Koh Chang is the largest island on Thailand’s eastern seaboard, and Thailand’s second largest island, only Phuket is bigger. Of the three main islands on Thailand’s eastern seaboard, Koh Chang has the most to offer. There are more activities and things to do on Koh Chang than there are on Koh Samet and Koh Lahn.
If you are looking only for a beach holiday Koh Samet and Koh Lahn are a good choice, but if you want a little variety, adventure and more things to do rather than just sit on the beach all day, then you must choose Koh Chang.
Accommodation on Koh Chang is diverse, there are cheap backpacker huts, luxury spas and resorts, and best of all there are some fantastic hotels and resorts right on the beach front. The beaches are also diverse, White Sands Beach is the most popular beach on Koh Chang, hence it can get quite congested, but you can still find relatively secluded beaches around the island.
I would say the beast beach on Koh Chang is Klong Prao Beach, it’s big, safe, and surprisingly it never gets overcrowded.
Be you a party animal, a backpacker, a beach potato, an adrenaline junkie or a solitude hunter you will be perfectly happy on Koh Chang. I selected a few of the best things to do on Koh Chang, and accompanied them with photos (below), read on and discover why Koh Chang is the obvious choice.
The Kayak Station at Salakkok Bay offers kayaks or you can simply enjoy the ride as you are rowed around on a gondola style boat, the mangrove swamp is a beautiful place to explore, as you paddle down river from the kayak station you enter a large bay which flows out to sea, there are small channels and little detours you can take through the mangroves.
Be careful not to get lost, and be careful of the current as the water funnels out to sea. You can also take a tour of the mangroves on foot, concrete walkways have been built over the mangrove swamp, at the right time of year you might even see fireflies. There is also an excellent restaurant on the jetty.
Salakkok Bay is a working fishing village, here you can see a traditional way of life and traditional Thai architecture in unspoilt natural surroundings.
Bangbao Pier is a great place to shop for souvenirs, to dine or just take a walk, along the pier there are restaurants, accommodation, scuba diving shops and tour operators.
Take a night time stroll on the beach, as the sun starts to set, many of the beaches become desolate, White Sands Beach is transformed as a myriad of resorts set tables on the beach, complete with candles and fairy lights, most offer barbecued seafood or food off the standard menu.
Koh Chang has some breathtaking scenery, the photo above is an overview of White Sands. The photo was taken from the steep twisting road which takes you from the ferry terminal to White Sands .
The photo above was taken from one of the many scenic viewing areas on the island. One of the best ways to admire the beautiful scenery of Koh Chang is to hire a motorcycle, but be warned, you need nerves of steel and a high level of competence to negotiate the steep twisting roads.
I can’t say that elephant trekking is one of my favourite pastimes but many people have it on their bucket list. I’ve done it and I won’t be doing it again for these reasons, if you are going to go elephant trekking just take the 1 hour ride, 2 hours starts to get pretty uncomfortable.
You can get almost anything on the beach, including massage, beer and food, I don’t know why so many women like to get their hair braided on the beach, my own theory is that it’s a souvenir to take home.
Due to Koh Chang’s geographical nature there are lots of waterfalls on the island, most of them are national parks so there is an entrance fee. The most popular waterfall on Koh Chang is Klong Plu Waterfall, a great place to go for a refreshing swim or impress the masses with your daring acrobatic dives into the pool.
Without doubt, if you visit Koh Chang you will spend most of your time on the beach, with or without your bucket and spade.
You don’t need a bucket and spade to have fun on the beach, you don’t even need a chair, all you need is a green bottle and a little bit of solitude.
If the “Treetops Adventure”, is half as good as The Flight of The Gibbon in Chonburi, I will highly recommend it, I can safely say that was one of the best thrills I had in my life.
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Best Places to Stay on Koh Chang
Among other things you are most likely heading to Koh Chang for a beach holiday. My own recommendation, if you want to get the best out of your vacation on Koh Chang would be to choose a beach front hotel.
Agoda is the recommended booking site to use if you want the best choice, and value for money hotels on Koh Chang.
Getting to Koh Chang
Now I’ve whetted your appetite for a vacation on Koh Chang, you most likely want to know how to get there. Personally I drive, but if you don’t have a car or just don’t fancy driving there are some great alternative ways to get to Koh Chang.