Thailand; female friendly beaches for single girl travellers

Single females, looking for fun, relaxation (or romance) on a Thai beach?

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If you are female, young or not-so-young, single and looking for fun plus the chance to meet interesting others, you need to know the right places.  And to be prepared, and know what to expect where.  Thailand has so many different beach scenes, but only a relative few might be considered both safe and friendly for foreign females travelling alone or in pairs.

Here we identify Thai beaches with true beachfront accommodations where single, foreign females should feel safe and are likely to meet good company while enjoying a relaxing beach vacation.

What criteria do we use in making such choices?  We have thought of relative safety in travelling to these beaches.  In each case there is a regular stream of foreign visitors already finding their way to the beach without incident.  We have considered the likelihood of dangers arising at the destination.  We don't touch places with blatant sex-for-sale scenes, which are generally a turn-off for single women.  

Most selected beaches have social scenes on the sand for younger people, for we assume there are more younger females in the single traveller group.  Our selected beaches generally have a broad mix of single male and female visitors.  And again, because we assume there are more younger women in this group, most of the chosen beaches have relatively inexpensive accommodation.

Thailand's famous male beer-bars VS female beaches

Why make a distinction between male and female beach destinations in Thailand? Because at a number of Thai beaches the entertainment is distinctly male-oriented… lots of local girls work there offering fun times to visiting boys. Some foreign women enjoy these hostess bars scenes, but not many – especially when travelling alone. And most of the men holidaying in places like Patong and Pattaya are more interested in meeting local girls in raunchy bars than conversing with foreign girls on romantic beaches.

Thus we avoid distinctly male destinations that single females are not likely to enjoy. Pattaya and Phuket's Patong Beach are the most famous (or infamous) examples. For female-friendly beaches we look elsewhere across Thailand's wide array of choices.

use common-sense safety precautions on Thailand's beaches:

A note of warning about safety must also be made: Thailand is a relatively safe country for foreign visitors of both sexes. Thai cities are generally considered safer for women than those in most Western countries, and lonely places are relatively safe also. All over Thailand there are many attempts to charge tourists more money than normal, but apart from trying to take money form them, there is relatively little serious crime committed against foreigners.

However, single women can become the target of male violence in any country, especially in places where a lot of alcohol is consumed. So every girl or woman should take all common sense safety precautions at all times. Do the same at the Thai beaches below that we suggest are relatively safe.

Finally, keep in mind that all male predators in Thailand are not necessarily Thai. Over the years there have been a number of incidents in which foreign tourists have spiked the drinks of other tourists, along with other means, to prey on them. Use the same common sense with all unknown men.

Sairee Beach, Koh Tao – great relaxation for girls & guys

Sairee Beach on Koh Tao was placed right at the top of our list of female-friendly beaches in Thailand - then in 2014 it suffered the horrific double murder of a young British couple - showing just how unpredictable things can be, and how our attempts to identify safe havens can go wrong.

But there was good rationale behind this choice, given below, and we have not removed it from the list. Does lightning strike twice in the same place?

Sairee Beach is on a small island well out in the middle of the ocean, a place that might seem to be potentially unsafe due to its remoteness. But no, this sits at the top of our list, and we explain why there are fewer threats here than on most other beaches. Sairee Beach has mostly budget accommodation, generally small beachfront bungalows, though there are a few better quality places here. The focus of beach social life is right on the beach, and in the many small beach bars and restaurants that lay mats, cushions and low tables on the sand for guests to come and watch the sunset from.

See the full story, and why we put this at the top of our female-friendly list: Sairee Beach, laid-back, relaxing and distinctly female-friendly .

Koh Chang – at Lonely Beach one may not be lonely for long

Lonely Beach on Koh Chang (Ta Nam Beach) is no longer really 'lonely', but neither is it really crowded. The people we have pulled together in this telephoto shot of the beach shows a high season 'crowd'. And they are generally young, from diverse parts of the world, and single. There are a few social hotspots where people gather at sunset to meet and chat. Each evening, at the south end of the beach is an open-air, in-the-sand dance party. It's definitely a young-people-meet-people scene.

See the full story of this beach at Lonely beach, Koh Chang – you don't have to be lonely for long .

Koh Phayam – for girls, for surfers, for all really laid-back types

Here's a beautiful, scarcely-known beach that offers a little adventure and a big escape, all in relative safety. Even in Thailand few people have heard of Koh Phayam, though it is definitely n the international backpackers' trail. While most accommodation is cheap and basic (some without electricity), a few more-comfortable resorts have arrrived. In 2012 there was just one swimming pool on the island, and a small number of air-con rooms – but none at Ao Yai Beach which we call female-friendly. The long trek to the island and the basic accommodations will scare off many, but there is a small, thriving beach scene at which young travellers from around the world congregate in the high season months. This island's small population of Thai Buddhist farmers and fishermen is distinctly friendly, and helping make it about as safe a place as one can find in today's wild world.

See the full story of this island and why we have included it in this list: Koh Phayam; for girls, for surfers and all really laid-back types .

Chaweng Beach, Samui – all-night fun for girls & guys

Despite that there has been some crime against tourists on this famous island in Thailand's gulf, it is still numerically about as safe as any tourist destination in the world – and safer than many. We have included famous Chaweng on the female-friendly list because of the heady mix of beach relaxation and all-night partying that many young people of both sexes engage in here. Thought there is a small commercial sex business here targeting foreign males, it is far-outweighed by the all-night party scenes in discos, club and bars. Chaweng is for those really looking for a beach holiday by day and party by night.

The story of this beach and why we have included it here is at: Chaweng Beach, Samui; all-night fun for girls & guys .

Koh Lanta's Klong Khong Beach keeps the past alive...

Klong Khong Beach on the central west of Koh Lanta holds the last hangovers from the island's youthful backpacker years. There is a group of little bungalows and beach bars here where young travellers and tourists still gather, sometimes to dance and party the night away. With this being a small scene, it becomes quiet very quickly outside the peak seasons from December to February. But it is certainly a great place to feel far from the crowds and to chill out in.

Read more about this and why we have included this beach: Klong Khong – clinging onto parties long past .

Koh Phi Phi – it's still a party place for the young at heart

By day the Phi Phi Islands are overrun by throngs of tourists – a few thousand on day-trips from Phuket and hundreds of others transiting via ferries between Krabi, Lanta and Phuket. Come sundown and Phi Phi suddenly fall quiet – or it does in most parts. The little tourist village at Ton Sai keeps buzzing, then disco music blares across the bay later in the evening. Many visitors stay on quiet outer beaches from which they can join the evening party at Ton Sai, and return in the early hours. The youthful party scene strikes up on the back beach around sunset each day, and ratchets up into party mode as the hours, beers and joints go by.

See the full story of this at Koh Phi Phi – it' still a happening place, for single females too .

Railay Beach, Krabi is female-friendly, but sometimes crowded

Railay Beach in Krabi is often called Thailand's most beautiful beach, and its fame draws large numbers of people each day. However, just before sunset there is a huge exodus as people staying in hotels at Ao Nang and on other beaches catch the last boats out. There is no road into this peninsula, and, in the high season, there is simply not enough accommodation on Railay to house everyone.

By sunset the mood on Railay has been transformed remarkably. It's quiet. It's incredibly atmospheric in the shadow of the towering peaks and rock walls. Many people continue to hang out on the beach in the dark. And later in the evening, on the back beach, a fun scene develops in the little bars. But the fun, youthful scene with rock climbers from around the globe is changing. In peak season the demand for rooms in Railay, and the high prices, keeps out many who used to party here in earlier years. See more about this scene at Railay Beach, Krabi is female-friendly, but it is well-discovered too .

..and ho-hum, yes, the Full Moon Party on Koh Phangan

We include Koh Phangan with its Full Moon Party with trepidation – first because it is so well-known it hardly needs an introduction, and secondly because we remain a little uncertain about safety. Statistically it is indeed safe, for there have been few major incidents despite so many hundreds of thousands of young people passing through here over the years. But so huge a party with so much drinking, smoking and pill popping is sure to attract predatory men of all nationalities. How many incidents happen but go unreported?

We offer a little advice to those going to either the Party or to Phangan's many other beaches at The Full Moon Party on Koh Phangan .

finally.... for political correctness, those male-friendly beaches too...

For political correctness we should also make mention of the distinctly male party scenes that have helped make Thailand famous; Pattaya and Patong Beach. Some women certainly like these scenes too, as our photos of Patong's bars and spectator crowds show. Most women coming here, however, come as part of a couple or group.

For visitors to Phuket, where the majority stay on quieter beaches away from Patong, it is standard practice to spend at least one evening taking in Patong's potpourri of restaurants, beer bars, sex shows and flamboyant transvestite acts. An evening stroll down infamous Soi Bangla – as a spectator, not participant – is excitement enough for many. See our page and photos of the wild nightlife on Patong's wild, wild Soi Bangla.

Thailand's raunchy reputation, however, does not hold true in the great majority of beach destinations. Our 'true beachfront' maps display all beach destinations across Thailand – that's about 20 distinct, and very different destinations. Virtually all have no sex tourism scene at all. Thailand has many more family-oriented, or female-friendly, beaches.

by John Everingham

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