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'Patong' is Thai for 'banana leaf forest'. Well that was a long time ago. Patong Beach is now the biggest tourist resort in Phuket. It is a large town with many hotels and guesthouses. There is a mass of shops, bars, restaurants and most of the amenities any visitor could ever want. If you like plenty of action and nightlife then Patong is the resort for you.
The beach is a stunning three-kilometer stretch of golden sand, enclosed by two long headlands. The beach slopes gently into the sea making an absolutely perfect bathing beach. A road runs the full length of the beach. Hotels, shops, restaurants and bars line the entire length of the road. There is a built-up area on the beach side of the road between Bangla Road and Sawadirak Road with beachside restaurants, shops and guesthouses.
During the high season, the sun loungers are in rows four to six deep. The sun lounger rent is 100 baht each.
The beach is a hive of activity with parasailing, banana boats and jet skis fizzing across the water. Even in the low season, this beach is busy. The northern end of the beach is a little quieter than the south end.
Vendors patrol the beach selling all kinds of refreshments and merchandise. It is possible to get some good deals from the beach vendors as they do not need to pay the huge rents that the beachside stallholders are paying. However if you do not want their goods some of them can be persistent and annoying.
We have given the beach a low water quality mark. The number of visitors and amount of activity inevitably means a fair amount of garbage gets into the water. There have also been problems in previous high seasons with build-ups of algae and seaweed in the bay. The main cause of the problem was a wastewater outlet at the south end of the beach. During the high season the placid sea simply did not sweep the waste out of the bay. The situation is improving and they have recently opened a new wastewater treatment facility which seems to have vastly improved the situation. Because of the low water quality, we have taken a star from the bathing rating on what would otherwise be a 5-star beach.
It is not really a beach where you would snorkel but at the north end there are some rocks that divide the beach from Kalim Beach. When the tide is in you can snorkel around these rocks and there are a surprising number of fish. It is not classic snorkelling but it can be a pleasant little swim.
There is lots and lots and lots of accommodation. Still at the peak of the high season around Christmas and New Year, it can be difficult to find rooms.
There are far too many hotels for us to even attempt to list them all. See our our Patong Map for a more complete list of hotels and their locations or consider some of the following:
Lamai Apartments (2 stars)
Lamai Guesthouse (2 stars)
Lamai Inn (2 stars)
Patong Beach Lodge Hotel (3 stars)
Royal Crown Resort & Spa (3 stars)
Tiger Inn Hotel (2.5 stars)
The Birdcage Patong GuestHouse (3 star)
Mid to High Range:
Amari Coral Beach Resort (4 star)
Andaman Beach Club Resort (4 star)
Baan Boa Hotel (3 star)
Baan Laimai Beach Resort (3 star)
Baan Sukhothai Resort (4 star)
Baan Yin Dee Hotel(5 star)
Burasari Hotel (4 star)
Byd Lofts Apartment Hotel (5 star)
Deevana Resort & Spa (4 star)
Diamond Clif Resort (4 star)
Graceland Spa & Resort Hotel (4 star)
Horizon Beach Resort (4 star)
Impiana Phuket Cabana (4 star)
La Flora Resort (5 star)
Leelawadee Boutique Hotel (4 star)
Millennium Resort (5 star)
Patong Bay Garden Resort (4 star)
Patong Bayshore Hotel (3 star)
Patong Beach Hotel (4 star)
Patong Paragon Hotel (4 1/2 star)
Rayaburi Hotel Patong (4 star)
Royal Palms Hotel (4 star)
Salathai Resort Hotel (3 star)
Thara Patong Beach Resort (4 star)
The Tique Hotel (3 star)
For budget accommodation, there are many small hotels and guesthouses around the side streets. For a central location, try Soi Viking off Bangla Road or Soi Sansabai. There are some good, cheap hotels opposite Christin Massage on Rat-U-Thit Road. Also go further back from the beach to Nanai Road and there are lots of cheap rooms.
See our Accommodation section for more advice about finding rooms.