Waterfalls in Phuket

The waterfalls in Phuket are quite small compared to waterfalls to be found in the north of Thailand. However, they are still worth a visit for those of you who wish to get away from the beach for a few hours. The three best-known waterfalls in Phuket are Bang Pae Waterfall, Ton Sai Waterfall and Kathu Waterfall. They all have small drop pools where it is possible to take a swim in the refreshingly cool water.

The Phuket waterfalls are at their best from June to November, with September and October being the best months, when the water level is high and the forest is at its greenest. During the dry season, they dry up to nothing more than a trickle.

Phuket Waterfalls

Bang Pae Waterfall
Bang Pae Waterfall in Phuket, Thailand

Bang Pae Waterfall

Bang Pae Waterfall is Phuket's biggest waterfall. Bang Pae Waterfall is located in Khao Phra Thaew National Park. To get there from Phuket Town, drive north up Thepkrasattri Road (Airport Road) for about 20 kilometers and turn right at Heroines Monument circle on to road 4027 heading east. Follow this road for about 9 kilometers until you reach an elephant camp, then turn left.

There are restaurants and food stalls by the car park. From there, follow the footpath that meanders along above the cascading stream. It is a slightly challenging 600-meter walk, that will take about 10 minutes, through a shady forest and thick foliage surrounding. The walk to the waterfall offers a chance to come out in the rainforest and you will have a chance to see animals. There are a few drop pools along the way where you can take a swim in the refreshingly cool water. The path can be slippery so it's best to wear good shoes. Bang Pae Waterfall is about 10 meters high and drops into a gully which is the best point to take a refreshing dip. You can even jump from the surrounding rock face if you are feeling brave.

Ton Sai Waterfall
Ton Sai Waterfall, Phuket, Thailand

Ton Sai Waterfall in Phuket

Ton Sai Waterfall is also located in Khao Phra Thaew National Park, but on the western side. In fact you can trek 8 kilometers from Bang Pae Waterfall to Ton Sai Waterfall. There are maps of the park and guides available to take you trough the jungle.

To drive to Ton Sai Waterfall, turn east at the traffic lights at Thalang town (22 kilometers north of Phuket town on route 402), and proceed for about 6 kilometers through rubber plantations following the sign for Khao Phra town.

At the park entrance there are a couple of restaurants if you get hungry. There are several places to sit in the shade along with ample WC facilities as well as a small children's playground. Ton Sai Waterfall is only a short walk from the parking lot and easier accessed than Bang Pae Waterfall.

The waterfall itself is quite small but during the rainy season a great volume of water pours down it. There is also a two-kilometer, well-signed trek around the back of the waterfall. Ton Sai Waterfall and the surrounding jungle is scenic making it a nice spot for a day away from the beach.

Kathu Waterfall
Kathu Waterfall in Phuket, Thailand

Kathu Waterfall in Phuket

Kathu Waterfall is located in Kathu district, up against Phuket's central mountain range, near the Loch Palm Golf Club. To get to Kathu Waterfall, if you're coming from Patong, drive out over the big hill on to Wichitsongkram Road. Turn left at the traffic lights (there is a Caltex Gasoline Station on the right hand corner) on to Road 4020. Drive on about 1 km until you see a black marble sign for the waterfall, where you turn left. If you reach the golf course, you have missed the turn. Drive to the car park at the end of the road.

There are restaurants and food stalls by the car park. Next to the car park runs a stream of cascading water with a couple of small drop pools. Cross the bridge over the stream and climb 250 m (840ft) up the steps to the lower falls. There are two large artificial drop pools created by two brick wall dams. For most of the year, there is not enough water to fill them but in September and October, they are usually full of water and a great place for a swim.

Additional steps have been cut into the hillside to enable one to reach the higher levels, where there are tables and benches close to the pools. If you keep on walking you will soon reach top of the waterfall, with more beautiful pools that offer a cool relaxing place for a pleasant swim. The surrounding hilltop jungle is quite impressive.