The stunning Koh Yao Yai sandbank formations are a unique sight to see and you’ll only find them at Laem Had Beach. The sandbanks curve and form beautiful patterns in the ocean. At the right time of day, you’ll be able to walk 100 metres out into the sea to check them out. The beach is also a tropical paradise with pristine white sand, hundreds of coconut trees and refreshing water. Here’s everything you need to know about visiting the Koh Yao Yai sandbank, otherwise known as Laem Had Beach.
How to get to the Koh Yao Yai Sandbank (Laem Had Beach)
Laem Had Beach is located at the northern peninsula on Koh Yao Yai. From Koh Yao Yai, you can easily get to the sandbank by renting a motorbike and driving yourself. The roads are also easy to drive on and there isn’t any traffic around. They’ve also recently built a new road leading all the way to Laem Had Beach so you won’t have any issues accessing it. You can rent a motorbike from the piers or from your accommodation. Prices are around 200 – 250 Baht ($10 – $12 AUD) for one day.
From Koh Yao Noi, you can take a day trip across to Koh Yao Yai to check out the sandbank. Head to Manoh Pier on Koh Yao Noi and take the longtail taxi boat service across to Koh Yao Yai. It’s super cheap and only costs 75 Baht per person ($3.50 AUD). The longtail boat will drop you off at Chong Lad Pier. From there you can either rent a motorcycle for the day or walk 20 minutes to Laem Had Beach. You can also take your bike across on the longtail for an extra 150 Baht, but we thought it would be best not to risk it.
Best time for visiting the sandbank on Koh Yao Yai
The sandbank at Koh Yao Yai is best seen when the tide is out. This is when they’ll be at their best and you’ll be able to see all the unique curves and formations. Low tide on Koh Yao is typically in the mornings and by lunch the tide is usually at its highest. Check here for the most recent and up to date tide times. Once it’s high tide, you’ll still have one beautiful sandbank on the tip of the peninsula that’s perfect for swimming.
What to expect
Laem Had Beach is one of the most picturesque and beautiful beaches we’ve seen on our travels through all of Thailand. If you’re a fan of incredible sand bars and palm trees, you’ll love this beach! The sandbanks form incredible patterns in the ocean for you to walk out and explore. You’ll be able to explore up to 100 metres out into the sea! The views from the sandbanks are also stunning as you’re surrounded by other islands and the crystal clear ocean.
As you’re checking out the sandbanks, make sure to keep a close eye on the tide as it comes in very quickly. You don’t want to leave your belongings on a sandbar, only to find it underwater in a few minutes. Once it’s high tide, you’ll have to spend your time at the beach which is equally as beautiful. The sand is powdery white and there are hundreds of coconut trees lining the coast.
Laem Had Beach is a little gem that not many people seem to know about. You’ll sometimes get one or two tour boats coming and going, but they never stay for long. Most of the time you’ll only be sharing the beach with a couple of other people. There are plenty of spots under the coconut trees to relax under the shade or catch some sun.
Laem Had Beach Bar & Swing
Amongst the palm tree forest, you’ll also find a small beachside bar where they serve food and ice cold drinks. It’s not too overpriced either which is great! The beach bar is the perfect spot to hang out, grab some lunch and a couple of smoothies. Additionally, the best part of Laem Had Beach Bar is the massive swing! The swing lies between two incredibly tall coconut trees and it overlooks the endless ocean.
Checking out Laem Had Beach is definitely one thing you shouldn’t miss when visiting the Koh Yao islands! This perfect tropical paradise is unlike anything else in Thailand. There are so many things to do on the Koh Yao islands that you won’t want to miss out on.
Where to Stay
Most people visiting the Koh Yao Islands will be staying on Koh Yao Noi. Although Koh Yao Noi is smaller in size, it has a lot more accommodation options for all types of travellers. Getting across to either island is super easy by using the longtail taxi service at the piers.
Six Senses Yao Noi – Luxury: Six Senses Koh Yao Noi is the ultimate luxury retreat surrounded by stunning scenery and breathtaking views. The modern resort has a large infinity pool overlooking Phang Nga Bay. There are also various dining outlets and plenty of facilities and spa-treatments to indulge in. Six Senses sure is the perfect holiday destination if you’re looking to get away from the crowds and unwind.
Cape Kudu Hotel – Midrange: Cape Kudu Hotel is right along the beach in a very convenient and quiet spot in Koh Yao Noi. The hotel also has a Boho theme that runs through spacious rooms, dining areas and the outdoor pool. It’s the perfect holiday setting to relax and unwind. The outdoor pool is where you’ll be spending most of your time as you soak up the sun and enjoy the beautiful endless views of the ocean.
Anattaya Holiday Home – Budget: Anattaya Holiday Home is a great place to stay if you’re looking to save some money but still be able to experience the beauty of Koh Yao. The rooms are clean and come with a small living space as well as a TV, air-conditioning and private bathrooms. It’s located in the town centre so you’ll be close to shops but a little far from the beaches. The owners and staff are extremely helpful and are always there to help you with any questions or requests.
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