Aow Leuk Bay Koh Tao
Aow Leuk Bay, which means Deep Bay is named after both the depth of the water and the deep, concave shape of the bay.
Considered to have one of the most beautiful beaches on the island, the surrounding area provides a stunning backdrop, which includes the nearby Shark Island.
Aow Leuk Bay is on the east side of Koh Tao
Aow Leuk is located on the east side of Koh Tao and is easy to visit by bike, taxi or on foot, although you will have to cross over the central mountain on Koh Tao to reach it from the west.
You can walk across the hills from Mae Haad pier in 30-40 minutes on a relatively easy, although steep in places road and path.
If you go by vehicle, the bay is signposted from the road towards Tanote Bay and there is a car park near the beach, although there is a charge for this.
When you arrive at the bay, you will have to go through the Aow Leuk Grand Hill Resort to reach the beach and you will need to pay a 100THB entrance fee.
WiFi & Refreshments
The fee also includes two drinks, use of their beach chairs and free Wi-Fi and can be worth paying as you aren’t allowed to bring your own food and drinks onto the beach.
In addition to the resort, there is a restaurant in the bay that has a small terrace space to its left-hand side.
You can access the restaurant without passing through the resort and, if you have lunch there, they will allow you to use the terrace without charge.
Soft White Sandy Beach at Aow Leuk Bay
The centre of the beach is covered in soft, white sand that stretches into the water providing a soft, sandy sea floor.
Coral reefs run down both sides of the bay, beginning straight off the beach in the shallow waters, so you don’t have to go very far out to see an abundance of marine life.
The sandy sea floor makes this bay perfect for swimming and lounging in the water.
Aow Leuk Bay for Swimming & Snorkeling
The depth of the bay and the calm conditions mean it is ideal for swimming, snorkeling and scuba diving, even during low tide.
Due to this, a lot of scuba diver training is completed here so the bay can get busy with both people and boats.
Check the Weather
As the bay predominantly faces east, during North East Monsoon time, adverse weather can sweep into the bay and cause unsettled conditions so be sure to check on the day you plan to visit.
Baby Black Tip Reef Sharks at Aow Leuk Bay
In addition to the marine life you will find around the coral reefs, Aow Leuk Bay is also home to black tip reef sharks.
Twice a year you will find baby black tip sharks in the shallows, which they use as a nursery environment, whilst the adults can be found 400-500 metres off the beach.
Visit Shark Island from Aow Leuk Bay
You can also find black tip reef sharks in the deeper waters surrounding shark island, which is just under a mile offshore.
Kayaking to Shark Island
You can kayak out to Shark island and there are floating buoys you can tie the kayak too whilst you explore underwater with a snorkel and mask. If you are really lucky you may also see a whale shark passing by.
Frequently Asked Questions
Where is Aow Leuk Bay on Koh Tao?
Aow Leuk bay is located towards the south eastern side of Koh Tao and can be reached by scooter or on foot. The journey by road takes around 10 minutes from Mae Haad or Chalok Baan Kao or 15 minutes from Sairee beach. Walking would take approximately 1 hour. You can follow the Tanote bay road until you reach the sign for Aow Leuk then follow the road until you reach the car park.
Do I have to pay to visit Aow Leuk Bay Koh Tao?
There is a 100baht entrance fee to access Aow Leuk beach as you pass through the resort. The fee is good value as it allows you an inclusive refreshment, access to the Wifi and beach chairs.
Is swimming recommended at Aow Leuk Bay?
Aow Leuk bay is considered a good area to go swimming from the beach if the weather and conditions are good and it has a white sandy seabed. Always take precautions when going swimming and remember that Aow Leuk is a wide and expansive bay and may be subjected to strong currents the further out you go.
Can I walk to Aow Leuk Bay from Mae Haad?
You can walk to Aow Leuk from Mae Haad by following the road to Chalok Baan Kao then turning left towards Tanote bay. This road rises uphill and keep following it until you reach the sign that points to Aow Leuk. You can expect a 1 hour walk to reach the beach from Mae Haad.
Can I rent a kayak at Aow Leuk Bay?
You may be able to rent a Kayak when visiting the beach from the Aow Leuk Grand Hill Resort or along the beach. Kayaking is popular here and a short trip across to Shark Island is recommended, although be aware of strong currents and passing boats as you head out of the bay across the channel.