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What to do in Patong Beach?

Patong Beach is the most popular beach resort town in Phuket, with a 3 km long beach and an immense choice of hotels, restaurants and shops, and legendary nightlife. What makes it so attractive to many is often what other people dislike most about it. Patong can be big, bold, crowded, bright and loud in normal years, yet millions of people can flock here like flies on honey every year. If Bangkok is the Big Mango, then Patong is the Big Durian: you’ll love Patong or hate it!

Patong Beach Sign

The initial success and popularity of Patong mostly rotate around two things: a fantastic beach and a legendary wild nightlife. The rest? Don’t blind yourself: shopping, dining, and foot massage are just the cherry on the cake. Anyway, there is a long list of things to do at night in Patong!

Bangla Walking Street in Patong Beach

Just walk up and down Bangla Walking Street at night, and you will instantly understand why it is so popular. Everyone is there: guys, girls, couples and even families with kids. And why not? Patong has rooftop bars, beach clubs and world-class nightclubs. For many, it’s a once in a lifetime party experience (once a year for some). For others, it’s mostly a curiosity to tick off their Phuket must-do list and something to talk about once back home. Just look at the crowd staring at sexy and very feminine ladyboys dancing on a street stage in a very tiny outfit, and you’ll get the picture, literally. And don’t forget to close your mouth.

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1. What to do in Patong Beach? ⛱️

The main reason people come here is obviously: the beach! If you decide to spend the day on the beach, you can rent beach chairs and umbrellas, get a beach massage, try parasailing, or get yourself killed by renting a jet ski (we warned you). Beyond the beach and the nightlife, Patong has a surprisingly wide array of things to do for everyone. There are rooftop bars, night markets, ziplines, cable skiing, cinemas, bowling and huge shopping malls that are much more fun than you may think.

The Beach of Patong

The beach is 3 kilometres long and often crowded in the middle part during the high season. Forget parking your car anywhere, and even parking your motorbike can be a problem.

Patomg Beach

The northern part of the beach, not far from Novotel Phuket, Four Points by Sheraton and Graceland Resort, is more beautiful and less busy. There are fewer people in this part of Patong, more parking, and plenty of local food and fruit vendors to enjoy. Water is also bluer during the high season, and there are plenty of palm trees to offer shade.

Where to Stay in Phuket: Patong Beach

The water at the southern end is not always as transparent as in the north. You can rent umbrellas and beach chairs available on 10% of the beach on this part of the beach (probably more now!). A long floating pontoon allows tourists to board those longtail boats to take them to the beautiful and secluded Freedom Beach during the high season.

Beach Massage

Massage in Phuket

Beach massages have always been popular because they are affordable, very casual, and the perfect way to relax and make the best of your day on the beach. There are a few types of massages available: foot and leg massages, shoulder massages, Thai massage, which involves strong pressure on muscles or pain points, the oil massage, which is a great way to relax and even the aloe vera massage, which is a great way to help that sunburn you probably got on your first day on the beach! The massages are done on a mattress under the shade of a tent and usually cost around 300 to 400 baht.


Patong Surf House

Surf House Patong

Surfing is popular in Phuket during the rainy season, but you can surf anytime at Surf House Phuket Patong, a fun activity that is more like a soft version of wakeboarding. Thankfully it is also a lot easier than real surfing or even wake-board, with a prime location near Bangla Road and the beach nearby.


Freedom Beach

Freedom Beach Phuket

Freedom beach is one of the most beautiful public beaches in Phuket, and despite being just next to Patong, it has remained relatively untouched because it’s not easy to access.


Tri Trang Beach

Tri Trang Beach in Phuket

Tri Trang is a beautiful beach situated just a couple of kilometres south of Patong, known to be surprisingly quiet and one of the few beaches in Phuket where you can swim safely in the low season. You will find a few modest restaurants with superb views on the roadside, plus a couple of hotels to stay at, including the luxury Rosewood Resort.


Wat Suwan Kiriwong

Wat Suwan Kiriwong (Patong Temple)

Wat Suwan Kiriwong is an understated Thai temple at the foot of the road leading Patong Beach to Phuket Town. The temple is always quiet, but if you come from overseas, you can easily stop and take a few minutes to admire the beautiful craftsmanship.

Doi Thepnimit

Doi Thepnimit Patong Phuket

There are three Thai temples in Patong and one Chinese Shrine on the hill just outside. The one at the bottom of the hill is the most visually attractive and often missed. It’s not easy to park if you drive a car, but it’s worth taking a photo on your way out if you are on a bike. Built at the top of the hill overlooking Patong, Doi Thepnimit is more impressive. Technically it’s not a temple but a Chedi and a monastery, but with such a panoramic view of the bay, it is unique. You can’t miss the small Chinese temple on the main road.


More Things to Do in Patong ►


2. Shopping in Patong 🛍️

You could say, “there is something for everyone in Patong Beach, ” but it’s very tourist-oriented. As you walk the streets, expect to see souvenir shops, Thai massage-foot massage-soapy massage, suitcases shops, art galleries, and many tailors.

Night markets have become incredibly popular in Patong, and there are no less than four to explore, Otop Market, Malin Plaza being the most popular. There are also two shopping malls here to enjoy. Jungceylon and Central Patong offer a more sophisticated shopping experience and an excellent way to escape the heat with plenty of restaurants, shopping and activities. If you want to know more, read about the Jungceylon Shopping Center, but don’t miss the Banzaan Fresh Market just behind it, it is a chance to see real fresh local fruits, spices and products!

Street Shopping

Street shopping is fun and convenient, mostly because it is entertaining as you walk around. Usually, people are not here to shop, but something grabs their attention as they walk. It can be something they need but didn’t think about, but it’s usually just for the fun of buying. The demanded price always starts higher than expected, so bargaining is necessary. That starting price changes with seasonalities, central location (near Bangla), and crowd density: you should bargain harder during the high season, especially if the town is busy. With Covid, people are desperate to sell, so it better not negotiate much.

Jungceylon Shopping Mall

Jungceylon Shopping Mall Phuket

Jungceylon is a massive shopping and dining complex that occupies a strategic location in Patong near the famous Bangla Walking Street. Here you will find a department store, a huge supermarket, a cinema, and plenty of restaurants serving all kinds of cuisines. Travellers often spend time here before the party, when it rains or even when it’s too hot. (note: Jungceylon is still temporarily closed)


Banzaan Fresh Market

Banzaan Night Market

Banzaan started as a fresh market on the lower, a bazaar selling cheap clothing on the second floor, and a modest food court. Its popularity grew when it opened the night market where visitors can buy mostly seafood and have it cooked on the spot. It is just a little cheaper than in a restaurant, but it’s more fun, something typical of south-east Asia.


Malin Plaza

Malin Plaza Night Market Patong

Malin Plaza is a popular and successful night market in Patong. It is an excellent place to spend some time after the beach eating, drinking, and buying inexpensive souvenirs and clothing.


3. Patong Beach nightlife 🍺

Patong nightlife has changed a lot since the old days when Patong was mostly beer bars, go-go bars and a couple of discotheques. There are now great live music bars, enormous international nightclubs, beach clubs and even rooftop bars. Of course, Go-Go Bars are still here.

Bangla Walking Street

Patong Nightife: Bangla Road

Patong nightlife rotates around Bangla Walking Street, all the way to Rat-U-Thit Road (the second road parallel to the beach). Every evening from 6 pm, this road closes to the traffic and turns into a bustling walking street. Many entertainment battles to grab your attention, senses, and money on each side!


Rooftop Bars

Things to Do in Patong Beach

There are more and more rooftop bars in Patong, and while they can never compete with rooftop bars in Bangkok, they are a great way to enjoy a sunset from a high point. So far, we have found four rooftop bars in Patong.


Live Music Bars

New York Live Band Phuket

Live bands are very popular in Phuket, and Patong features a few excellent bars with a stage equipped with good lighting and sound systems. The quality varies with the day and the hour, but the bands in Bangla road are generally pretty good, and it only costs you one drink to enjoy any of them.


Go Go Bars

Phuket Best Go Go bars

Whether it’s with bright light, loud music, ladies wanting you to have a seat at one of the many open beer bars, or even touts inviting you to look at the naughty shows (you should never follow touts, by the way!)

Read more about Patong Nightlife ►



4. Where to eat in Patong

Restaurants are everywhere in Patong, serving anything from Japanese to Russian, but real Thai food is difficult to find around here. You’ll get some Thai restaurants serving decent Thai food, but you would hardly see a Thai person eating there, which should give you a clue. For instance, in Soi Post Office, roughly around the middle of the beach, is Sabai Sabai, a Thai restaurant very popular among tourists. You will find little places to eat around these small streets, but the taste of the Thai food served is often adjusted and toned down to fit tourists’ palates.

Street Food

Patong Beach Pancakes and Fruits

Like everywhere in Thailand, street food is omnipresent in Patong, from noodle soup to fried chicken, fish, and rice. It’s cleaner than most newcomers think, very cheap and surprisingly good. You will often see carts along the beach with a little smoking barbecue attached to them. The fruit vendors and banana pancakes are the most popular!


Best Thai Restaurants in Patong

Best International Restaurants

See more Restaurants in Patong ►


5. Where to stay in Patong

There are hundreds of hotels in Patong, and you will find yours with no problem. We tried some because they are close to everything, close to the beach or stand out from the rest. Below are some favourites, but there are many more. Read more

4 Great Hotels near the beach in Patong

Other popular hotels in Patong

See more hotels in Patong ►

6. Getting around

Getting around Patong and beyond is very easy and stress-free. Tuk Tuks are the most obvious way to go anywhere and can be fun, but the price varies depending on each driver, so always agree on the price before stepping in. Motorbike taxis are cheap, fast and a casual way to cover short distances.

Tuk Tuks


7. Is Patong Beach safe?

Patong Beach is very safe, considering the massive amount of tourists visiting it every year. Of course, just like in any city, there are a few incidents and occasional tourist scams, but if you use your common sense, you will never feel threatened or worried, even very late at night. Patong beach is very much alive until 4 am, and finding a tuk-tuk to go back to your hotel is always easy, and it’s a lot safer than driving your motorbike if you have a couple of drinks!

More Patong Photos

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How to get to Patong Beach?

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

From Phuket Airport to Patong: 37 km
From Phuket Town to Patong: 14 km
From Patong Beach to Kata Beach: 10 km

Patong Beach Map

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More about Patong Beach

Bangla Walking Street in Patong Beach

Phuket Nightlife – What to Do in Patong Beach at Night?

22 BEST HOTELS IN PATONG BEACH 🧳 Where to stay in Patong?

10 Best Things to Do in Phuket at Night


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FAQs about Patong Beach

  1. Q. What to Do in Patong Beach during the day?

    a. The main activities in Patong rotate mostly around the main beach, but also the small and lesser-known beautiful beaches nearby:
    Jungceylon Shopping Centre
    Freedom Beach
    Paradise Beach
    Tri Trang Beach

  2. Q. What is there to do at night in Patong?

    a. The vibrant nightlife is, of course, what makes Patong so special:
    Bangla Walking Street
    Live Music Bars
    International Nightclubs
    Rooftop Bars
    Muay Thai Fights

  3. Q. Where to shop in Patong?

    a. Shopping is everywhere in Patong, and Jungeylon shopping centre has always been the main magnet; visitors love the night markets and fresh markets:
    Malin Plaza
    OTOP Night Market
    Banzaan Fresh Market

  4. Q. Where and what to eat in Patong Beach?

    a. There are hundreds of restaurants to choose from in Patong, from street food to restaurants listed in the Michelin Guide:
    La Gritta
    Pan Yaah
    Kaab Gluay
    Hern Bistro

  5. Q. What are the best hotels in Patong Beach?

    a. Finding a hotel in Patong beach is easy, and there are hundreds of hotels to choose from. Here are some favourites:
    Amari Phuket
    Holiday Inn Phuket
    Four Points by Sheraton
    BYD Lofts
    Burasari Phuket
    Novotel Phuket Resort
    Phuket Graceland

  6. Q. How far is Patong from the airport?

    a. Patong Beach is 35 km from Phuket International Airport and 14.5 km from Phuket Town.

Willy Thuan
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.