Not sure if this should go on the Malaysia or Thailand forums so I'll start by trying Thailand...
We're a family of 4, wishing to travel from Langkawi to Ko Sukorn in December, and trying to work out the best, most stress-free route to follow. The place we're staying on Ko Sukorn can organise a (very expensive) transfer from Pak Bara Pier, but I can't work out whether there are boats that travel to Pak Bara from Langkawi. Are there any public boats going from Pak Bara to Ko Sukorn? I know that it's possible to get a boat from Langkawi to Satun and then bus from Satun to Trang and then road transfer and boat to Ko Sukorn, but that seems to involve going a long way north to come south again. Any ideas? Thanks.
#1 chopster has been a member since 3/5/2014. Posts: 4
There are no direct public boats from Pakbara to Ko Sukorn that I'm aware of. From Langkawi you'll need to either go through Ko Lipe (and would probably need to change boats there) or the mainland -- either way I wouldn't expect that portion of the trip to be a problem (just check in with a Langkawi travel agent when you're there). Once in Pakbara, it also shouldn't be a problem to book a minibus or songthaew straight to Tasae pier, though I'm not sure what times these would leave... Worst case scenario would be arranging a private taxi in Pakbara or getting stuck there for an overnight.
An agent on Langkawi may be able to arrange the whole trip; they definitely could for more popular islands but perhaps not for Sukorn. I'm pretty sure that a Trang-bound minibus from Pakbara could drop you at Tasae (or at least link you to a songthaew that's going there), and those leave continually throughout the day. Otherwise you could take the minibus straight from Pakbara to Trang and transfer there (could also go through Satun as you mentioned) -- Wunderbar (www.wunderbar-trang.com) is a reputable Trang agent with a cafe near the train station; you could contact her for a definitive answer on when the minibus / songthaew goes to Tasae / Sukorn. I'd expect a transfer on a public minibus from Pakbara to Ko Sukorn to run around 250 baht per person, not including transport to your accommodation once on Sukorn (probably best to get your accommodation to pick you up there). For a private taxi you're looking at somewhere between 1,000 - 2,000 baht.
I expect to be down that way in November and will get better transport info for Sukorn at that point. In the meantime the people at www.kohlipethailand.com do a good job of keeping up with the Andaman boat / minibus schedules and can probably provide you better info if you contact them. However it's low season now so they might not be able to give definitive info as schedules for the coming season don't usually take shape until around September/October. But changes from the previous season are usually minimal.
Thanks DLuek for such a detailed response. That's really helpful.
#3 chopster has been a member since 3/5/2014. Posts: 4