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Beach Guide Koh Lanta

Ko Lanta Travel Guide: What to Know Before You Go!

by Tsvete Popp

This post is part of the series Koh Lanta

Other posts in this series:

  1. The Best Beaches in Ko Lanta, Thailand
  2. Ko Lanta Travel Guide: What to Know Before You Go! (Current)

This post is part of the series Thailand

Other posts in this series:

  1. 3 Week Thailand Itinerary
  2. Wat Arun: The Temple of Dawn in Bangkok, Thailand
  3. Wat Pho: The Temple of Reclining Buddha in Bangkok

Welcome to Ko Lanta – the most underdeveloped island with a laid-back atmosphere during our trip to Thailand! Koh Lanta is the perfect Thai island – not too crowded but has enough facilities for me to live comfortably. Ko Lanta is famous for its long, empty, tropical beaches, jungle-covered mountains, and spectacular sunsets! When I think of Lanta I have some hammocks, cocktails, long sandy beaches, beautiful nature, and affordable accommodation in mind. That is how actually Ko Lanta really is! One of best-kept secrets of Thailand!

 

Koh Lanta is quite a large island – 27 km from North to South and has a width of only 6 km. Having your own scooter makes it easy to explore. The roads are paved and there is almost no traffic (and absolutely No Traffic when you are in the south of the island). It is hard to get lost – there is only one road that goes around the island and a couple that cut across it.

 

Koh Lanta is quiet, relaxing and perfect if you want to escape the crowds of Phi Phi, Phuket and Krabi and enjoy the Andaman Sea at its best.

Travel Guide Koh Lanta
 

How to Get to Ko Lanta

 

Koh Lanta doesn’t have its own airport. The nearest airport to Koh Lanta is Krabi International Airport (KBV). You can get from Krabi Airport via shared mini-bus for 400 THB ride from Krabi Airport to Koh Lanta. It takes between 2 and 3 hours and the drive can be booked from Krabi Airport. The shared mini-bus will drop you off at your hotel and are the most convenient. You could also get a private taxi which costs around 2500 baht – would be a good option if you arrive late at night.

 

Another option is to travel by ferry from Ao Nang and Railay Beach. There are daily connections to Koh Lanta in both variants.

From Koh Phi Phi you can book a ferry which will take about 1h, and from Koh Lipe – 3h. From Phuket to Koh Lanta you can book a two-hour ferry that stops at Koh Phi Phi Don.

 
Travel Guide Koh Lanta
 

The Best Time To Go to Ko Lanta

 

March – May: the hottest months in Ko Lanta. The average temperatures are between 28° and 35° with humidity levels steadily on the rise.

 

May – October: the monsoon season in Ko Lanta starts in May, the average temperature is 29°, the prices are low and the rains heavy! The wettest months are May, September and October.

 

December – March: the dry season in Ko Lanta, but you can expect some raindrops at any time of the year.

 

November – February: the coolest season in Ko Lanta. The average temperature is between 23°C and 30°C. From December to March the humidity is slightly lower and the night temperatures rarely drop below 20 °C.

 

The high season on Koh Lanta is from November to April when skies are sunny, the rain is at ease and all of the businesses are up and running. The high season is when most people are visiting the island. Expect to pay slightly more than normal for hotel rooms during the peak season due to increased demand.

 
Travel Guide Koh Lanta
 

The Best Amount of Time to Spend on Ko Lanta

 

Ko Lanta is about beach-ing and relaxing – for the rest, there isn’t really much going on here. If you are a beach lover like me, you can spend a whole month here without getting bored. But if you are searching for some parties or activities different than sun-bathing, 3 to 4 days on the island would be enough for you!

 
Travel Guide Koh Lanta
 

The Best Place to Stay on Ko Lanta

 

The most popular beaches on Ko Lanta are the beaches located in the North of the Island. The three main beaches are Klong Dao (3.5m long), Phra Ae Beach (5km long), and Klong Khong Beach (3 km long) – they are more developed and offer more accommodations compared to the beaches in the south, mainly because they are nearest to the port of Saladan where most travellers arrive on the island.

 
Ko Lanta is broken up into 7 areas, all of which are primarily on the west side of the Island. It only takes 35 mins to go from north to south.

The further south you go, the more remote and peaceful the beaches become! In the south of Ko Lanta, the beaches become shorter, the number of hotels and the density of people – lower!

 

The beaches in the middle of Ko Lanta are less spectacular in terms of length and quality of sand but are a good place to relax and swim.

 

The most beautiful and wild beaches of Ko Lanta are located in the south of the island (Klong Jark Beach, Bamboo Beach). Here you will find the paradise on Earth only for yourself!

 

West Coast

 

99% of the hotels and bungalows are located along the beaches, mainly at the west coast of the island. All the beaches in Ko Lanta are on the west coast too. Even during the peak season, they are never crowded, whether in the north or in the south of the island!

 
Travel Guide Koh Lanta
 

East Coast

 

Probably the only interesting place you can visit on the east side of Ko Lanta is the Old Town located in the centre of the east coast. Originally the Old Town was a Chinese local fishing village with wooden houses on stilts going out into the sea.

 
Travel Guide Koh Lanta
 

Beaches of Ko Lanta

 
Ko Lanta has the most beautiful wild beaches in Thailand! To make up your own mind, see my guide to the beaches on Koh Lanta:
 

The Best Beaches in Ko Lanta, Thailand


 

The Best Way to Get Around Ko Lanta

 

The best way to get around the beautiful island of Ko Lanta is by renting a motorbike. The rent is about 200-300 THB per day including a helmet. The petrol costs around 100 THB per day. I recommend choosing a rental shop that doesn’t need to hold your passport as a deposit- give a copy of your passport instead plus despot in cash.

 

If you rent a motorbike you’ll be able to explore all beautiful sides of Ko Lanta, but it’s also just fun to drive around enjoying the views and stopping off at quiet beaches.

 
Travel Guide Koh Lanta
 

Accommodation on Ko Lanta

 

The hotel selection on Koh Lanta is quite large and most accommodations are located on the north-west coast. The most popular but also the busiest beach is the Klong Dao Beach located near the main village of Lanta.

 
Travel Guide Koh Lanta
 

I think the best area to stay in Koh Lanta is Long Beach in the northern part of the island. The beach is only 10 minutes of drive to the main pier but is much more secluded and peaceful than the Klong Dao Beach. There’s a good choice of accommodation and restaurants here, from high-end to reasonably priced bungalows located along the beach.

 
I can totally recommend our bungalow at Sayang Beach Resort Koh Lanta. Here you can find some other options:
 


Booking.com


 

Travel Guide Koh Lanta

 

Island Hopping: 4 Island Boat Tour

 

One of the most famous activities on Ko Lanta is the 4 Island Hopping Tour. There are many boat trips to choose from. You can spend the day snorkelling, kayaking, and island hopping around the gorgeous limestone islands, including Emerald Cave and Koh Muk.

 

Another beautiful island trip is to Koh Rok, but here it can be very crowded during the high season.

 

Get a Massage

 
… As anywhere in Thailand! My very favourite thing to do is to enjoy a good old Thai Massage!
 
Travel Guide Koh Lanta
 

Snorkelling & Scuba Diving

 

Although Ko Lanta has not as good diving location as Koh Tao, snorkelling or scuba diving is still worth it when you’re there. The southern beaches, such as Kantiang Bay, tend to have the clearest water and best sea life. The best place for snorkelling near Ko Lanta is Koh Rok and Koh Haa.

 

Koh Tao Travel Guide: What to Know Before You Go!


 

Travel Guide Koh Lanta

 

Ko Lanta National Park

 

The national park is one of Ko Lanta’s most beautiful spots, located at the southern end of the island. Many tourists decide not to experience the park, so it’s relatively secluded. You will have to pay an entrance fee of 200 BHT per person to enter it. As a result, you’re able to enjoy the park and its beautiful beach in peace – there is one big minus point: the water has almost only stones, which makes nice swimming impossible for me.

 
Travel Guide Koh Lanta
 

View Point Restaurant

 

Anyone who comes to Ko Lanta and explores the island by scooter will come across this amazing Viewpoint Restaurant, located on a mountainside facing the East coast, offering some amazing views of the surrounding islands, mainland, old town and Koh Lanta’s farmer’s fields!

 
Travel Guide Koh Lanta
 

Enjoy The Sunset

 

There isn’t a bad place to enjoy the sunset on Ko Lanta unless you are on the east side of the island 😀 This activity is, of course, completely free and you can be engaged every evening between 5:15 PM and 6:15 PM in watching the sunset over the ocean and Phi Phi Islands.

 
Travel Guide Koh Lanta
 

Safety on Ko Lanta

 

Don’t drink the water! It is not potable. Water from the tap will make you sick and that is definitely the last thing you want during your trip to Ko Lanta!

 

Don’t do drugs! Technically, imprisonment of anywhere from 1-20 years and 20,000-400,000 Baht may be applied.

 

Although it is not unusual to see people smoking e-cigarettes in Thailand, this is technically breaking the law as possession and smoking e-cigarette is illegal.

 

Be aware of the Sun! The sun is also something different than the sun we know from Europe … Always wear a sunscreen with 50+ SPF! Not kidding, it will heart if you don’t!

 

Don’t drink and drive! It is tricky enough when you are sober … The roads are dirty and in a bad condition. You will notice a lot of travellers around the island with bandaged appendages or the so-called “Thailand tattoos” from motorbike accidents.

 

It is a really good idea to invest in travel insurance for scuba diving because you never know what could happen and when you might need it!

 
Travel Guide Koh Lanta
 

What to Pack for Ko Lanta

 

Umbrella or Raincoat: Because of its tropical location, whenever you travel to Ko Lanta you will see some afternoon raindrops during your stay for sure! Thailand is a tropical country so escaping the rain and humidity is not really possible. So you better bring an umbrella or raincoat every time you travel to Ko Lanta.

 

50% DEET Spray: There is no vaccination against malaria or dengue fever so you have to prevent the mosquito bites as far as you can. Malaria could be a problem if you’re hiking through the jungle or doing mountain trekking during the rainy seasons. The best solution: use 50% DEET spray, wear long sleeves and trousers and sleep inside mosquito nets.

 

Sunscreen: Sunscreen is veeery expensive in Thailand! 100 ml cost about 15 €, so make sure you have enough in your bag. Be aware of the Sun! The sun is also something different than the sun we know from Europe … Always wear a sunscreen with 50+ SPF! Not kidding, it will heart if you don’t!

 

Medicaments: Traveller’s diarrhea is a common problem too. I would recommend you to choose what and where you eat more carefully, and also to bring some anti-diarrhea pills (like Imodium) with you.

 

Nappies, Sanitary Towels, Panty Liners, Tampons: These are also very expensive and sometimes difficult to get on Ko Lanta.

 
Enjoy the day!
 
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