Running Trails in Phuket: Where to Get a Runner’s High

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Heading to Phuket and want to stay in shape between the partying? There are some great running trails in Phuket to sweat on. Read more here.

jungle running trail in Phuket

So you’re traveling to Phuket, the party island of Thailand. But you need to get that runner’s high you are used to back home. Luckily, Phuket has some great running trails to sweat out all those impurities on.

Whether you like jogging in public parks or rainforests, on hard-packed sand beaches or around artificial reservoirs, here are the six best running trails in Phuket.

Get ready to lace up and take off.

Khao Phra Thaeo National Park

muddy running trail in Phuket

Home to the Gibbon Rehabilitation Center, Khao Phra Thaeo National Park in Phuket’s north offers the ultimate jungle experience. Picture yourself running on nature trails to the sound of cascading waterfalls and happy gibbons piping up from afar.

While you might not spot many wild animals, the calls of Phuket’s last significant rainforest speak volumes, literally. Due to nature’s obstacles, like roots on the eight-kilometer path between Bang Pae Waterfall and Ton Sai, this is one of the more challenging Phuket running trails. 

Apart from the Gibbon Rehabilitation Center amid this wildlife sanctuary, there’s also an information center plus a small museum.

Bangwad Dam

Aerial of running area inBangwad Dam in Phuket

Off the main drag of Phuket’s lively Patong area, Bangwad Dam in Kathu boasts one of the best running routes in Phuket. It has a 6.4-kilometer loop around the reservoir and is not frequented by car drivers. Instead, you’ll run into cyclists and fellow athletes. 

Flanked by banana and rubber plantations and peppered with small waterfalls, the paved circuit meanders through greenery like a slithering snake. Occasionally, an invisible hand draws the curtain and unveils the sight of the reservoir and its surrounding hills.

Most people start their run at the reservoir’s north end, where the dam is. Choose the upper route if you’d rather run a shorter distance.

Saphan Hin Park

bricked running trail in Phuket

Running in Phuket is also possible in public parks like Saphan Hin, a seaside park three kilometers southeast of the Old Town with its Sino-Portuguese buildings. 

Formerly an important trading port, Saphan Hin played a crucial role in the island’s tin and mining industries. That’s why the egg-shaped Mining Monument greets you steps away from the public green space. 

Today, Saphan Hin is a highlight among the best things to do in Phuket because the park is a popular Loy Krathong venue. Also, it’s where the annual Vegetarian Festival ends.

While you can’t find most Saphan Hin running trails on a map, the multi-purpose park has a Thetsaban Mueang Sports Stadium and picnic area, making excellent jogging. 

Sandwiched by a stream and the seaboard at the end of Phuket Road, the park’s wide winding roads along the waterfront make up a three-kilometer loop and provide views of the riverside and the island’s east coast.

Busy in the morning and at night when locals come here to wind down and enjoy the cooler temperatures, the Saphan Hin parkland is unsuitable for running after 10 p.m. 

Nai Harn Lake

Nai Harn Lake running trail in Phuket

Located literally a stone’s throw from Nai Harn Beach in Phuket’s south, the walkway around Nai Harn Lake is a paved two-kilometer loop that’s excellent for running. The rubber, casuarina, and cashew trees make a beautiful setting beside the lake. And due to its proximity to the beach, you might catch the scents of evergreen firs and salty sea air.

There’s an open-air fitness corner on-site with free workout equipment and various street vendors selling food and drinks.

Bang Tao Beach

aerial view of Bang Tao Beach running area

Want to be in touch with nature and run right on the beach? 

Then look no further than Bang Tao Beach on Phuket’s west coast, where you can enjoy one of the island’s longest beach runs. While the beach’s southern end is a tourist favorite, the way to the north almost feels like you’re on a secluded island. Plus, there’s hard-packed sand—a decent running condition.

You can start your run at Catch Beach Club in the south of Bang Tao and then head for the Kala estuary near Layan Beach in Bang Tao’s north. It’s a 5.6-kilometer coastal run without beach roads. 

Suan Luang Raw Gaw Park (Chalerm Phra Kiat Park)

bridge for running in Suan Luang park Phuket

Also called King Rama IX Park, Phuket Town’s green lung is the most extensive parkland in the city. Locals love the green grounds, the complimentary open-air fitness center, and the four-kilometer loop around the lotus ponds that add to the peaceful feel of Suan Luang.

Bordered by towering trees and tropical vegetation, the paths are appropriate for runners of all skill levels. 

You’ll find the main entrance off Chao Fah Road on Suan Luang’s eastern side, where a land bridge separates the park’s ponds. From here, you can set off in both directions. While the circuit is only four kilometers long, you can easily extend your jog to six kilometers on Suan Luang’s other paths.

Weather in Phuket

waterfall running trail in Phuket

Phuket has a tropical monsoon climate with a dry season (November to April) and a rainy season (May to October). 

As a runner, you may not want to run in the rain, so November to April is a great time to go, but it’s also hot and humid. 

If you don’t mind the rain, you can visit the island all year round since the temperature remains between 25-34°C (77-93°F). 

Map of Phuket’s Running Trails

This map of the best running trails in Phuket will show you (literally) how close they all are. You might even be able to run on them all while you’re there. 

Getting to and around Phuket

running trail in Phuket

Lucky for you, Phuket has an international airport. So if you come from abroad, you can fly directly into the island. 

Otherwise, here are a few other common routes:

Getting around Phuket is also pretty straightforward. It’s a well-worn tourist path, so that makes it easy. 

The final lap around Phuket’s running trails

blue running trail in Phuket

As you can see, you’ve got a lot of choices when it comes to running trails in Phuket. Hopefully, your runners high will outlast all the partying.

If you can’t get enough or want to take it slower (you’re on vacation, after all), check out the top hiking trails on the island.


How much time should I spend in Phuket?

Three days will give you a chance to visit the highlights. Seven days will give you a good feel for the island. 

When is the best time to go to Phuket?

Chasing waterfalls? Go between May and mid-December, when downpours are more common. Otherwise, between January and April.

Is it safe to run at night in Phuket? 

Overall, Phuket is a safe place. But running at night isn’t the best idea. Especially if you are running in the parks on dirt trails. 

Posted February 20, 2024
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Philipp Meier
Philipp Meier is a Phuket-based travel writer passionate about Thai culture and wandering off Thailand’s well-trodden tourist trail. His work has been published on the Nat Geo Traveller India, South China Morning Post, Culture Trip, BootsnAll, GoNOMAD, and elsewhere. You can find him at Writer Philipp Meier and LinkedIn.
image of blog writer Phil