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Ko Kradan

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Set to the south of Ko Muk and Ko Ngai, Ko Kradan is one of the most isolated of Trang province's islands -- or at least of those with accommodation on them. It's a thin slip of an island with a stunning white-sand beach spanning the length of the island's eastern shore. A handful of resorts have popped up along the beach over the last 15 years, but much of Ko Kradan remains (in theory) a national park, and as such if the park rangers stationed there happen to see you exploring outside the main beach area you may be asked to cough up the 200 baht entrance fee, or head back to the beach.

Staying on the beach for your entire stay would not be a bad choice though, and most who visit do exactly that. Ko Kradan's beach is one of Trang's finest: the bright blue-green, crystal clear water is perfect for swimming, and at low tide sand bars form far out into the sea, making for the beach walk of a lifetime.

Because of the isolation, many choose to visit Ko Kradan on a daytrip from Ko Ngai or Ko Muk, but with one particularly great and unique place to stay, it's not a bad spot for a longer break -- especially if you're in need of some time out from the world. If that's the case, bring enough cash for your stay as there are no ATMs here. There are also no villages -- we saw a single private home on the entire island -- so the only inhabitants you'll encounter aside from other travellers are resort workers, longtail boat drivers, park rangers and a few friendly beach dogs.

There's not a whole lot to do on Ko Kradan -- but then again, that's sort of the point. You can easily fill your days lying in the sun and admiring the splendid views out over Ko Muk, Ko Libong and the mainland.

If you're feeling a little more active, you can snorkel out to the nearby reefs in the hope of glimpsing a sea turtle or lionfish. That said, the reefs are pretty banged up around Ko Kradan, so you're more likely to see lots of fish rather than too much in the way of spectacular corals.

There are a handful of isolated beaches on the west side of the island, most of which are only accessible by kayak. Sunset Beach, however, is reachable via a path beyond Paradise Lost Resort, and here you'll find a small but tranquil beach with large pieces of coral sticking out from the sand. Sunset Beach is a good spot for strumming a guitar in the evening and for -- you guessed it -- taking in the Andaman Sea sunset. Plus, it's become somewhat notorious as a popular skinny dipping site. Note that if you go to Sunset Beach during low season expect to see a lot of litter washed in from the tide. Every year in November, though, the Paradise Lost gang clean it up.

Ko Kradan is also the site of the underwater weddings the TAT organise every year, so if you're looking for a unique way to tie the knot, Ko Kradan could be an option.

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Text and/or map last updated on 28th December, 2011.

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