Love filled days on sun-kissed shores. If it’s a luxurious wedding in South East Asia that you’ve been dreaming of, you can’t go past, the land of smiles, Thailand.
Thailand is one of the most exquisite holiday destinations in the world and is visited by a significant number of travellers every year. There is a wealth of glorious beaches, snorkelling spots, and an unparalleled level of hospitality to enjoy. But with so many options, how do you choose the perfect location for your wedding?
At Wed Away, we’re experienced at helping our couples choose the right location for their tropical wedding, based on four key factors;
- Proximity to beaches
- Variety of things to see and do
Now, let’s take a closer look at each of these factors, to help you narrow down your choice of a dreamy wedding location.
Phuket – explore its secrets!
There is so much more to Phuket than picture-perfect palm-fringed beaches and buzzing nightlife. Phuket ticks the ‘variety of things to see and do’ box beautifully; whether you’re dreaming of a wedding on a white sandy beach, or on one of the spectacular cliffs overlooking the Andaman Ocean.
When it comes to luxurious 5-6-star accommodation options (from resorts to private villas) Phuket boasts an abundance of gorgeous choices. It also serves as a gateway to the many beautiful southern landmarks of Thailand, such as the famous Phi Phi Islands, Koh Lanta, Koh Yao Noi and the Similan Islands.
But that’s not all! Phuket wins the award when it comes to accessibility. Phuket is Thailand’s largest island and is connected to the mainland by a small bridge. Boasting its own international airport, you can fly directly to the island from over 49 cities worldwide, including Sydney and Melbourne (which means more time spent celebrating).
Wed Away’s Favourite Activity in Phuket
A leisurely day trip cruising around Phang Nga bay, on a traditional Thai style sailing boat. Imagine a day of Island hopping and swimming, a gorgeous sunset and an evening under the stars as you sail back to port. Occasionally stopping to enjoy quiet beaches, is far more rewarding than the standard crowded boat tour.
Good things to know
- Because Phuket is a popular destination for weddings and honeymoons, book as early as you can to enjoy the freedom of choice when it comes to suppliers and venues.
- With so much to offer it can get a bit crowded, which is why we love private villas for your intimate wedding getaway.
- Most popular (pristine and private) beach locations to get married; Bang Tao, Surin, Naithon, Layan and Laem Singh Beach.
Khao Lak – blissfully private and quiet
If you’ve been dreaming of a wedding on a quiet, pristine, white sandy beach surrounded by calm, warm shallow waters, away from the hustle and bustle of busy tourist areas, Khao Lak is the wedding destination of your dreams.
But peace and tranquillity doesn’t mean there’s nothing for you and your guests to do. Located on the west coast of Thailand, on the Andaman seaboard, Khao Lak is also the perfect location for nature lovers, with no less than 3 national parks to explore. Activities we recommend include; turtle spotting whilst out for a day of snorkelling off the Similan Islands. Exploring rocky coves and waterfalls and, back on land, a heart-warming private group visit to the elephant rehabilitation centre where you can enjoy elephant mud baths, feeding time and hugs. Aw!
And of course, there is Phuket on your doorstep if you want to do a little shopping too!
Wed Away’s Favourite Activity in Khao Lak
Snorkelling or diving around the Similan island with a private beach bbq lunch. If you’re not a water person, connecting with nature supporting the elephant sanctuary is a wonderful experience.
Good things to know
- You reach Khao Lak by flying into Phuket airport, which is far north of Phuket and close to the bridge which connects to Khao Lak. The resorts and villas in this area stretch as close as 30 mins from the airport starting at Natai Beach to approximately 1.5hrs far north.
- Tranquil is the best way to describe Khao Lak. This makes it a beautiful destination for an intimate and exclusive Wed Away. If you’re looking for buzzing nightlife, Phuket may be a better option for you.
Koh Yao Noi – incredible scenery
If you are looking for a memorable wedding in a tropical paradise, we have the perfect location in Thailand for you.
Imagine your wedding on a white sandy beach, surrounded by a crystal blue sea and tropical vegetation, not to mention a spectacular view over Phang Nga Bay. The scenery of imposing limestone cliffs, the sparkling turquoise waters, and the naturally integrated resorts and villas, combine to provide a perfect backdrop for western style or traditional Thai blessings. And, if you would like a little of both, each wedding ceremony at Koh Yao Noi can include the unique paradise Koh Yao ritual of planting a coconut tree on the beach, to symbolize the growth and abundance of your union.
Imagine returning year after year to see how tall your coconut tree has grown!
Wed Away couples love the remoteness of this island, which takes about 30 minutes to reach by speed boat from Phuket or Krabi. There is also the option of getting married on an even more private island nearby, which takes about 5 minutes to reach, again by speed boat. And if you would like to enjoy some adventures as part of your wedding experience, Koh Yao Noi is a great base from which to island-hop to Phi Phi and Ao Phang Nga National Park.
Wed Away’s Favourite Activity in Koh Yao Noi
If you have a large group of 30+ people, a Thai cooking class followed by a sunset cocktail sailing trip is a fun and relaxing way to spend the afternoon together. And there is an elephant sanctuary to explore on the nearby island Koh Yao Yai which is a 10-minute boat ride away as well.
Good things to know
- The Island is reached by speedboat via Phuket which has both a domestic and international airport. This trip takes less than 1 hour.
- You can drive around the island in less than 30 minutes.
- This location is a great option for a small group.
- There are no suppliers on the island – everything needs to be brought by speedboat which is something we can organise for as part of your Wed Away.
Krabi – For the romantic, nature-lovers
Krabi is a coastal town on the west coast of southern Thailand. It’s a region of lush jungles, golden sandy beaches, spectacular limestone cliffs and crystal-clear turquoise waters.
Krabi has everything that Phuket or Koh Samui offers, just delivered more discreetly. And if it’s options you are looking for, when it comes to your pre and post-wedding events, it’s hard to look past Krabi. It’s close to numerous small secluded islands for your wedding ceremony, including Lanta, Nok and Bamboo with Railey beach being a top favourite. And, in addition to the stunning beaches and breathtaking scenery, Krabi offers gorgeous resorts, bustling markets, lively bars,, beautiful temples and plenty of fantastic outdoor activities for adventure; rock climbing, abseiling, cave exploring and nature trails.
Wed Away’s Favourite Activity in Krabi
Krabi is a Wed Away favourite for a romantic, nature-inspired wedding in a serene location. Numerous islets and beaches offer a spectacular location for a remarkable wedding ceremony.
To accommodate a large group kayaking in and around the limestone caves with a tour guide explaining the history of the area is a must. Also, why not host a private movie night under the stars, which is a great way to end the day.
Good things to know
- Krabi airport is serviced by several airlines and accepts international flights.
- The province is not as crowded with tourists when compared to Phuket, but there are fewer accommodation options and the top resorts are accessed by boat only.
Koh Samui – explore its beauty
Koh Samui is the second-largest island, located off the east coast in the Gulf of Thailand. If spending the days before and after your wedding exploring the sea is what you desire, you and your guests will delight in island hopping, snorkelling and diving.
Located just 1 hour away from the world-famous Ang Thong National Marine park consisting of 44 island archipelago, Koh Samui is one of the best places in Thailand to dive.
An abundance of activities is not the only reason we love Koh Samui for your destination wedding in Thailand. It’s beautiful and secluded white sandy beaches are perfect for an island ceremony. Our favourite way to say I-do on Koh Samui? A ceremony at your own private unobstructed sea view villa is spectacular! Koh Samui opens-up your options when it comes to luxury accommodation, with numerous luxury private villas available. Hosting your wedding experience at a private villa really is the ultimate way to celebrate your marriage in Thailand.
Wed Away’s Favourite Activity in Koh Samui
The Wed Away team thinks Koh Samui wins the prize for the perfect location for a combined Wedding and Honeymoon!
Good things to know
- 13 cities fly international Koh Samui, however factor in more travelling time as there are limited direct flights you can go from one side of the island to the other in less than an hour, with good infrastructure.
- February, April and June are peak months, but generally speaking, there is more privacy and fewer crowds.
- The islands of Koh Phangan and Koh Tao are close by and great places to visit for pre/post wedding day events as well.
- Close to full moon parties for that last-minute bachelor getaway.
How we compare the options
We love Thailand as a destination for your wedding day and pre and post-wedding events. There really is a perfect spot for every couple’s personality and budget.
Phuket is the easiest and least expensive to reach (especially if you are travelling to Thailand from Australia). When it comes to costs, Phuket and Koh Samui are similarly priced, but there are more ways to spend money on Phuket, with more luxurious shopping malls and nightclubs on your doorstep. So watch that budget!
Khao Lak, connected to Phuket on the north by a bridge, offers more tranquillity than the other locations; it’s less built up, with fewer tourists, but still enjoys easy access from Phuket. This is the perfect location for enjoying amazing sunsets and beautiful quiet beaches.
Koh Yao Noi is a little island of paradise and culture on the doorstep of Phuket and Krabi and many other islands hopping destinations. Krabi is a little quieter, laid back and perfect if it’s adventure and views you’re seeking; you’ll never tire of looking at those limestone cliff landscapes
About the Weather
Thailand is primarily sunny, warm and beautifully tropical all year round, making it an ideal wedding destination. Temperatures vary across Thailand but you can expect an average of 24-30 degrees most days. It also experiences a monsoon season. Now, of course, you can get married in Thailand at any time of the year, and there can be advantages to not booking during peak season (more choice and lower prices). However, it’s important to understand that getting married during the rainy season may make it difficult for you to have the wedding experience you’ve been dreaming of.
The dry season is when the weather conditions are ideal for activities, such as saying “I-do” outside; on the beach, or in a tropical garden. It’s also the best time of the year to enjoy cocktails by the pool, dancing under the stars and water sports activities.
For this reason, we recommend that you make yourself aware of the variations in weather between regions.
Weather Variations Around Thailand
June-October is when Thailand experiences most of its rain. On the west coast around the islands of Phuket, Koh Yao Noi, Koh Lanta and Krabi, the wettest months tend to be July-October and the safest and driest months to visit are November-March. Towards the end of March-May, in the lead up to the monsoon season, the weather is hotter and more humid.
On the east coast, around the islands of Koh Samui, Koh Phangan and Koh Tao the weather is lovely from January – August. The chance of rain increases after September – December.
As helpful as we hope this guide is, there is no better way to find your perfect wedding destination experience than by talking to an expert. At Wed Away we take the time to understand your love story and from there, we help you choose a stunning location that ticks all the boxes for you. Contact us to start planning your dream wedding.