Chiang Rai Province is the northernmost province of Thailand. As the province is at the very top of Thailand, it borders Myanmar and Laos. The close proximity to these countries has allowed the cultures to influence the province of Chiang Rai.
The province is average sized and is home to approximately 1,130,000 citizens.
There are an abundance of different people from the different cultures from the surrounding countries, and the rest of Thailand obviously. The provincial capital, also named Chiang Rai is a honey pot of mixed races and mixed language citizens.
Arriving by plane really is a joy when flying into the nearest airport to Chiang Rai. ‘Mae Fah Luang-Chiang International Airport’ is only 8km from the city centre, so really isn’t far. Flights are available from all parts of Thailand.
The Mekong river, although not the biggest river, runs through the centre of the provincial capital, and is home to many hill-tribes along its banks. The Mekong links to other rivers such as the Mae Rim Valley River and acts as a carrier river. It has an amazing and fascinating mix of colours that varies between locations.
Chiang Rai city lies 565 metres (1885 feet) above sea level in a large fertile valley. Along the valley there’s an abundance of wildlife and vegetation of all different kinds. The river banks are lined with trees. The cool refreshing climate is a favourite of local Thai people and of world travellers alike.
There is a very famous and popular night market with a more subdued atmosphere than that of the bustling city centre of the provincial capital and the other cities and towns in Chiang Rai Province. Surprisingly, the pollution levels around the night time market are very low, some of the lowest levels in the whole of Thailand in fact. Local sellers are given special precedence in the market to sell their wares to the weary travellers. The market is not for from the city centre of Chiang Rai, and if you don’t want to walk you can always take a ride on a local form of transport, such as the Tuk-Tuk.
Hill tribe fabrics, beads, needlework, and silver dominates the city and whole province of Chiang Rai. There are many food courts in Chiang Rai city, selling a number of northern Thai dishes, and Asian dishes. Day time and night time snacks are available. Or, you can go into one of many pubs and just relax, enjoy the city, and people watch.
Stay with our Hotel Partners in Chiang Rai
The following hotels and resorts have special safety measures in place due to the global Coronavirus Pandemic.
Geography of Chiang Rai
The province of Chiang Rai, and its capital city that is also called Chiang Rai is Thailand’s northernmost province. The province is situated between north latitude 14 degrees and east longitude 49 degrees.
The whole province covers an area of 11,678 square kilometres, making it the 12th largest province in Thailand. The provincial capital is approximately 785 km north of the capital of Thailand, Bangkok.
The province is divided into administrative districts, sub-districts, amphoes, or king-amphoes. There are 13 in total, some larger than the others for political and economical reasons.
Chiang Rai city is 62 km from the Burmese border, so is easily and quickly accessible from Myanmar. The city is also only 60 km from the Laos border, so again is easily accessed from Laos. This has allowed an influx of immigrants from the border countries to move into the city and province of Chiang Rai.
The landscape within and surrounding Chiang Rai is flat and heavily vegetated, or is hilly with various rivers running through and around them. Many of the hill tribes are located within the limestone hilled areas of the province. Limestone cliffs are visible from miles around, and the view really is breath taking.
The climate of Chiang Rai province is actually quite stable throughout the year. On average the yearly average high temperature is approximately 86 degrees Fahrenheit (30 degrees Celsius) and the yearly average low is approximately 65 degrees Fahrenheit (18 degrees Celsius). The hottest month is April with an average high of 95 degrees Fahrenheit (35 degrees Celsius). During this month weather warnings are often issued due to the hot and humid weather and the frequent thunderstorms experienced this time of year.
The official population of Chiang Rai city is 62,000 people, but this does not include the suburbs, towns, villages, and local tribes, so the actual population could be well over 200,000 citizens. 12.5% of the population of the city are members of local hill tribes, which is a collective term for the ethnic minority groups of northern Thailand such as the Karen, Akha, Lisu, Meo, and Muser tribes.
Many Chinese immigrants have moved to the province of Chiang Mai. The Chinese population has merged in with the native Thai citizens, and has created a “Thainese” ethnicity. Well over half of the businesses in the Chiang Rai are owned by the Chinese population.
Transportation in Chiang Rai province, and especially within Chiang Rai city is relatively well organised, if not a little hectic at different times of the day and at different times of the year. The province is easily accessible by plane from the major cities of Thailand. As Bangkok holds the country’s largest and most important International airport, daily flights are available from the airport to Chiang Rai International Airport with flight times of approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes, with flights run by Thai Airways, Air Asia, Nok Air, and One to Go Airlines. Trains are not available to the city, as the train lines end at Chiang Mai city, but boats along the rivers, and buses which run along the Burmese border are available with travel times of approximately 14 hours.
The geography of Chiang Rai is very complicated and a little confusing, but it is an amazing province, and must be visited.
Cheap Flights to Chiang Rai
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The History of Chiang Rai
Chiang Rai is absolutely steeped in history, both from its past rulers, and from its past inhabitants. Many reminders of these historical events can be still be seen today.
Chiang Rai was founded in the year 1262 AD by King Ramkhamhaeng (1279-1299 AD) of the Sukhothai Kingdom of Thailand. Thirty four years later, King Ramkhamhaeng founded Chiang Rai as a capital city, and centre of the Lanna Thai Kingdom (circa 1262-1558 AD). The Lanna Thai Kingdom covered the areas of Chiang Rai, Chiang Mai, Phayao, Nan, and many other provinces in the North of Thailand at present.
During the years 1558 to 1774 AD, the Lanna Kingdom was a Burmese colony, and many of the native Thai people were oppressed by their rulers. But finally, King Taksin (1767-1782 AD), the King of Siam of the Thonburi period, won the realm back from the Burmese, and the Lanna Thai Kingdom became a dependency of Siam (former name of Thailand). Until 1933 Chiang Rai was ruled as a frontier town when it became a province of Siam.
Legend has it that King Ramkhamhaeng was chasing down a runaway prize elephant and finally recaptured it at the foot of Doi Tong Hill. Taking this as a good sign, the King founded the city of Chiang Rai on that spot. The King built the temple of Wat Phrathat Doi Tong at the top of the Doi Tong hill. A short way down from the hill there is a Chinese shrine that backs into the hillside under the temple. The sign reads Hall of the Godfather of Doi Tong. It is written in Thai, and was erected as a thank you shrine to the founding Father of the city and province of Chiang Rai.
The Capital Chiang Rai was once a walled city along with the neighbouring city of Chiang Mai. The walls were constructed as defences and the protection of the city, as being on the border it was prone to attack from neighbouring forces. In the 19th century the walls were knocked down on the advice of a visiting Dutch engineer who believed that the walls were bad for public health.
Apparently, the walls restricted the flow of fresh air to the city. A few years ago, the city Fathers tried to make the city walls more appealing to visitors, but due to the lack of any actual archaeological of photographic evidence, the rebuilding effort failed.
In the last 50 years, many Chinese immigrants have arrived into the city to escape from Chinese Communist oppression. The village of Doi Mae Salong is extremely unique and over the years since the Chinese arrived, the village has changed and merged with the local Thai traditions. The Chinese have planted hundreds of Soolong tea plantations.
Remnants of Ancient Burmese occupation are very evident in the local traditions and buildings in the different areas of the city. Kaow Soy curries, which are an ancient Burmese food, are widely available in Chiang Rai.
Local citizens are just as proud of their ancient historical Bangkok royal family as they are of their founding father, and of the multiple cultures that have merged over the years to create the modern city and province of Chiang Rai.
Local Thai people and expats really are friendly and welcoming in Chiang Rai. The Thai people will show you their legendary charm and will always be there for you, just to have a chat with, or to help you if you are in need of it.
There are many adventure and health resorts in the province of Chiang Rai. You can take a relaxing break to forget the world and your problems at home, or you can take an adventure break, taking elephant treks along the rivers and in the forests.
What to see and do
Chiang Rai is famous for many things. There are popular events that tourist and locals alike all love. The cultures and traditions in Chiang Rai city and the Chiang Rai province have all added to the effect.
Everyone knows about the famous Thai food, so what can be better than learning to cook and create the food for yourself? The Suwannee Thai Cooking Class is a privately run cookery school. The school is run by Suwannee, who takes you around the Chiang Rai city market to gather the necessary ingredients for your Thai dishes, and then she takes you to the school and shows you how to cook the food using traditional Thai methods. This is a must for the food connoisseur, and you get a free tour of the famous city market included.
Chiang Rai night market is a magnet for all kinds of visitors to the province. Every tourist wants to buy something as a souvenir to take home for family and friends, or to keep so that they can remember their trip. At the Chiang Rai night market you will be able to buy local Thai clothing, pottery, beads, etc. and when you have no energy left after all the shopping, then why not have a relaxing foot massage by a local Thai woman? It’s cheap and relaxing, and you won’t want it to stop.
Chiang Rai may not have a beach, but it does have many different bodies of water that should be visited at least once whilst in the province. The ‘Golden Triangle’ is the most famous body of water in the region, where the borders of Thailand, Laos, and Myanmar meet. The rivers of Chiang Rai provide the people with transport, food and leisure and getting out of the water allows you to get closer to the culture of Chiang Rai.
January is probably the most lively and eventful month in the Chiang Rai calendar. The whole month is set aside to commemorate the founding Father of the city and province. The ‘King Meng Rai Festival’ is an event to celebrate the 13th century creation of the city. Parades, culturally driven performances and songs are sung to celebrate the past. Extremely colourful and atmospheric, it’s undeniably an unforgettable experience.
The most important Buddhist festival in the Buddhist calendar is the ‘Visakha Bucha’ which is held on May’s full moon. On this day in history, Buddha was supposedly born, achieved enlightenment, and died (all on separate occasions).
Candlelight vigils, parades, and religious ceremonies are held in temples right across Chiang Rai. You don’t have to be a Buddhist to help the locals celebrate the event. Travellers and pilgrims from right across the globe come to Chiang Rai and you should join them.
There is always something to do and see in Chiang Rai. Once you have seen and experienced the sights and sounds of the city and province, you will want to return with all of your friends and family.
|Address||Chiang Rai Stadium|
Attractions of Chiang Rai
There are many tourist attractions in the city and province of Chiang Rai. With many a reference to the history and culture of the region, the attractions range from markets to temples. There is always something to do and plenty of experiences for all travellers, young and old.
Located outside of the city walls, some 200 metres from the visitors centre, the most famous historic site, Wat Pa Sak lies. On the site there is a deserted temple with ornamental stucco motifs. The temple is regarded as one of the most beautiful examples of Lanna architecture in Northern Thailand. In 1925, Prince Saen Phu built the temple to contain Buddha’s relics. He planted 300 teak trees in the grounds of the temple. There are 22 historic remains on the site of the temple, the most famous of these being the main bell-shaped chedi with its 5 tapering spires. The spires were designed in the design of the pagan (Phukam) architecture.
A major attraction that is popular with both tourists and locals is called ‘The Golden Triangle’ in English. The English name comes from the meeting of Laos, Myanmar, and Thailand, but to the locals it is called ‘Sop Ruak’, since this is where the Mekong and Ruak rivers meet.
The area has in the past been famous for the sinister growth of opium, but those days have passed and today the area is one of the largest tourist traps in Thailand. At the ‘Golden Triangle’ you will see the natural boundaries that the river provides between the 3 neighbouring countries. The rivers flow through the hills and forested areas of the area and the views are absolutely stunning. Many people take a private boat ride on the rivers, and visit the Phra That Doi Pu Khao temple which is located on the hill just before the Golden Triangle and is believed to have been built by a King of Wiang Hirannakhon Ngoen Yang in the mid-8th century. Remains of antiquities are in the Viharn with crumbled Chedis.
The Chiang Rai province is very famous for its natural healing and relaxation centres. The most famous of these is Wang Jao Clinic and Spa in which you can have certified massages by professional therapists to help you forget your troubles and relax. There are various treatments available for all of the troubles that everyday life may bring with it. The most famous massage offered in the spa is a coffee spa and coffee massage. Locally grown coffee is used in many various ways. You will just have to experience these for yourself to understand the true potential that is offered.
Chiang Saen, next to the city of Chiang Rai, but still in the province of Chiang Rai, south of the Golden Triangle is home to the Chiang Saen wall ruins. The walls that were built during the occupation periods from 1262 to 1803 as homes and businesses can still be vaguely seen today. In 1803, Chiang Saen was left as a ghost town until 1900, but the town has still not repopulated much since then. The walls really are a must-see and cannot be missed for all travellers to Chiang Rai province.
Chiang Rai Hotels
Hotels Chiang Rai City: Popularity
|Hotel||Stars||Discount||Price before and discount||Select dates|
|Nak Nakara Hotel||★★★★|
|Hop Inn Chiang Rai||★★|
|Le Meridien Chiang Rai Resort, Thailand||★★★★★|
|Homey Dormy Chiangrai||★★★|
|Hi Chiangrai Hotel||★★★|
|Le Patta Hotel Chiang Rai||★★★★|
|The Imperial River House Resort, Chiang Rai||★★★★★|
|Laluna Hotel And Resort, Chiang Rai||★★★★|
|Ariya inn Chiangrai||★★★|
|Baanmalai Guest House||★★★|
|Siya House Hotel||★★|
|Meesuk ChiangRai Hotel||★★|
|Chiangrai Green Park Resort||★★★|
|The Riverie by Katathani||★★★★★|
|See View Place||★|
The Global Response to the Military Thugs of Myanmar needs to be a Military Answer
Myanmar is on the brink of becoming a failed state and the Myanmar military is pointing their weapons to anti-coup protesters with over 500 Burmese that have been killed.
The military thugs that overthrow the democratic elected government are now accusing Aung San Suu Kyi of taking bribes in addition to importing walkie talkies and violating social distancing during the Covid-19 pandemic and the JUNTA is making it up as they go.
Those military thugs lost most of their seats in last November’s Generation Election in which Aung San Suu Kyi NLD Party won 85% of the popular votes.
Since the coup on February 1, those thugs shut down television stations and the internet to have a clear way of butchering their own people and the International community does nothing.
Myanmar’s military chief throwed a lavish dinner party March 27 on Armed Forces Day for his friends from Thailand, China, Russia, Vietnam, Laos, India and to show his cruelty over 120 Burmese were killed by the thugs.
A day later 12 defense chiefs from the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the EU jointly condemned the killings of unarmed people’s but surely we must ask how on earth are those 12 countries with such a large military capabilities not being able to stop the killing in Myanmar by retaliating actions to fix the situation.
The death in Myanmar is not going away until their is an international intervention but since the Chinese and Russian’s are blocking the United Nation Security Council (UNSC) it need’s to be a Coalition of the Willing.
If the free world is not prepared to defend democracies in Myanmar we might have to wonder what the free world stands for, besides talking to ASEAN leaders which is a waste of time.
As long ASEAN accepts military coups nothing will change in Southeast Asia and Myanmar’s generals know that they can get away with it when they look at their neighbor Thailand which is headed by another military thug General Prayut Chan-o-cha.
As for consumers of the free world, the only language that ASEAN needs to hear is a full travel boycott to all ASEAN countries which includes Brunei, Cambodia, Laos, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Thailand, Singapore.
Hua Hin Cha-am | Covid-19 Travel Restrictions | Lockdown | Coronavirus Outbreak
Hua Hin Travel Guide
Hua Hin is a district in the Prachuap Khiri Khan Province of Thailand, 295 kilometers from Bangkok and 90 km from the provincial capital. It is the oldest and most traditional of Thailand’s beach resorts combining the attractions of a modern holiday destination with the charm and fascination of a still active fishing port. Beaches are located in the east of the province, including a 5km stretch of white sand and clear water. Although it has developed to cater for tourists from all over the world, the resort which began its development over 70 years ago, remains popular with Thais too, a good sign for those looking for an authentic experience.
The resort was originally founded in 1830s, when farmers, moving south to escape the results of a severe drought in the agricultural area of Phetchaburi, found a small village beside white sands and rows of rock, and settled in. The tranquil fishing village was turned into a ‘Royal resort’ becoming popular among Siam’s nobility and smart-set.
Accessibility was greatly enhanced by the construction of the railway from Bangkok, which brought visitors from wider social groups, and kick-started the industry which would bring tourists from other countries. The first hotel – The Railway Hotel – was built in 1921 and it still stands today continuing to serve tourists as the Sofitel Central.
Hua Hin was made famous in the early 1920s by King Rama VII, who decided it was an ideal getaway from the steamy metropolis of Bangkok. He built a summer palace and this was echoed when King Rama VII ordered the construction of the Palace of Klaikangwon (“far from worries”). The latter is still much used by the Thai Royal Family today.
The resort continued to develop slowly, protected to some extent by its Royal reputation. Its fishing port grew alongside golf courses and all the big hotel chains are now represented. Many of Bangkok’s rich and famous and a growing number of expats have built their own summer homes along the bay, making the resort more cosmopolitan every year.
Development has taken over much of the prime government land, so the coast road suffers from obstructed views of the sea these days, but Hua Hin is trying hard to retain its beach-side atmosphere. Compared to Pattaya, the resort remains relatively serene and attracts families and older travelers. The beach has a gradual slope, into clear warm water which so far has escaped pollution of any kind.
Further afield, the Prachuap Khiri Khan Province is a charming region, where limestone cliffs and islands, bays and beaches, are home to a national park, and several temples, and travelling through this area will be a welcome experience for those hoping to avoid the tourist traps found further South. Driving from Bangkok through Prachuap Khiri Khan takes around three hours, a journey punctuated by summer palaces, huge temples, beautifully kept gardens and salt flats.
Visitors head to Hua Hin all year round. The area has one of the lowest rainfalls in the country, and there’s usually a gentle sea breeze to punctuate the heat, particularly welcome in the summer season between March and September.
Stay with our Hotel Partners in Hua Hin
The following hotels and resorts have special safety measures in place due to the global Coronavirus Pandemic.
Flights to Hua Hin
Cheap Flights to Hua Hin
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Things to see and do in Hua Hin
As you would expect with a resort boasting a 5km clean white beach, sunbathing, swimming and snorkelling are popular pastimes. Swimming is safe, and with one of the driest climates across Thailand, there’s plenty of opportunity to dry off in the sun afterwards.
Possibly due to its noble history and elegant clientele, Hua Hin has the highest density of world class golf courses anywhere in Thailand, although it has yet to be discovered by the international golf tournament circuit. Green-fees and other costs are surprisingly low, given that course maintenance and services are superb. The Royal Hua Hin course is one of many, but considered to be the best.
Shop till you drop
Chatchai Market is colourful and inexpensive and is one of Hua Hin’s major attractions. Vendors gather nightly in the centre of town, where they cook fresh gulf seafood for hordes of hungry Thais and provide a spectacle for visitors. As well as plentiful food shops, it offers much that will appeal to souvenir hunters too.
Klai Kangwon (which means ‘Far From Worries’ ) is the Royal Palace built by King Rama VII in 1928. It was designed by Prince Iddhidehsarn Kridakara, an architect and the Director of the Fine Arts Department at the time, and officially opened in 1929. Further structures have been added over time, including a mansion ordered by King Bhumibol (Rama IX) for Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn, and accommodation for the royal entourage, built in the style of the original buildings so as to preserve the harmony of the palace. Although Klai Kangwon is still in regular use by the Royal family, it is also open to the public.
Hop on a train
Or more importantly, visit the railway station. Built in the reign of Rama IV, the brightly painted wooden buildings somehow combine traditional Thai ideas with a Victorian feel, and in 2009 Hua Hin made it onto NewsWeek’s Best Stations list, in great company such as New York’s Grand Central, and London’s St Pancras.
Although one of the joys of Hua Hin is its serenity and calm, if you’re keen to take in more, its fairly easy to find trips which will take you to many of the other southern beach destinations such as Koh Nangyaun, Koh Toa, Koh Samui, Phuket, Krabi and Koa Sok. You may find however that some of these legendary destinations have suffered more at the hands of the global tourist industry than Hua Hin has.
Khao Takiab is referred as Monkey Mountain, but as well as the mischievous residents, it also boasts a hilltop temple with sensational views of Hua Hin, a pagoda-style shrine and a giant golden Buddha which faces the sunrise.
Walk in the Park
The region boasts several parks, and natural attractions, such as the Kangajan National Park, and the Koa Sam Roi Yod Marine Park. You’ll find miles of good walking, amongst lakes, caves and waterfalls, and you’ll be in the company of as elephants, tigers, wild dogs and leopards.
Eat, drink and sleep in Hua Hin
As more affluent ex-pats from all over the world gather to weather the winter, or snap up beachfront properties in Hua Hin, the restaurant scene becomes more cosmopolitan. French, Italian, German and Scandinavian restaurants are all here, in case anyone feels homesick. However, there are also rustic seafood restaurants, especially on the pier, and at several of these you can choose your own fish from the fish market right outside and waiters will bring you the finished result.
There are plenty of simpler local restaurants both inside and out on the streets where you can sample authentic Thai food too.
If you want to try to cook your own Thai food in Hua Hin, the very best place to buy your ingredients, not because it’s the cheapest, but because it is a fabulous experience, is the night market. Right in the centre of town, it opens at 18:00. It’s also a terrific place to buy handicrafts, souvenirs and clothing.
The Chatchai market is a great day market and the place to go for the best street food, as vendors grill, fry, boil and dress the fabulous local fish and shellfish, but don’t forget to leave room for a real local speciality. Roti Hua Hin is a delicious dough-based snack filled with strawberries, custard or raisins.
In a side street just off the market is the Hua Hin Thai Show, a pagoda-style restaurant which combines great food with a nightly musical performance, where you can sample folk with your fish or classical over your clams.
Unlike many Thai resorts, here you will also find more elegant dining, including Thai and Vietnamese food with a more upmarket touch for a real treat. Monsoon is the most romantic and expensive, but it’s worth it for the wine list and the elegant atmosphere. If your budget doesn’t run to dinner, you can enjoy afternoon tea on its teak-decked terrace.
Hua Hin isn’t as lively as many of its neighbours, but that doesn’t mean it’s no go for night life. There are quite a few live music venues, including El Murphy’s the Irish bar, which has its own local band rocking the town with rock and blues classics. There are a couple of country music pubs, and several nightclubs, but for a really classy experience, head to Satchmo’s where a vibrant Filipino band will serenade you as you drink the best Mojito outside Mexico.
Hua Hin has more than its share of upmarket and luxury accommodation. All the main hotel chains are here, and most have lovely grounds, top facilities and restaurants. There are elegant luxury boutique-style hotels too, many with villas and private pools. Sadly, there aren’t as many budget options as there used to be, but if you’re prepared to do some research you can find clean an friendly guesthouses and bed-and-breakfasts at reasonable rates. If you’re planning to stay a while, a rental apartment can be a good option; many of the holiday homes owned by people who live abroad can be rented for at least part of the year. Wherever you stay, Hua Hin is an oasis of calm in a country of exciting contrasts.
Hotels/Resorts in Hua Hin
Hotels Hua Hin: Popularity
|Hotel||Stars||Discount||Price before and discount||Select dates|
|Hua Hin Marriott Resort and Spa||★★★★★||-29%||154 109|
|G Hua Hin Resort & Mall||★★★★|
|Hilton Hua Hin Resort & Spa - SHA Certified||★★★★★||-38%||101 62|
|Hop Inn Hua Hin||★★|
|Anantara Hua Hin Resort||★★★★★||-18%||99 81|
|Centara Grand Beach Resort & Villas Hua Hin||★★★★★||-27%||107 77|
|Blu Marine Hua Hin Resort and Villas||★★★|
|Amari Hua Hin - SHA Certified||★★★★★|
|Asira Boutique HuaHin||★★★★|
|Bann Lom Le Guest House||★★|
|The Herbs Hotel Hua Hin||★★★★|
|Corner Cafe Bed & Breakfast||★★|
|Putahracsa Hua Hin Resort||★★★★★||-19%||109 89|
|Whale Hua Hin - SHA Certified||★★★★|
|Dadddy's home Huahin||★★|
|Ruenkanok Thaihouse Resort||★★★|
|InterContinental Hua Hin Resort, an IHG Hotel||★★★★★||-32%||143 97|
|Hyatt Regency Hua Hin||★★★★★||-24%||112 85|
|Prinz Garden Villa||★★★|
Ko Chang Covid-19 Safe Travel Trat Thailand
Ko Chang (เกาะช้าง) is an island in Trat Province, Eastern Thailand.
Ko Chang is Thailand’s second largest island, and the biggest in eastern Thailand. With about 5,000 permanent residents the island is not heavily populated, but tourism (and development) has increased dramatically over the past few years.
Ko Chang is one of Thailand’s most beautiful islands with long white sandy beaches, most half-deserted. The island is also home to a wide range of wildlife, including a good selection of birds, snakes, deer, and a number of elephants. The island and its vicinity are great places for snorkelling, diving, and jungle hiking. The “discovery” of the island as a tourism destination since 2000 has brought on a large amount of rapid development, and while still far quieter than places like Phuket or Ko Samui, it’s probably better to go now than later. Regarding services and activities specifically aimed at tourists prices have reached such a level that the islanders are pricing themselves out of the market when compared to the other islands.
Stay with our Hotel Partners on Ko Chang
The following hotels and resorts have special safety measures in place due to the global Coronavirus Pandemic.
History of Ko Chang
Prior to World War II, Ko Chang was little known by anyone. During this period, the few families there made a living growing coconuts and fruit on the mainland. In January 1941, during the Japanese occupation, the Thai Navy fought the French in a battle in the waters to the southeast of Ko Chang.
Nothing else happened to Ko Chang until the first backpacker foreigners started arriving on the back of local fishing boats in the mid-1970s. In 1982, Ko Chang along with surrounding area became part of the protected Mu Ko Chang National Marine Park. Only very recently, in less than ten years, Ko Chang has turned itself into a major tourism destination, both for foreigners and local Thais.
This sudden tourism boom however, has been fraught with controversy concerning land encroachment. The government is trying to “develop” it from a backpackers’ paradise to a top-level destination, and construction work is going on throughout the island, with basic huts torn down to make way for fancy resorts.
Ko Chang is the largest island in the Ko Chang Archipelago. The name means Elephant Island, named for the elephant shape of its headland, although elephants are not indigenous to the island.
Ko Chang has an area of approximately 429 square kilometres. The topography contains high mountains and complex stone cliffs. The highest peak is Khao Salak Phet which is 744 m high, rich in fertile evergreen forest which is the main water source. There are many waterfalls, beaches and splendid reefs in the west of the island.
Most accommodation is on the west side of the island, where the sandy beaches are. On the east side there are no sandy beaches and it is far less touristy. There are some nice waterfalls though.
70% of the island is rain forest, steep hills, cliffs, waterfalls, and wildlife, fine beaches, coral reefs and an abundance of marine life. The island also has tall mountains and rock cliffs.
Climate & Weather
Ko Chang has the same seasons as Bangkok. The best season to go is the (comparatively) cool season between Nov-Feb. Mar-May are roasting hot and between Jun-Oct it rains, and a lot at that: 4,000 mm in an average year. Many guesthouses close during this season, so accommodation is limited. If you don’t mind the rain, traveling during the rainy season can be enjoyable nevertheless, and prices for accommodation are low.
Fly to Ko Chang
Bangkok Airways flies three times a day from Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK) to Trat. The flights depart at 08:30, 12:40 and 16:50, and takes 1 hour. Fares are between 1,800-3,300 Thai Baht.
Cheap Flights to Trat
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Direct door-to-door minibus transfers from Trat airport to Ko Chang resorts cost 500 Thai Baht/person one way and 900 Thai Baht/person return 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.
From Bangkok the most economical way to get to Laem Ngop (where the Ko Chang ferry piers are) is to take a 1st class Bus 999 from the Eastern (Ekamai) Bus Terminal direct to the Laem Ngop piers. The fare is 268 Thai Baht and takes just over 5 hr. Departures from Ekamai are at 07:45 & 09:45, and return at 14:00 and 16:00. Subject to seat availability, this bus can also be boarded at Chanthaburi and at Suvarnabhumi Airport Airport.
There is a more comfortable way to travel from Bangkok Airport to Ko Chang: Bus 392 starts from the airport at 07:30 and returns from Ko Chang at 12:30. Tickets can be bought on-line at the Suvarnabhumi Burapha Bus Company. There are also express shared minibuses running from Suvarnabhumi Airport airport non-stop to Lonely Beach on Ko Chang via the Lonely Beach Express. Tickets are 308 Thai Baht for the big bus and 600 Thai Baht (800 Thai Baht round trip) for the minibus which includes a ticket for the ferry.
Bookable from most travel agents near Khao San. Travelmart operates a large, nice air-con VIP Bus from Khao San area to Centrepoint ferry terminal 4-5 hours. 300 Thai Baht which includes the ferry crossing is among the cheapest and most convenient way to Koh Chang. Leaves at Khao San at 08:00, but times can vary. Return service is also available.
Alternatively, there are 1st class (approximately 5 hr, around 250 Thai Baht) and 2nd class services from both the Eastern Bus Terminal (Ekamai) and Northern Bus Terminal (Mo Chit) direct to Trat, and frequent songthaew services from Trat to Laem Ngop (approximately 30 minutes, 50 Thai Baht/person). Departures from Ekamai are more frequent than from Mo 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.
Connections in Trat can also be used if coming from Pattaya (2nd class bus, 4 hr, around 200 Thai Baht).
There are direct minibus services to Laem Ngop from Pattaya, Ban Phe (gateway to Ko Samet), and Bangkok’s Khao San Road and Victory Monument (in front of Payathai Hospital). They, however, are less comfortable and spacious than public buses, and you may be charged significantly more by travel agencies selling tickets to these, as often with any tourist-oriented transportation in Thailand.
It may also be possible to proceed directly to Laem Ngop by minibus or songthaew from the Hat Lek/Ko Kong border crossing with southern Cambodia, depending on the time of year, time of day. Inquire locally. Price around 120 Thai Baht (one way) from the border to Trat bus station.
Most ferries operate from Laem Ngop, which has three piers: the Laem Ngop (Tha Khrom Luang or Tha Laern Ngop) pier is approximately 700 m west of Laem Ngop; the Centrepoint (Tha Centre Point) pier is about 3.5 km northwest of Laem Ngop. These piers serve both vehicle and passenger ferries; the Ko Chang vehicle ferry pier is in Thammachat Bay (Ao Thammachat), around 15 km west of Laem Ngop.
All piers on Ko Chang are on the east side of the island. The major piers are the two Dan Kao piers, Tha Dan Kao and Tha Ferry Dan Kao, which handle most of the traffic.
To take a boat from Laem Ngop to the Dan Kao piers takes around 45 minutes. The car ferry from Laem Ngop takes around 1 hour and arrives at the Tha Ferry Dan Kao pier, 400 m southeast of the Tha Dan Kao pier. The car ferry from Thammachat Bay stops at the Ko Chang Ferry Pier (Tha Ferry Ko Chang) in Sapparot Bay (Ao Sapparot), 3 km northwest of the Dan Kao piers.
Light meals, fruit, fruits and beverages are available at all the piers and on the car ferries.
There are two operators who provide daily bus services from Ko Kut to Ko Chang. One is based in Ban Bao, the other on Kai Bae Beach. Rates are the same but departures times can vary, so make sure to book ahead.
- Ferry timetables – Up to date ferry timetables for boat services between the mainland and Koh Chang.
By taxi or limousine
From Bangkok or Suvarnabhumi Airport international airport takes a total of about 5 – 5½ hours by taxi. Most taxis will decline the trip as the risk of empty return is too high for them. Most (airport) limousines and taxis can deliver you to the island, especially if they can make it back to the mainland before the last ferry sails.
- Koh Chang Minibus , ✉ email@example.com.
In the daytime, you can catch a songthaew on its route around the main road for 50-100 Thai Baht/person, depending how far you go. The rates are generally much higher than in other places, but the vehicles are almost new and in excellent condition. Starting from 17:00, many of them start to ask “taxi” price, telling you that they operate as a public transport only until that time, and may quote prices as high as say 500 Thai Baht from Lonely Beach to the Dan Kao pier. However, if you have some time and patience, you still can try and have a “shared” ride with some drivers, maybe for a higher rate if they expect little or no other passengers.
These taxis are also waiting at the Dan Kao Pier (50 Thai Baht/person to White Sand Beach, 100 Thai Baht to Lonely Beach). 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 m to Dan Kao Pier.
Cars are also available for rent, most hotels can help with it. 4 x 4 recommended, since some roads might be in bad condition, especially near Lonely Beach.
If there are 2 or more people going with you, hiring a songthaew may cost the same price, or even be cheaper than paying per each person in a “shared” songthaew (there is no difference, an empty songthaew can easily be hired). Just do not forget to bargain if their price sounds quite silly when compared, say, to Bangkok taxi-meter (on Ko Chang it can be difficult if not impossible to get the same price, but at least it should not cost double or even more). Most folk however, just stay put on the beach of their choice and walk to wherever they want to go.
Hitching on Ko Chang is also an alternative if you choose not to pay the often exorbitant fees of the songthaew. Many islanders are more than willing to pick up a hitchhiker who happens to be going the same way they are. A Coke or cold bottle of green tea for the driver are always appreciated at the end of your journey.
Motorbikes are a fantastic way to explore the island. Small motorcycles can be hired for 150-250 Thai Baht per day. The main road is sealed and almost circles the island and there are plans to complete the circuit in the near future. The road leading to the War Memorial at the south end is worth a trip.
Riding a motorbike is not for the inexperienced or faint of heart. Most visitors manage on level roads, during the daytime and during good weather conditions. Darkness and rain, together with poor skills, steep hills and questionable maintenance can be fatal. Think twice if you have to travel at night, and when it rains during the night, avoid the steep hills in the north and the southwest.
When renting a bike, check tires, brakes and light. Reputable shops will fix them while you wait, don’t compromise on safety. Bring your own helmet if you have one.
What to see and do
- Mu Ko Chang National Park. National Marine Park including parts of Ko Chang and 46 other islands.
- War Memorial Monument (In the very South of the island). A renovation is underway at the Memorial site, with a huge building being constructed (Jan 2018).
- Kai Bae Beach.
- Khlong Prao Beach (enter the Public Beach Access opposite Mother Earth Garden or next to Nong Bua Seafood, Chaichet).
- Lonely Beach (Hat Tha Nam, Ao Bai Lan).
- White Sand Beach.
- Khiri Petch (About 3 km from Salak Petch village). Medium sized waterfall.
- Klong Nonsi. Waterfall on the east side of the island. Reachable by foot from the Klong Plu waterfall, 6 km.
- Klong Nueng. Said to be the most breathtaking waterfall.
- Klong Plu. The most popular waterfall, and the only one on the west side of the island.
- Kongoi (Near Bang Bao). 5 waterfalls.
- Thanmayom (Near Thanmayom Pier).
What to do
- Dive Adventure. Five star PADI IDC diving school offers scuba diving, PADI courses and snorkelling trips into Ko Chang National Marine Park.
- Diving School Ko Chang (Bang Bao). Go diving or learn to dive in the beautiful waters of Ko Chang.
- Eco-Divers Koh Chang (bookings at White Sand Beach (near Kacha Hotel), Kaibae (just in front Kaibae Resort, on the main street; main office is in front of the 7-Eleven at the entrance to Klong Prao). 09:00-20:00. Snorkelling trips.
- Tree Top Adventure Park. Daily 09:00-17:00. Rope and harness tree climbing. Fun activities and amazing views from the top of the trees. Half-day program, 950 Thai Baht.
- Hike with a park ranger from the Than Mayom Waterfall to the Klong Plu Waterfall. The cross island trek takes 8–10 hours and costs 500 Thai Baht per person.
- Trek in the jungle with Tan, +66 89 6452019, +66 89 8322531, who has been taking guided treks for over 10 years and speaks very good English.
- Learn Thai cooking in one of the three Thai cooking schools located around Klong Prao: Kati Culinary, Ko Chang Thai Cooking, Blue Lagoon.
- Guided sea kayaking trips. KayakChang.com is run by a qualified British guide. They use imported sea kayaks and equipment. They offer single day expeditions off the west coast and multi-day expeditions in the southern islands.
- Meet retired Ko Chang elephants at the north end of White Sand Beach.
- Books Thailand (Pearl Beach, next to the main post office). Has a good selection of second-hand books in many languages.
- Madoosika (Bang Bao Plaza). Latest fashions. Chic, BOHO, gypsy, hippie, maxi dress, party and sun dresses.
- Scuba Zone (Scuba Koh Chang), 21/23 Moo 4 White Sand. Extensive range of snorkelling and diving equipment focusing more on quality than price, but still cheaper than Western prices.
Menus are similar to the rest of Thailand, but the high island prices are due not so much to higher transportation costs, but because of high demand. There are many restaurants on any given beach open both daytime and evening with a strong concentration of tourist venues on White Sand Beach.
The beaches of Ko Chang are all dotted with restaurants dishing up some delicious seafood as well as offering romantic evening views. Try Ko Chang’s own wine which comes in a variety of fruity flavours including mangosteen and pineapple.
Sunsets can be watched in style from the terrace at the Top Resort on south White Sand Beach from the vantage of a cliff top. Bring an appetite and your camera, no reservations needed.
White sand beach
- Apple (แอปเปิ้ล บังกะโล), 7/4 Moo 4. Su-F 08:00-24:00; Sa 08:00-01:00. Probably the cheapest restaurant/bar along White Sand Beach. It has a good location in the middle of the beach. Don’t expect anything special, just the usual Thai and Italian dishes common at tourist spots. Upstairs there is a small hut where you can chill out with a beer on pillows. Closing times are early, but if you order before closing time you can keep sitting there as long as you want. They also have 21 small wooden bungalows available for 800-4,000 Thai Baht/night.
- Nong Bua Seafood (White Sand Beach, opposite Ban Pu Resort). 07:00-22:00. If you pass by, you might wonder why this place is busy every night. A family-owned restaurant open for more than 30 years. Thai, Chinese, Western food, and especially fresh seafood.
- Rock Sand Restaurant (N White Sand Beach. Turn right on the beach by the 7-Eleven). 07:00-22:00. Thai and Western food. Speciality: Taste of Thailand and finger licking good.
- Ido Ido Restaurant and chill out bar ; Past bang bao on the way to klong koi beach home made Thai food – western food – breakfast
The drink you have to try is Chang beer, even if its only for the name. If you have a busy schedule ahead of you, better stick to Tiger beer as it doesn’t give as much of a headache (yet it is slightly more expensive). Each village offers something different, but taken as a whole, Ko Chang’s nightlife is fairly mellow compared to other islands. There are some quiet beach bars dotted around White Sand Beach with amazing sunset views.
- Jungle Queen Live Music Bar (Next to Alina Grande). The house band plays from around 20:00-24:00, and plays music from Rihanna to AC/DC. People come from all over the island for the live music hour, so be sure to stop by when they are on. They also have free pool, and the place doesn’t close until 05:00, so it’s a good place to take the party after the nightclub and the other bars start closing. Service is good, and the staff are friendly and efficient.
Lonely Beach’s nightlife and bar scene is gaining a reputation among the backpacker community. It is the place to be for “full moon” imitations, bucket parties, and dance till you pass out disco bars. The rubbish left over from the parties are barely cleaned up, so the next day you can see exactly where the party took place from the main road. The party location generally rotates among several different bars depending on the day of the week, and is usually heavily advertised which bar is “the spot” for each night.
- Cafe del Sunshine (Lonely Beach. Walk towards sunset, on your left). 07:00-24:00. Thai food and a great selection of Western brunch and lunch dishes. Set in a nicely designed and relaxing building. 50-100 Thai Baht.
- Rock Sand Resort (White Sand Beach). Right by the sea with a terrace over the sea to sit and watch the Ko Chang sunsets. Special: Taste of Thailand. Just above and behind the restaurant Rock Sand has rooms for backpackers and flashpackers.
- Siam Hut. Hosts a large dance party every Friday night in their large outdoor deck on the beach. Happy hour specials on Friday until 23:00
Where to stay in Ko Chang
Hotels Chang Island: Popularity
|Hotel||Stars||Discount||Price before and discount||Select dates|
|The Emerald Cove Koh Chang||★★★★★|
|Awa Resort Koh Chang||★★★★|
|Klong Prao Resort||★★★★|
|Centara Koh Chang Tropicana Resort||★★★★|
|Santhiya Tree Koh Chang Resort||★★★★|
|Sea View Koh Chang||★★★★★||-28%||70 51|
|Seavana Koh Mak Beach Resort||★★★★||-24%||89 68|
|The Dewa Koh Chang||★★★★|
|Bhu Tarn Koh Chang Resort & Spa||★★★★|
|Ramayana Koh Chang Resort & Spa||★★★|
|Koh Chang Paradise Resort & Spa||★★★★|
|KC Grande Resort & Spa||★★★★||-18%||66 54|
|Amber Sands Beach Resort||★★★|
|Serenity Resort Koh Chang||★★★|
|Koh Chang Kai Bae Beach Resort||★★★|
|Capital O 834 Iyara Resort & Spa||★★★|
Hat Sai Khao (White Sand Beach)
Most hotels are on the west side of the island, with many resorts and guest houses all along the road that leads down the coast. Generally speaking, prices drop off the further away from the port you get. Supply far out-strips demand, so finding a place to stay should never be hard, though the best or cheapest places may fill up at weekends.
- Alina Grande Hotel & Resort (At the S end of White Sand Beach) , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 12:00, check-out: 12:00. In the heart of White Sand Beach, it is the perfect place to stay for families with children. 800-2,200 Thai Baht.
- Chang Cliff Resort, 16/14 Moo 4. 1,600-9,000 Thai Baht.
- KC Grande Resort. Bungalow village with restaurant. Five night stay minimum. 13,750-25,550 Thai Baht.
- Koh Chang Kacha Resort & Spa (In the centre of the beach). Fantastic beach side swimming pool, beach-front bungalow-villas, pool-side deluxe villas, deluxe hotel rooms, and many rows of bungalow in tropical-style garden. The best place for families. Good value for money, friendly staff, delicious food. 4,000-5,600 Thai Baht.
- Pattamas (At the S end of White Sand Beach). Roomy upstairs apartment with balcony, large bedroom, lounge and bathroom. The rooms are a great value. Three cheaper rooms available at 400-800 Thai Baht. Pattamas Restaurant serves authentic Thai dishes, coffee, teas, beers and spirits. Staff are friendly and happy. 800-2,000 Thai Baht.
- S.P. Place (On the N side of the beach, across from 15 Palms). Check-out: 12:00. It appears to be family-owned, but the family isn’t very friendly although the cleaning staff are. Wi-Fi is not free. Rooms are clean, TV/balcony/air-con/private bath. 550 Thai Baht, though possible to negotiate down to 500 Thai Baht for an air-con room. There’s also a 500 Thai Baht key deposit.
- Top Resort (At the S end of White Sand Beach). Guests can head to their own beach if they get the expensive 4,000 Thai Baht rooms and villas. Flagship are the sea view villas. Friendly staff, German and Thai food (and beer). Reasonable for families and single travellers. 790-4,990 Thai Baht.
- White Sand Beach Resort. 1,330-4,500 Thai Baht.
Klong Son Bay
- Siam Royal View (Chang Noi Beach). Villas & beach bungalows.
Klong Prao Beach
- Aana Resort and Spa (Near Klong Prao Beach). Upscale retreat. Some rooms have outdoor plunge pools and amazing views. Two gorgeous swimming pools, restaurant, two bars and a lovely (yet pricey) spa. The resort is 100 m up the river that spills out into the bay and Klong Prao Beach. Free kayaks are available for use. Excellent service. 5,000-13,000 Thai Baht.
- Amari Emerald Cove Koh Chang , fax: . Check-in: 14:00, check-out: 12:00. A tropical getaway offering a dive centre, a 50 m lap pool and 5 restaurants. 3,000-5,000 Thai Baht.
- Barali Beach Resort, 77 Moo 4, ✉ info@Baralikohchang.com. Nice little resort on the beach. 3,000-8,000 Thai Baht.
- Big Elk Steak House, 38/5 Moo.4 Amphoe Koh Chang (300 m from Klong Prao Beach) , ✉ email@example.com. Check-in: 14:00, check-out: 11:00. Bungalows and holiday houses in a nice garden with a clean swimming pool in the middle. Not getting too much noise from the road, but the nearby rooftop club can be heard quite often in the nights. The owner, Bank, is very nice and helpful, and takes good care of the place, everything is clean and neat. Wifi reaches probably all bungalows. Their steakhouse is closed as Bank is repairing the whole place. Cheapest huts for 300 Thai Baht (mattress only, shared bathroom), a bit nicer ones for 400 Thai Baht, aircon for 400-500 Thai Baht, bigger family ones (for four people) 1400 Thai Baht. Five to ten minutes walk to the beach through the Blue Lagun. 350-1,500 Thai Baht.
- Centara Koh Chang Tropicana Resort, 26/3 Moo 4. Large resort with 157 rooms in small cottages. Near the beach. Several pools, restaurants and bars. Free Wi-Fi in public areas. Kids Club, babysitting. Most rooms can accommodate 3-4 people. 5,000-10,000 Thai Baht.
- Mother Earth Garden, kitchen and homestay, 19/1 Moo 4, Baan Klong Prao, Amphoe , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 13:00, check-out: 12:00. Founded 1990 by the travelers and nature lovers Nujaree and Manni Frohloff. They intend it for nature lovers, writers, musicians, artist, peace lovers, gardeners as space for healing, yoga, detoxing, workshops, etc. It’s placed uphill with marvelous sea view, between jungle and sea. The entrance is just opposite the public beach access. Reservations by email, or Skype mann.frohloff. The rooms for rent are the Upper Room in the Base House, Children House, Nujaree’s Tower, Treehouse and Kent’s House. 45 Thai Baht entry for geo catching, 660 Thai Baht room/ night, 10000 Thai Baht room/month, for volunteers special discount.
Kai Bae Beach
- The Chill Resort and Spa, 19/21 Moo 4 , fax: , ✉ email@example.com. Beautiful, modern luxury resort with 38 rooms, including deluxe rooms, deluxe pool access rooms, Jacuzzi suites and pool villas. Breakfast served any time of the day. Free Wi-Fi and Internet stations. 6,250-15,000 Thai Baht.
- Gajapuri Resort and Spa. Bungalows on the beach. 4,000-13,000 Thai Baht.
- Garden Resort. Quiet and charming resort with luxury bungalows, swimming pool, high speed Internet and just 150 m from the beach. 1,200-2,700 Thai Baht.
- Koh Chang Cliff Beach Resort. 2,000 Thai Baht.
- Sea View Resort & Spa. Over 100 rooms. 1,600-10,000 Thai Baht.
- Siam Bay Resort Koh Chang, 100 Moo 4. 60 luxury bungalows on the beach, large family bungalows on the hillside and new sea view and pool villas. 300-4,000 Thai Baht.
- The Stage, 19/19/1 Moo 4 , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. New set of bungalows not far from the beach. Pool. 900-1,600 Thai Baht.
Hat Tha Nam (Lonely Beach)
Following a great deal of development, the name “Lonely Beach” has become something of a misnomer. Lonely Beach is the party capital of the island and each guesthouse on Lonely Beach takes it in turns to hold “party night,” during which the partying and attendant thumping music goes on until about 05:00 and all the revellers on the island come to your guesthouse. If you do not want to be kept awake then Lonely Beach is definitely not the place for you. Most guesthouses giving “Lonely Beach” as an address are not located along the actual beach, but about 500 m down the road. From the village access to the sea is not possible as the coast is rocky.
- Bhumiyama Beach Resort (ภูมิยามะ บีช รีสอร์ท), 99/1 Moo 1 (Next to Nature Resort). Offers beautiful sea view bungalows and hotel rooms. 3,000 Thai Baht.
- Ice Beach (Follow signs to Sun Flower, then Sea Flower). Wooden bungalows, cheapest on Lonely Beach at 200 Thai Baht for a shared bathroom & fan room, 5-10 min walk to Lonely Beach. From 200 Thai Baht.
- Joy Cottage (On the main road by the bridge). Great backpacker place. Listen to live music, enjoy great food and chill out. Nice little huts, that come with mosquito net, attached shower and toilet and free Wi-Fi, though signal is very weak in huts but works well in restaurant. 400 Thai Baht.
- Kachapura. Well-appointed concrete bungalows spread around a serene tropical garden layout in Hat Tha Nam’s “town” strip. It’s a trek through the garden to get to the beach, which is anyway rather rocky, so better to walk 5-10 min down the road to the beach and bar at Siam Huts. Some noise from nearby bars at night in the bungalows near the road. 500-700 Thai Baht.
- Koh Chang Pool Villas, 100/1 Moo 4. Check-in: 13:00, check-out: 12:00. Pool villas on the white sand of Lonely Beach. Part of the Siam Beach Resort, but in a class of its own. Most popular with romantic couples and young families, because these villa have only a single large bed/living room. 3,900-7,600 Thai Baht.
- Little Eden, 4/47 Moo 1. Small bungalow resort, up the hill away from the bustling village. Comfortable bungalows individually placed, 12 with fans 2 with air-con, 1 twin double room, hot showers, mosquito net, toiletries and free Wi-Fi. Restaurant has Thai and international (slow) food. Every bungalow has a hammock and a gallery in the bath.
- Lonely Beach Resort. New concrete bungalows with fan, TV and Wi-Fi. Restaurant serves Thai and Western food. A 5-10 min walk to the sandy beach. From 500 Thai Baht.
- Oasis Koh Chang (Koh Chang Bungalows), Ko Chang (Lonely Beach Soi 3, opposite the pharmacy) , ✉ email@example.com. On a hillside with sunset views from the restaurant deck, where you can enjoy home-style Thai dishes, sandwiches or Western favourites. The wooden huts come with fan and mosquito net, attached open-air bath with shower. Free Wi-Fi. 350 Thai Baht.
- Paradise Cottages (At the end of Lonely Beach). Check-out: 12:00. Very nice, large and clean waterfront concrete cottages. There is a rocky waterfront, an amazing bar, and lounging areas with very friendly staff and outstanding food. Free Wi-Fi. 700 Thai Baht, 1,000 Thai Baht for waterfront. Off-season prices (as of 2014-06-23): 350 (wooden, smells stuffy, fan only, cold shower), 500 (fan only, warm shower) and 700 (waterfront, air conditioning).
- Seaflower (Follow signs to Sun Flower). Great price range (between 500 Thai Baht for 1-2 person bungalow with fan and private bathroom, and 1,000 Thai Baht for sea front bungalow with air-con, cable TV, private bath. All bungalows are clean, new, and the grounds are very well taken care of on a daily basis by maintenance staff. Nice lounging area on a patch of lawn right next to the water, and only a 5-10 minute walk along the water’s edge to Lonely Beach. Very quiet at night considering how incredibly close to all the action. Free Wi-Fi. 500 to 1,000 Thai Baht in high season.
- Siam Beach Resort Koh Chang (On the beach). Formerly a backpacker place, converted into a resort with large swimming pool. Sea view and deluxe pool view hotel rooms, all with a sea view, cable TV, refrigerator, hot water, comfortable beds and breakfast for two. 1,500 Thai Baht.
- Siam Hut. On the beach, offering a quiet atmosphere (unless they are hosting a beach party, in which case don’t expect to sleep before 02:00), friendly staff and delicious food. Options are cheaper spartan waterfront bungalows or slightly more expensive air conditioned bungalows. 400-680 Thai Baht.
- Sun Flower (Follow the signs). Nice bungalows with well-priced Western and Thai restaurant with nightly movie screenings, free Wi-Fi and reclining cushions. 300-500 Thai Baht.
Most of this beach is rocky, only the southern end—which is dominated by the resort, not really welcoming non-residents—is sandy.
- Ao Bai Lan Beach Resort (อ่าวใบลาน บีช รีสอร์ท) (Laem Bai Lan). 150-200 Thai Baht.
- Bai Lan Hut , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Each of the 22 bungalows has a computer, free Wi-Fi, hot shower, fan. Air-conditioned rooms available. The bungalows are right by the sea with sunset views. 500-1,500 Thai Baht.
- Bai Lan Resort (ใบลาน รีสอร์ท), 6/1 Ko Chang Tai. Have six bungalows, pitching a private tent is 50 Thai Baht per person per night. 100 Thai Baht.
- Elephant Bay Resort (formerly: Gu Bay). Bungalows and swimming pool with view to the sea, just 5 m from the water. low season: 450-1000 Thai Baht, high season 650-1150 Thai Baht.
- Koh Chang Bailan Bay Resort (first resort S of Lonely Beach, about halfway up a steep rise in the road). Spacious, en suite bath, well-designed bungalows built into the hillside, going all the way down to the beach. Fan and air-conditioned rooms available. Friendly staff. Reception and restaurant are open from 08:00-22:00. 350-1,000 Thai Baht.
- Whitehouse Bailan Resort (ไวท์เฮ้าส์ ใบลาน รีสอร์ท). Cosy white cottages, swimming pool, air-con, hot showers, free Wi-Fi. They have 15 standard rooms and 18 cottages. 800-1,500 Thai 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 houses and a few places that provide accommodation for visitors.
- Alysia Spring Resort Bang Bao. 27 rooms with air conditioning, hot water, fridge, cable TV, safe and balcony. Internet. 1 km to beach, free shuttle service. English and German-speaking staff. 800 Thai Baht.
- Asia Backpackers (from ferry, follow signs to Mercure Hideaway, 2 km past Mercure) , ✉ email@example.com. Ko Chang’s largest backpacking resort on Ko Chang. Has private bungalows and female/mixed dorms, providing quality accommodation at a great price, Also on site is a bar/restaurant/communal area showing all sports and pool table, dart board. From 250 Thai Baht per night per person.
- B. Phoem Phun Thap (บ. เพิ่มพูลทรัพย์), 24/1 Moo 1. 2,000 Thai Baht.
- L’appartement, Bang Bao Village – TBR residence (200 m after Bang Bao Temple), ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 14:00, check-out: 12:00. 2-bedroom self catering sea view apartment, 120 sq m, 180° sea view, 30m swimming pool, kids’ pool, 300m private pier.
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