Ao Nai Wok, also spelt Ao Naiwok, is a large beach close to Thong Sala — the main town and point of entry to Koh Phangan. Quiet and largely unknown to most tourists, Ao Nai Wok has a great selection of budget bungalows and hotels with a distinctly local Thai feel.
Lined with coconut palms and largely undeveloped, Ao Nai Wok is a small beach with rougher sand than many of Koh Phangan’s more popular beaches. The water is calm but shallow, with the limited depth making it difficult to swim without heading quite far out to sea.
When the tide is in, however, the coral reef about 100 metres from the shoreline makes Nai Wok a fairly good beach for snorkelling. Kayaks are available for rent from some of the resorts on the beach and are a fun way to explore the coastline.
Although its water is far from the best on the island, Ao Nai Wok has several advantages. First, it’s one of the best beaches on Koh Phangan for cheap backpacker accommodation near the main town of Thong Sala. Second, it’s quiet and peaceful, with very little unwanted noise.
Finally, it’s a good escape from the hustle and bustle of the island’s other spots. Ao Nai Wok’s chilled out atmosphere and jungle surroundings have made it the location of several new resort developments, including the upmarket Kupu Kupu Beach Villas development.
If you prefer your beaches quiet and peaceful to loud and crowded and don’t mind waiting until the tide’s in to go for a swim, Ao Nai Wok is a great choice. The hotel recommendations below also cover Ao Plai Laem — a small beach to the north of Ao Nai Wok within walking distance.
Best Hotels on Ao Nai Wok
- Kupu Kupu Beach Villas & Spa
Located just to the north of Ao Nai Wok on Plai Laem, Kupu Kupu Phangan Beach Villas is a stunning private pool villa resort. The resort has direct access to a quiet stretch of beach and over 30 stunning suites and villas, many of which feature private pools and sun terraces.
- Angkana Hotel Bungalows
Angkana Hotel Bungalows is a three star resort on Ao Nai Wok with a selection of comfortable bungalows, many of which have direct beach access. Guests have access to the hotel’s pool, beach loungers and seaside restaurant.
- Mangrove Villa
Mangrove Villa is a boutique resort with a selection of affordable private bungalows. The rooms are modern, clean and comfortable, with simple furnishings and free Wi-Fi. A brief walk from the beach, Mangrove Villa is one of the best budget accommodation options on Ao Nai Wok.
- Beck’s Resort
Beck’s Resort is a small resort with a variety of fan and air conditioned bungalows. Rooms are somewhat on the small side but are clean and well maintained. Many of the resort’s bungalows have direct access to the beach, making Beck’s a great place to relax and unwind on a budget.
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Koh Phangan Travel Guide:
- Koh Phangan – A Very Quick Travel Guide
- Full Moon Party Koh Phangan
- Drugs on Koh Phangan
- Full Moon Party Accommodation on Koh Phangan
- Things To Do On Koh Phangan
- Places To Eat On Koh Phangan
- Koh Phangan Villas For Rent
- Where To Stay On Koh Phangan
- Koh Phangan Day Trips
- Koh Phangan Weather
- How To Get To Koh Phangan
- Koh Phangan Airport
- Koh Phangan Beaches