Phuket, Thailand

Western Phuket


Mai Khao Beach

Mai Khao is a beach located on the northwestern side of Phuket. It's also known as Airport Beach or Sanambin Beach (Thai word for "airport"), as it's very close to the airport. The area was once a nesting ground for the endangered Giant Leatherback turtle but due to egg poaching, resort development and pollution they are unfortunately no longer found here. The area around Mai Khao is still very quiet and natural but in danger of future over-development. 
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Public transport from the airport to Mai Khao is very limited or even non-existent from the airport and  easier to get a taxi which takes about 20 minutes. If you only want to see the beach (most of the accommodation here are posh hotels) the best way is to follow the signs to Turtle Village and carry on past the large hotels and you will find yourself on the quietest beach in Phuket - part of the Sirinat National Park. The beach here stretches from from Nai Yang to Sarasin Bridge which includes Mai Khao. 

JW Marriot in Mai Khao by moaskey

The beach drops sharply into the Andaman Sea and therefore not safe for swimming during low season (May-November), when the sea tends to be rougher. However, this should not stop from enjoying the beach and lazing under the sun. Furthermore, the beach is rather quiet and secluded to find your own spot. The best time for calm seas is around January. This is also one of the the busiest months and it's a good idea to book well in advance. 

Mai Khao Beach by moaskey

The tourist area where most of the hotels and resorts are located is between the airport and the JW Marriot. Beyond the beach and national park, shopping at Turtle Village (a short walk from Anantara Resort and JW Marriott) is the main activity here and stuffed with luxury items - lacks the shopping experience of Patong Beach or Phuket Town. There is not much of a nightlife in Mai Khao and mostly confined to quiet dinners along the beachfront. If you have kids, they will definitely love the Splash Jungle Water Park with its fast pacing waters slides and pools.

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