Raya Island (Ko Racha Yai) Overview

Also known as Racha Island, Raya Island is a tiny island located in the Andaman Sea. If you are an adventure lover, Raya Island will allow you to indulge in several water sports activities, like scuba diving and snorkeling. Not only this, but you can also enjoy a long walk with your loved ones or relish a tranquil vacation with your family on the island.

The Racha Islands are located about 20 km from the South of Phuket and are home to two islands namely Koh Racha Noi and Racha Yai. These islands have been attracting tourists from all over the world with their crystal clear waters and white sandy beaches. Many travel enthusiasts include the Racha Islands in their Thailand holiday package, drawn to the natural beauty and serene atmosphere offered by these picturesque tropical gems.

Apart from offering the visitors an ultimate natural setting, these islands are also very much famous for their adventure offerings. You can come over to this beautiful paradise on earth and try out scuba diving and snorkeling. There are several diving schools and adventure water sports complexes where you will be offered hands-on training from the experts. 

The Rach Yai is a small island off the coast of Phuket that is mostly populated by Muslim farmers and fishermen who live in age-old communities and fishermen villages. During your tour, you will be able to discover more about their unique culture and customs. Ao Tawan Tok, which is located in a u-shaped bay, is the main attraction of these islands. It is made up of pure white sands and has the consistency of talcum powder. You'll find some high-end lodging in this area, as well as several upscale restaurants where you can sample some delectable local food.

It's also highly popular with daytrippers who want to unwind in the afternoon. The nightlife in this city is likewise highly sophisticated and energetic. There are a few restaurants and bars where you can get a drink and relax while taking in the atmosphere. Racha Noi is smaller than Racha Yai and is located to the south. The island is mostly uninhabited, with rugged cliffs dominating over beaches. In the islands, you will also come across a little bay that is well-known for its fishing activity. During your journey, you can also try scuba diving to learn more about the underwater world.


• Home to two Islands - Racha Yai and Rach Noi dotted with white sandy beaches and crystal clear waters.
• Offers a wonderful adventure-filled getaway for thrill-seekers to indulge in scuba diving and snorkeling activities.
• Enjoy the tranquilising coastal vibes with your loved ones in the afternoon hours at the beaches of Racha Yai.
• Experience an awesome underwater life with rich marine creatures and tropical fishes.
• Great place for family vacations as well as romantic getaways.
• Offers tourists a thriving nightlife in the upmarket bars and restaurants.

How To Reach

By Air- Bangkok is the closest area to Raya Island. You can take a flight to the Suvarnabhumi Airport or Don Muang Airport. From there, you can take a bus or boat ride to Raya Island.

By Water- Raya Island is very well connected to the other parts of Thailand through waterways. You can avail yourself of the ferry services to reach Raya Island by water. Longtail boats and speedboats are the most convenient modes of water transport to Raya Island.

Best Time To Visit

December through February remains the best time to visit Raya Island. During this time, the place enjoys the winter season with an ideal temperature between 33.9℃ to 31.8℃. It also experiences a fair amount of rainfall or snowfall two to six times on average, attracting maximum tourists to Raya Island.

Other Essential Information

Places to visit in Raya island

1. Patok Bay: All boats showing up to Raya will anchor at Patok Bay, a beautiful bay with a white sandy seashore. Fishing boats, jump boats, and speedboats regularly tour in the dazzling Patok Bay to give clients the opportunity to have lunch or have a break with staggering viewpoints. What's more, since the actual inlet is brimming with living coral and numerous species of fish, it's an incredible spot for a speedy snorkel stop prior to taking off on a visit.

2. Siam Bay: Siam Bay is the second most mainstream beach and is more serene than Patok Bay. Siam Bay has a couple of classic cafés and some old villas, however, it is undeniably lonely in light of the fact that its shallow waters don't permit boats to be there. This likewise implies that Siam Bay isn't especially suitable for swimming, however, it is an ideal spot for sunbathing and hanging out on the seashore while watching the islands of Phuket somewhere far off.

3. Island Life: The majority of the island (Racha Yai) is generally steep, dense woods with paths that will take you through a portion of the complement partitions where you may see coconut trees, water buffalos, and local people carrying on with life at a sluggish speed.

4. Batak bay: Batak Bay is one of the most sought after places in the Raya Islands for snorkelling. The water in this area is a bit warm and shallow making it just perfect for underwater activities. Heading over to this place, you can enjoy swimming in the calm water as well as watch the rich diversity of marine creatures. 

Coral Island: The underwater coral reefs and exploring marine life in the beautiful blue waters of Raya island are just amazing. The visitors can book a session of snorkelling or scuba diving through various local operators on the island. They can have an exotic experience of vast marine biodiversity including pufferfish, eels, barracudas, lionfish, and a lot more. During clear weather, Tourists can also go to the seabed and have a look at the historic shipwrecks and statues. Fishing on luxury cruises and yachts is also very popular on Raya Island with a lot of visitors.

5. Koh Racha Yai: It is one of the two Raya Islands near Phuket in Thailand. Koh Racha Yai or is also known as Ko Raya Yai which means bigger. The island has gained tremendous popularity among tourists for its beautiful white sand beaches and clear blue waters. The island is a hotspot for divers and snorkelers. Over the past decade, Ko Raya Yai has become an ideal weekend getaway for people due to the number of activities that people can do here. From luxury resorts and cruises to serene white sans shores, this island has everything for everyone. The island is easily accessible from Phuket on a 45 minutes journey through a speedboat. Ko Raya Yai island can be toured on foot only. All the major points are connected to small dirt trails. There are several scuba diving and snorkelling operators on the island itself from where you can book a tour of the marine life on the coral beaches.

6. Koh Racha Noi: Koh Racha Noi, which means Small Racha Island, is the smaller island between the two Raya islands, which comprises generally rough slopes and seashores. This arrangement is because of the consistent collection of coral stones. Consequently, this island is more appropriate for fishing than swimming. It is effectively open by contracting a long-tail boat or speedboat at Chalong wharf in Phuket, or by booking one of Racha Yai. This island is quieter than Raya Yai and has fewer visitors. The island has negligible accommodation options as the majority of the hotels are on Raya Yai. Trekking enthusiasts can explore an unconventional trail leading to the topmost viewpoint. The rough patch is covered with dense forest and big rocks. Visitors usually come here from Raya Yai and spend an hour or two in the peaceful environment of the island. It will take hardly 10 minutes with a speedboat to reach Ko Raya Noi from Raya Yai.

7. Racha The Resort at Raya Island: The Raya Island Resort is a luxurious 5-Star resort situated on the hill near Patok Bay on Raya Yai island. This majestic resort has all the amenities for leisure you can expect. From grand villas to classic suites, The Racha has it all. You can enjoy the splendid views of the Andaman sea and Patok Bay during your stay. This premium resort has world-class facilities including international restaurants, a professional spa centre, and water sports including snorkelling and scuba diving. The resort also hosts various events and occasions like weddings and anniversaries on request.

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Traveller Tips For Raya Island

1. It is suggested to book a speed boat to reach the Koh Racha Islands rather than booking a long tail boat. A speed boat takes about 45 minutes to 1 hour to cover the distance whereas a long tail boat will take about 2 hours.  

2. You should put on comfortable footwear as you will need to explore the island on a walking trail. 

3. You should carry sunscreen lotions to keep your skin protected from the harmful UV rays. 

4. You should make sure that you have your valid identity proof if you wish to indulge in water sport activities like scuba diving and snorkelling. 

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Point of Interest for Raya Island (Ko Racha Yai)
Enjoying the Beach Life

Enjoying the Beach Life

The island has a number of beaches having their own uniqueness. The most popular being Patok Bay and Siam Bay. You can enjoy the sunrises and sunsets while sitting on the white sand. Also, enjoying the local delicacies on the beaches is a soothing experience.

Recommended Read: Beaches In Phuket



The waters around Racha Yai and Noi are perfectly clear and turquoise. Swimming close to the seashores is an extraordinary method to go through the day. The water is warm and welcoming. Cottage Bay has a region divided for swimming.

Suggested Read: Adventure Sports In Thailand



The individuals who might want to take a shot at fishing in the Andaman Sea can book fishing boat visits that will take them out into the waters and give direction and fishing tools.You will get to come across a wide range of fish species during the time you swim in one of the island's inlets, your guides will frequently set up the day's catch for you to have for lunch.

Snorkelling and Boat Trips

Snorkelling and Boat Trips

There are a lot of nearby operators willing to take you and your or your family out on the entire day trips brimming with snorkelling and swimming. Most trips incorporate breakfast, every one of your drinks, and a bunch of new fish got and ready by your sides, just as chicken, organic products, and bread. Snorkelling on Raya Island is ideal as the water visibility is perfect. You do not need to be a professional to go snorkelling on Raya Yai.

Check This Out: Best Snorkeling In Thailand

Scuba Diving

Scuba Diving

Like snorkelling, local companies offer scuba diving tours at different spots and provide you scuba gear, loads, tools, oxygen tanks, and experienced PADI guides. Numerous organizations offer scuba courses for rookies as well. Other than the vast and diverse marine life near the island’s waters you can watch pufferfish, moray eels, and lionfish.

Recommended Read: Best Scuba Diving In Thailand

Tourism Board Alliances

Raya Island (Ko Racha Yai) FAQs

How do I get to Raya Island?

By Boats: In order to reach the Raya Islands, you would need to hire speed boats or motor boats from Phuket. This is the only way to reach these islands.

Do Read: Island Hopping In Phuket

What will we see at Raya Island?

1. Snowy white beaches: The white sandy beaches of Raya Island will surely give you a chance to relax close to the waters with your loved ones soaking in all that’s around.  

2. Crystal clear waters: The waters surrounding the Raya Island are crystal clear giving you a wonderful view of the marine ecosystem. 

3. Excellent diving and snorkelling spots: With clear waters, abundant aquatic life and magnificent coral reefs, one can indulge in superb diving and snorkelling spots.

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Is Raya Island worth visiting?

Yes, Raya Island is definitely worth visiting as it is a paradise with beautiful beaches offering you views of crystal clear waters and snowy white sandy beaches. You can also indulge in a wide range of water-based adventure activities like scuba diving and snorkelling. 

Also Read: Island Near Phuket

What is Raya Island famous for?

Raya Island is famous for its surreal coastal destinations and beaches offering a tranquilising vibe. It is mainly visited by nature lovers and avid thrill-seekers all through the year. Being sparsely populated, it is known among the peace seekers for its solitude. The island is dotted with snowy white beaches and adventure-filled getaways as well.

How much time will it take to reach Raya Island?

The Raya Islands are located at a distance of 20 km south of Phuket and it takes about 2 hours to cover the distance by a long tail boat. If you are travelling by speed boats, then you will be able to cover the distance in 1 hour.

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