Black Rock Viewpoint is still a well-kept secret. It’s situated high up in the mountains that overlook Nai Harn beach and Ao Sane. The view is outstanding—arguably the best view in Phuket (another contender being Khao Kad View Tower, and just north of Phuket—Samet Nangshe Viewpoint).
Black Rock Viewpoint derives its name from the exposed, flat black rocks that cover much of the ground on that side of the mountain. What really makes Black Rock stand out though is its isolation. It’s perfectly quiet up there, and given how crowded Phuket is, that’s a rare thing.
It requires a healthy dose of adventurousness to reach, but it’s worth it.
How to get to Black Rock Viewpoint
The dirt road that leads to Black Rock Viewpoint is located off the main coastal road just south of Karon Viewpoint. A sign marked with graffiti for Nui Beach sits opposite the road entrance. The road itself is completely deserted, except for a few dogs. Some barked as I drove by, but they didn’t chase like some I’ve encountered in other places.
While bumpy in spots, the road is wide enough to accommodate cars and motorbikes.
There are a few forks in the road, but the correct road is always the one that is wider and smoother. The narrower, more bumpy road is the wrong way.
Parking and hiking up
The parking area is near a large rock spray painted with the words “Pa Hin Dum” on it. Directly across the road from this is a trail with a small sign in Thai. The trail is about 200 meters long, but it’s steep—especially in the beginning. I recommend sneakers or hiking shoes for safety, but given that it’s only a 5-7 minute walk up, flip flops would work too.
However, proceed with caution as there is one part along the trail where there’s a barbed wire fence along the left side. The fence ends after 20 meters, but one of the barbed wires continues directly across the trail at foot level. It crosses right in front of this small cement step, so while you probably wouldn’t trip on it on your hike down, it could catch and cut your foot on the hike up, especially if you’re wearing flip-flops.
At the top, there are two narrow paths that lead down to standing spots on the side of the mountain, but beware as there is no fencing or guardrails around. It’s quite steep so take extreme care here not to slip.
Sunrise or sunset?
It depends on the time of the year. I’ve gone for both, but each trip was in June/July. I couldn’t see the actual sun rise or set when I went. I saw the brilliant play of light on the clouds and sky, but the mountains around Black Rock obscured the sun from view once it descended low enough.
Considering that the sun will rise and set at slightly different parts of the horizon depending on the time of year, I’m certain that it’ll be visible for sunrise around the end of the year for a few months, probably starting around November.
But don’t discount going for the hour before sunset. You’ll have the best view (much better than Phromthep Cape), and you’ll have it to yourself.