Endowed with a number of astonishing islands nearby, Phuket is the ultimate destination for your island hopping jaunt. The unparalleled beauty of their beaches, the magical color of their waters and the exotic marine life draw millions of travelers every year. While there are tonnes of these little islets close by, these 9 amazing islands near Phuket just cannot be missed.

1. Koh Phi Phi

Made popular by the movie The Beach, Koh Phi Phi is like a Hollywood star in the island world. Bordered by emerald green waters and ringed by colourful corals, its no surprise why travelers fall head over heels in love with Phi Phi.

Phi Phi

Photo Via tripadvisor

Maya Bay is the magnet that draws everyone to Phi Phi. An amphitheater of rocky cliffs enclosing a mesmerizing lagoon, its a natural wonder unlike any you have seen.

When you are not drooling over the picture perfect scenery, you are diving in its crystal clear waters. Being part of a national park, it has some of the best dive sites in Thailand. Its also one of the cheapest places to dive in the country.

Nights are bustling with thousands of backpackers dancing to the beats from bars littered across the island. Beach parties and fire shows happen at almost every nook and corner.

How to reach: Koh Phi Phi can be reached in 2 hours from Phuket by ferry.

2. Koh Lanta

Koh Lanta was once rated as having some of the best beaches in the world by Sunday Times. To this day, it remains a relatively untouched beauty. Widely known for its unique rugged terrain, traditional lifestyle, gravel beaches and stunning coral reefs, the island will leave you awe-struck.

Koh Lanta

Photo Via kohsamuisunset

Koh Lanta will give you a spectacular diving experience, with its dive sites touted to be among the world’s best. With its incredible underwater visibility, bright corals and an array of sea life, diving here is like exploring a new world altogether.

On other days, you can succumb to Lanta’s mellow vibe and just lounge on its milky white beaches chasing magical sunsets.

How to reach: Koh Lanta can be reached in 2 hours from Phuket by ferry.

3. James Bond Island

The picturesque island is by far the most popular day trip from Phuket. It rose to fame after being featured in a James Bond movie (The man with the golden gun).

James Bond Island

Photo Via jamesbondisland.com

Its majestic limestone pillars, especially a funnel shaped rock standing magically in the water make it ideal for shutterbugs to capture some beautiful shots.

Adventure lovers can explore its exotic mangrove forests and underground caves on a kayak. You can end the trip with an exotic Thai Lunch in a floating village.

How to reach: There are many day trips to James Bond Island from Phuket.

4. Similan Island

A group of 9 unspoiled islands, Similan is the undisputed no.1 place to scuba dive in Thailand, with its dive sites considered to be some of the best on the planet.

The underwater world is a palette of colors with its vibrant corals and shimmering marine life. The visibility is just outstanding. No wonder that divers are attracted to it, like a moth to a flame.

Similan Island

Photo Via Phuket.com

A striking feature of the island are its massive truck-sized boulders strewn about the landscape. They make a great backdrop for your pictures. As the island is mostly deserted, you can have it’s ghostly white beaches all to yourself.

Note: Camping on the island requires permission. Travelers usually opt for Liveboard cruises, which include multiple day diving excursions around the island.

How to reach: It can be reached from Phuket by a speedboat in an hour.

5. Surin Island

A part of the Mu Koh Surin National Park, Surin Island is Similan’s equally attractive neighbor. Its glittering blue waters and breathtaking corals are a siren call to giant whale sharks.

Surin Island

Photo Via mokenislands.com

Surin is known to lure travelers in search of a quiet refuge, away from all the hustle and bustle. While you are here, you can witness the daily lives of Moken or Sea Gypsies, who have been its inhabitants since decades.

How to reach: It can be reached from Phuket by a speedboat in an hour.

Also Read: Where to Stay in Phuket | Itinerary for Phuket

6. Koh Yao Yai and Koh Yao Noi

The Koh Yao islands will give you a feel of a typical Thai Island, away from all urban comforts.They are ideal for those who want to string up a hammock and just disconnect from the world.

Koh Yao Islands

Photo Via Booking.com

Their landscape is diverse, with dense mangroves, golden sand beaches and views of dramatic limestone karsts. The best way to explore these islands is on two-wheelers. When you are not exploring the land, you can dive, snorkel or kayak in their turquoise waters.

How to reach: Both the islands can be reached by a slow boat in an hour.

7. Koh Racha Yai and Koh Racha Noi

Collectively known as Racha Islands, Koh Racha Noi and Koh Racha Yai are small, beautiful islands with spectacular white sand beaches and sparkling blue waters.

Racha Noi is well-known for its mind-blowing dive locations. Racha Yai has some great luxury resorts, making it ideal for a romantic getaway.

Koh Racha Islands

Photo Via intophuket.com

How to reach: The Racha Islands can be reached by ferry in an hour from Phuket.

8. Koh Bon

Adorned with lush green vegetation and tiny sand coves, this exotic island lies quite close to Phuket. But despite its close proximity, it has still not been invaded.

Koh Bon

Photo Via rawaiphuket.blogspot.in

Its gorgeous beaches are perfect for lounging about while huge crabs scuttle about. Apart from crabs, the island is widely known for its flora and fauna. Its waters are teeming with marine life, making it a great spot for snorkeling.

This mini heaven on earth is also a culinary paradise, with its restaurants offering an array of extravagant Thai cuisine.

How to reach: Koh Bon can be reached from Phuket in 15 minutes by ferry.

9. Koh Khai ( Koh Khai Nok and Koh Khai Nai)

Ask anyone in Phuket about Koh Khai Islands and you will see a blank look on their faces. Despite being close to Phuket, it remains a hidden gem. Its a group of 3 tiny islands, home to many exotic fishes, and these fishes aren’t afraid of humans.

Koh Khai

Photo Via tonphai.com

So you can easily get that perfect shot with shoals of fishes swimming in between your legs in indigo-blue waters. The island has a few shops offering diving at reasonable prices.

If you are not in the mood for snorkeling, then you can just clamber on a deck-chair and soak in the picturesque surroundings under the shade of colorful umbrellas.

How to reach: Koh Khai can be reached from Phuket in 30 minutes by ferry.