Koh Chang hotels
Chilled Koh Chang
Koh Chang is the second-largest island in Thailand, but it wasn’t on anyone’s radar until World War II, when a fight off the coast put it on the map, so to speak. The War Memorial Monument honours the naval battle. Today, ships still visit the island to escape the monsoon season. And travellers? They visit to just escape.
On your island escape, you can pretend you can command your own ship by renting a kayak on Kai Bae Beach and heading out to sea. Or venture beneath the clear water for a bit of diving at Ko Wai; either way the potential for a good time is large. How large? Well, the name Koh Chang means ‘Elephant Island’ – and while it has only been in the last decade that visitors have been coming in large numbers, the potential for enjoyment is as huge as an elephant!
Koh Chang’s Top 10
10. Sima Massage Follow the locals to Sima Massage. They always know best!
5. Ban Kwan Chang Elephant Camp Feed, wash and ride the giant creatures at the island’s best elephant camp.
9. Wat Salak Phet This temple sits in front of the oldest village on the island.
4. Khao Salak Phet The highest mountain peak unsurprisingly offers the best view – so get walking.
8. Ban Salak Phet The largest community on the island also offers the largest bay.
3. Klong Nueng The most beautiful waterfall on the island. There is no better place to watch water fall!
7. Mu Ko Chang National Park Venturing into the jungle is hard work, but so worth it.
2. White Sand Beach The name says it all. Relax under the coconut trees or take a dip in the crystal-clear water.
6. Bang Bao Fishing Village Built over the sea, with houses on stilts, this village will remind you that you’re ‘not in Kansas anymore!’
1. Klong Plu This three-tiered waterfall is enormously popular. Go see why.
Koh Chang History
- Battle of Koh Chang Monument - Discover the historical importance of Koh Chang at this popular monument.
- Ao Salek Phet - This is the site of the wreckage of two famous battleships.
- Bang Bao Fisherman’s Village - This historical village offers a great look at the Koh Chang of the past.
- Wat Salek Phet - This historical temple was built in the reign of Rama V and has remained an important site since.
- Koh Chang Yutthanavi Day - In late January, this event commemorates the Thai defeat of the French in 1941.
Koh Chang Art & Culture
- Shrine of Chao Po Koh Chang - This shrine to the god of Koh Chang is still very important among the locals.
- Koh Chang Cooking School - Come learn about one of the most important parts of Koh Chang culture: the food.
- La Cabra Art Gallery - This Koh Chang gallery features local works, as well as works from foreign artists.
- Nattha Massage and Training Centre - Massage is a big part of Thai culture.
- Koh Mak’s Underwater Elephant Sculptures - This attraction features underwater statues that also act as coral.
Koh Chang Shopping
- Prince Craft Centre - The best place in Koh Chang to find something unique to decorate your home.
- Portobello - This unique Koh Chang store offers a wide selection of lamps and jewellery.
- Baan Chai Chet - Small shops that sell just about anything.
- Bangbao Village - The largest souvenir centre on Koh Chang.
- Bailan Beach - The roads along this Koh Chang beach are a great place to buy fresh fruits and vegetables.
Gay & Lesbian Koh Chang
- Nirvana Koh Chang - This popular Koh Chang resort has much to offer the gay and lesbian traveller.
- Kai Bae Garden Resort - One of the most popular places for gays and lesbians.
- Tropical Beach Resort - There is a beautiful beach and killer views at this gay-friendly Koh Chang resort.
- Lemon Bar - This Koh Chang gay bar features drag shows and musical performances by the friendly staff.
- Marina - A beautiful Koh Chang restaurant that is not only gay friendly but shows a variety of films every evening.
Koh Chang Outdoor
- Ban Kwang Chang - This Koh Chang elephant trek allows visitors to interact with elephants close up.
- Klong Plu Waterfall - This Koh Chang attraction offers swimming, as well as great views of the island.
- White Sand Beach - This is Koh Chang’s most beautiful and busy beach, a perfect place to relax or take a swim.
- Than Mayom Waterfall - Thai royalty has visited this four-tiered fall on Koh Chang.
- Ao Bai Lan - The path to this Koh Chang favourite has beautiful mountain views.
Koh Chang Sports
- Paddle your way around Koh Chang with Kayak Chang Day Tours.
- Ride the zip lines through the jungles of Koh Chang at Tree Top Adventure Park.
- Stretch and stay fit at Baan Zen Yoga in Koh Chang.
- Swim with whale sharks at the Mu Koh Chang Marine Park.
- Hike to Klong San along Koh Chang’s many trekking trails.
Koh Chang Events
In late January, join the locals for Koh Chang Yutthanavi Day to commemorate an old battle with exhibitions by the Royal Thai Navy.
April’s Songkran Festival welcomes in the Thai New Year. Go and throw water on complete strangers. After all, they’ll be doing it to you!
September brings the Koh Chang Food and Fun Festival. There is food and there is fun. What more could you want?
The Chao Po Koh Chang Festival takes place in November. Experience Thai dancing and people walking over razor-sharp broken glass.
Also in November is Loi Krathong, which literally means ‘float a raft’. Hundreds of decorated rafts are set to float in the river.
When To Go
The cool season from November to February is a great time to visit, when the temperatures are comparably comfortable.
The mercury rises from March to May, as does the humidity.
Koh Chang gets really wet from June to October.
The easiest way to have independence on the island is to hire a motorbike. If you don’t feel confident riding your own bike, there are also motorbike taxis – hop on the back for a wild ride!
Public passenger vehicles travel up and down the west and east coast roads.
Hire a long-tail boat and visit the beaches on both Koh Chang and the neighbouring islands.
As the main island in the exquisite Mu Koh Chang Marine Park archipelago, Koh Chang is a popular tourist destination. Home to spectacular biodiversity, a pristine white sand coastline that seems torn out of a travel brochure and phenomenal waterfalls (or klong), Koh Chang has become a tranquil alternative to Samui and Phuket in Thailand.
At more than 300 km from Bangkok, Koh Chang is not a tiresome trek from the massive Thai capital. The journey is well worth the effort and when you repose on the likes of White Sand Beach, Bang Bao Beach and Lonely Beach, Bangkok will seem millions of miles away. Though not as overrun with commercial development as other resort islands in Thailand, this is a point in Koh Chang's favor. All in all, the island strikes a fine balance, with simple but superb restaurants and bars in close proximity to just about every beach and plenty of unspoiled tropical wilderness to explore.
Attractions & Activities
Restaurants & Nightlife
Koh Chang has three seasons: hot (March to April), wet (May to October) and cool (November to February). Temperatures waver between 22°C and 36°C throughout the year.
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