Abstract We proposed a surface-emitted THz-wave generation on the basis of difference frequency mixing in a GaP planar waveguide. By utilizing modal birefringence of fundamental TE and TM modes at telecom wavelengths in the GaP membrane waveguide, phase matching condition for the surface-emitted difference frequency mixing (SE-DFM) can be achieved. THz output power is enhanced near the phonon polariton resonance frequency owing to the strong coupling between the transverse optical (TO) phonon of GaP and THz radiation. The SE-DFM scheme can generate THz waves beyond the Reststrahlen band located between 11 and 12THz, resulting in widely tunable THz wave generation. Our proposed broadband THz sources can be applicable for optically isotropic nonlinear optical materials such as GaAs and InP as well as GaP.