Top 10 Exquisite Destinations in Southern Thailand for an Unforgettable Tropical Getaway in 2023

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The southern part of Thailand is a stunning place, filled with magnificent beaches, bays, and temples. These incredible destinations to explore in Southern Thailand have evolved into popular tourist and nightlife hubs over the past twenty years. If you’re seeking an amazing vacation destination for your next tropical getaway, there are various well-known and secluded spots to consider. From resort towns to remote islands, these locations showcase the best of what Thailand has to offer.

10 Destinations to Explore in Southern Thailand in 2023

Continue reading to discover more about the most breathtaking places to visit in Southern Thailand during your journey through South Asia. Which one of these will you visit first?

Ko Tao

1. Ko Tao

The island of Koh Tao, situated in the Gulf of Thailand, is a beloved spot for divers who come here to experience the diverse marine life and stunning coral formations. The island can only be reached via a ferry from the town of Chumphon. If you’re not a diver, you’ll have the opportunity to find PADI certification courses at various locations on the island. While most people visit the Chumphon Pinnacle on the island to see the renowned bull sharks, the mesmerizing sculptures in Val Tong Tao Bay are also popular among tourists.

Koh Tao attractions: Chumphon Pinnacle, Val Tong Tao Bay, Sai Nuan beach

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Amazing Ang Thong

2. Mu Ko Ang Thong

Near the island of Koh Samui in the Gulf of Thailand lies a collection of 42 islands known as the Mu Ko Ang Thong. Now designated as a national park, this archipelago is a stunning destination to explore through boat tours and is one of the ultimate places to visit in Southern Thailand with friends. The lush green forests that blanket most of the islands are exceptionally picturesque, and a visit to the island of Ko Wua Talap is highly recommended.

Mu Ko Ang Thong attractions: Ko Wua Talap beaches, Buaboke caves, Ko Mae Ko beach

Ko Phangan

3. Ko Phangan

The island of Ko Pha Ngan is most famous among international tourists for its grand parties that are held in honor of the full moon. Flooded by global backpackers, these celebrations have transformed into a hub for merrymaking and some very vibrant revelry. While a sanctuary for party enthusiasts, the island has a variety of other things to offer. You can access the Ko Pha Ngan national park (with complimentary admission) and trek up the different woodland trails on the mountain island.

Ko Pha Ngan attractions: Scuba diving or Muay Thai training at the coastline.

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Amazing Khao Sok National Park

4. Khao Sok National Park

While the popular depiction of Thailand frequently includes beaches and nightclubs and alcohol, the Khao Sok National Park provides the contrasting experience with its serene and natural beauty. The optimal approach to explore this forested island is through guided tours if you are visiting for the first time. In addition to the natural wildlife present, the Cheow Lan Lake is an especially splendid place to behold. The viewpoint above the lake is perhaps the finest location to capture pictures of the lake, nestled among the cliffs which renders it one of the must-see spots in South Island.

Khao Sok National Park attractions: Cheow Lan Lake, Wing Hin waterfall, Tang Nam gorge

Amazing Diving Fish Sea Diver Ocean Water Light Swimming

5. Railay

Situated right in the middle of Krabi and Ao Nang, Railay is a peninsula, encompassed by mountains on one side and the splendid ocean on the other. You can only reach here by boat, and this is a paradise for adventure enthusiasts. The Phra Nang beach is renowned not only for its stunning shoreline but also for the surreal limestone formations that protrude from the coast. Moreover, you can go for a swim beneath the limestone structures.

Railay attractions: Phra Nang beach, Rai Leh West beach

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6. Phuket

Phang Nga Bay, Thailand

Phuket is a minuscule jurisdiction in the southern part of Thailand and one of the most bustling tourist destinations in South Thailand. You can discover the most vibrant nightlife here on the stretch along the Patong beach, and also elsewhere in Phuket. This is the place to come if you are seeking lively celebrations, the most astonishingly beautiful South Thailand coastlines as well as exceptional dive sites where you can engage in snorkeling as well as scuba diving. There are also some remarkable temples at Wat Chalong and Wat Luang Pu Supha for a more varied experience of Thailand.

Phuket points of interest: Patong beach, Wat Chalong, Naka Kerd Mountain

7. Phang Nga Bay

The islands of this bay were put on the radar of Southern Thailand by Hollywood movies, most notably the James Bond movies. Located between the towns of Krabi and Phuket, and accessible from either, the Phang Nga Bay is one of the finest places to visit in Southern Thailand. The hundreds of limestone formations that protrude from the exquisite water make for a genuinely awe-inspiring sight. Most tourists opt for boat tours to cover the waters but kayaking is also a beloved and daring option.

A couple on a canoeing tour in Phang Nga Bay in Phuket

Phang Nga Bay points of interest: Khao Phing Kan (James Bond Island), Ao Phang Nga National Park

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8. Ko Lipe

Ko Lipe

The island of Ko Lipe is the perfect fusion of natural marvels to explore and luxurious resorts where you can unwind in comfort. The island is not overcrowded as such, so this is ideal for the laid-back vacationer. The Pattaya beach is the most renowned attraction in Ko Lipe, and the Sunset beach offers the optimum vistas of the sun descending into the ocean. There are also some prominent dive sites – 8 Mile Rock and Yong Hua Shipwreck are where all the streams converge. One of the top destinations to visit in South Thailand in December.

Ko Lipe tourist spots: Pattaya and Sunset beach, 8 Mile Rock, Yong Hua Shipwreck

9. Similan Islands

Amazing Similan Islands

The Similan islands are well-known for their corals, and that makes these group of islands one of the top diving spots in all of Thailand. Among the finest things to engage in within South Thailand, the Horseshoe Bay beach is a surreal combination of white sand and tepid waters perfect for swimming and a leisurely day under the sun. The Fantasy Mound here is the most desired diving location where you can observe manta rays, whale sharks, and barracudas, aside from the undoubtedly stunning coral formations.

Simian Island tourist spots: Horseshoe Bay Beach, Fantasy Mound

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10. Ko Phi Phi

Ko Phi Phi

If you examine the southern Thailand islands map, then the islands of Koh Phi Phi are positioned just off Krabi which is the most sizable of South Thailand cities and are one of the most exquisite locations to be in South Thailand. The six islands have some of the most astonishing white sand beaches and enjoyable activities to offer. You can easily find accommodation on the Ko Phi Phi Don, the largest island in the group.

Ko Phi Phi tourist spots: Ko Phi Phi Leh, Maya Bay, Patong

These splendid locations to explore in South Thailand provide the ideal blend of festivities and relaxation for an exceptional Thailand vacation. You can embark on island hopping here, and witness both the wonderful beaches and breathtaking marine as well as animal life in these places. Peruse through our assortment of customized Thailand tour packages and embark on the most incredible vacation of your life!

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Commonly Asked Questions About Destinations To Explore In South Thailand

Where can I find the most pleasant place in Thailand?

Some of the finest destinations to discover in Thailand include Chiang Mai, Phuket, Ayutthaya, Kanchanaburi, Krabi, Ratchaburi, Sukhothai, and Phang Nga.

What are a few safety measures that should be taken when traveling to Thailand after the Covid-19 pandemic?

Some of the essential information for travelers visiting Thailand after or during the covid pandemic are: Wear a mask when in public and ensure it completely covers your nose and mouth. Maintain social distancing at public gatherings of at least 6 feet which is approximately 2 meters.

When is the optimal time to visit South Thailand?

The prime time to travel to South Thailand is between November and April when the weather is pleasant and dry.

What is the finest Thai island to explore?

The top islands in Thailand encompass Koh Samui, Phuket, Koh Lanta, Koh Phangan, Koh Samet, Koh Phi Phi, Koh Yao Yai, and Koh Yao Noi.

Which city in Thailand is the most exquisite?

Chiang Rai, Kanchanaburi, Krabi, Sukhothai, Pai, Chiang Mai, Ko Samet, and Ayutthaya are a few of the most stunning cities in Thailand.

How costly is Thailand?

Thailand is not a pricey country to visit. The accommodations, food, and transportation are usually affordable within your budget. However, most of the markets in Thailand charge high prices for handicrafts and local products, so shopping can be expensive.

Which month offers the cheapest flights to Thailand?

March is regarded as the most economical month to fly to Thailand.

What is the chilliest month in Thailand?

December is the coldest month in Thailand with an average temperature of about 79°F (26°C). The weather during this time is quite pleasant, and it’s also the ideal time to experience a grand New Year celebration in Thailand!

Where should one go in Thailand?

Some of the most enchanting places to visit in Thailand include Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Phuket, Chiang Rai, Phang Nga, and Ko Chang. You should also explore the various offbeat destinations in Thailand like Wat Pariwar, Wat Mae Kaet Noi, Wat Rong Khun, Sam Phan Bok, Death Railway in Kanchanaburi, War Cemetery, and Phaya Kankak Public Park.

Where is the region of South Thailand located?

South Thailand is situated on the Malay Peninsula, encompassing an area of approximately 70,714 square kilometers (27,303 square miles). Its northern part is bounded by the Kra Isthmus, the narrowest peninsula. This region boasts some of the most iconic resorts, beaches, and islands in the Gulf of Thailand and the Andaman Sea.

What are the provinces in southern Thailand?

The provinces in southern Thailand are: 1. Chumphon 2. Prachuap Khirikhan 3. Ranong 4. Surat Thani 5. Phang Nga

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