BEST THINGS TO DO IN KOH LANTA
Best things to do in Koh Lanta Thailand
The sky is burning over Koh Lanta. Thailand is known for its beautiful islands. Most are designed for mass tourism, but there are also quiet, hardly discovered islands. Koh Lanta, not far from Phuket, is one such place.
A few adventurous steps made of bamboo lead down the mountain slope. Even while climbing, the view falls on the turquoise blue of the sea. Once at the bottom, you enter the fine sand of the most beautiful beach on Koh Lanta: Nui Bay.
The sickle shape is almost perfect. The Andaman Sea with its crystal clear water opens up in front of you, in the back a mountain landscape rises from the lushest tropical green you can imagine. This is what an island paradise looks like.
Amazingly, Nui Bay is still an insider tip on Koh Lanta. A wooden beach bar by the water, another on the mountainside, there is nothing more here. It is certainly due to the fact that the beach is hidden far in the southwest of the island.
Presumably for sheer convenience, most visitors get stuck on one of the many beaches further north, where most of the accommodations can be found. And it’s not that there is a lack of beauty there.
The liveliest and most popular beach is Long Beach in the far north. Here you can celebrate, sip cocktails or dine with pleasure in one of the many restaurants. This is also the right place for those who want to jog or sweat during their morning workout.
In addition, a tourist infrastructure consisting of diving schools, shops, fitness studios and hostels has formed around the beach. You will hardly find a dreamy magic here. There is it further south – at Relax Beach.
People meet at Relax Beach for sunset
Coming from the coastal road, vacationers have to maneuver a little through the residential complexes on their first visit until they find the barracuda bar. But it is worth the effort.
As the name suggests, you can get fresh barracuda dishes here every day. Whether in sweet and sour, curry or pepper sauce, the juicy, tender predatory fish at unbeatable prices is easy to fall for. And so there is often a loyal regular audience here that can be enjoyed.
At Relax Beach you also meet for sunset, which is hardly anywhere more beautiful. On the right side, fishing boats moor in a small bay, on the left a wild palm grove rises.
The Phi Phi Islands, known for the dreamy Maya Bay, stand out on the horizon. Until recently, countless tourist boats were parked there every day, but the corona pandemic has made this endangered natural paradise more deserted than it has been for years. A boat trip there from Koh Lanta is again recommended.
The nightly drama at Relax Beach: The sun hits the sea, disappears, and suddenly the horizon turns yellow, orange and red at the same time. The cloud formations appear like a fire inferno and simulate a burning sky over Koh Lanta. What a spectacle.
Holidays on Koh Lanta with the moped
Strictly speaking, Koh Lanta consists of two islands. The northern part, Lanta Noi, is connected to the southern part, Lanta Yai, by a bridge. However, the entire infrastructure is located in the southern part. Yai can, in turn, be divided into the busier north and the quieter south, with all the beautiful beaches on the west coast. If you are undecided, it is best to choose an overnight accommodation in the center of the island.
The region of Klong Nin is ideal for this. Inland, away from the coastal road, you will find the best accommodations for every budget – whether a romantic bungalow or an entire house with a pool that you share with friends. However, if you want to enjoy the diversity of the island, you need a vehicle, preferably a moped.
Even inexperienced drivers have the opportunity to develop their skills on Koh Lanta, as the traffic is manageable in contrast to the Thai cities. Nevertheless, caution should be exercised. Quite a few tourists are marked by abrasions after accidents. Unexpected potholes, speed bumps, fine sand or mud in the curve can quickly become fatal.
With a moped, a holiday on Koh Lanta becomes a journey of discovery. The best way to do this is to take the 25-kilometer road along the west coast. The International Buddhist Meditation Center is located about two kilometers south of Klong Nin. The view from the oasis of calm on the coast alone is a dream. However, it is primarily about the inner workings of the guests. Twice a day a monk leads meditation while walking and sitting.
An idyllic accommodation in the east of the island
Further south, just beyond Nui Bay, there is a small junction that leads inland to an elephant camp. This facility, which is very controversial from the perspective of animal welfare, should be ignored.
Instead, you can take a short hike from here, which first leads to an impressive bat cave and then to a picturesque waterfall. If you want to hike even more and discover nature, such as mangrove and rainforest, visit the Mu Koh Lanta National Park on the southern tip of the island.
A detour to the east side of the island is also worthwhile. There is Old Town, the old founding town with its traditional buildings. The small coastal village with a harbor, from where boats go to neighboring islands, is ideal for travelers who prefer to spend their time with locals rather than other tourists.
Tips and information for Thailand
Arrival: Usually you fly directly to Bangkok from Germany. Several airlines operate between Bangkok and the coastal city of Krabi. The flight time is around an hour. From Krabi there is a shuttle bus to Koh Lanta. The island is close to the mainland and can be reached in a quarter of an hour by ferry.
Climate and travel time: The climate is tropical and warm all year round with daytime temperatures above 30 degrees. The best travel time is between December and April, the rainy season begins in May. In the following months up to November it is humid with partly heavy rain showers and a choppy sea.
Health: Vaccinations are not mandatory, hepatitis A is recommended as a travel vaccination. According to the Federal Foreign Office, the risk of malaria is low at best.