When you are in Thailand, cooling off on the beach on a hot, sunny day sounds like bliss until you reach the shore and see the crowds of people thinking the same thing as you. Each hut has long waiting times, and all hammocks and beach chairs are already taken. You can go back and go home disappointed, or you can head to the island’s east coast to find stunning waterfalls with fewer crowds and cool off under the natural water jets to make the most of it. On your sunny day, Phuket’s landscape is blessed with beautiful rolling hills and spectacular waterfalls that offer panoramic views of the endless sea and alluring rainforests. Hike through lush green jungles leading to hidden waterfalls and have a good time surrounded by pure nature.
Bang Pae Waterfall
With a height of 10 meters, Bang Pae Waterfall can be visited at any time of the year as it does not dry up. Dubbed the largest waterfall in Thailand, the waterfall is surrounded by exotic wildlife and stunning scenery. Located in Khao Phra Thaeo National Park, entry costs 200 THB per person, which is well worth it, given the magnificence of the waterfall. Pack some snacks, choose an excellent, shady spot around the waterfall, and relax as the bubbling water creates a magical sight in front of you.
Ton Sai Waterfall:
Ton Sai Waterfall is another mesmerizing sight to feast your eyes on. Just 20 minutes from Bang Paeon, just over the hill. Although Ton Sai is not as massive as Bang Pae, the former has charm. Hike from the falls to see the park’s impressive flora and fauna. Ton Sai is a center for bird watchers as there is a wide variety of species to observe. So remember your camera and binoculars. There is also an information center for the curious. But there’s a catch. The scripts are written in Thai, so you can get a guide to translate them.
Instead of a massive drop, Kathu Waterfall has a series of mesmerizing waterfalls and pools. The best time to visit Kathu is during the rainy season (June to November), as the water flow is at its highest. Nevertheless, the path leading to the waterfall can be slippery, so use caution when visiting this site. Climb to the top of the falls for a never-before-seen view. The ascent is challenging but worth it. To the top, you have shade on the side so you can stop and rest in case the hike gets tiring. Take a dip in the plunge pools for a swim, or if you prefer, the collections are a great place to paddle. Entrance costs 100 THB for foreigners and 20 THB for locals. There are food stands right at the door. So eat something before you visit the falls to recharge your batteries.
Ao Yon Waterfall:
A small faded sign (sometimes tricky to see) sits unobtrusively in Cape Panwa, indicating a waterfall nearby. However, getting to the waterfall can be tricky as similar trails lead to different locations. On the one leading to Ao Yon Waterfall, you will come across small huts, villagers, and even some roaming buffalo. As not many people know of the existence of this waterfall, you are more likely to find it in its natural state. Walk through a small stream that will lead you to the waterfall.
The plunge pools aren’t big, but they are big enough to swim in. The tropical trees form a magical reflection in the water, which is lovely to capture on cameras. Photographic skills to use.
The area around Lampi Waterfall near Khao Lak is now a commercial area, although the waterfall is intact. Will visiting Lampi waterfall be hassle-free as it is only a 3-minute walk from your car park? You can avoid stepping into the jungle and looking for a waterfall. An ideal place for a picnic as there are several food stalls around the falls. Did you forget your swim shorts? Don’t worry; there’s a shop that sells one.
The waterfall is awe-inspiring, with its multiple cascading tiers jutting out of the forest. You can walk on the bridge and get a good view of the falls or swim under the bridge in a large cold pool (though not big enough for paddling). Although not that deep, the water will be hard, perfect for cooling off from the summer heat. The entrance fee is 100 THB for foreigners and 20 THB for locals. Visit on weekdays to make the most of your trip, as the pool fills up on weekends.