Although Pattaya has it’s own beach right on its doorstep, it is far from the best that Thailand offers! Pattaya has become famous for its night-time attractions and is the main reason most visitors come to Pattaya (and not for its beach) Pattaya Beach suffers from many problems including floating debris, rampant development behind the beach, speed boats coming and going, runoff from roads and drains during the wet season, murky water, beach erosion, deck chair vendors who take over most of the beach, overzealous beach vendors, the busy beach road….. the list can go on! Jomtien Beach suffers from similar issues but is not on the same scale as Pattaya. However there are some great beach options within easy travelling distance of Pattaya, Many will hop over to the nice beaches on Koh Larn but Hat Sai Kaew in Sattahip is a great alternative!
Sai Kaew Beach is not a public beach but lies on the grounds of the Sattahip Naval Base. For foreigners to gain entrance to the beach they will need to deposit their passport at the entrance to the naval base in exchange for a pass. The beach is situated in a sheltered bay and is around 500 meters long. Deck-chairs are available for rent from vendors behind the beach and there are plenty of shady trees for those who do not want to be out in the sun all day. There is very little speed boat traffic and thankfully the little there is, is limited to the southern end of the beach, most of the beach is sectioned off for swimming only. There are a few food vendors behind the beach and one small bungalow operation. The water here is usually very clear here!
Hat Sai Kaew Entrance fee
As Sai Kaew Beach is not public the naval base charges an entrance fee here. Foreigners are charged 100 baht and Thai’s are charged 50 baht.
Getting to Sai Kaew Beach
If you have your own transport then head south out of Pattaya on the Sukhumwit Road in a southerly direction for around 20km, look out for the Sattahip Naval Base main entrance on your right which is right on the main Sukhumwit Road. On entering the main gate you will need to report to the visitors’ office on your left-hand side (about 20 meters inside the gate) and pick up a pass. Foreigners will need to leave their passports. Continue following the road into the naval base and follow the signs to the beach. Around 2 km in you will need to stop at a further office to pay the entrance fee to the beach, before continuing a further 2km or so to the beach.