Jamie's Phuket Blog

Ya Nui Beach

Ya Nui beach seems to have remained pretty much unchanged since I first saw it more than 10 years ago. Quiet, undeveloped, easily missed if you don't know where it is - squeezed into a small bay in between Nai Harn beach and Phromthep Cape. Ya Nui is a different side of Phuket compared to the main beaches. Ya Nui has no big hotels or shops, not much at all except one small restaurant and a few shacks which serve as little groovy bars. There are some nearby bungalows, invisible from the beach itself and if you were to stay in this area, would be best to have your own transport. The view below shows Ya Nui beach, photo taken from the viewpoint just to the north where you find the big wind turbine. Nice views from up there!

Ya Nui Beach

I don't remember the last time I stopped at Ya Nui beach. Never seems to be enough time to visit old hangouts. We used to like it. We have good memories from many years ago. A photo of our daughter when she was about 3, pretending to play drum on a wooden stall at the little cafe. We visited with my parents, this must have been in 2004. Later that year, Ya Nui was hit hard by the tsunami. We found new places to hang out, had another baby and I can't seem to recall stopping at Ya Nui for years now. Should go for often to all these nice places, but .. I am not on holiday here, I normally work 6 days a week. However, last month, right at the end of my holidays on October 12th, I went back to Ya Nui beach with Mum and Dad. Looks like we should have gone the next day for free beer :)

I'm going tomorrow!

The weather on that day was a real mixture of sun and sudden showers. We walked on the beach in the sun at first. Ya Nui is a small beach, quite rocky at low tide, and in high season the snorkeling is said to be good here. They do put beach chairs on the beach sometimes, which uglies things up a bit.. there's just the one restaurant, run in very casual local style :

Restaurant owner at Ya Nui Beach

We wandered the beach for a while trying to find an interesting photo of rocks and waves - it was still low season and the sea was pounding away. Mum enjoyed getting her feet wet - you can see the sky behind her (below) - blue skies and sun, with a side dish of dark clouds and rain. The kind of low season day when you can get sunburn or soaked, and we played "dodge the shower" all day.

Mum at Yanui Beach

We were almost alone at the beach, only a couple of young ladies there at the same time. Crowded Phuket? Get out and explore and lose the crowds. The photo below, with added foreground interest, is looking more to the south over the jumble of rocks at the south end of Ya Nui. It's only 1km from here to Phromthep Cape.

Yanui Beach, Phuket

Oh, there was one other guy at the beach - a good old fashioned beachcomber, armed with metal detector....

Treasure Hunter at Ya Nui Beach

Should you go swimming at Ya Nui and get into trouble, don't worry, be happy.. There is a Lifeguart on hand. Nobody was swimming that day, but in high season when the sea is almost always calm, you can certainly swim here, or snorkel or dive - I have a friend who likes to dive here, starting at Ya Nui and swim round the corner (about half a mile) to Nai Harn then get a tuk tuk back to Ya Nui.


The rain did come that afternoon for a while, so we sat in the restaurant, had a beer and then went for another little walk. At the far north end of the beach I found several memorial plaques dedicated to loved ones who had died in the tsunami. That seems a long time ago, and yet very recent.

Tsunami Memorial

The southwest corner of Phuket is good for a day out - including Ya Nui, Nai Harn, the windturbine viewpoint, the Karon viewpoint, maybe a sunset beer at the After Beach Bar or dinner at Phromthep Cape restaurant. A very nice part of Phuket.

(added later) Found the photo - our daughter age (nearly) 3 at the cafe, Ya Nui beach in July 2004. For this reason, the place has an emotional attachment and seeing the tsunami plaques brought it back. Ya Nui is rebuilt of course, it happened 7 years ago. We were there before. We are here now.

Our daughter at Ya Nui beach 2004

Ya Nui Beach - Location Map

View Ya Nui Beach, Phuket in a larger map

 Ya Nui Beach  |  Jamie's Phuket Blog

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  Please do add your comment!

Anonymous flymyself :

Ya Nui Beach sounds like a must-go vacation spot ! looks so calm and relaxed. love it !

November 16, 2011  

Anonymous Anonymous :


Ejoy your blog very much. Find new places to visit and reminders of old ones from the 20 years I've been visiting Phuket (now, for ten year, living on the shore at Rawai Beach). Enjoy a dawn walk to Ya Nui Beach every few days - nice and quiet and relaxing - have even spotted pairs of Greater Racquet-tailed Drangos several times.

Tom Rice

November 16, 2011  

Blogger Jamie Monk in Phuket :

Hi Tom, thanks for your comment, yes it's still a quiet area even if development has increased around Rawai and Nai Harn. I had to Google the bird.... and wondered if you have ever seen a Pin-Striped Tit-Babbler? :)

November 16, 2011  

Anonymous Anonymous :

Hi Jamie,

Now I had to use Google. Am not a birdwatcher, but an amateur conchologist (will let you google that one). The babbler looks a bit like the birds in my backyard tree, but think these are Yellow Bullbulls (sp?). Will keep an I out for the Tut-Babbler (have to admit I thought you were "pulling my leg" with the name at first!).

Tom Rice
Rawai Beach

November 17, 2011  

Blogger Dina :

Hi Jamie,
I love your blog! Am traveling to Phuket alone at the end of November and I came across your blog. After reading your blog I feel like renting a car and just driving to all those places around Phuket featured on your blog, the beaches, temples and shrines. I will be a single woman traveling alone. Do you think it is advisable to rent a car on my own? Can I depend on road signs and should i get a map or gps? Or should I get a driver as well, or just depend on taxis and buses. Taxis would probably be more convenient but I have a feeling it will cost a bomb! So sorry for the barrage of questions. It'll be my first solo trip and I've never driven in any other country other than my own. Thanks in advance. Love love your blog!

November 17, 2011  

Blogger Jamie Monk in Phuket :

Hi Dina,

Driving is fine here, I drive every day, traffic can be heavy sometimes but not neat Ya Nui beach! Taxis - yes, expensive. Take 2 rides in a taxi for any long distance and thats going to cost the same as car rental. Maps all over the place, or Google Maps is pretty good! Or a good website : http://www.map-of-phuket.com/ :)

November 17, 2011  

Blogger Dina :

Hi Jamie. Thanks for the advice! Looking forward to seeing your Phuket!

November 18, 2011  

Blogger BecTaylor :

Came across Ya Nui beach last week whilst exploring on scooters and it really is so beautiful! Just returned from the most amazing holiday and your blog helped us so much! Our favourite was The Beach Hut near the Novotel on the way to Cape Panwa!! Already planning our next trip! Thanks

November 24, 2011  

Blogger Dawn in Phuket :

I lived at Ya Nui Bungalows on Ya Nui Beach back in 1987, great place, in those days they were still growing rice along Soi Ya Nui. I built a small house about 500m from the beach and spent around 7 years there before the land was sold and I moved on, however the place is always in my heart.

January 21, 2013  

Blogger Jamie Monk in Phuket :

It's still pretty quiet now, I can only imagine 1987!

January 24, 2013