SAIREE BEACH

A New Guide To Sairee Beach Koh Tao In 2024

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Sairee Beach the most popular beach in Koh Tao! But not always the easiest to navigate. This guide will tell you everything you need to know about Sairee Beach and what to expect from your trip to Koh Tao.

Koh Tao is most well known for the opportunity it provides travellers to go scuba diving and the ability to gain their open water certification. While this is something you should DEFINITELY do when in Koh Tao, Sairee Beach and Koh Tao is much more than just a divers haven.

Sairee Beach is the busiest and most popular beach on the island. The beach unfolds like a natural masterpiece, where crystal-clear waters crash into the golden sand. As you stroll along the beachfront, palm trees sway in the breeze, casting a calming shadow on your path.

As the day winds down, the sun dips low, painting the sky in a breathtaking palette of pinks and oranges. Sairee Beach transforms into a scene straight out of a postcard, with the rhythmic waves providing a serene soundtrack to the unfolding spectacle.

Along the beach, local restaurants and bars alike entice you to try their authentic Thai dishes while travellers around you begin to have a few drinks for the party ahead.

In the morning venture into the daylight, and the beach becomes a playground for adventure. Imagine snorkelling in vibrant coral gardens or gliding atop the gentle waves on a paddleboard. Sairee Beach invites you to embrace a harmonious blend of relaxation and excitement, ensuring each moment is etched into the memory of this coastal haven.

This is just a snippet of what Koh Tao has to offer and this complete guide will go in more depth about what you can do at Sairee Beach.

Getting to Koh Tao (Ferry)

The only way to get to Koh Tao is via the sea. Koh Tao can be found in the Gulf of Thailand, Northwest of Koh Phangan.

There are three main places you’ll be able to get direct ferries to Koh Tao from these are:

The ferry schedules for each are as follows:

Ferry departures can be altered in case of bad weather so always check weather apps and check your ferry is running at normal times. Expect a choppy ride!

Departure & Arrival TimesCompany (Ferry)Journey DurationPrice Per Person
08:30 – 09:30Lomprayah (Speedboat)1 Hour£13 (approx 500 baht)
12:30 – 14:30Songserm (Big Ferry)2 Hour£11 (approx 450 baht)
13:00 – 14:15Lomprayah (Catamaran)1 Hour 15 Minutes£13 (approx 500 baht)
15:00 – 16:00Lomprayah (Speedboat)1 Hour£13 (approx 500 baht)
16:00 – 17:00Lomprayah (Speedboat)1 Hour£13 (approx 500 baht)
Ferry to Koh Tao from Koh Phangan
Departure & Arrival TimesCompany (Ferry)Journey DurationPrice Per Person
08:00 – 09:30Lomprayah (Catamaran)1 Hour 30 Minutes£15 (approx 600 baht)
15:30 – 17:00Lomprayah (Catamaran)1 Hour 30 Minutes£15 (approx 600 baht)
Ferry to Koh Tao from Koh Samui
Departure & Arrival TimesCompany (Ferry)Journey DurationPrice Per Person
07:00 – 08:45Lomprayah (Speedboat)1 Hour 45 Minutes£16 (approx 650 baht)
21:00 – 04:00Axara Travel
(Sleeper Boat)
7 Hours£13 (approx 500 baht)
Ferry to Koh Tao from Chumphon

When is the best time to visit Koh Tao:

  • November to early April is the cool and dry season
  • March to June is the hot season
  • July to October is the rainy or monsoon season

I would recommend going to Thailand between November and May if possible.

How To Get To Sairee Beach

So you’ve arrived in Koh Tao, now what?

When you first arrive you’ll be greeted by this sign and you’ll know you’re in the right place.

Now for you to reach your accommodation at Sairee Beach I would certainly recommend taking one of the Songthaews. The distance from Mae Haad Pier to Sairee Beach is approximately 1.8km which is an 8-minute drive or an 18-minute walk.

You might be thinking 18 minutes that’s not so bad let’s just walk it.

Just No.

You will need to get a Songthaews to Sairee Beach unless you’re a maniac!

The first 10 minutes of the walk from Mae Haad Pier is a straight uphill and with all your bags in the blistering heat, it’s gonna be tough. Instead, walk through town, away from the pier, and get one of the Songthaews at a cheaper price.

Alternatively, you can rent a scooter, for 150 baht per day, and drive from the Mae Haad Pier yourself. But with all your bags it might be smarter to rent a scooter later on.

Where To Stay At Sairee Beach Koh Tao

With so many options for accommodation at Sairee Beach, it can be a bit of a challenge to select the right one for your needs. Here are my recommendations for the best places to stay near Sairee Beach. 

All the accommodations recommended have your bare essential air conditioning, free WIFI, and so on.

Budget-Friendly Options

Revolution Koh Tao – Certainly a hostel I would recommend to anyone happy to socialise and get involved with any of the numerous activities they include:

  • Boat parties.
  • Pool parties.
  • Hikes and more!

In prime location by Sairee Beach, this hostel will also rent you snorkel equipment and beach towels at your convenience as well as get you discounts from diving companies should you wish to give it a go.

From as little as £11 for a night at this highly-rated hostel, it truly is a bargain for travellers.

Save House Poshtel – A hostel for travellers who aren’t feeling too social but also want to save a bit of money. Save House Poshtel offers accommodation with good service friendly staff, and clean rooms, and is near Koh Tao’s Sairee Beach.

Again from as little as £11 a night, this is one of the cheapest places to stay near Sairee Beach while also maintaining high-quality facilities.

Mid-Price Range

Wyh Hotel – Just a five-minute walk from the beachfront of Sairee Beach, Wyh Hotel offers travellers accommodation in the perfect location while maintaining the highest quality displayed by their reviews on Booking.com.

With the staff receiving a 9+ rating, it is fair to say all your needs will be met when you stay at Wyh Hotel.

Thalassa – Stands as an exemplary choice for discerning travellers seeking a harmonious blend of comfort and convenience. Nestled in proximity to the captivating Sairee Beach, its allure is magnified by state-of-the-art facilities. The resort boasts a range of amenities, including luxurious accommodations, and dining options that tantalise the palate.

I have heard the shower pressure is quite good here and I do consider this an important factor lol.

Ban’s Diving Resort – Ban’s Diving Resort in Koh Tao is a premier choice for diving enthusiasts.

Established in 1993, it has earned a stellar reputation for its top-tier dive training programs, featuring certified and experienced instructors.

The resort boasts state-of-the-art facilities, convenient on-site accommodation, and access to diverse dive sites around Koh Tao. With a commitment to excellence, Ban’s provides a comfortable and communal atmosphere, fostering connections among diving enthusiasts.

Overall, its comprehensive offerings, including quality training, prime facilities, and a sense of community, make Ban’s Diving Resort an excellent option for an enriching diving experience in Koh Tao.

Luxury

The Place Luxury Boutique Villas – The Place Luxury Boutique Villas, where luxury isn’t just a word, but a way of life. Tucked away in a secluded haven, these villas redefine what it means to live it up.

Each villa is like a private oasis, giving you all the space you need to relax and unwind in style. And let’s talk about service – it’s not just good; it’s personalised to make you feel like a VIP.

But it’s not just about the villas; it’s a whole experience. The architecture seamlessly blends with nature, creating this serene escape.

The Place Luxury Boutique Villas isn’t just a stay; it’s a statement – a statement of indulgence, privacy, and pure sophistication. If you’re into that kind of thing, this place is your perfect match.

Situated close to Sairee Beach if you want to live in style The Place Luxury Boutique Villas is the place for you.

Monkey Flower Villas – Monkey Flower Villas offers an unparalleled retreat for travellers seeking tranquillity and luxury.

Nestled amidst lush greenery, the villas provide a serene escape from the hustle and bustle. Immerse yourself in the harmonious blend of modern comfort and traditional aesthetics.

The villa is meticulously designed, boasting spacious interiors and private terraces with breathtaking views. 

At the northern end of Sairee Beach, this villa also includes 24-hour a day complimentary pick-up and drop-off for locations on Koh Tao during your stay. 

This is PERFECT for those wanting the luxury life or if you can get a group of 8 together this property works out at approximately £212 each for 4 nights. A BARGAIN!

What Activities Can You Do At Sairee Beach

There are many MANY activities you can do at Sairee Beach. Some activities will keep you at Sairee Beach whereas some start here and then move around the island. Here are all the activities you need to know about Sairee Beach.

Scuba Diving

As previously stated, the main reason travellers flock to Koh Tao is to try scuba diving, usually, for the first time. This is one of the best places to achieve your open-water qualification.

With many dive shops on Koh Tao finding a reputable dive school is easy to find, examples include Ban’s Diving Resort and Big Blue Diving. Both of these diving schools are located near Sairee Beach so pop into the shop or book online to reserve a place. 

Scuba diving at Koh Tao is ideal for beginners due to its calm, clear waters, and diverse marine life. You’ll begin your diving journey in a swimming pool before progressing to sites around the island that have gentle currents, allowing novices to develop skills comfortably. The vibrant underwater ecosystem, featuring colourful corals and tropical fish, enhances the learning experience. 

Experienced instructors and well-maintained equipment contribute to a safe and enjoyable introduction to diving. Koh Tao’s established reputation as a premier diving destination, coupled with its welcoming atmosphere, makes it an excellent choice for those embarking on their underwater exploration journey.

During my time in Thailand I made a real mistake by not giving myself enough time to complete the Open Water PADI Certification so only had time for the fun dive to a maximum of 12 metres.

My scuba diving experience was fantastic so I will definitely be back to Koh Tao, Gili Trawangan (Indonesia), or Dauin (Philippines) to complete my certification as all these destinations offer a safe and detailed experience.

Snorkelling

The crystalline waters teem with vibrant marine life, showcasing a kaleidoscope of coral reefs and tropical fish.

Snorkelers can explore the shallow, easily accessible reefs near the shore or venture further for encounters with larger marine species.

The beach’s serene ambiance and clear visibility contribute to an unforgettable underwater adventure. Whether you’re a novice or an experienced snorkeler, Sairee Beach provides an enchanting setting to immerse yourself in the breathtaking beauty of the underwater world.

Koh Tao has many incredible snorkel sites so it is also possible to start trips from Sairee Beach, we will talk more about this later.

Swimming

If you’re just planning to have a chilled day in Koh Tao then you’ve picked a good destination as this is one of the most popular beaches on Koh Tao.

Sairee Beach provides an inviting setting for leisurely swimming.

Its gently sloping sandy shoreline and calm, clear waters make it an ideal spot for swimmers of all skill levels. The absence of strong currents enhances the safety and enjoyment of a refreshing swim.

The expansive beachfront allows ample space for you to indulge in relaxed swimming sessions or simply bask in the tropical sun.

Whether you seek a tranquil dip or a more energetic swim, Sairee Beach offers a serene and picturesque environment for a delightful aquatic experience.

Sunbathing

Being one of the best beaches in Koh Tao, Sairee Beach in Koh Tao is a prime sunbathing spot.

The pristine white sand, complemented by turquoise waters, creates a picturesque backdrop of the beautiful beach. 

The beach is renowned for its vibrant atmosphere, attracting both leisure seekers and water sports enthusiasts. Sunbathers can relish the tropical warmth, occasionally cooled by gentle sea breezes.

While relaxation is paramount, the beach’s lively ambiance ensures there’s never a dull moment. Sairee Beach thus harmonises natural beauty with a lively social scene, providing a diverse experience for those seeking sun-soaked tranquillity or vibrant social interactions.

Perfect for those nursing a titanic hangover from the Koh Tao bar crawl if you know what I mean…

Sunset Watching

Watch the Sunset!

Watching the stunning Koh Tao sunset is seeing the sky turn into a beautiful painting. As the sun goes down, it colours everything with warm shades of orange and pink.

The sea reflects these colours, making it look so magical.

The beach becomes calm and peaceful, making it a perfect time to think or enjoy the moment with others. The sunset at Sairee Beach is simply nature at its most beautiful, creating a special and calming atmosphere.

Having a meal during the sunset is an equally pristine experience and something I would highly recommend.

Make sure to head over to Sairee Beach to watch the sunset!

Eating 

Sairee Beach boasts a diverse culinary scene, offering some of the most popular dishes in Thailand. Visit one of the many bars and restaurants scattered around the beach.

From beachfront seafood shacks serving freshly caught delights to upscale restaurants presenting a fusion of Thai and international cuisines, the options are plentiful. Local street vendors tantalise taste buds with authentic Thai street food.

Whether craving traditional Pad Thai, succulent seafood barbecue, or innovative dishes blending local flavours, Sairee Beach caters to every palate, ensuring a delightful culinary journey amid the stunning coastal ambiance. The culinary richness here truly enhances the overall beach experience.

Some of the many restaurant and local food options include:

  • Whitening Restaurant
  • Barracuda Rooftop Restaurant
  • The Factory Café
  • 995 Duck

A few options here whether you want something within budget or want a more luxury-based experience.

Nightlife

As the night progresses, Sairee Beach becomes the hub for the majority of the nightlife on Koh Tao. Bars are located all the way along the main strip of Sairee Beach so it’s impossible to miss which bar is booming.

Can you spot the Alex!

Dive into the island’s renowned pub crawl, the PERFECT spot to make new friends and party the night away. Also one of the best and most famous bar crawls in Thailand and something you must consider if you want the right of passage as a traveller!

The nightlife extends beyond the beaches, with lively beach bars and laid-back lounges, catering to diverse tastes. As the sun sets, Koh Tao transforms into a hub of entertainment, where the options for an unforgettable night out are as varied as the starlit sky above.

Alternatively, at the 7-Eleven between Mae Haad and Sairee Beach on the main road is the Koh Tao night market to get cheap souvenirs and food!

Other Options

Along Sairee Beach there are other fun things to do including tree swings, playing beach volleyball, or going for a gentle stroll. With so many options available it is clear to see why it is one of the best beaches on Koh Tao. 

Make sure you explore the entire beach so you don’t miss out on any fun activities.

What Else Is There To Do On Koh Tao

Variety of viewpoints

To name a few viewpoints include:

John-Suwan Viewpoint  – At the southern tip of Koh Tao appreciate the panoramic views of Chalok Baan Kao Bay and the southern coastline, finding it a serene spot to witness stunning sunsets. 

Nang Yuan Viewpoint – Nang Yuan offers a spectacular view of the iconic triple islands connected by a sandbar. 

Freedom Beach Viewpoint – This secluded viewpoint is often praised for its quiet and serene atmosphere, offering a more intimate connection with nature. 

Koh Nang Yuan – Offers breathtaking panoramic vistas, showcasing pristine beaches and crystal-clear waters.

Visit Sai Nuan Beach

Escape the crowds at popular beaches and head to Sai Nuan Beach for a more tranquil experience. This hidden gem offers a serene environment, perfect for relaxation and unwinding.

Snorkelling Tour

Koh Tao’s clear and shallow waters make it an ideal destination for snorkelling, allowing both beginners and experienced snorkelers to enjoy the stunning underwater scenery. Here are some of the best snorkelling spots: Shark Bay – Aow Leuk – Mango Bay – Japanese Gardens.

All of which can be found through day trip tours on GetYourGuide.

Final Thoughts

So there we have it, your perfect guide to Sairee Beach.

We have not left a stone unturned with this guide so I hope you find it very informative and helpful in navigating your way around Sairee Beach.

If you plan to do the PADI open water course make sure you give yourself enough time in Koh Tao to pass the course and see the sights on this gorgeous island.

Check out my Koh Tao itinerary for more details.