Kata Beach's Best Beaches

If you're looking for pure blue water in so many shades of turquoise you run out of adjectives to describe it then the Kata Beach area on the southwest side of Phuket, Thailand, will fit your definition of paradise.

But with miles of beachfront to choose from, how does the vacationer decide where to go? It really depends upon what you're looking for. Are you a lay-on-the-sand-with-a-fruity-drink traveler or a dive in and get wet kind of beachgoer? Do you need high-energy water activities or just a wave and a surf board or some good snorkeling?

To help narrow down the possibilities (there are, afterall, 35 beaches there, according to one source, we've found five favorites that will fit your traveler personality.

Patong Beach

If you picture your Phuket beach experience with a drink, a lounge chair and an umbrella, then Patong Beach might be your best bet. While this beach can get busy, you can rent a chair and umbrella and enjoy treats from food and drink venders. This beach also would be good for the beachgoer who wants some extra fun. Activities include parasailing and jet skiing.

Kata Beach
Kata Beach is known as the most popular beach after Patong Beach. It's a bit less crowded but there's still an active dining and nightlife scene. Depending on the season, it can be unsafe for swimmers, but bigger waves at low season can be great for surfers. A lush tiny island offshore makes for a nice view, especially at sunset.

Freedom Beach
Just a few minutes from Kata Beach by boat is the soft blinding white sand and cerulean-colored waters of Freedom Beach. This beach is known as the most beautiful on Phuket. If having a quiet tranquil beach day is your preference, it will be worth the boat ride. Don't try to bring too much though, as you'll need to wade through the water to shore.

Ao Sane Beach
Ao Sane Beach includes three coves separated by rock formations so if you're looking for good underwater fun, this should be a great spot for that. There is a restaurant and dive center where gear can be rented. Access is via a tunnel at the Phuket Yacht Club.

Mai Khao Beach
Mai Khao is another quiet beach, and it is said to be the longest in Phuket. If you want to go for a classic romantic walk on the beach, this would be the place to go.

Of course you can't enjoy the beach if you're not staying in the best local hotels, so make sure you find the right accommodations for your visit to Kata Beach.