Merlin Beach, Tri Trang Beach, Paradise Beach, Freedom Beach… which is which? Every time we post a photo of any of these beaches, it starts endless discussions, so I guess it is still confusing. Names similarities added to the fact that some of these beaches were hard to reach until recently didn’t help. These four beaches are located around a peninsula just south of Patong Beach, so let’s try to clarify!
Merlin Beach is surprisingly the least known of all four beaches, unless you are a guest of the Phuket Marriott Resort Merlin Beach of course, in which case this beautiful strip of sand is all yours, but any other traveler would miss the small dirt road along the hotel that leads to the beach.
Once again, the concept of private beach in theory doesn’t exist in Thailand, but owning the land surrounding the beach ends up the same. In the case of Tri Trang Beach, you won’t have this problem and the road in actually very visible once you know it and is just few hundred meters long. Once you reach the beach, the first thing you’ll see are the usual massage huts, and beyond is the bay. The area is really nice but the sea is not great for swimming with a lot of coral but is one of the best spots in Phuket for snorkeling.
On a grassy hill at the south end of the beach, a flight of stairs will take you to two very welcoming bar restaurant with very agreeable bird view on the bay, I only remember ‘Little Tiger’ restaurant which seemed to be the most popular, not spectacular, but still very pleasant.