Bang Tao Beach - Phuket
Classy and sophisticated, luxurious resorts and villas line this impressive 6km long beach. Dine in a Michelin starred restaurant, relax in an exclusive spa or explore Boat Avenue’s 30,000 sqm of shops.
Once an abandoned tin mining town, Bang Tao has transformed into a tropical beach paradise largely thanks to the Laguna Group. Stretching 3kms along the beach, this impressive complex includes hotels, shops, a golf range, swimming pools and restaurants.
There is a lot on offer outside the complex too. A large choice of luxury villas and hotels stretch the length of the beach. Restaurants and beach clubs offer high quality dining and entertainment. Choose from water activities including paragliding, jet and water skiing. The picture-perfect beach is great for long walks, lazing and swimming, or even horse riding. The northern end of the beach is good for surfing. The water can be treacherous in low season, always pay attention to the warning flags.
Layan beach lies at the most northern point. This beach is quiet and laid back. Behind the beach is a small lake you can explore by kayak.
Bang Tao hosts a lively and sophisticated crowd at some of the best beach clubs in Phuket. Most clubs are at the southern end of the beach, with reggae bars clustered in the north. The nightlife is family friendly and far less rowdy than famous Patong.
Boat Avenue is a huge local and international shopping centre spread over 30,000 square metres. Located near the entrance to Laguna, shopping is divided into different zones. There are dozens of restaurants including Spanish, French, Chinese and local food. Container Mall features quirky souvenir and clothing shops tucked inside shipping containers. The Villa Market contains a huge range of imported food and wine. Don’t miss Friday’s Avenue Market featuring local food, hand made items and clothing. Jim Thompson, famous for Thai silk, has an outlet store in neighbouring Canal Village.
Head to one of the night markets if you fancy some cheap local food. The market days and locations change so check with your hotel. Snack on local treats including fried crickets and grasshoppers, local sausage and quail eggs. Dessert options include banana pancake with condensed milk. The markets are also packed with well-priced handicrafts, clothing and gifts.
There are cultural delights to explore too. Cherng Thalay Temple is the main Buddhist temple in the area. Close to a century old and decorated with scenes from Buddha’s teachings, the temple looks particularly beautiful at night.
Cherng Thalay Shrine (different from the Temple) is one of the most historical places in Phuket. In the early 18th Century Chinese immigrants came to Bang Tao seeking a new life in tin mining. Built in the early 1900’s and decorated with three wooden Taoist deities said to protect the villagers, the Shrine is usually a quiet and tranquil place. It comes alive, however, during Chinese New Year, deity ceremony days and the Vegetarian Festival.