Ko Chang

Image of Ko Chang

This island’s status on the world’s tourism barometer has risen a few degrees in recent years because of its stunning natural beauty, and the fact that its once-rickety infrastructure has been solidified. More than 70 percent of the mountainous island is still covered in untouched rainforest, and there are many secluded beaches, complete with that vital tropical isle trinity of white sand, palm trees, and warm blue water, where you can really get away from it all and leave your troubles on the mainland. Ko Chang, or Elephant Island, is part of the Mu Ko Chang National Park. This national park is comprised of an archipelago of 52 islands, of which Ko Chang is the largest. Some 429 square kilometres in size, Ko Chang is, after Phuket, the second biggest island in the Kingdom. Wealthy with greenery, wildlife, and marine creatures, its most scenic beaches are located along its western flank. Moving from north to south, the beaches are generally more secluded, less crowded and pricey, with the aforementioned Diamond Sand towards the northern tip, and Hat Khlong Phrao and Hat Kai Bae, in the middle. Further south is a lively backpacker’s enclave at Lonely Beach, or Hat Tha Nam, where you can stay in a tree house. Other than swimming and sunbathing, the island offers inland adventures such as rainforest trekking. Or you can ride a lumbering elephant into the primeval jungle, populated with wild boars, Javan mongoose, barking deer, and more than 60 different species of birds. Many of the bungalow operations around Hat Sai Khao and Hat Kai Bae have kayaks, boogie boards and mountain bikes for rent. Booking a day trip, or an overnighter, to nearby islands is another attractive option.


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