Chang , in the Gulf of Thailand, a
designated National Park, is approximately 300
kilometers south east of BangKohk. To prevent
environmental damage the Government of Thailand
has ensured that no roads will lead to Koh Chang
. The island is connected to the mainland by ferries
largest island in the Koh Chang Marine Park archipelago,
Koh Chang was named for the elephant shape of
its headland, although elephants are not indigenous
to the island. Best visited outside of the monsoon
season -- which runs from about June to September
-- the sea is warm and clear, the beaches for
the most part white and sandy and the interior
is filled with National Park protected forest
and craggy, picturesque mountains.
of the beaches are on the western coast, and each
has built up with a distinctive atmosphere based
on shopping, activities, partying or chilling
out. Accommodation offers a style to suit every
type of traveller, from independent low budget
backpackers to those wanting a touch of luxury.
There are plenty of activities to be organised
from almost anywhere on the island: snorkelling
and diving trips to nearby coral reefs, jungle
treks and elephant rides, not to mention various
it's long stretches of sandy beaches and bay,
Koh Chang's west coast has become the focus of
the development boom, and that's where most foreign
travellers stay on the island. Beaches such as
Haad Sai Khao (White Sands Beach), Khlong Prao
and Kai Bae have developed more in the past few
years than most of Thailand has in the last few
decades. If you want to party, swim, dive or do
practically anything else you'll find somewhere
that's perfect for you.
are three different and definitive vibes from
each of the three main west coast areas; White
Sand beach, Kai Bae/Khlong Prao and Lonely/Bailan.
White Sands is more modern than the others, reminiscent
of Kuta in Bali, or indeed its aspired cousin,
Phuket. The Kai Bae and Khlong Prao strip is gorgeous
on the eye with its quaint village appearance,
plenty of quirky shops and bars -- certainly more
of a tropical island vibe. Lonely Beach and Bailan
Bay continue on the topical island theme, but
are far more traveller orientated; less souvenir
shops, more bars playing Bob Marley. No Italian
restaurants, but an abundance of affordable Thai
fare. Ultimately it's a backpackers heaven.
east coast is home to major Thai villages but
few beaches and so attracts far fewer foreign
travellers. This side of the island is popular
with Thais from cities such as BangKohk and Chiang
Mai, who might never have seen the ocean before
and want to join in traditional Thai seaside life.
Eagles, monkeys, epic views and jungle noises
are all around, and if you're lucky you may spot
the majestic Great Hornbill, resident of Koh Chang
but rarely seen. Koh Chang is somewhere you can
let your hair down a little, where perhaps those
who hit the road in years gone by can capture
the spirit of this wonder that we call travelling,
yet enjoy the facilities that they yearn in today's
society... namely air-con, hot water and a comfortable
bed, and all found in abundance in White Sand,
Khlong Prao and Kai Bae Beaches. At the same time,
the old scene still exists at places like Lonely
Beach, a reminder of what got the ball rolling
in the first place.
word of warning, the roads on Koh Chang are treacherous.
The steep gradient of the hills can be very dangerous,
particularly during the rain, and every year there
are fatal accidents; during our research through
mid 2008, three people died in road accidents
in one week - serious statistics. If you're not
an accomplished and experienced driver then this
is not the island to start to learn. Cars and
minibuses travel at breakneck speeds around the
island and coupled with the hundreds of motorbikes
whizzing about it becomes quite hazardous. Particularly
bad stretches of road lead from the ferries to
White Sand Beach, between Kai Bae and Lonely Beach,
and the stretch from Bailan Bay to Bang Bao. With
numerous hairpin turns up high on the cliff there
is no room for mistakes. Taxis are a far better
and safer option for getting about for the inexperienced.
Also worth bearing in mind is that the clinic
charges a 4,000B fee just to walk through the
door for accident victims, even if all you need
is a light bandage and some antiseptic.
the last decade, a wave of travellers, both international
and domestic has washed over Koh Chang in ever
increasing numbers, and its popularity will only
continue to grow towards its government driven
target of becoming the 'next Phuket'. That said,
Koh Chang has much more of a tropical island feel
than its larger cousin Phuket. Phuket Island is
a province in itself, with an intricate network
of villages and roadways -- Koh Chang didn't even
have a main road ten years ago!
from sun , sand & sea Koh Chang
If you want to take a break from the Koh Chang
beach, a wide range of activities await both on
shore and inland.
Cooking Schools Koh Chang
If there's one thing visitors can take back with
them, it's the remembrance of Thai cuisine. Nowadays,
it's easy enough to re-create a lot of your favourites
dishes since most Thai ingredients can be easily
obtained or substituted. Such knowledge is given
at most Thai cooking schools including the one
at the Koh Chang . Classes take a few hours and
students usually learn the art of fruit and vegetable
carving as well as traditional stir-fried dishes.
You will have an opportunity to cook by yourself
and dine with fellow students after class.
cooking as now enjoyed all over the world is a
blend of Asian and European influences adopted
through centuries of trade and diplomatic exchanges.
Thais have traditionally lived close to the land
and the waters, and original Thai cooking reflected
that. Main ingredients were rice, fish, vegetable
and herbs. Very little meat was used, and traditionally
beef or buffalo meat was eschewed since the animals
were the mainstays of farm life.
Trekking Koh Chang
During harvest seasons in March/April, and in
August/September, visitors are allowed to pick
ripe pomelos from the trees with compliments of
Chutiman, the proprietor. On your return route,
the mahout may lead the elephant through a different
path that exposes you to wild vegetation, giant
trees and wildlife. Cold drinks and coffee are
served as you refresh back at the camp. If you
don't have time, you can still experience the
thrill of a one-hour trek (500 Baht) without the
waterfall. Open daily from 8.00 am to 5.00 pm,
you can start your tour any time of the day.
main road west of Koh Chang from Klong Son to
Kai Bae is a popular route. The Kai Bae to Bang
Bao hike is a challenging experience. Passing
through some coconut groves and rubber smallholdings
the terrain is steep. Shorter hikes to the waterfalls
from their main entrances are gaining popularity.
There are footpaths to the waterfalls. There are
two Elephant Camps on Koh Chang. One in Klong
Phrao is Chang Chutiman Company and one in a jungle
valley in the north of Koh Chang. Ban Kwan Chang
or the Klong Son Elephant Camp is supported by
the Asian Elephant. Foundation to provide a natural
environment for elephants and their mahouts (Kwan,
in Thai). The camp opens with a half-day tour
from 8.30 a.m. to 11.30 a.m. which include elephant
bathing, feeding, performance and a 1.30 hour
elephant trek into the forest. Elephant Trekking
is fun. Come and enjoy, see how to take care Elephants
and see how they work with them. Go on a Jungle
ride and finaly wash the Elephant in a clear jungle
stream. The cost is 900 Baht inclusive of transportation
to and from your resort, your drinking water and
bananas & coconuts for you to feed the elephants.
& Diving Koh Chang
The best diving season is between October/November
and April. The best sites are on the west and
southern tip of the island, between Koh Chang
( Koh Chang ) and Koh Kohod ( Koh Kut ). There
you can see soft corals, anemones, myriad reef
fish, and sometimes eel. Hin Luk Bat and Hin Lap
both have coral seamounts. Further south, white-tip
reef sharks can be found near Hin Phrai Nam.
addition, there are two wreck dive sites. The
Koh Chang ( Koh Chang ) Wreck is a Thai warship
sunk by the French navy in 1941. The wreck is
only 15 metres deep in the Salakphet Bay on the
southern tip of the island. The other wreck is
the Pak One Wreck which sank after hitting a coral
reef in August 1996 on its way to Vietnam. It
resurfaced almost 8 years later. The 900-ton sunken
tanker posed a danger to ships on international
waters. The Royal Thai Navy drained off its 600
tonnes of liquefied petroleum gas and resank it
between Koh Chang and Koh Samet. It now lies horizontally
in 35-metre-deep waters.
are a few diving centres on Koh Chang ( Koh Chang
) such as the Ploy Scuba Diving in Bang Bao. They
provide free transfer to and from the resort.
Language barrier is no problem to the centre since
they provide instructions in different languages.
Following the standards of the sister centre in
Koh Samet, this is the premier diving operator
in Eastern Thailand.
best time to go snorkeling is also between October
and May. There are beautiful snorkel places with
shallow depths around Koh Chang. Such as Koh Wai,
Koh Kra and Koh Rang. During high season we offer
4-5 day trips weekly. All trips start in the morning,
including lunch. You will be back before sunset.
and Kayaking Koh Chang
For a relaxing trip along the coastlines, try
paddling canoes. Canoes can be found along the
beaches and some Koh Chang resorts.
Fireflies Koh Chang
During the cooler months on Koh Chang ( Koh Chang
), you can rent a boat to slowly cruise along
the waters at night to see fireflies in the mangroves.
Thousands of fireflies send out mating signals
as they settle into the mangrove forest, lighting
up the whole tree with their simultaneous flashing
in the dark. It's like rows of Christmas trees.
Plu Waterfalls Koh Chang
One of the best-known waterfalls, Klong Plu is
close to Klong Phrao and Kai Bae beaches. The
fall plunges down a narrow drop-off into a pool,
where you can go for a refreshing swim. Heading
3 km south from Klong Phrao along the main road,
you will see a sign of the waterfall on the left.
Turn left into the path and follow the sign for
2 km. You'll find a ticket kiosk to pay the entrance
fee. Walk along a well-marked footpath for only
20 minutes or about 400 metres past many kinds
of vegetation, birds and giant trees, and you'll
encounter a spectacular view of the waterfall.
is also a 3-level waterfall, which has served
as an important source of fresh water for the
island. King Rama V visited Klong Plu twice. Most
visitors stay at the first level which is already
a breath-taking sight. Walking to the second and
third levels will need the assistance of park
officials or guides, as the path is slippery and
difficult to reach. Swimming and camping are allowed.
Plu Waterfall has three stories. The entrance
is 3 Km. from Ao Klong Phrao Community. It will
take about 20 minutes from the entrance to the
site by walking. Klong Nueng Waterfall is a small
fall situated remotely from Salak Petch Community
near Salak Petch Waterfall. Klong Son Bay which
is rich with coral lines is in the northernmost
of the west.
Shrine of Jao Po Koh Chang
Leading up a steep road on the west coast to Ao
Sapparos, not too far from the pier, you will
see the shrine of Chao Po and Chao Mae Koh Chang
on the right.
is a highly revered shrine especially for local
people. Chao Po Koh Chang (literally the Deity
of Koh Chang) has guarded people on Koh Chang
(Koh Chang), nearby islands and the mainland of
Trat for generations. Fishermen struck by monsoon
or lost their directions in the sea put their
faith on Chao Po Koh Chang. Legend has it that
many prayers have been answered, and the locals
have been praying to Chao Po Koh Chang concerning
various hardships, from low yield harvests to
sickness or other miseries.
Situated 80 kms southeast of the provincial capital
of Trat, Koh Kohod is the farthest island from
the mainland. It is also the easternmost island
of Thailand bordering Kampuchea. With an area
of 129 sq. kms Koh Kohod is the second largest
island of the Koh Chang Marine National Park and
fourth largest in Thailand, after Koh Samui. It
is supported by essential infrastructure, which
include a hospital, schools, police station, electricity
(mainly for state-run facilities), water and telephone
system. Fuel and solar energy are, the main sources
of electricity here. Most resorts generate their
To the west of Koh Mak is a group of 12 islands
known as the Moo Koh Rang. Of these, Koh Rang
Yai is the largest. It is covered with tropical
virgin rainforests and boast of the longest and
most beautiful beach in the area, the Had San
Chao or San Chao Beach, where the sand is powdery
white and water crystal clear. Divers can enjoy
its scenic underwater beauty up to 25 meters deep.
Koh Rang Yai has a hilly terrain. Its only low-lying
area are at the shores. Koh Rung is a small island
at the west of Koh Maak. The isle has not enough
flat area suitable for the setting up of any resort
and bungalow. Koh Rung is place of concessions
of bird nests, Charmed eggs and bat's dung. Stone
knolls and deep-water coral under the sea of Koh
Rung are very magnificent.
Lying between Koh Chang and Koh Kohod, about 40
km from the mainland is a group of 9 islands called
the Moo Koh Mak (Moo Koh Maak). Only 4 of these
islands, including Koh Maak, Koh Kradard, Koh
Kham and Koh Rayang Nok are occupied. Koh Mak,
with an area of only 16 sq km and a 27 km coastline,
is the third largest island of the Marine Park.
It has a flat terrain with plenty of coconut and
rubber plantations. The main attractions are the
long beaches and clear seawaters. There are only
a few hundred people living here, most of them
1 km northwest of Koh Mak is Koh Kham, a small
island with clear seawater, coral reefs and coconut-fringed
sandy beaches that are excellent for swimming,
snorkelling, fishing and angling for squids. The
island is almost within swimming distance from
Koh Maak's Ao Suan Yai beach. Aged lava exists
on the island which means a volcano existed in
prehistoric times. Big boulders believed to be
volcano rocks are seen on its pristine beaches.
During low tide a sand dune practically links
the island to Koh Mak (Koh Maak)
Battle Area is in the south of Koh
Chang close to Salak Petch Bay. The zone is where
the battle between Thai and French naval troops
fought over the east border conflict on January
Mayom Waterfall is the three stories
fall of medium size. The footpath up to the site,
situated 500 meters from durian orchard, is near
the office of the national park. King Rama V and
VI once visited the place and singed their royal
names on the highest cliff of the cascade.
Mayom Beach is a nice beach near the Than Mayom
Waterfall which this waterfall is the most beautiful
of Koh Chang. The waterfall there are the fresh
water all the year and good place for swimming.
This beach is good place for the travelers like
the nice beach and nature life of waterfall.
Nonsi Waterfall is a little fall in
the northeast zone of the island. The side- walk
to the area lies 3 Km. from Baan Daan Mai or 3
Km. from the national park office.
Chang Noi and Leam Chang Noi lie in
the north of Koh Chang. The sea between Koh Chang
Noi and Laem Chang Noi is abundant with corals.
Son Community is set up in the area.
Klong Plu Waterfall has three stories. The entrance
is 3 Km. from Ao Klong Phrao Community. It will
take about 20 minutes from the entrance to the
site by walking.
Son Bay which is rich with coral lines
is in the northernmost of the west coast. Klong
Son Community is set up in the area.
at the northern tip of Koh Chang, Khlong Son gets
very low numbers of visitors with the bulk of
the backpackers and tourists alike speeding south
enroute to Koh Chang's finer and more popular
stretches of sand.
a glance it is fairly easy to understand why that
is the case as the beach here, particularly at
low tide when it runs out to mud flats, is not
much chop at all. It is isolated, and as long
as you stay above the mud, it is pleasant enough
for a late afternoon stroll, but that is about
where the attraction ends.
is also a fishing village at Khlong Son where
you may be able to arrange a homestay should you
northwest of Koh Chang, this is the first beach
as you disembark and head west of the island.
It is approximately 1.5 kilometres wide, at the
southern part scarcely 2 kilometres long and at
the northern section easily 3 kilometres. Had
Klong Son is a wide beach with plenty of coconut
trees. Two small islands are located at each end
of Khlong Son Bay - Koh Chang Noi in the northwest
and Koh Mapring in the southwest. This is popular
with the fishermen as a port, since it is quite
well protected against the violent winds during
monsoon. The Premwadi Resort has a pier suitable
for fishing and a powdery beach safe for swimming.
Petch Waterfall has only one storey.
The place is situated 3 Km. from Salak Petch Community
along the orchard of rubber trees.
This is Koh Chang's largest and longest and busiest
beach. The beach is noted for its beautiful and
fine white sand. Here you will find the shops,
beach vendors and tourism related businesses.
Boat charters, tours and motorcycle rentals can
be arranged here. At the back or the beach are
orchards of coconut trees and forests. The beach
is easily accessible due to many roads passing
to it The name suggests scenic beauty of the area.
Sands Beach. The most popular and consequently
the most densely touristed, the beach front is
packed with concrete bungalows and upmarket resorts.
At night the beach lights up with seafood barbecue
restaurants on the sand and some funky beach bars.
main street that runs behind it, under the shadow
of tree covered mountains, is likewise packed
with restaurants, resorts, shops and tour agencies.
If you're looking for a quiet secluded beach or
budget accommodation this is not the spot, but
of all the beaches on Koh Chang, Haad Sai Khao
certainly has the most to offer in terms of variety
and available amenities. It's hard to believe
that just a few short decades ago there only a
few places to stay, a dirt road and little to
do in White Sands.
are a few quieter options at the northern end
of the beach, based around and to the north of
the small rocky outcrop where the last bastions
of budget in the area are clinging on. It's old
school, but decidedly pleasant. As development
has driven prices up, the majority of the party
crowd have upped and left for Lonely Beach; these
places meanwhile are for the more laid back crowd
who are on a shoestring...
of the rocky outcrop, things turn upmarket quickly.
In this area the beach fills up every evening
with on-the-sand restaurants, usually set up by
the nearby resorts. Further south the beach turns
rocky, so it's not great territory for reading
a book on your beach towel, but with over two
kilometres of sand to the north of you it's not
hard to find a spot. A few of the resorts along
the rockier stretch have man made beaches beside
further south the main road curves upwards and
there is a decent cluster of bars and international
restaurants at this end of town.
of the beach bungalows and resorts also front
onto the main road, and here's where you'll also
find the dive shops, mini-marks, travel services
and internet cafes. White Sands also has the biggest
range of choice when it comes to banking services
Sand Beach the longest and most popular beach
on Koh Chang. It is about 2.5 kilometres long
and lined by rocks, over-hanging palms and broad-leaved
trees.The southern 1.5 kilometre long area, located
at the road, is during the season the busiest
part of the entire island. The main road runs
pass all the resorts, shops, restaurants, pubs
and coconut groves. It is the best place for those
who enjoy the white wonderful sand and the association
with other travelers: most visitors prefer coming
to this beach that makes the beach so colorful.The
beach slopes gently into the sea and is very wide
during low tide attracting hordes of visitors,
especially in the evening, when it transforms
into a playground. Regular football and volleyball
games are played as the sun sets right off its
Khai Mook Set between Whitesands and
Klong Phrao, the small and pebble-strewn Haad
Kai Mook (also known as Pearl Beach) is best known
for the decent snorkelling available just off
its shores rather than pristine white sands --
of which is has none.
cheaper alternative to White Sands Beach to the
north, accommodation here offers a lot better
value for money, but without either the soft white
sand nor the local amenities.
you have your own transport Haad Kai Mook is a
great option, but if you're looking for quality
(sandy) beach time or a raging nightlife, try
either Kai Bae or Lonely Beach.
Bao Fishery Village
beach is southwest portion of the island. The
beach here lines the beautiful bay. There are
a few fishing villages in this area. This is another
one of Koh Chang's pristine locations, is very
interesting because residents in the area build
up their houses with poles pitched into the sea
and the bridge reaching to every house is set
up to link the community together.
Bao is the island's diving mecca and a jumping-off
point for other islands in the area. Tourism has
all but replaced fishing as the village's main
industry, but it's still not so busy as the beaches
in the north and Bang Bao retains a laid-back,
breezy feel to it.
of the action is on a long pier stretching out
into the same-named bay. The pier is lined with
private houses, shops, restaurants and guesthouses
-- all on stilts; until about half way out. Beyond
that the pier has been extended in recent years
to allow for larger boats to moor safely.
the morning madness has subsided and the dive/snorkel
boats have embarked for the day, Bang Bao can
make for a pleasant place to unwind -- the end
of the pier sports a cute light house and stunning
views looking back to the island, and the abundance
of Sea Eagles diving for sprats in the shallows
are a photographer's dream.
and an over-abundance of travellers and day-trippers
have resulted in Bang Bao shifting from being
a fairly charming little fishing village into
a bit of a tourist trap with overpriced seafood
restaurants and no shortage of trinket shops.
Despite this rising commercialism, Bang Bao remains
interesting -- at least for a short visit. There
is a photogenic collection of colourful fishing
boats moored at the end of the pier, both genuine
working boats and those for tourists' pleasure.
number of restaurants specialise in freshly caught
seafood, though watch your wallet as prices can
be very high; most places display a menu out front
so be sure to have a browse if you are budget
conscious. Aside from eating, other activities
include fishing, snorkelling and diving boat trips
-- there's even a real estate broker here.
the south-east of the pier area are a few lovely
stretches of quiet beach. In front of the gallery
at D.Jambe House is a very cute but diminutive
beach the locals have recently started calling
Haad Sai Noi -- there's a simple bar/eatery here
which does good trade but no accommodation. Keep
on another km or so and cross a narrow bridge
over a lagoon and you're at another beach, Kohng
Gloi is one of the area's highlights, and
the beach has a few huts where you can get a massage
and have a snack underneath the palm trees. The
beach looks over neighbouring islands and back
to the pier at Bang Bao. The beach is very narrow
at high tide, with barely a few metres to walk
on. However venture here on one of those days
when the tide is low all day and you'll be in
for a treat, particularly if you value seclusion.
There's a small motorbike lay-by for parking on
the opposite side of the road from the bridge.
Carry on a few km down the road and you'll eventually
come to the sprawling metropolis of the Grand
Bang Bao is a small place, and you'll find just
about all the services you could need on the pier.
shops are found on the pier, (1-2B a minute)
and a few of the cafes around the square have
a computers available. There is also a couple
of ATM machines, the easiest to find is the one
at the entrance to the pier, where there is also
a money changer.
Bao is connected to the rest of Koh Chang by songthaews.
They arrive and depart from the base of the pier,
in the small town square.
Bao is one of the zones rich with corals.
Koh Mun- Nok & Mun Nai is a small isle
opposite Kai Bae's Beach. The Beach around the
isle can be seen at low tide. The sea in the area
is some what shallow and plenty of gold-colour
Bao Bay is a well protected bay at the southwest
end of Koh Chang. The quaint fishing village Baan
Bang Bao is built on stakes far out into the bay
and has become quite a popular attraction. Many
seafood restaurants offer a rich selection of
fresh seafood and small shops sell souvenirs or
refreshments. Bang Bao Bay has lately become a
resort and recreation area with bungalows built
on selected scenic sites. The beach at Bang Bao
has clear waters with rocks and corals off its
shores. A good place to fish, snorkel and swim.
With hardly any sandy beaches and a more erratic
transport system, the eastern coast of the island
is visited by far fewer foreign travellers than
the western coast. Most of the places to stay
are in the south-east, in the villages of Salakphet,
Jek Bae and the newly established Long Beach.
The largest village, Salakphet, does not receive
so many visitors and so it is less developed and
commercialised than Bang Bao. Life for the welcoming
locals revolves around fishing, eating and getting
away with as little other work as possible. The
town is quite spread out over flat terrain, ringed
with mountains, and the bay on one side. Perfect
for getting about on motorbike.
is situated on the south of island around Ao Salak
Petch (Salak Petch Bay) which is the largest bay
on Koh Chang. Salak Phet measures 3 kilometres
in length and is between 1.5 and 2.5 kilometres
wide. The villagers are mostly fishermen. Ao Salak
Petch is an ideal shelter for fishing boats. There
are many piers that serve fishing boats as well
as boats to neighbouring islands and Laem Ngob.
Beautifully, the islands Koh Mapring, Koh Phrao
Nai and Koh Phrao Nok are situated in the mountain-surrounded
bay. 3 villages, Baan Rong Than, Baan Salak Phet
and Baan Chek Bae, find protection in the bay.
They are built mostly on stakes into the sea and
are inhabited by fishermen, rubber- and coconut-farmers.
Any exploration of the area wouldn't be complete
without a visit to Salak Khok. A pint-sized fishing
village that screams authenticity, houses are
built along a series of boardwalks that snake
around the canals of a mangrove forest. Red and
aqua-painted fishing boats line the boardwalks
and you stroll around gives the feeling that you've
really discovered something special and unique.
It's an incredibly pretty, unspoiled area.
new business in Salak Khok has just started to
rent out kayaks that you can use to go exploring
in the mangrove forest. It's 100B for an hour's
paddle or 200B if you want a guide along. The
business also has a few traditional Thai row-boats
in which you can enjoy a romantic Thai dinner
while being rowed around the mangrove forest.
It's like a strange juxtaposition of the Amazon
Rainforest meets the canals of Venice. The dinner
costs 1,200B. For more details call (01) 9193
Dan Mai is the largest Thai village on the island
and is roughly half-way up the east coast. It's
the home of services such as the BangKohk Koh
Chang Hospital, the island's central police station
and national park office. Internet access is limited
and there aren't any ATM's on this side of the
island, so get sorted out before you arrive.
Sand Beach is next to Sa Lak Kohk Bay.
The area is covered with forest and orchards of
Beach isn't actually all that long, but it's beautiful
and virtually untouched an has recently become
a new hippy haven thanks to a relocation of Treehouse
from Lonely Beach. Long Beach is a long way from
anywhere and Treehouse management hope that will
prevent the beach, as many people fear is happening
to the western beaches overdevelopment (though
this concern doesn't appear to have stopped them
from constructing dozens and dozens and dozens
of bungalows themselves).
of the best views on Koh Chang can be had on the
road that links Long Beach with Salakphet, revealing
breathtaking scenes of the bay and its few tenant
Rising popularity and rapid expansion means that
Lonely Beach is lonely no more and traditional
bamboo beach huts sit flush with expensive resorts.
Like the rest of Koh Chang, Lonely Beach has gone
ahead in leaps and bounds in the past few years,
but it's still a chilled-out, laid-back little
place with a village atmosphere -- by day at least.
night is a different matter -- things get pretty
raucous with parties tend to spring up randomly
on any given day; so bear this in mind when choosing
the location of your accommodation. Some people
have started to call this place the Haad Rin of
the East, (Haad Rin being the home of the Full
Moon Party and related hedonism). With the ever
more frequent party scene developing fast, the
emergence of some very funky parties as well as
the newly opened Vitamin Club, it certainly looks
to be following in Haad Rin's footsteps. Light
collection of shops along the main road are set
in a scenic spot between the steep, jungle-decked
hills and the mostly rocky coastline. The road
veers upwards and away from the beach as you head
south through the town, so it's a downhill walk
to go for a swim. Just north of the ever-popular
backpacker hangout Treehouse is where the real
beach begins, already taken up with several expensive
the Treehouse southwards, the coastline is all
rocks. It looks quite rugged and beautiful but
isn't really suited for swimming. There are regular
fire-shows on the beach where talented locals
and a few game tourists tempt their luck by swinging
alight balls on the ends of chains, called pois,
around their heads.
Beach is an enclave of simple beach
huts, sporadic generator electricity, and limited
running water. The best day really depends on
the person. You can bask in the sun while intermittently
slipping into the beautiful ocean, spend a few
hours sea kayaking along the rugged coast, embark
on a day in the jungle, or get a taste of how
Thai people truly live in one of the small fishing
villages populating the area. Lonely Beach provides
the opportunity to indulge in every imaginable
aqua activity while at the same time being content
with a good book.
One of the few truly peaceful hideaways on Koh
Chang's west coast, Bailan Bay is perhaps taking
over where Lonely Beach has left off. The rocky
bay has less to offer in terms of beach activity,
but the chilled out atmosphere and secluded bungalows
make for a tranquil and private spot to relax.
There's a small strip of sandy beach at the northern
end of the bay, but that's about all. Low-tide
reveals a rocky landscape that extends hundreds
of metres from the shore, giving the bay a unique
Bay is mainly for people who want to get away
from all the hustle and bustle, and many people
stay for a month or more. Things are about to
get busier, though, with the massive Dusit resort
newly opened at the southern end of the bay and
plans for a shopping plaza.
there's only one small grocery shop and a few
independent Thai eateries along the main road.
All accommodation options have their own restaurants.
Bailan Bay is a short songthaew ride south of
Lonely Beach, or about a 15 minute walk.
This beach is south of the Hat Sai Khao beach,
and it is not a busy beach. The bay, tropical
vegetation and beach-line are very beautiful.
There is a nearby fishing village, but not many
services. ( Hat Khlong Phrao ) Laem Chaiyachet
is the long seaside adjacent to Kai Bae Beach.
The beach is rather steep. The northern most of
the each which has beautiful landscape but swimming
is not recommend.
Phrao, or Coconut Canal, has sprung up in recent
years as a centre for major upmarket resorts and
health spas. The mostly private expanse of beach
is quite narrow, particularly when the tide is
in, but is covered with soft white sand.
Phrao is strung out over about five kilometres
of beach of varying quality. Though there are
plenty of shops around VJ Plaza at the Chai Chet
end, there's no feeling of a centred community
here like on White Sands Beach or Kai Bae. The
emphasis is on top-end resorts that cater for
their guests' every whim. Much of the northern
end of the beach is privately owned.
the proximity to the water, many of the larger
resorts have stunning swimming pools and because
most of the accommodation is resort style, there
are not too many independent restaurants or other
shops in the area.
highlight of a stay in Klong Phrao is a visit
to the canal at night to see masses of fireflies
dancing around in the twilight. As well as the
usual beachside activities, there are a few excellent
cooking schools towards the southern end of the
beach. Klong Phrao is also the place to access
the Khlong Phu waterfall and Chang Chutiman Trekking
Phrao Beach starts where the gently curving Laem
Chaichet ends. Coconut trees line the beach, and
the northern end has a beautiful rocky landscape.
Resort development has grown rapidly, although
the beach itself does not get very crowded. Between
White Sand Beach and Klong Phrao Beach is the
18-unit Remark Cottage , built with natural materials
that mix with its secluded environment. The resort
is outstanding for its traditional Thai spa and
massage by well-trained staff. The Coconut Beach
Resort has a variety of units which include the
very simple wooden huts raised from the sandy
beach by stilts at the seafront, the fanned bungalows
and the air-conditioned bungalows with a refrigerator
and a TV. VIP rooms by their new beachside swimming
pool were recently open. The upmarket Koh Chang
Resort & Spa provides packages for three days
and two nights including meals and round-trip
transfer from BangKohk. The bungalows have air-con,
hot water, and satellite TV. The luxurious Klong
Phrao Resort has cottage-styled rooms of different
sizes, bungalows around a lagoon, VIP rooms by
the pool and beach and a conference room for up
to 200 people. Its long and wide beach is ideal
for a leisurely walk or athletic activities. There
is also a two-storey house that can hold up to
Koh Chang Resort , a very pleasant hideaway, offers
unique Asian architecture featuring three-tiered
roof of reddish brown tiles. In addition to the
swimming pool, there are the Jacuzzi and sauna.
The 50-villa resort has been successful in attracting
many European travelers, who usually spend a week
to three weeks there. Rooms have wooden floors
and four-poster beds. Another spa place is now
located in the V.J. Hotel & Health Spa . Guests
can enjoy the many contemporary comforts the hotel
has, including a swimming pool and restaurant
on the beach. The 39 boutique-style villas at
Barali Beach Resort is nearby as with two other
more upscale accommodations on this strip of beach.
The Magic Resort on Klong Phrao Beach has bungalows
for up to four persons but larger ones sleep up
to five. The pride of Magic Resort is its beachfront
restaurant built over a bay.
is another long sandy beach. They are situated
south of White Sand Beach. Klong Phrao Beach,
growing rapidly into popularity after White Sand
Beach. The area is covered with coconut grooves
and wild vegetation. At the northernmost part
of the beach is the rocky Laem Chaiyachet or Chaiyachet
Cape which is an ideal site to watch the magnificent
sunset or the sunrise above the southern hills
of Bang Bao. Laem Chaiyachet is a favourite on-shore
fishing ground. A fishing pier is erected near
the cape which is also a great viewpoint for the
whole of Klong Phrao Bay. The road runs almost
everywhere in suitable distance from the beach
and accommodation. Two small islands, Koh Suwan
and Koh Rom are located at the southern end of
Klong Phrao Beach.
is close to Klong Phrao Beach. The beach, like
that of Klong Phrao, is steep but swimming is
Bae has become one of the better areas on Koh
Chang for those wanting a bit of excitement, nightlife,
restaurant options and easy access to tourist
services. While not as busy and developed as Haad
Sai Khao, Kai Bae is upgrading fast.
Bae's beach is decent, with a range of accommodation
from budget huts through to upscale resorts, and
the main street is busy with bars, restaurants
and shops, while the town itself is divided by
a low, narrow bridge. On either side are clumps
of mostly unnamed bars in small bamboo huts from
which ladies and lady boys will becKohn you to
come in from the street before charging 100B or
more for a beer.
rarely a footpath, so pedestrians are forced to
share the road with the traffic. The town was
built on a platform of red clay that turns very
muddy after rain and makes getting to the beach
a very sticky experience.
low tide in the morning the water receeds about
50m from the string of bungalows along the shore,
revealing a moonscape of moss-covered rocks. This
is great if you want to wander out and spot the
shallow sea life, but means it's not such a nice
place to swim later on. You have to be careful
you don't cut your feet or fall face-down on the
the northern end of the beach it's possible to
walk across to an uninhabited island during low-tide.
Bae Beach (Haad Kai Bae) is situated south of
Klong Phrao Beach. It is an almost 2.5 kilometre-long
beautiful sand beach, which is partially lined
by over-hanging palms and broad-leaved trees.
Beaches on the southern coast are also guaranteed
of its beauty and tranquility. Like all beaches
on the west coast Kai Bae- Beach is flat, but
nevertheless all the time suitable for bathing.
In the dryer months, at low tide however, one
must walk up to 100 metres to the deeper waters.
Four islands, Koh Yuak, Koh Pli, Koh Man Nok and
Koh Man Nai, are idyllically placed in the bay.
At low-tide Koh Man Nai can be reached by foot.
Lao Ya lies at the south of Koh Chang.
The group comprises Koh Lao Ya Nai, Koh Lao Ya
Klang and Koh Lao Ya Nok. The transportation from
Laem Ngob takes about 2 hours and a half. The
islands has beautiful beaches, crystal-clear water
a cololurful corals, Lao Yo Resort provide accommodation
Wai situated next to Koh Lao Ya is
a big island most of Beach which are plenty with
stones. The area occupies many bay which has beautiful
beach lines and wide wonderful coral zones. Koh
Wai is also the best source for fishing. As for
accommodations, Koh Wai Pakarung Resort is ready
to server tourists.
Khlum is a historical island during
the Thai-French Naval Battle like Koh Chang. The
island is proper for fishing. The landscape comprising
stone yard is worth a visit.
Phrao is in front of Salakpetch Bay
from Laem Ngob, it takes two hours to the island,
Koh Phrao has clean and calm seaside, and is cool
and shady because it is plenty of coconuts trees.
Ngam is situated in the south of Koh
Chang. The place comprises of two islands with
a huge sand knoll at the middle. The little bay
formed by the lines of the mountain stretching
into the sea is a splendid and serene site without
storms. It takes two hours to go from LaemNgob
to the place.
Chang Scuba Diving
A group of about 10 islands south of
Koh Chang have coral reefs and are ideal for diving
and fishing. Boats to the island can be hired
from Ao Cho, Laem Sok Pier or Laem Ngop Pier that
will take you to the islands where the diving
is good. Diving season in Koh Chang is from October
until May. The diving around Koh Chang is at reasonably
shallow depths at 5 - 25 meters. Visibility is
between 7 and 30 metes. There are fantastic reefs
with a variety of corals. The main dive sites
are Hin Luk Bat, Hin Sam Sao, Hin Raap and Koh
Chang Yoga, Wellness & Spa Treatments
In Asia, spa has evolved into a concept focussing
on the spiritual and natural, drawing from traditions
of meditation, respect for nature and the desire
to achieve physical and mental well being, the
key to maintaining health and beauty. In Thailand,
the concept of spa blends with the ancient traditions
of natural healing through herbal baths, massage,
meditation, and the continued pursuit of inner
and outer beauty. Before the arrival of modern
medicine in Thailand, the temple was the the centre
of learning for all disciplines, including medicine.
Monks therefore played the role of doctor and
pharmacist, prescribing herbal remedies, steam
compresses, massages and other such treatments
for the relief of various ailments. Spa therapy
is another choice to feel relaxed and rid away
your aching. Most up-scale hotels and resorts
offer their unique therapeutic session.