Ko Tao is so big, we’ve split it up into areas, select one of the below for detailed accommodation and food listings in that area. Sights and general overviews for Ko Tao as a whole can be found via the icons above. Don’t know where to start? Read an overview of Ko Tao’s different areas.
Never heard of bouldering? If you took a guess… you’d probably be right. It’s all about climbing boulders. And Ko Tao is becoming increasingly popular with the bouldering community due to the quantity and variety of granite boulders here to climb.
Bouldering is a discipline in climbing that’s growing quickly; put simply, it’s the practice of climbing boulders without lines or ropes. Originally it started out as a way to practice techniques and get experience ahead of “normal” rockclimbing. Climbers use a crash mat to cushion falls, usually wear climbing shoes and maybe carry some chalk, but nothing else. Unlike solo climbing though its climbs are usually less than seven metres high.
Boulders are scattered literally everywhere here on Ko Tao and more are being discovered all the time as land is cleared for development. If you’re interested in giving this sport a go, while you can just go for it on your own, you might want to pop into Goodtime Adventures for advice and pay any land fees if required — not all the land you see is publicly owned and you should check first and carry receipts for any payments you make.
Do be warned that the boulder at the south end of Sairee Beach is sacred and on no account should be climbed. Do be considerate with noise and of course don’t climb anywhere you are going to disturb someone in their home.
It’s now quite a common sight to see climbers riding their bikes around the island with their crash mats strapped to their backs. If you are going to be one of them, then there’s a great guide that you can download directly from Goodtime Adventures, with the boulders marked and graded and additional tips.
If you are not travelling with your own gear, they offer hire from their office on south Sairee: shoes are 350 baht, chalk 150 baht and a crash pad is 300 baht for 24 hours.
Don’t forget, if climbing is too much, there’s always plain hiking.
By Ayesha Cantrell
Last updated on 4th October, 2013.