Photo: Hit the jungle.

Caves and waterfalls on Ko Lanta

Our rating:

The south of Ko Lanta has a couple of caves and one small waterfall to check out if you feel like getting dirty.





Tham Mai Kaew With a deep and scary nature that makes it accessible only with one of the local guides who hang out at the entrance, this cave has long tunnels leading to a cathedral-size chamber with a cool pool at the centre. Expect to pothole through tight pinches, climb down bamboo ladders and pull yourself up steep rocks with the help of ropes. You will get muddy. A two- to three-hour tour costs 200 baht per person, headlamp included.

From inside looking out. Photo taken in or around Caves and waterfalls on Ko Lanta, Ko Lanta, Thailand by David Luekens.

From inside looking out. Photo: David Luekens

To reach Tham Mai Kaew, take the main cross-island road from Baan Khlong Tob (near Khlong Nin beach) and look for a sign-posted right turn after less than one km. From there it’s another km to the entrance on a dirt road hosting a few cheap bungalow joints. Para Hut is a good one if you seek the quiet life of a spelunker.

Tham Seua “Tiger Cave” is less strenuous than Tham Mai Kaew and can be visited with or without a guide, often in conjunction with Khlong Jak Waterfall and the far southern beaches. We were told it goes deeper than most people know, so splurging the 300 baht for a guide might be worth it if you’re a serious caver. At least one guide speaks English. There is also a fee—it seems to vary but we’ve been quoted 150 baht—for the privilege of walking through a guy’s lawn.

To reach Tham Seua, head south past Khlong Nin and look for a sign pointing left soon after you pass Diamond Cliff Restaurant.

On the way to Khlong Jak Waterfall. Photo taken in or around Caves and waterfalls on Ko Lanta, Ko Lanta, Thailand by David Luekens.

On the way to Khlong Jak Waterfall. Photo: David Luekens

Khlong Jak Waterfall Seven-metre-high Nam Tok Khlong Jak cascades down a vertical cliff shrouded in lush jungle, emptying into a clear pool that’s good for a dip if the water is high enough. While it’s a refreshing spot from roughly June through November, the falls become a trickle during dry season and often disappoint those who make the two-km hike. But the trail leads past impressive old growth and is one of the only well-known options on Ko Lanta for a taste of ... please log in to read the rest of this story.


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Popular attractions in Ko Lanta

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A selection of some of our favourite places to stay in Ko Lanta.


What next?

 Browse our independent reviews of places to stay in and around Ko Lanta.
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