuktuks in Patong and competition is fiercer.
Things to do in Karon Beach
Dinos Park Mini Golf
Locate beside the Marina Phuket Resort, this mini gold course is fun for all ages. It features 18 different holes with an erupting volcano and giant dinosaurs as decoration. Light and sound give it an exciting touch.
Snorkeling and diving
Like most places in Thailand, Karon Beach has some great places for snorkeling or diving. There are a number of shops to rent equipment from, get lessons, and learn where the best spots to go are. There is a bit of a current at Karon Beach, so exercise caution when you are in the water.
Get a massage
Getting a massage is a must experience when vacationing in Thailand. Karon Beach is able to mix together the relaxing nature of a massage with the tranquil beauty of the area. There are many spas to choose from, all of which have a host of different options to choose from.
Karon Beach has a lot of great stores and a lot of different places to purchase goods from. If you are looking for clothing there are a number of tailors and clothing markets in the town and along the beach front.
Karon Beach is a nice, quiet retreat in Phuket that offers many kilometers of pristine white sand. If you think it may be too isolating, don’t worry as Patong Beach, the party capital of Phuket, it just 10 minutes away.
Karon Beach allows you the chance to lay on the beach and stare out at the ocean and get lost in your thoughts. There are many things to do in the area, but if you want to explore more, there is also the opportunity to do so.