BEST THINGS TO DO IN KOH CHANG
VISIT THE TROPICAL ISLAND KOH CHANG TRAVEL GUIDE
Everything you Need to Know about Koh Chang
Shaped like Thailand’s national symbol and nestled off Trat province, the easternmost part of the country bordering Cambodia, the island combines the flawless beauty of an emerald-coloured ocean, white sandy beaches and lush tropical jungle all in one.
Thanks to its enviable exposure to the vast expanse of the Gulf of Thailand, Koh Chang is home to unspoiled natural wonders like waterfalls, river estuaries and a dozen of pristine beaches, each catering to a wide range of travelers from independent backpackers, honeymooners to family. And with its rapid growth of an impressive variety of accommodation ranging from budget-friendly huts to five-star pool villas, the island has graciously emerged as one of the hottest exotic getaways you simply can’t afford to miss!
Hotels in Koh Chang run from ultra luxurious five star resorts with fine dining restaurants and spas on site, right through to modest guesthouses offering fan rooms, ocean views and sounds of lapping waves as you sleep. Below is a selection of recommended hotels and resorts that offer excellent value for money – in our most popular Koh Chang locations. Browse through our website to discover more great offers and don’t forget, take a look at our Last minute hotels in Koh Chang from Latestays.com for some excellent last minute bargains on Koh Chang hotels!
Koh Chang is located in Trat Province in the east of Thailand and is around four hours from the Thai capital of Bangkok.
Koh Chang is rife with wonderful unspoiled nature and the locals’ undisturbed ways of life. Well-suited for everyone in the family, waterfalls are among the most popular attractions on the island. The Shrine of Chao Por Koh Chang, the most revered shrine, is believed to bring peace and good luck to the people on the island. Kids will love the wonderment of the illuminating fireflies in the mangrove area of the island. If you want to see how the locals go about their daily routines, make sure to visit one of the fishing villages along the further south of the island.
For a glimpse of how the locals live, visit fishing villages along the further south of the island. Bang Bao Bay is home to one of the largest fisherman’s communities on Koh Chang. While you’re there, don’t forget to sample what could be the freshest seafood you’ll ever have.SHOW MAP
There are about five waterfalls on Koh Chang. The most popular and easily accessible ones are Klong Plu Waterfall and Thanmayom Waterfall, both located in Klong Prao area. Klong Plu Waterfall is the only waterfall on the west side and can be reached easily by bike or motorbike from White Sand and Kai Bae beaches. This three-floor waterfall is about 400 metres away from Klong Plu Ranger station.
The Shrine of Chao Por Koh Chang
Not too far from Ao Thammachat pier is the highly-revered shrine of Chao Por and Chao Mae Koh Chang (the Godfather and Godmother Deities of Koh Chang). Legend has it that many prayers have been answered and many wishes granted.SHOW MAP
Abundant of fireflies illuminating the night forests can be viewed in the island’s mangroves during the cooler months (from November to Janurary). Take a tour or rent a boat to cruise along the waters and revel in this magical experience. Contact your hotel for more details regarding the tours and where to rent a boat.
Koh Chang Activities
Koh Chang is in fact so much more than just the white sand and blue sea. Countless of fun and exhilarating things to see and do can be had while you’re vacationing on the island. Nature lovers will love Koh Chang’s waterfalls – the attractions once frequented by the previous kings of Thailand. For the spiritual side of things, visit the Shrine of Chao Por Koh Chang and pray for unrelenting sunny sky. Alternatively, you can learn how to sizzle up your favourite Thai dishes from the island’s many Thai cooking schools. If you’re a little sore from bus or boat riding, take advantage of great massages including traditional Thai massage and the must-have foot massage. Other interesting and worth-doing activities include fireflies viewing, a visit to an elephant camp, fishing villages, kayaking, canoeing and even getting a tattoo.
While some of these activities you can plan on your own, others are more convenient, time-saving and cost-effective if you take one of the organised tours. Most hotels and resorts usually have a tour desk available in their lobby area, or if not, plenty of tour agents located along the main road will be more than willing to help you find a good deal package.
Koh Chang Spa & Health
Thanks to its unspoiled landscapes and lush jungle-covered mountains, Koh Chang makes for a perfect getaway destination to relax, unwind as well as rejuvenate. Be prepared to indulge in the ultimate pampering as most hotels and resorts on the island provide superb spa facilities, treatments and massage services.
Plush resorts like Amari Emerald Cove Resort & Spa on Klong Prao Beach and Koh Chang Kacha Resort & Spa on White Sand Beach, among others, are renowned for offering an excellent range of spa treatments. The island also have clinics, hospitals and drug stores available in case of emergencies and illnesses.
And for your total well-being
Some hotels and resorts also feature a fitness centre, sauna, steam and Jacuzzi which guests can use for free of charge. Need to shed some sweat? A small, independent gym can also be found in the Klong Prao Beach area. Alternatively, beach sports and activities like swimming, kayaking, canoeing, Frisbee, volleyball, football and jogging are also a fun way to exercise.
Most convenient shops and 7 Eleven normally carry basic medication like Tylenol and tiger balms. Proper drug stores with on-duty physician can be found in major beaches. Each beach has its own clinic, especially in ‘moo ban’ (villages). Major beaches like White Sand, Klong Prao, Kai Bae and Lonely also have a branch of small hospital and a dental clinic (located in Klong Prao Beach) available.
Although notorious for vicious mosquitoes, Koh Chang is generally malaria safe. However, in order to avoid the more prevalent dengue fever, make sure to wear long sleeved shirts and trousers in the evening if you plan to go out and about. Unless you’re staying in a thatch-roofed hut, mosquitoes are not a problem as most hotels and resorts’ rooms are usually void of them. However, for extra protection, insect repellent spray or lotion is recommended, especially for young children.
Independent spa facility
Bodiwork Spa, the island’s most notable independent spa facility is located in three different beaches, White Sand Beach (at Koh Chang Kacha Resort & Spa), Klong Prao Beach (VJ Plaza) and Kai Bae Beach. Operated by veteran professionals, not only does Bodiwork Spa feature an extensive menu of quality treatments and services using the finest natural ingredients, it also offers well-established training programs and courses for spa therapists, owners as well as those who are interested.
The training includes all aspects of spa treatments, products, services and management. Some of the services include Holistic Treatment, Aroma Treatment, Crystal Spa Treatment, Aesthetic Treatment and Indulgent Programs, to mention but a few. SHOW MAP
The local touch
For affordable massage services, many beachside huts – run by the locals – offer a traditional Thai massage as well as foot massage (prices range from 200 to 400 baht per person and per hour). Although the services may not be on par with those offered at the leading hotels and resorts, the beachside location of these massage huts and the friendly local touch make up for it.
Nothing is more relaxing than having your body pampered while listening to the sound of the waves lapping against the shore. Barbers and salons by the locals are also on offer if you need dying, braiding, trimming, cutting or even shaving.
Koh Chang Sports & Recreation
Kayaking, Snorkeling and Diving
More invigorating activities can also be enjoyed on Koh Chang. Canoeing and kayaking to nearby islands or beaches provides a fun workout and a great way to break out a sweat. Fascinating underwater world is also not to be missed. Snorkeling and diving tours are offered by many tour operators found in abundance on the island. For some family fun, try a mini golf in Kai Bae Beach area.
Most Booked HOTELS Rating
- Sea View Koh Chang4.4/ 5
- Mercure Koh Chang Hideaway4.0/ 5
- The Chill Resort & Spa Koh Chang4.8/ 5
- The Emerald Cove Koh Chang4.5/ 5
- The Dewa Koh Chang4.3/ 5
- Centara Koh Chang Tropicana Resort4.3/ 5
- KC Grande Resort & Spa4.3/ 5
- AWA Koh Chang4.3/ 5
- The Aiyapura Koh Chang4.3/ 5
- Santhiya Tree Koh Chang Resort4.6/ 5
Canoeing & Kayaking in Koh Chang
Canoeing and kayaking offers great workout and a cheap alternative to reach a nearby island. Canoe and kayak rental usually costs 100 an hour, and 500 baht for a full day. Some resorts offer these free of charge for their guests.
Golfing in Koh Chang
Hold that thought for a second! Golfing on Koh Chang isn’t the same deal you’d normally find anywhere else. So, don’t expect a proper 18-hole type, but a fun miniature version of it! Located in the northern end of Kai Bea Beach, mini golf provides a great entertainment for everyone in the family.
Snorkeling & Diving in Koh Chang
The best time to dive is during the cool season from around October/November to April. The west and the south of the island, between Koh Chang and Koh Kood, is an excellent spot to dive. Snorkeling on other small islands off Koh Chang like Koh Kham, Koh Rayang, Koh Wai and Koh Laoya are also worth checking out.
One of the most famous and reliable diving operators includes Ploy Scuba Diving, which provides free transfer to and from the island’s main resorts as well as instructions in major languages.
Koh Chang Nightlife
What to Do at Night in Koh Chang
Besides its firm status as one of the most idyllic islands in Thailand, Koh Chang also caters for party animals and those who seek to liven their evenings while they’re on the island. Expect all kinds of nightlife options from something ‘soft’ like a relaxing chat over delicious coffee at the many cafés, lively pubs – where live music, sports on big screen TV and great drinks are on offer, to wild and rowdy beach and beer bars. Depending on which beach you’re staying, nightlife in each area differs in terms of the crowds, types of music and the vibe. For an ultimate blast, head to White Sand Beach for a night of revelries and fun crowds, which usually goes on well past midnight. Plenty of cafes, beach bars, beer bars, pubs and clubs can be found in almost every beach, especially the popular ones like White Sand Beach, Klong Prao, Kai Bae and Lonely beach, the latter being the hub for full-and half-moon parties held on a regular basis. Have a look in each of our beach guide for more details on where and what’s on offer.
Koh Chang Restaurants
Where and What to Eat in Koh Chang
Dining options on Koh Chang are diverse and plentiful. No matter what pleases your palate, you’re bound to find it on the island’s many beaches and areas. Most hotels and resorts usually feature an excellent choice dining venues serving a wide range of popular local and international dishes. The choice extends to scrumptious cuisine like Italian and Indian. Found flanked the main road, street food or roadside stalls are a great (and cheap) alternative to the sometimes pricey resorts’ restaurants, especially if you want to sample authentic and tasty local food like ‘som tam’ (papaya salad), ‘tom yum goong’ (hot and sour shrimp soup) and ‘ka prao gai’ (stir-fried chicken in basil leaves), among other things. In addition to local and international cuisine, a choice of seafood, caught fresh off the ocean, is also readily available and can be prepared in a variety of ways to suit your taste. And to complete Koh Chang’s fantastic and memorable dining experience, do not miss seafood restaurants – with open grilling and cooking stations – found on major beaches like Klong Prao Beach, White Sand Beach, Kai Bae Beach and Lonely Beach.
Koh Chang Shopping
Where to Shop and What to Buy in Koh Chang
Although shopping on Koh Chang can be very limited, it still offers some interesting items not found anywhere else in Thailand (like T-shirts with the word ‘Koh Chang’ on it). Shops are often located close together along the road of each beach. An easy stroll along the road will find you small shops one after another. Shops on every beach are pretty much the same so don’t expect much variety other than the usual mix of souvenirs, beachwear, Thai paintings, CDs and DVDs and sunglasses. Trinket (handmade accessories and scarves, among others) sellers usually roam the beach and displaying their products right in front of your resort’s beachfront area.
Some major beaches like White Sand and Kai Bae are home to Speedo and BSC (a brand of swimming suits) shops. For a variety of unique lamps, make your way to Portobello shops in White Sand Beach (one located next to and the other just across the street from Koh Chang Kacha Resort & Spa). These chic air-conditioned shops are probably the most modern-looking shops on the island. Some also has a nice collection of new and used paperbacks available in different languages. Explore the shops in your area and enjoy what Koh Chang has to offer