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Coral Island in Thailand The Ultimate Travel Guide

Coral Island in Thailand: The Ultimate Travel Guide

Without a doubt, Coral Island is a magical spot in the Andaman Sea, adding allure to Phuket and its jaw-dropping beaches

To help you get over major FOMO when you go exploring there, we’re detailing everything that’s in store for you, so read up!

Things to Know

Time Zone: Indochina Time (UTC/GMT+7)

Currency: Thai Baht
(Check the current exchange rate)

Language: Thai (Central Thai)

Calling Code: +66

Location: Tambon Rawai, Amphoe Mueang Phuket, Chang Wat Phuket 83100

Distance From Nearest Major Islands: 5.6 km (Phuket), 3.8 km (Ko Lon), 28.7 km (Ko Yao Yai)

Nearest Airport: Phuket International Airport (41 km)

Operating Hours: 24/7

Admission Fee: 100 – 150 baht (Coral Beach Club, Kahung Beach, and Banana Beach)

Coral Island Thailand in a Nutshell

Located south of Phuket, Coral Island a.k.a. Koy Hey or Hey Island is a small paradise island that is distinct for housing gorgeous white sand beaches. Perimeter-wise, this tropical destination is 2.5 km long with a dense forest right in the middle. 

For the irresistible combination of sun, sand, and crystal-clear water, two beaches stand out in Coral Island: Kahung Beach and Banana Beach. Though Kahung is bigger, both beaches offer stunning places to lounge and have fun, especially on weekends. 

For sure, Coral Island’s crystal clear blue waters and its soft, white sands are going to give the best beaches in Phuket Island a run for the money.  Add a forest with a local hornbill bird population and this magical destination could easily top your bucket list. 

Best Time to Visit Coral Island Thailand

Coral Island is best to visit after the monsoon season in Thailand ends, or anytime between November and April. During these months, the water around the island is calm, perfect for island-hopping and watersports.

Plus, you’ll enjoy the beach best when the sun is shining in the clear blue skies above Coral Island. Of course, visiting during this high season also means you get to enjoy the freshest seafood in Thailand (e.g., local lobster famous in Phuket). 

Just remember that when the seas behave best, tourists also flock to Phuket like a metal magnet so expect a crowd. If you want the island for yourself or with your travel mates, the tours operating in the region should lend you a hand. 

How to Get to Coral Island Thailand

A boat or ferry ride is the only way to Coral Island, so your starting point will always be a marina or any of Phuket’s piers, like Chalong Pier, Rawai Pier, or Laem Pawan Pier. Here are all your options for getting to Coral Island:

Island Tour Packages: The most reliable way to get to Coral Island is through the island tour package offered by travel agencies and hotels. A special pick-up service is included in most island tour packages, so you can enjoy a worry-free journey.

A special shuttle service will take you to your designated pier, where a partnered ferry, speedboat, or longtail boat is waiting to take you to Coral Island. After the island tour, the shuttle service should be at the pier to deliver you back to your hotel.

Ferry: Boarding a ferry is also another great way to reach Coral Island if you haven’t booked a tour package. Ferries anchored in the previously mentioned piers in Phuket, taking passengers every day to Coral Island, Racha Island, and other nearby islets.

Rawai Pier is nearest to Coral Island so that should be the best option if you want a short ferry ride. Otherwise, Chalong Pier is a safe option since it’s considered the main pier in Phuket.

Longtail Boat: Local longtail boats are cheaper and more accessible than ferries so they’re the most popular mode of transportation for island-hopping tours. Plus, you don’t need to go to a big pier because you can board or rent one from any beach in Phuket.

The price will depend on your starting point, but you can always negotiate with the longtail boat operator to get a reasonable deal. They often give discounts if you hire them for a round trip, or if you hire them as a special full-day service.

Speedboat: The fastest way to reach Coral Island is by riding the private speedboats you can charter from Phuket’s main piers. You can also rent speedboats from private establishments like Phuket Boat Lagoon Marina and Royal Phuket Marina.

Keep in mind that chartering a private speedboat is expensive, but it lets you travel to Coral Island and other nearby islands at your own pace. And that kind of freedom could be all worth it. 

What to Do on Coral Island Thailand

Ride a banana boat around the island

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Riding a banana boat is a popular activity in Coral Island’s Banana Beach, which is fitting for its name. But keep in mind that this beach is private so you must pay a 150 baht entrance fee unless you booked an island tour that covers your admission.

But there’s an alternative. You can also ride banana boats at the nearby Kahung Beach, which requires a 100 baht entrance fee.

Parasail like there’s no tomorrow

Parasailing is another popular water activity available at Coral Island in Thailand. Depending on where your ferry or longtail boat dropped you off, you can book parasailing from Banana Beach, Kahung Beach, or the Coral Beach Club.

Remember that parasailing is only available when the winds around the island aren’t strong, so it’s important to pick the perfect time and day for this activity.

Kayak to your heart’s desire

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If parasailing isn’t available in Coral Island, another option you can try is kayaking in Banana Beach. They have clear kayaks here so you can observe the underwater life while circling the waters around the beach.

Paddle around the beautiful waters

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Unlike the clear kayaks in Banana Beach, paddleboards are the rental options available at Kahung Beach. Riding a paddle will be more challenging than a kayak due to less stability, but it’s more fun because you have more room for movement.

For instance, you can easily jump out and get back into your paddleboard if you plan to do a little bit of swimming on the side. You’ll also see some people doing yoga poses on their paddleboards, which is an excellent recreational activity.

Swim to your heart’s content

Because Coral Island in Thailand is popular for its pristine white sand beaches and crystal-clear waters, it’s perfect if you enjoy swimming. Best of all, you don’t have to worry about strong waves because the water near the shore is calm and shallow.

Plus, speedboat and banana boat rides won’t operate near the shore of its beaches, so the island is a safe option if you plan to bring children with you.

Snorkel to explore under sea beauty

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Coral Island in Thailand got its name from the beautiful coral reefs surrounding it, which is a shame how tourism and natural disasters reduced their numbers. But, that doesn’t mean you won’t enjoy snorkeling on any of the island’s beaches.

To this day, the water around Coral Island remains clear, making it the perfect spot for snorkeling. Here, you can observe the colorful fishes and coral reefs inhabiting this paradise island’s shallow waters.

Get up close and personal with coral reefs and marine life

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There’s only so much you can see when snorkeling so an alternative option you can try is scuba diving. Although diving requires advanced breathing and swimming techniques, it’s better since you can observe Coral Island’s marine life in its full glory.

Also, most of the island’s surviving coral reefs are thriving in the deeper parts of the water, so diving is the only way to see them up close. On top of that, there are fishes that you can only see when diving, making it a worthwhile experience.

Watch hornbills up close 

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Aside from the rich marine life surrounding the island, it also features a vibrant tropical forest that is home to various animals. Coral Island, in particular, is famous for its hornbill population, which you might spot perched on the trees on any of its beaches.

Funnily enough, you might even see ducks walking around the beach, which the island’s caretakers own. Best of all, you can find man-made structures that are perfect for taking photos with, like the wooden hornbill statues in Kahung Beach.

In the beach area, you’ll see regular or nest-like swings and chairs that are perfect for taking Instagram-worthy photos.

Stay close to your fitness goals

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If you think that vacation isn’t a reason to stop working out, you’ll love your stay in Banana Beach because they have wooden barbells and weights. It gives you the perfect opportunity to maintain your fit body after consuming various Thai seafood.

Go island hopping

Although Coral Island in Thailand is your main destination, it’s not a reason to miss out on its nearby islands and islets. Racha Island, in particular, is a splendid paradise location to the south, where you can find various facilities and attractions.

Racha Island is also home to the stunning Patok Beach and Siam Bay, including some hotels like the luxurious Racha Resort. A quick stop on this island is perfect if you need to get various necessities since it also has a supermarket.

Where to Eat on Coral Island Thailand

Coral Beach Club Restaurant

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Address: 3/3, หมู่ 6, ราไวย์ เมือง, Phuket 83130

Contact Number: +66 89 288 5252

Operating Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Monday to Saturday) and 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Sunday)

Costs: ฿฿

Each of Coral Island’s beaches has a restaurant, but the one in Coral Beach Club stands out for the food’s quality and price. Here, you can order fresh seafood dishes that you’d expect from an island restaurant.

Just watch out for the special VIP tables at the front because they charge extra for using them. 

Mook Manee

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Address: 1120, Wiset Road, Rawai, Mueang Phuket District, Phuket 83100

Contact Number: +66 81 719 4880

Operating Hours: 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. (Daily)

Costs: ฿฿

Mook Mane, in particular, is the best restaurant to go to for fresh and top-tier seafood dishes.

Since it’s beside Rawai Seafood Market, you can buy today’s fresh catch and bring it over to the restaurant to be cooked however you like. The quality of food here is amazing, which explains the Bib Gourmand from Michelin Guides.

Racha Seafood Restaurant

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Address: Racha Island, Rawai, Mueang Phuket District, Phuket 83100

Contact Number: +66 89 588 5777

Operating Hours: 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. (Daily)

Costs: ฿฿฿

If you’re making a stop at Racha Island, you can order a nice meal at Racha Seafood Restaurant. It also specializes in seafood dishes so you can expect scrumptious servings of fresh tom yum shrimp and crab curry.

However, keep in mind that food prices here are high because Racha is a small island 17 kilometers south of Phuket.

Where to Stay on Coral Island Thailand

Thai Palace Rawai Beach Resort

Media credit: Thai Palace Resort

Address: 52/8, Viset Road, Rawai Beach, Muang Phuket, Phuket 83130

Contact Number: +66 76 288 042

Operating Hours: 2 p.m. to 11 a.m. (Check-in/Check-out)

Costs: ฿


Since Coral Island in Thailand lacks on-site accommodations, the nearest you can find is Thai Palace Rawai Beach Resort. This three-star is also the nearest to Rawai Pier, so it’s the place that gives you the quickest access back to the island.

With a good balance of utility, accessibility, and affordability, this hotel is perfect if you don’t mind not having luxury facilities. Best of all, Thai Palace Rawai Beach Resort is only 300 meters west of Mook Manee, so get excellent food whenever.

The Racha Resort

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Address: Batok Bay, Koh Racha Yai 44/12-13, Rawai, Mueang Phuket District, Phuket 83100

Contact Number: +66 76 355 455

Operating Hours: 2 p.m. to 11:30 a.m. (Check-in/Check-out)

Costs: ฿฿


For a luxury experience, you can stay at the Racha Resort, along Racha Island’s stunning Batok Bay. Here, you can witness a breathtaking seaside view while enjoying a dip at their ozonated outdoor pool, with a few snacks and drinks on the side.

What’s more, you can treat yourself to a romantic candlelight dinner with your beloved at their gorgeous Sunset Restaurant. Of course, you can also book a special private beachside dinner or in-villa BBQ if you want to take your date to the next level.

The Racha Resort also has a full-service spa if you’re looking for a relaxing time. But, if you book a VIP Couple Suite, you instead get a private pool, dressing room with spa facilities, and shared sauna.

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