With vast expanses of soft, ivory sand, glistening, azure waters and verdant, tropical forest-covered hills, Khao Lak exudes natural beauty and mystique. The beach town, while smaller and less glamorous than nearby, and often overcrowded, Phuket, is coming in to its own as a highly coveted holiday destination. Full of beautiful rugged landscapes and modern amenities, Khao Lak offers visitors a quiet and relaxing retreat in which to explore Thailand’s stunning west coast and charming culture.
Known for its warm and friendly atmosphere and uncompromised beauty, Khao Lak truly is the ultimate paradise. The 12 kilometres of palm and casuarinas-fringed coastline, backed by a lush rainforest, makes for some of the most idyllic beaches and picturesque views. The town, which was hardest hit by the tsunami in 2004, has recovered to become a prime destination for sun-worshiping, adventure-seeking holidaymakers. With incredible dive sites, thrilling inland adventures and a vibrant culture, there isn’t much that this town can’t offer.
Khao Lak’s greatest asset is its natural beauty. Surrounded by the warm, rich waters of the Andaman Sea, there are plenty of opportunities to lie out on the sand and explore the diverse reef below. Khao Lak beach itself is rather small, but it boasts a beautiful beach and a handful of luxurious and affordable resorts. Nang Thong is the area’s most popular beach and city centre. To the north, is the smaller, quieter, gold sand beach of Bang Niang – perfect for those seeking seclusion and tranquillity. Laem Pakarang is further up the coast. Free from the commercial influences of other beaches, it boasts rather beautiful, unspoilt terrain and beautiful vistas. For the ultimate private getaway and luxury accommodations, head to Hat Pakweeb (Hat Bang Sak).
While many may be content to lounge on the beach all day, there are plenty of excursions and fun activities that await. Centrally located, Khao Lak proper or “Khao Lak Town,” serves as the perfect base for exploring other nearby areas. With its looming peaks and lush greenery, it’s hard not to ignore the majestic forest. The expansive Khao Lak/Lam Ru National Park, which extends well into the jungle, is a mélange of dramatic sea cliffs, beautiful estuaries, dense mangroves and breath-taking waterfalls that serve as a safe haven for monkeys, langurs, tapirs, Asiatic black bears gold whiskered barbets, snakes and a variety of birds and butterflies. Many visitors make diving and island hopping a priority on their itineraries. The Similan and Surin Islands are a must-see for adventure-seekers and divers. These islands seem otherworldly with their pristine, white sand beaches, smooth, grandiose boulders, beautiful flora, diverse wildlife and clear waters. As some of the most recognized landforms of the Andaman, these nine islands make for exceptional day excursions and camping trips. The waters surrounding them are also some off the best dive sites in Thailand and the world. Meanwhile, just an hour away is the famed Phuket. Thailand’s largest island offers visitors a variety of beaches, restaurants, markets and tours.
In addition to diving and snorkelling – obligatory activities given the astonishing coral reef in the area – there are several other relaxing and fun-filled diversions on and around Khao Lak. Animal lovers will enjoy spending quality time with elephants while on a trek through the forest. Those who are up for a more physically engaging way to experience Thailand’s natural beauty can embark on bamboo rafting and canoeing trips. Meanwhile, those looking for the ultimate in relaxation can indulge in the healing waters of the hot springs. While Khao Lak has made great strides in recovering from the tsunami, its devastating effects are ever-present. The museum and memorials serve as gentle reminders of the lives lost and the power of Mother Nature.
Khao Lak is increasingly becoming the destination of choice for travellers of all ages and origins. In a wonderfully relaxed setting, the beach town provides visitors with uncompromised elegance and luxury, while still retaining is rugged allure. Undoubtedly, the natural beauty is the main attraction. With dense forests, exceptional coral reef, picturesque beaches and diverse wildlife – there is no place quite like Khao Lak.
Whether desiring rest and relaxation on the serene beaches or seeking hidden treasures and memorable wildlife encounters in the pristine waters, Khao Lak has it all. The beach town and surrounding islands of the Andaman Sea is the ultimate outdoor playground of every beach holidaymaker’s dream.
Things to do in Khao Lak
For more information about Travelbag’s custom holidays to Khao Lak, please contact us at 0871 703 4713 Costs 13p/min + network extras and speak with one of our friendly and knowledgeable experts.
While the warm weather and copious amounts of sunshine make for ideal holiday conditions, the temperatures can be uncomfortably hot and humid. Bring plenty of lightweight clothing, beachwear and comfortable shoes for walking. Cooler nights may warrant a light sweater or jacket.
With nearly 26 days of sunshine each month during the hot season, it’s imperative that visitors bring plenty of sunscreen and protection such as hats and sunglasses. Not only are there plenty of sun filled days, but the sun’s rays are also stronger here.
Pack a small first aid kit that contains pain medications and antibiotics, anti-diarrhoea medication, water purification tablets and rehydrating solutions. Insect repellent and mosquito nets are also important, though the latter is usually provided by hotels.
A small torch and pocket knife always come in handy. Waterproof bags are also good to for protecting personal items. A lot of items can be purchased on the island, however, bringing your snorkelling gear and other beach accessories may be beneficial.
Khao Lak enjoys a typical tropical weather pattern, which means that it is hot and humid year-round. There are two main seasons, the hot and the rainy.
From March to November, the northeastern monsoon brings sunny skies, much welcomed breezes and cooler nights. Daytime temperatures hover around 30°C. During this season, there are usually two hot streaks. The first is between April and May, when temperatures average 33°C, and the second is between September and October. Peak travel season is also during this time, with the December and January being the busiest.
The southwest monsoon, that persist between May and October allows for several sunny days, but brings heavy rains, winds and rough sea conditions. Travel during this time can be rewarding, with more secluded beaches and fewer crowds, however, some dive sites may not accessible because of the turbulent waves.
Check out our Blog to see some of the amazing experiences Khao Lak has to offer
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