Sheltered by Racha Island and Coral Island, Chalong Bay (Ao Chalong is one of Phuket’s busiest tour boat ports. But there’s more to the area than the 1,640-foot (500-meter pier. Chalong is home to Wat Chalong temple, the Chalong Bay Rum distillery, a yacht club, muay thai camps, and a wealth of resorts and restaurants.
Between the boat traffic, the murky waters, and the tan sand, Chalong Bay is not a top Phuket beach destination—although you may well travel through here en route to clearer waters and white beaches offshore. Boat tours to the Racha islands (Ko Racha Yai and Ko Racha Noi, also known as the Raya Islands) and Coral Island (also written Koh Hae, Ko He, or Koh Hay) generally leave from here, as do many other island-hopping tours.
Things to know before you go
- Chalong Bay’s protected waters and range of marinas make the area a great choice for sailing enthusiasts.
- While lots of dive centers are based in and around Chalong Bay, the diving happens elsewhere.
- Island-hopping from Phuket is not impossible for travelers who use wheelchairs. Specialist operators can adapt tours and provide beach wheelchairs.
How to get there
Chalong Bay sits in southeastern Phuket, about a 6-mile (10-kilometer) drive south of Phuket Old Town. Blue songthaew minibuses run between Ao Chalong Pier and Phuket Town Central Market on Ranong Road during the day. Ferries from other islands generally stop at other Phuket ports.
When to get there
Phuket has a mellow tropical climate and the rainy season is not too intense. Sailors can enjoy Chalong Bay year-round, with northeast winds between November and April and southwest winds from May to October.
Top Island-Hopping Day Trips from Phuket
The warm waters of the Andaman Sea make Phuket the perfect base for island-hopping adventures. Phang Nga Bay is known for sculptural, rugged karst islands and sea caves, perfect for exploring by kayak. The Phi Phi Islands are famed for white-sand beaches, turquoise waters, and a buzzing party scene. Closer to Phuket, the Racha Islands are a great choice for divers and snorkelers.
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