Kata & Kata Noi Travel & City Guide
Great for families and couples, surfers and laid-back travellers who want a relaxing holiday.
Kata Beach is one of Phuket’s highlights, a stunningly beautiful stretch of white, sandy shore that attracts crowds any time of the year. Its smaller sister beach town of Kata Noi still remains somewhat of a secret to many tourists but is much loved by those who know it.
Both areas offer their own unique charm with Kata Beach boasting bars, restaurants and a vibrant nightlife, while Kata Noi is the place to go for peace and tranquillity. Kata Beach has a large residential area with both locals and expats choosing to make the town their preferred place of residence. As such, it has a small town feeling to it. You’ll find all conveniences here to make for a relaxing holiday, whether you’re after the beach life, fun nights out or dining in quality restaurants.
Kata is also conveniently close to Chalong, full of dive shops, an international grocery store and main road connections to the centre of Phuket. In the other direction, Patong is just a 15-20 minute taxi ride away.
WHERE TO STAY
A bit similar to Karon, but more crowded, you will find hotels, resorts, guesthouses, bungalows and serviced apartments, offering all types of accommodation for all kinds of budgets. Some of the islands top resorts are situated along the road between Kata and Kata Noi with luxurious rooms, private villas and classy restaurants overlooking the Andaman Sea.
A small street running in the back towards the main road is more residential and is a good option to look for long-term rentals.
WHAT TO DO
Both Kata and Kata Noi’s main attractions are their beaches. Its long stretch of sand and the numerous water-based activities and beach sports make Kata Beach a favourite. It is a safe swimming area which makes it ideal for families. You can catch non-stop waves at the Surf House or you can try your skills at a pre-historic Dino-themed mini golf course.
Yoga is becoming very popular and Kata houses a studio not far from the beach with daily classes.
Kata’s Temple, Wat Kittisankaram dates back to 1832 and is home to a monastery pavilion, as well as a primary school.
WHERE TO EAT
Eating out and going for drinks in either Kata Beach or Kata Noi gives you plenty of choice with a variety of cuisines available in addition to Thai, such as French, Italian, and Scandinavian among others. Plenty of these establishments offer al-fresco dining, making them the ideal spot for wining and dining at lunch or dinner. In addition, you’ll find bars, casual cafés, coffee shops, steak houses, intimate Thai eateries, and wine bars, which all add to Kata’s charm. A few bars on the hill towards Rawai offer refreshingly cold drinks, tasty Thai and international food, as well as views that will literally take your breath away at sunset.
Both Kata Beach and Kata Noi are home to exclusive restaurants. Together with incredible views, the food and drinks served in such establishments are delicious and often award-winning.
Kata Beach provides a lively atmosphere when it comes to nightlife. Loads of bars can be found along most of its streets, in all shapes and sizes. Kata Night Bazaar, which sounds as if it is a shopping arcade but isn’t, is a collection of little bars with friendly staff. Located near a parade of restaurants, it makes for a great night out.
Kata’s smaller namesake, Kata Noi, has a much more chilled-out feel to it where beachside beverages and dining make up the night-time activities. Should you wish to enter a livelier environment, it’s easy to head over to Kata by way of a taxi or if you’re feeling fit, a hike over the hill. Both Kata Beach and Kata Noi are home to various beach bars for that perfect chill mode on holiday. Although Kata Beach has developed into quite a large area of entertainment, you can still find its beach town vibe throughout.
Shopping in Kata Beach is quite diverse with a range of vendors selling souvenirs and surf shops selling branded products. Everything stays open late into the night, so you’ll find that the shops are busier after dark when everyone has returned from the beach.
There are quite a few unique shops at Kata Beach that sell clothing, as well as traditional home furnishings and antiques. Most shops are stand-alone but there are a collection of stores within Kata Plaza where you’ll find beachwear, clothing, hats and shoes, as well as sunglasses and travel accessories. Remember to bring your bargaining skills with you and you’ll be sure to have experienced a satisfactory shop.
Kata Noi has a few tailors and convenience stores and can cater to your requirements for basic needs. You can always head to Kata Beach, a short distance over the hill for more products, where you will find opticians, pharmacies and such like.