The third longest beach in Phuket is Karon Beach, and this popular Phuket location is ideal for a family vacation, couples getaway, or trip with friends. Karon Beach is one of the most-visited areas in Phuket and offers excellent snorkeling and diving, interesting attractions, great restaurants, and a lively nightlife. Situated on the west coast of Phuket, between the main town of Patong and Kata, Karon Beach is spacious enough to never feel crowded. Find out all about Karon in this quick travel guide.
Karon Beach/ Image via yeowatzup/ Flickr
Different Areas of Karon Beach
Karon Center is the small city which makes up the heart of Karon Beach. Here you will find a good selection of restaurants, shops, and nightlife opportunities. Plus, there is a lively market and a Buddhist temple to look around. Karon Beach Road has many restaurants and is the location for some of the biggest resorts in Karon, while the Luang Poh Chaun Road, at the southern end of the beach, is the setting for more restaurants, bars, and clubs. Karon Beach is the second-most popular area in Phuket and offers a wide array of things to do, and places to stay and eat, for all kinds of traveler.
A Closer Look at Karon Beach
The beach itself at Karon is one of the longest in Phuket, behind Mai Khao and Bangtao. It is also wide enough to never feel too crowded, even though it attracts a lot of visitors. The most popular end is the south, with the central part of the beach also popular. The northern end of the beach is quieter and is home to the large Centara Grand Beach Resort. All along the beach, you will find beach bars and cafes selling fruit, snacks, and drinks.
Watersports are popular, although you will not see as many boats or jet skis as in Patong. You have more room on the water here to try out your jet skiing skills, or your waterskiing, wakeboarding, and windsurfing skills.
Snorkeling is good at the south end of the beach near to the rocks and you can rent snorkeling equipment from vendors on the beach.
Wat Karon and Karon Market
Karon Temple – Wat Karon – is located around 500m from the beach in the center of Karon. This temple was established in 1895 and the large building is home to many community activities as well as a busy market on Tuesdays and Saturdays. Here you will find a variety of products from food to fashion, with an emphasis on goods for tourists like bags, T-shirts, sarongs, and shoes. You’ll be able to pick up a good selection of snacks as well as a variety of different drinks. The market on a Tuesday and Saturday opens from around 4 pm to 10 pm at night.
Health, Spas, and Massage in Karon
If you want a good quality Thai massage or a spa treatment then you should be able to find something to interest you in Karon. Many of the most popular spas are located at the bigger Karon resorts like the Hilton Phuket Arcadia Resort & Spa and Mövenpick Resort & Spa Karon Beach. If you want a cheaper option you’ll find plenty of choice on the beach.
Cooking Classes in Karon
If you get bored on the beach all day, take an interesting cooking class where you can learn how to craft excellent Thai food from local ingredients. Find fun Thai cookery classes at the major resorts, where you can spend a few hours under the guidance of the cooking experts.
Karon Beach Sunset/ Image via Luke Ma/ Flickr
Restaurants in Karon Beach
If you enjoy eating food rather than preparing it, Karon has a wide selection of good quality restaurants. One of the most popular places is 2Gether, a restaurant located on Patak Road a little way from the beach. The restaurant serves a selection of international favorites. Another choice for Thai food and international dishes is Bai Toey in The Old Phuket Karon Beach Resort.
Karon Café serves excellent steaks from its location at the Pacific Club and also has a good selection of wines. Ging Restaurant is a simple, friendly Thai restaurant with great food and great service. Mama Restaurant on Karon Beach Road is a good place for cocktails watching the sea and the sunset, as well as seafood and other favorites. Two Chefs serves cheap and tasty food at good prices and has live music most nights. On the Rock at the Marina Phuket Resort is right beside the ocean and a romantic dining spot for seafood, wine, and cocktails. Or try Red Onion, a place to go for cheap and very tasty Thai food – the place is always busy. El Gaucho at the Mövenpick Resort, on the other hand, is a Brazilian style restaurant serving steaks and a variety of fine wines.
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