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​What to do in Karon Beach?


Karon is one of the longest beaches in Phuket, ranking 3rd on our beach popularity page. It enjoys a 3 kilometres stretch of white sand, a decent choice of dining and nightlife, and never seems to draw crowds of tourists, which is a good thing. Karon is known for its big beach with big hotels lined across the frontage road and the small town of Karon.

Karon Beach Video

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What to do in Karon?


Apart from a fantastic beach, many restaurants and bars, there is not much to do around in terms of landmarks and activities, but Kata or Patong are not far.

The Beach

Karon Beach Phuket

The beach of Karon forms an immense crescent with a wide sandy area. The sand is very soft and white and is known to make an unusual sound when you walk on it.

Karon Temple (Wat Suwan Khirikhet)

Karon Temple

Karon temple, locally called Wat Suwan Khirikhet, is beautifully crafted and open to visitors any day of the week. You can walk around freely, take photos and admire the carvings and paintings, but try to make a small donation; it is always a nice gesture. The temple hosts a famous market twice a week with lots of food and little things to buy. Remember to dress politely, just like in any temple in Phuket and Thailand, which means no short skirts, no sleeveless shirts and no topless. Remove caps and shoes if you wish to walk into the temple. (usually, a small signboard will inform you).

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The Naga of Karon Beach

This mystical golden snake or dragon is curled on the beach, not far south of the circle. Thai people come here to make offerings and pay respect.

Parasailing

Parasailing in Karon Beach

Parasailing offers a unique birdview of the bay and a bit of adrenaline rush, but it’s somewhat controversial regarding safety issues.

Dino Park Mini Golf

Dino Park Mini Golf

Dino Park is a Jurassic Park inspired mini-golf with dinosaurs and even a volcano. It is technically in Kata beach, but it’s not very far from Karon and is always good family fun. The park is still closed after covid.

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Spa Treatments

Spa at Centara Grand Beach Resort

Thailand is well-known for massages and aromatherapy, and it would be a shame not to take advantage of the quality and array of treatments available at this price. Spend the end of your beach day with a spa treatment at Centara Grand Beach Phuket or Movenpick Resort, especially on those occasional raining days!


Where to eat in Karon?


Karon Beach Square is a group of restaurants on the grounds of the Movenpick Resort, mostly known for El Gaucho, serving Brazilian Churrasco and great steaks. For comfort food, Two Chefs and Karon Cafe are trendy.

Tann Terrace

Tann Terrace Phuket in Karon Beach

Tann Terrace is a new restaurant with an immense beachfront wooden terrace at the very south of Karon Beach, just next to Beyond Resort Karon and opposite the old football stadium. The restaurant mostly serves Italian and Thai food and has an excellent bakery, perfect for enjoying breakfast on the beach.

Address: Patak Rd, Karon, Mueang Phuket District, Phuket 83100
Hours: 10 am – 9 pm
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tannterracephuket/

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On The Rock Restaurant

On The Rock restaurant

A good place for dinner with a sea view is On The Rock restaurant, at the south end of the beach. The restaurant serves Thai food and seafood and is part of the Marina Phuket Resort.

Address: Marina Phuket Resort, 47 Karon Road, Karon Beach, Phuket 83100
Hours: 12 am – 11.30 pm
Tel: +66 76 330 625
Price: Expensive

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EAT Bar & Grill Restaurant

Eat Bar & Grill Restaurant Karon

EAT Bar & Grill Restaurant, on the back road of Karon, is a casual place serving delicious steaks and grilled meats. The restaurant is not very big and is often full, so you should book in advance to save a table.

Address: 250 1 Patak Rd, Karon, Mueang Phuket District, Phuket 83100
Open
: 11 am – 10:30 pm (Closed on Sunday)
Tel: 085 292 5652
Price: Affordable

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Karon Beach Square at Movenpick Resort

currently closed

Karon Beach Square offers plenty of dining and drinking options with great music, such as Brazilian Churrasco, Thai Cuisine and a bakery. The many large sofas that look like outdoor beds are perfect for hanging after a hard walking day, perfecting to enjoy the evening al fresco!

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Seafood restaurants by the lake

Karon Lake Seafood Restaurants

For seafood or Thai food, you can choose one of the many small restaurants in front of the stadium or those by the lake. They are relatively cheap, and while they are not serving haute cuisine, they have a unique exotic charm and a beach view. It would be difficult to recommend one in particular, so walk around and look at the well-illustrated menu always displayed in front. They also serve a decent European breakfast of eggs or omelette, toast with butter and jam, sausages and bacon. It’s simple but goes so well with the beach to start the day!


Karon Beach Nightlife


There is a bit of nightlife in Karon beach, but it’s nothing like what you will experience in Bangla Walking Street of Patong Beach. Karon nightlife rotates around three areas: the best know is near the Karon Circle, with few bars and live music, a little further is a small alley once called ‘Little Bangla’, and an L-shaped street near Kata Beach where you can enjoy some beer bars.

Coast Beach Club

Coast Beach Club at Centara Grande Beach Resort Phuket

Coast Beach Club is an excellent place to enjoy a couple of drinks at the end of the day. The bar is not exactly on the beach but quite near and is part of the Centara Grand Beach Phuket.

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Patak Road Nightlife


Patak road is the main nightlife area, and while it’s relatively modest, it’s always fun. Angus O’Tool’s is a long-time Irish pub, and the neighbourhood is full of tiny beer bars such as Clapton Bar and a great live band bar called The Garage.

Mini Bangla on Luam Por Chuan Road

Further down the beach, just before the hill leading to Kata Beach, is an L-Shaped street with a dozen old-fashioned beer bars where ladies always loudly invite you for a drink. Walking around is easy-going and safe, so stopping for a beer is okay.

Karon Temple Market

If live music, alcohol and girlie bars are not your things after dinner, check the Karon Temple Market that opens only twice a week: Tuesdays and Fridays, from 4 pm to 10 pm.

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Shopping in Karon


Karon Beach has enough shopping options to keep everyone happy, even those who don’t like shopping but need convenience stores or forgot something important at home. There are also some markets, bazaars and of course night markets.

Karon Temple Market

Karon Temple Fair

Wat Suwan Khirikhet, the temple at the end of Soi Patak in Karon, is an excellent photo opportunity and is famous for the popular night market held every Tuesday and Friday. Never miss a chance to visit it; it’s full of fun things to try, games to play and fun local food. You might even get a chance to try fried insects and giant water bugs or take a photo to share back home.

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Karon Bazaar

Karon Bazaar

The Karon Bazaar is a vast covered market situated just next to the Movenpick Resort. You will mostly find tee-shirts, bags, trousers, beach toys and accessories and cheap souvenirs. It’s fun and colourful but can be hot during the day. Most vendors can speak decent English (they are not often Thai), so don’t forget to bargain hard!


Where to stay in Karon Beach?


You can consider two hotels on the beach if the price is right for you. Then you have many smaller hotels all around the place, and you shouldn’t have a problem finding accommodation according to your budget.

Beyond Resort Karon

Beyond Resort Karon

Beyond Resort Karon is one of the two only hotels in Karon to be really on the beach itself. The rooms are a bit small, but the views from the hotel make up for it. It’s an excellent place to stop for breakfast or lunch with beautiful views.

Centara Grand Beach Resort Phuket

Centara Grande Beach Resort

Centara Grande is one of the only hotels in Karon to offer direct beach access. This immense pink resort provides many facilities and outlets, such as a great kids club, a huge fitness centre, several swimming pools and even a beach bar.

Range: 5-star
Swimming pools: 4
Restaurants and bars: 7
Distance to the closest beach: on the beach!
Distance to Karon City Center: 1 km
Distance from airport
: 42 km
Distance to Phuket Town: 19 km

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Paradox Resort Phuket

Centara Grande Beach Resort

Paradox Resort Karon (previously Mövenpick) is an immense resort just across the street from the beach and at decent walking distance from the city centre. This resort is one of Karon’s largest and best-located hotels, with immense gardens and a large spa.

Address: 509 Patak Rd, Tambon Karon, Mueang Phuket District, Phuket 83100
Phone: 076 683 350
Range: 5-star
Swimming pools: 2
Restaurants and bars: 2 restaurants, 3 bars
Distance to the closest beach: across the street

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The geography of Karon


Did you know? Karon consists of 3 areas: Karon Center (a small town), the Lake area and the beachfront road that ends at the hill reaching Kata Beach.


1. Karon Center and Patak Rd

Patak Road is mostly a street going perpendicularly inland from the very fancy and convoluted ‘Karon Circle’ to the temple. It’s small, messy and feels rather old; additionally, parking there is impossible. Around here, you will find a few long-established restaurants, convenience stores, ‘ Hellooooo you want massage‘ parlours, and lots and lots of bars in all sizes and shapes. Just like everyone else, walk up and down Patak road and pick one bar; ultimately, they are all the same same but different.

Karon Circle in Phuket

2. The Lake

The Lake near the circle has also been the subject of many attempts to make the area an upmarket zone or a convention centre. Once in a while, especially during Songkran Festival, the lake hosts one of those popular local funfairs where you can play some typical funfair games, try local food and even shop.

Karon Beach

3. Beach Front Road

The beachfront road goes from the lake to Kata Beach, mostly occupied by large resorts with a few small hotels. At the beginning of the beach road, you’ll find Karon Beach Square, the Night Bazaar, a temporary roofed market selling mostly tee-shirts and beach toys, including all the usual fake brands.

Karon Night Bazaar

More interesting is Soi Aroonson, a small street in the middle of the beach road. Some good restaurants, lots of massages, and a few convenience shops have opened here. It’s still quiet but doesn’t feel as messy as Karon Center.

karon-beach

Then you’ll reach the end of Beach Road when a small hill leads to Kata Beach (boundaries have never been visible). Noticeable around here is the restaurant built on the beach, a football stadium (also used for cricket competitions) and one of the two nightlife areas around. This very narrow and hard-to-spot alley is called ‘Bangla Plaza’ and has always been here, but nothing to compare with Soi Bangla in Patong Beach nightlife. You won’t find more than a few beer bars with colourful spotlights, even more, colourful staff, and plenty of tiny shops and foot massage.

More Photos of Karon Beach

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Useful information

Thai name: หาดกะรน
Beach length: 3.3 km
Nearest airport: Phuket International Airport


How to get to Karon beach?

You can easily go to Kata Beach by local bus or smart bus, tuk-tuk, taxi or self-driving:

Distance from Karon to Phuket airport: 43 km
from Karon to Patong: 7 km
from Karon to Phuket Town: 16.8 km

To get the directions to the beach, open this Google map and click on ‘directions’ or save to use it once in Phuket ▷ https://goo.gl/maps/FA3raog3WUFJVWjd6.


Karon Beach Map

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Karon Business Directory

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What’s around?

Karon Temple Market – A Local Market in a Temple

Paradox Resort Phuket in Karon Beach

Centara Grand Beach Resort Phuket – Karon Beach


FAQs about Karon

  1. Q. What is there to do in Karon?

    a. Karon Beach has a few activities to offer:
    The Beach
    Karon Temple Market
    Coast Beach Club
    Dino Park Mini Golf

  2. Q. What are the best hotels in Karon Beach?

    a. There are dozens of hotels to choose from, here are some favourites:
    Centara Grand Beach Resort
    Hilton Phuket Arcadia Resort
    Beyond Resort Karon

  3. Q. Where to eat in Karon?

    a. There are restaurants for all tastes and all budgets here:
    Beachside restaurants
    On The Rock Restaurant
    EAT Bar and Grill
    The Pad Thai Shop

  4. Q. How far is Karon from the airport?

    a. Karon Beach is:
    43 km from Phuket International Airport
    16 km from Phuket Town
    2.22 km from Patong Beach

Willy Thuan
https://www.phuket101.net/
Born in France a long long time ago, I started to travel the world early and never stopped until I settled in Thailand in 1994. Then for the past 27 years, my passion for photography and my natural curiosity has taken me to every corner of Thailand, jumping frequently between Bangkok and Phuket and basically everywhere I could go. I run Phuket101.net and manage large international online travel guides.