Koh Mak nightlife is not going to set too many pulses racing, it’s not that kind of island, but there are a handful of great bars where you can kick back with a cold beer or a cocktail, shoot some pool and listen to some decent tunes.
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Around the Beaches
Ao Suan Yai Beach
On Ao Suan Yai Beach, I-Talay by Koh Mak Resort Pier and Thai Sabai Sabai Bar @ Prompakdee, just down the sand to its right, are great spots to take in the calm beauty of Koh Mak. They are also party hosts when the festivals are on the island and at New Year. At the other end, the wonderfully designed and very popular Day Beds at Seavana sports a pool table to go with its full bar and diner.
On the cape between Ao Suan Yai and Ao Pra Beach (Mira Montra), Cococape has a unique thatch bar, Blue Pearl, at the end of its little pier – good for those socials as well as a drink but they do have an entrance fee of 200bt per person (including a drink of value up to 80bt).
Ao Kao Beach
On Ao Kao Beach at the start of the main central section, Monkey Schocks, the long running, reggae-infused scene down by the sea, currently offers a bar, some live music, a small menu, the odd party and its Highway 420 cannabis outlet. Enough said…
A little further on, the indoor bar at By The Sea also has outdoor seating with low tables and bean bags, a great hang-out. Next up, Talay Bar at Baan Koh Mak is one of the island’s cutest beach bars with its pot-pouri of drapes, shells and ramshackle whitewashed tables and chairs.
Continue on down past Makathanee, which incidentally has its own rooftop bar Head in the Clouds, you come to TK Huts, the bungalow resort. The bar at the front has been done up and relaunched in ’23 , giving this end of the beach another excellent spot on the sand, well worth adding to the list for sundowners.
Finally, tucked away behind the foliage on the back road running from behind Makathanee, the bohemian style Art House is known for its live music and a laid back scene. Its tiny entrance is at the bottom of the slope opposite Good View.
On the coast between Ao Kao Beach and Laem Tookata, Hidden Beach has expanded its party area down by the sea, with the original beach bar now joined by a larger space, where two on-shore wooden boats provide a 2nd bar and a seating area overlooking the dance floor (beach). It’s used by both the Fly to The Moon and Thaibreak crews for their party venues (see below). You can stay here too in their stilted bungalows. Head to Mira Montra and the track down to Hidden Beach is another 300 metres along on the left.
Meanwhile, Banana Sunset over on the south east coast is great for many things – parties, live music, food – but in particular, you guessed it, the sunsets are superb – settle back on their deck by the sea and have the camera ready. It too has basic accommodation.
At the start of the north coast road towards The Mak, Utopia – all decked out in vivid reggae colours and lit by fairy lights and candles – is an understated, homely bar, where the Swedish owner also puts on frequent live acoustic sessions and throws the odd party. You can stay too in the one-of-a-kind pod.
Finally, Terraria on the Ao Nid road boasts live music, a pool table, a very decent line in cocktails and Japanese and Thai food.
Twice a year, the Koh Mak nightlife scene does break free of its shackles with the arrival of Thaibreak, a German clubbing collective and the party goup, Fly To The Moon, from Bangkok.
Running for around 7 days at the end of March/start of April, Thaibreak brings together top European DJs from the Berlin label Moon Harbour (deep house) with big name Thai Djs to throw nightly parties at a host of different venues around the island. Thai Sabai @ Prompakdee, Hidden Beach, I Talay @ Ko Mak Resort, Banana Sunset and even one year Koh Rayang Nok have all been part of the action in years gone by.
Fly to the Moon, meanwhile, holds an annual New Year festival over 3 to 4 days, with leading Bangkok Djs from the hip nightclubs and bars of Thonglor, Ekamai and Kolour in Phuket. Venues are similar to above, with the parties held previously at I Talay @ Koh Mak Resort, Sabai @ Prompakdee, Hidden Beach and NYE itself at Little Moon Villa (one of the co-organisers). Daylight hours are set aside for yoga and there is always one boat trip (club on the sea).
On all the major holidays, you can also safely assume that there will be a proper party on one of the beaches, late loud and bacchanalian.