Islands and Beaches

Thailand Travel Blog

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Laem Tong Bay

The term ‘island paradise’ is bandied around a lot when it comes to destinations, but when nature plays a hand like this, it seems to be the only description that fits.

            The beauty of a Thai beach holiday is the sheer variety on offer, and with a regular and affordable network of internal flights, getting around to ‘mix things up a little’ isn’t a problem.  When you’ve had your fill of diving and watching the local marine life, you can find a quiet corner and relax under a palm tree, or find the perfect beach bar to enjoy a cocktail or two as the sun goes down.



RAYONG & KOH CHANG  - South East of Bangkok on the gulf of Siam lies the provinces of Rayong and Trat.  Koh Chang in Trat province is Thailands’s second largest island after Phuket, yet remaining a secluded and unspoilt and unspoilt island of pristine rainforest and spectacular beaches.

Laem Tong Bay
  Rayong is a sleepy area of natural beauty with mountains, forests and miles of unspoilt beaches.

 
KRABI

Just over one hours flight south of Bangkok lies one of the most beautiful beach resorts in Thailand.  Lapped by the gentle clear waters of the Andaman Sea, Krabi is also  one of Thailand’s most popular beach resorts and is replete with white sand beaches, beautiful islands, verdant forests, caves and waterfalls.  Most of the area has been designated a national park and the tourism here is low key and in keeping with the natural beauty.


PHI PHI   - Paradise

 

PHI PHI DON

Laem Tong Beach is located on the northeast coast and was the only part of the island barely touched by the Tsunami. Tonsai Bay 

 

PHI LAE

Here you will find Maya Bay…location for the film ‘The Beach’.

 

KRABI

Just over one hours flight south of Bangkok lies one of the most beautiful beach resorts in Thailand.  Lapped by the gentle clear waters of the Andaman Sea, Krabi is also  one of Thailand’s most popular beach resorts and is replete with white sand beaches, beautiful islands, verdant forests, caves and waterfalls.  Most of the area has been designated a national park and the tourism here is low key and in keeping with the natural beauty.

 

The pace is unhurried and locals are friendly and welcoming.  There’s a wide variety of beach bars and simple restaurants serving tasty local dishes. For more natural sight, there are some amazing limestone formations take a 15min boat ride out to the most famous  Khao Khanap Nam  and explore spectacular caves filled with stalactites and stalagmites. The famous limestone cliffs, which protect the coastline and hover above Krabi River, Draw climbers worldwide and form a striking contrast to Krabi’s golden, sandy beaches.

The pace is unhurried and locals are friendly and welcoming.  There’s a wide variety of beach bars and simple restaurants serving tasty local dishes. For more natural sight, there are some amazing limestone formations take a 15min boat ride out to the most famous Khao Khanap Nam and explore spectacular caves filled with stalactites and stalagmites. The famous limestone cliffs, which protect the coastline and hover above Krabi River, Draw climbers worldwide and form a striking contrast to Krabi’s golden, sandy beaches. 

Popular beaches include Ao Nang, Hat Nopphrat, Thara and Rai Ley Bay. Take a boat ride out of Hat Tham Phrang to visit the most attractive beach in the area, while the inner and outer Phrang Nang Caves and Phra Nang Laggon  are  also  worth  visiting.

Krabi Town , with a range of basic hotels, shops, markets and bars, is the primary transit point for ferries to Koh Lanta, Phi Phi, Phuket and the far southern islands. Well developed Ao Nang ,  a 40 minute drive away, is the chief mainland resort with mainly low cost and mid market accommodation.

KOH SAMUI

This is Thailands third largest island, fabled for its’ long, palm-fringed beaches, high quality hotels, numerous restaurants and entertainment spots. Koh Samui was an idyllic getaway, a small and charming rural island mostly untouched by mass tourism. It was discovered by backpackers only 25 years ago. Since the Tsunami at the end of 2004 we have heard various reports that the island is now getting very commercialised.

This lush tropical island is the coconut capital of the world, so look forward to fantastic pina colada cocktails made with plenty of fresh coconut milk.

When you’re lying back on your lounger, you’ll be able to smell roasting coconut on the breeze. The island’s blue-green waters are home to brightly coloured tropical fish.

Swimming over various reefs particularly good for a day trip is the Angthong Marine National Park.  Coral Cove is a great place for scuba diving.  The island’s beaches offer soft, white and powdery sand.  Inland you can visit the Hin Lat waterfalls, contemplate the Big Buddah at Ko Fan, perhaps visit a coconut plantation look out for the amazing Ling Nang monkeys, trained to pick the coconuts.    

Koh Samui has opposite monsoon seasons to Phuket and is often dry and sunny when Phuket is wet during summer months, and vice versa

PHUKET  This has become Thailand’ most visited island.

Although only 30 miles long and 13 miles wide, this is the largest island in Thailand and sits in the Southern Province, a narrow peninsula surrounded by the Adaman Sea on one side and the Gulf of Thailand on the other. Phuket is considered to be among the top ten dive sites in the world boasting crystal clear waters with an average visibility of 30 metres and being warm enough to make wetsuits unnecessary.

The coral reefs are home to 106 species of coral reef fish, they have over 850 species of pelagic fish, five species of sea turtle including green turtles, loggerheads, hawkbills and Ridleys. Swimming with with dolphins, whale sharks and manta rays are all distinct possibilities.

 Undoubtedly the most popular beach resort in the Far East.  Phuket’s many white sandy beaches, set in wide curving bays are in themselves a huge attraction and its’ range of resorts cater for all tastes and pockets. From the 5-star resort complexes to the frentic and risqué night life of Patong, there’s enough variety here to keep everyone happy.  Inland, much of the island (apart from Phuket town) is still rural, with pockets of rainforest too.  The wide open bays can mean that in summer, sea-bathing may be restricted, but the excellent hotel pools more than make up for this. The resorts of Patong and Karon have seen the largest concentration of new hotels and offer enticing neon nightlife. Phuketalos boasts the sunning Phang Nga Bay.  (James Bond Island)

 

            HUA HIN AND CHA-AM  are together known as ‘Thailands Riviera’.

            Fly between Bangkok and HuaHin in only 40 minutes. (apx. £89.00 per person)

 

HUA HIN       (for golf enthusiasts)   

This is the summer retreat of The Royal family. It has beautiful beaches, with cooling sea breezes during the hot summer months.   Hua Hin is a bustling fishing resort with restaurants and bars and a particularly good night market with handicrafts galore. With winding streets, you really can loose yourself as you watch the brightly lit fishing boats on the Gulf of Thailand.  It’s the oldest beach resort in the country, and its tradition of providing a haven for to those who seek it remains irresistible to this day. The area is also the golf capital of Thailand with six championship golf courses so you can play on the greens during the day and take in the sights of the town as evening falls.

CHA- AM  On the Gulf of Siam next to the Royal Resort is Cha-Am.  The beautiful stretch of soft sand beach is ideal  for swimming and those lazy days of soaking up the sun. Easy access to Hua Hin with an exciting night market.  No lively nightlife or bright lights, but if peaceful days and a vast, deserted beach with a few small local beach restaurants, is your idea of heaven, they try Cha-Am. It still holds its original village charm.

 PATTAYA    Once a sleepy fishing village, Pattaya is now the ultimate sun, sea, sand destination, where watersports are second to none and neighbouring islands offer superb dive sites.  When  it comes to nightlife, Pattaya’s bars and restaurants are rivalled only by it capital, Bangkok. Loud , brash and unashamed of it’s reputation  Pattaya is one of those places you either love or hate.  It is Thailand’s most commercialised resort and still has the most notorious ‘adults only’ nightlife in the Far East. The hotels here are incredible value for money. Although rarely visited for its palm fringed beaches, Pattaya is one of Thailand’s top diving centres.   

KOH LAK   This island is for people seeking seclusion and who don’t want shops restaurants, and nightlife.

 

KOH LANTA  This  island can be reached by ferry from Krabi Town or Phuket/PhiPhi. It remains an undeveloped island with a string of bungalow resorts ranged along its west coast beaches. The exception to the rule, to the far south of the island, is the five star Pimalai Bay resort with beach villas and one of Thailand’s finest spas.    

 

TRANG AND LANTA YAI   - Both Trang and Lanta Yai offer untouched paradise.  This is the far southern province two hours’ drive from Krabi or 90 minutes by boat. Deserted beaches, uncrowded offshore islands and a hinterland peppered with mountains, jungles and waterfalls. The underwater sights are as picturesque as the surface.

 

THE SIMILAN ISLANDS     ((Thailand Diving) The Similand Islands are a group of nine uninhabited granitic islands with deserted sandy coves.  Dive sites here are a mix of colourful reef fish, hard corals, macro life, gentle currents contrasting with granite boulder swim through’s and brisk up welling currents, ideal for large fish sightings. 

   

KOH PHA NGAN  This tiny island is famed for out-of-control full-moon parties bursting with backpackers spinning fire and dancing maniacally to monotonous euro trance.  But when people talk of it in this way, they really mean Haad Rin Beach on the south east cost.  The rest of  Koh Pha Ngan is blessed with cove after cove of empty beaches and tend to stay that way year round.


KOH CHANG  Koh Chang offers total seclusion.


 

    


        

 

          

 


 

   


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