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Ko Chang

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Revision as of 17:34, 26 December 2006

For other places with the same name, see Ko Chang (disambiguation).

Ko Chang is in Trat Province, in Eastern Thailand, about 330 kilometers from Bangkok. It is Thailand's third largest island, and the biggest in Ko Chang National Park. With about 5000 permanent residents the island is not heavily populated, but tourism (and development) has increased dramatically over the last few years.

White Sands Beach on Ko Chang.

Understand

Climate Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Day(°C) 31 32 33 35 33 32 32 32 31 30 30 30
Night(°C) 20 22 24 25 25 24 24 24 24 24 22 25
Sunhours/day 9 8 9 8 7 5 4 4 5 7 8 9

 

 

 

Get in

By plane

Bangkok Airways flies three times a day from Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi Airport (the "new" BKK) to Trat.

Direct door-to-door minibus transfers from Trat airport to Ko Chang resorts cost 280 baht/person including the ferry crossing.

From Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi Airport, take the free express shuttle bus from outside the arrivals concourse to the airport's own bus terminal, and from there the next available bus to either Trat or Chanthaburi, then proceed as described below.

By bus

From Bangkok the easiest, most direct, and most economical way to get to Laem Ngop (where the Ko Chang ferry piers are) is to take a 1st class bus from the Eastern (Ekamai) Bus Terminal direct to the Centrepoint pier. The fare is 232 baht (or 438 baht for a round trip) and takes just over five hours. Departures from Ekamai are at 07:45 & 13:00, and return at 14:00 and 16:00. Subject to seat availability, this bus can also be boarded at Chanthaburi.

Alternatively, there are 1st class (approx. 5 hours) and 2nd class services from both the Eastern Bus Terminal (Ekamai) and Northern Bus Terminal (Moh Chit) direct to Trat, and frequent songthaew services from Trat to Laem Ngop (approx. 30 minutes). Departures from Ekamai are more frequent than from Moh Chit.

If coming by bus from the south, the #511 air-con bus can be used to connect directly between Bangkok's Southern (Sai Tai Mai) and Eastern (Ekamai) bus terminals.

There are direct minibus services to Laem Ngop from Pattaya, Ban Phe, and Bangkok's Khao San Road. It may also be possible to proceed directly to Laem Ngop by minibus or songthaew from the Hat Lek / Koh Kong border crossing with southern Cambodia, depending on the time of year, time of day, phase of the moon, etc - enquire locally.

By boat

Most ferries operate from Laem Ngop, which has three piers, of which two are currently operational. The Laem Ngop (Tha Khrom Luang or Tha Laern Ngop) pier is approximatly 700 metres west of Laem Ngop. The Centrepoint (Tha Centre Point) pier is located about 3.5 km north-west of Laem Ngop. These piers serve both vehicle and passenger ferries.

Another vehicle ferry pier is located in Thammachat Bay (Ao Thammachat), around 15 km west of Laem Ngop.

Almost all piers on Ko Chang are situated on the eastern side of the island. The major piers are the two Dan Kao piers, Tha Dan Kao and Tha Ferry Dan Kao, who handles most of the traffic. To take a boat from Laem Ngop to the Dan Kao piers take around 45 minutes. The car ferry from Laem Ngop take around 1 hour and arrives at the Tha Ferry Dan Kao pier, situated 400 minutes southeast of the Tha Dan Kao pier. The car ferry from Thaachat Bay stops at the Ko Chang Ferry Pier (Tha Ferry Ko Chang) in the Sapparot Bay (Ao Sapparot), 3 kilometres northwest fom the Dan Kao piers.

Light meals, fruit, fruits and beverages are available at all the piers and on the car ferries.

Get around

Hillside road on the southern part of the island

In the daytime, you can catch a songthaew on its route around the main road. These taxis are also waiting at the Dan Kao Pier. At the Dan Kao Ferry-Pier there may be no taxis available. If you arrive without a vehicle you may have to walk the 400 metres to Dan Kao Pier.

Small motorcycles can be hired. The main road almost circles the island and there are plans to complete the circuit in the near future. Cars are also available for rental, most hotels can help with it.

See

  • War monument. In the very south of the island there is a war monument being built. As for spring 2005, there was nothing but a small store and an unfinished hotel at the site.
  • Waterfall

Do

  • Elephant rides
  • Package tours for snorkeling, diving, elephant riding etc. are widely available

Buy

Market stands along the main road. Pretty much the same pirate-products in every stand. Lots of salesmen on the beaches, especially White Sands Beach.

ATMs and 7-Eleven convenience stores can be found alongside the main western coastline road.

Eat

Similiar to the rest of Thailand, including the prices. There are many restaurants at the beach open both daytime and evening.

Drink

Beer Chang, if you wish to sample the famous "Changover" the following day.

Sleep

Most of the hotels are located on the west side of the island.

The cheapest places to stay are located at Lonely Beach, on the southern end of the west coast.

TreeHouse[1] (Hat Tha Nam Beach (Lonely Beach)) Beautiful but basic Bamboo Huts, no fan, no air, and no electricity during the day. Authentic bucket open air showers. Children/family-specials (kids-menu, playground, kids-corner, car park). Restaurant/bar. 90-250 baht, depends on season, size and location.

  • Siam Hut, which offers a quiet atmosphere, friendly staff, delicious food and spartan waterfront bungalows for around 300 baht/night.
  • Nature's Resort, a more upscale place with a pool and hermetically sealed cabins.

Sai Khao Beach (White Sands Beach)

The white sand beaches are in the north west in a section called Hat Sai Khao. This area is being developed quite rapidly, so prices are going up. However, you can still get bungalows for 400 baht/night.

  • KC Grande Resort is a bungalow-village with a restaurant - rooms start at 1800 baht.
  • Ko Chang Kacha Resort and Spa - prices start at 1400 baht.
  • Independent Bo Bungalows - prices start at 200 baht in low season and 300 baht in high season.

Klong Son Bay

Klong Prao Beach

  • Klong Prao Resort - rooms from 1100 baht.
  • V.J. Hotel & Health Spa - a new hotel, with prices from 1500 baht.

Kai Bae Beach

  • Sea View Resort & Spa - prices from 1200 baht.
  • Siam Bay Resort [2] - luxury bungalows on the beach or large family bungalows on the hill side. High season rates 500-2500 baht, "green season" rates 300-1500 baht.

Hat Tha Nam (Lonely Beach)

  • Paradise Cottage is located at the end of Lonley Beach (most people in the area can point you to it) and has very nice, large and clean waterfront cottages starting from 300 baht. There is a somewhat rocky but very pleasant waterfront, an amazing bar and lounging areas with very friendly staff and outstanding food.
  • Siam Beach Resort [3] was formerly a backpacker place, and converted into a 4 star resort in early 2006. Deluxe Rooms, all with sea view, cable TV, refrigerator, hot water and comfortable beds start at 1500 baht.

Bang Bao Bay

Bang Bao is on the south side of the island. It's little more than a long stretch of wooden deck that takes probably 5 minutes to walk from end to end, with dive shops, seafood restaurants, local housing, and a few places that provide accommodation for visitors.

Get out



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