Photo: Almost Maldivian at Ao Noi, Ko Kut.

Thailand forum

paradise lost

Posted by pad_thai on 23/7/2013 at 13:53

what is the most 'off the beaten track' island (or beach) you have visited in Thailand.

I love Thailand, I've been a couple times. I like mellow and slow - not full moon party. I've been to a few islands in Thailand (Ko Chang, Ko Tao, Ko Samet) I've also visited Ton Sai. I loved all of these places probably Ton Sai the best but I'd love to know if there are any more obscure beach/island spots I could (should visit).

Thanks!

#1 pad_thai has been a member since 23/7/2013. Location: United States. Posts: 4

Posted by Tilapia on 23/7/2013 at 19:11

I think that Koh Jum is one of the best and most underrated islands in the country. But don't tell anyone.

#2 Tilapia has been a member since 21/4/2006. Location: Canada. Posts: 1,499
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Posted by LeonardCohen1 on 23/7/2013 at 21:07

Kradan is very quiet. You mean Ton Sai near Railay? The other Ton Sai on Phi Phi is super busy.

#3 LeonardCohen1 has been a member since 24/7/2012. Posts: 2,148

Posted by DLuek on 24/7/2013 at 00:27 TF writer

If you liked Ton Sai, the first island that comes to mind is Ko Chang Noi: https://www.travelfish.org/blogs/thailand/2012/04/05/ko-chang-noi-thailands-most-laidback-island/

I missed Ko Phayam but apparently it's similar, though a little more developed from what I've gathered.

Ko Kradan might be too small for some... It's great for couples looking for a getaway. It does have a much better beach than a lot of the more offbeat islands. If it weren't for Paradise Lost, Kradan would be almost completely a midrange to high-end island. Ko Muk is good b/c you can visit Kradan on a daytrip and it's big enough to walk, hike and bicycle around.

I also really liked Ko Bulon Lae, although I saw they added a regular speedboat service in high season so maybe it's getting busier now. Ko Sukorn, Ko Libong and Ko Phra Thong are all great if you want islands that are really outside of the tourist trail. I especially liked Ko Phra Thong. With its rolling sand dunes, the savannah landscape of Phra Thong is unlike anywhere else in Thailand, and you can have massive stretches of beach all to yourself there. I've yet to hit Ko Jum, Ko Si Boya and Ko Yao Yai / Noi, but those are all supposed to be good for a similarly 'out there' vibe (and if Tiliapia says Ko Jum is all that then I'd believe it).

And then of course there are the national park islands. Of those I've been to (Similans, Ko Surin , Ko Tarutao , Ko Adang, Ko Rawi and Ko Ra), I felt Ko Surin was the best. The scenery there topped any island I've visited -- absolutely breathtaking. Similans are comparable in terms of scenery but they tend to be overrun by tour groups; Ko Surin is more laid back and has similarly incredible snorkeling, but travel around the islands is by longtail rather than speedboat at the Similans. Ko Surin also has the presence of the Moken (traditionally nomadic sea people), which adds a sort of mystical element. Tarutao is also good but in a different way. It's perfect if you're looking to jungle safari it into the rugged hills then descend down to completely empty beaches.

Though it's a lot more popular, I'm also a big fan of Ko Lipe. Great lively atmosphere and beautiful beaches, and with the bonus that you can daytrip to Ko Adang, Ko Rawi, Ko Hing Ngam etc. From Lipe you can also easily hit Ko Tarutao or Ko Bulon on the way to/from Pakbara.

Oh yeah and there's Ko Kut. I haven't been but Travelfish's founder says it's "the most beautiful island we've seen in Thailand over two decades of travel to the kingdom". That's quite an endorsement.

#4 DLuek has been a member since 19/6/2008. Location: Thailand. Posts: 1,176
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Posted by pad_thai on 24/7/2013 at 09:35

yeah, Ton Sai near Railay.
Thanks for all the suggestions, I'll look into them! You've given me a lot of procrastination material for work today.

#5 pad_thai has been a member since 23/7/2013. Location: United States. Posts: 4

Posted by LeonardCohen1 on 24/7/2013 at 10:06

Ton Sai near Railay has nothing.

#6 LeonardCohen1 has been a member since 24/7/2012. Posts: 2,148

Posted by LeonardCohen1 on 24/7/2013 at 10:07

"I'm also a big fan of Ko Lipe. Great lively atmosphere and beautiful beaches, and with the bonus that you can daytrip to Ko Adang, Ko Rawi, Ko Hing Ngam etc. From Lipe you can also easily hit Ko Tarutao or Ko Bulon on the way to/from Pakbara."

Can you do these daytrips in June/July?

#7 LeonardCohen1 has been a member since 24/7/2012. Posts: 2,148

Posted by DLuek on 25/7/2013 at 05:28 TF writer

The national park islands are officially closed then, but you can still find a longtail driver on Lipe who will take you out there so long as the seas aren't too rough. Why do you ask?

"Ton Sai near Railay has nothing."

It has very good rock climbing. And bong hits. Although the quality of the latter might not be so great.

#8 DLuek has been a member since 19/6/2008. Location: Thailand. Posts: 1,176
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Posted by LeonardCohen1 on 25/7/2013 at 09:41

Just wondering what's open and operating as I always go low season. Bong hits? geez.

The Mali resort on Lipe looks pretty awesome. I noticed they have a good deal on a garden room low season. But if tours and activities are down then I'm not sure it's worth the trouble going.

#9 LeonardCohen1 has been a member since 24/7/2012. Posts: 2,148

Posted by pad_thai on 25/7/2013 at 11:03

Some of the islands are close? I'll have to do some research for Nov.

Ton Sai DOES have good rock climbing, and I thought it was really beautiful when I was there - about 10 years ago now, sigh.

#10 pad_thai has been a member since 23/7/2013. Location: United States. Posts: 4

Posted by LeonardCohen1 on 25/7/2013 at 11:43

How many people do rock climbing in their holidays? Must be less than 0.1%.

#11 LeonardCohen1 has been a member since 24/7/2012. Posts: 2,148

Posted by pad_thai on 25/7/2013 at 12:43

I did. That's where I learned to climb, it's been a hobby ever since. My boyfriend at the time gave it a go but it wasn't his thing. I continued to climb without him though, much to his irritation.

#12 pad_thai has been a member since 23/7/2013. Location: United States. Posts: 4

Posted by DLuek on 27/7/2013 at 22:44 TF writer

pad_thai, as I recall the national park islands open either November 1 or mid November... Just check in the individual destination pages for each to find out. Other islands are getting into full swing in November so no worries there. Island hopping routes and other ferries also start running in early November.

Leonrad, a big proportion of people who go to Railay/Ton Sai go specifically for rock climbing. It's considered to be among the best climbing destinations in the world.

#13 DLuek has been a member since 19/6/2008. Location: Thailand. Posts: 1,176
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Posted by LeonardCohen1 on 28/7/2013 at 19:32

I've been to Krabi many times and kayaking and snorkelling trips are far more popular. Hardly anyone does rock climbing.

#14 LeonardCohen1 has been a member since 24/7/2012. Posts: 2,148

Posted by lanathai on 1/8/2013 at 23:31 TF writer

Ko Tarutao and Ko Lipe are both beautiful, though the latter's getting built up -- these are my favourite Thai islands visited so far. I have not yet been to Ko Yao Noi, which is about 40 minutes by boat off Phuket 's east coast but everyone I know who's gone there absolutely loves it. Beaches are apparently not as nice as Phuket but great views out to Phang Nga Bay and laid-back local scene. Hope to get there soon!

#15 lanathai has been a member since 21/7/2011. Location: Thailand. Posts: 36
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Posted by alisonmilliken on 6/8/2013 at 02:25

I loved going to Trang in the off season, was so quiet, just amazing. Ko Muk (just off Trang was a highlight - we were the only ones at the Emerald Cave, was fantastic.) But shh, don't tell everyone!

#16 alisonmilliken has been a member since 10/12/2006. Posts: 70

Posted by LeonardCohen1 on 6/8/2013 at 07:56

Emerald cave gets tours in low season. Nice enough beach but it wasn't that big a deal. Tham Lae Khao Kob was more interesting IMO.

#17 LeonardCohen1 has been a member since 24/7/2012. Posts: 2,148

Posted by christof on 13/8/2013 at 11:43

I loved Koh Phra Thong so much that I ended up living there (here). For almost 5 years now.

#18 christof has been a member since 23/7/2009. Location: United Kingdom. Posts: 55
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