DESTINATION GUIDE

Koh Chang: a complete guide

Sander & Mariska - Go To Thailand

Koh Chang is one of Thailand’s most relaxing islands. The beaches are beautiful and the coastline long. From hip beaches with lots of backpackers to the deserted, but stunning, shores of the southeast, Koh Chang has it all. We always love returning to this lovely, tropical paradise in the east of Thailand!

– Sander & Mariska

Sights in Koh Chang

Koh Chang is big. In fact, it’s Thailand’s second largest island. Does this mean there’s a lot to do? Well… no, not really. Besides the beaches, the underwater world and a few waterfalls, there’s not much else to do. But that’s why you come to Koh Chang: to chill out!

Ao Kai Tao in Koh Chang

Koh Chang’s beaches are, of course, its greatest attraction. From beautiful, long bays to secluded, unspoiled little gems.

BB Divers Koh Chang

Koh Chang has a lot of great snorkeling and diving spots. Book an underwater trip and marvel at the coral and the colorful fish. We think BB Divers is the best!

Go supping at Klong Kloi Beach on Koh Chang

Stand-up Paddling, otherwise known as Supping, has become very popular. A friendly lad named Tommy rents boards at Klong Kloi Beach. Highly recommended!

4. Klong Plu Waterfall

Klong Plu Waterfall in Koh Chang

A jungle trail will lead you to this waterfall, where you can take a dip and spot turtles. Visit during the rainy season (June to October).

5. Kai Bae Viewpoint

Kai Bae Viewpoint Koh Chang

An accessible viewpoint, slightly north of Lonely Beach, with four small islands on the horizon. Especially beautiful during sunset.

Tree Top Adventure Park in Koh Chang

Looking for adventure? Visit the Tree Top Adventure Park for a two-hour trail along the treetops of Koh Chang.

7. Kayaking

Ao Kai Tao in Koh Chang

Rent a kayak and paddle your way to the uninhabited island of Koh Man Nai for that true tropical island feeling. There’s also a private beach.

Crossing around Koh Chang

Koh Chang’s roads are suitable for fun road trips. Make the trip to the southeastern coast of the island. It’s almost completely deserted there.

9. Deserted cruise ship

Cruiseship The Galaxy - Aunchaleena Beach on Koh Chang

In the southwest of Koh Chang, you’ll find an almost entirely deserted resort. It’s also home to a massive cruise ship (The Galaxy) that’s just rusting away. Creepy!

10. Bang Bao Pier

Bang Bao Pier in Koh Chang

A touristic pier from where you can take fun boat trips. You’ll also find some excellent (seafood) restaurants on the water, like The Buddha View.

Beach yoga

Want to relax a little after a busy day? Join Natalie’s yoga classes near the Aire Beach Café, within walking distance from Lonely Beach.

Beaches in Koh Chang

Koh Chang is a fantastic beach destination. Each beach has its personality and attracts a different crowd. Whether you want to party till deep in the night or enjoy the quiet beach life with the family, Koh Chang’s got the beach for you!

1. Wai Chaek Beach

Peace and quiet - Wai Chaek Beach on Koh Chang

Probably the most beautiful, but also the most out of the way beach on Koh Chang. With rows of palm trees, crystal clear water and a mangrove forest at its extremity.

2. Aunchaleena Beach

Aunchaleena Beach on Koh Chang

This beach was part of the luxurious Aunchaleena Beach Front Resort, which is deserted and dilapidated these days. The beach is as gorgeous as ever though!

3. Klong Kloi Beach

Striking a pose at Klong Kloi Beach on Koh Chang

Our favorite beach on Koh Chang. A relaxed, pleasant atmosphere and bungalows on the beach that range from simple to semi-luxurious. Ideal for families as well.

4. Bailan Beach

Chilling at Lisca Beach on Koh Chang

Bailan Beach used to be rocky, but these days it’s been covered by sand which makes it easier to relax.

5. Lonely Beach

See and be seen at Lonely Beach on Koh Chang

Koh Chang’s main backpackers’ hotspot, with a nice village nearby with a wide choice of restaurants and bars. The beach is in excellent condition.

6. Kai Bae Beach

Swinging at Kai Bae Beach en Koh Chang

This is Koh Chang’s main family beach, and it’s all you could wish for. You can swim in the sea, there are beautiful bungalows, and restaurants are within walking distance.

7. Klong Prao Beach

The perfect refreshment at Klong Prao Beach on Koh Chang

A long, quiet bay with a central location on the west coast, ideal for flashpackers who love a romantic stroll on the beach.

8. White Sand Beach

Dining on the beach - White Sand Beach Resort on Koh Chang

The liveliest, most busy, part of Koh Chang, with a lot of restaurants and bars in the southern part of White Sand Beach. For the real beach enthusiast.

9. Amber Sands Beach

Ban Laem Thakian at Amber Sands Resort on Koh Chang

An extraordinary beach on Koh Chang’s deserted east coast. For anyone that’s into small-scale tourism, this is the place to be!

10. Long Beach

Long Beach on Koh Chang

An unspoiled gem in Koh Chang’s southeast. These days there’s an entirely paved road, making the beach ‘easy’ to reach.

Hotels in Koh Chang

Koh Chang’s west coast, in particular around Lonely Beach, is the island’s most developed part. Here you’ll encounter many hotels, budget bungalows and beach bars playing party music. Travel to the island’s east coast for a more restful stay. Tourism there is much more low-key, and you’ll mostly encounter small fishing villages. Here’s a list of 10 amazing accommodations for an unforgettable stay on Koh Chang!

Blue Lagoon

1. Blue Lagoon

Great location In nature Fantastic restaurant

$$ – This place is amazing! Blue Lagoon is a holiday park built around a lagoon. The bungalows on the water (make sure you book one of those) are awesome; you can kayak your way from your own balcony to the beach. Besides that, it comes with an amazing restaurant, there’s small shop and you can participate in fun activities such as cooking and yoga classes. As far we’re concerned, this is the best place to stay on Koh Chang!

The Dewa

2. The Dewa

Fantastic location Luxury spa Family friendly

$$$ – This wonderful, small-scale resort is located in the most beautiful part of Koh Chang and it’s a great place to unwind. Go for a swim in the huge 700 m² swimming pool or wander down to the sea (where lounge chairs are available). The villas are furnished beautifully, with modern style interiors. The staff is incredibly friendly, there are 3 restaurants and a luxury wellness center.

Klong Kloi Cottage

3. Klong Kloi Cottage

Relaxing atmosphere Fantastic beach Very kind family

$ – These wonderful, modest bungalows are situated in a quiet part of the beach; somewhere to relax, not do anything and just enjoy the sea view from your hammock. The nightlife center is a 10-minute ride away by taxi or motorbike.

The Mangrove Hideaway

4. The Mangrove Hideaway

Kayaking in the mangrove Thai village Jacuzzi

$$$ – This gorgeous place lies in one of Koh Chang’s quieter parts, near the water and on a fantastic natural location. Everything here’s just right: the warm interior, the lovely food, the pleasant atmosphere and Olivier, the wonderful and helpful owner!

Pajamas Koh Chang

5. Pajamas Koh Chang

Nice atmosphere Modern interior Near the beach

$ – This hostel wouldn’t be out of place on Pinterest; that’s how beautiful it looks on the inside. At night there are fun parties and the atmosphere is very laid-back. The staff is very kind and helpful. It also has some lovely, mid-range private rooms.

Amber Sands Beach Resort

6. Amber Sands Beach Resort

On the beach Quiet location Luxury

$$$ – Amber Sands is run by a very kind Thai family and it’s a great place to unwind. There are only eight bungalows, but all of them are fully equipped. Days can be spent at the swimming pool, or on the beautiful, almost private, beach with golden sand. The location is rather secluded and a fair way away from restaurants – so renting a motorbike is highly recommended if you want to explore more of the area. The downside is its location near the pier, where the ferries going to and fro can be heard all day.

Lisca Glamping

7. Lisca Glamping

Luxury tents Fantastic restaurant Unforgettable experience

$$ – Rent one of Lisca Glamping’s luxury tents on a beautiful stretch of beach for a special, romantic stay. There’s a small restaurant that serves excellent Thai and Italian food (breakfast is included). There are two types of tents (check closely on Airbnb before booking) that are very comfortable with soft beds and private bathrooms. A unique experience!

You can book your stay at Lisca Glamping via Airbnb. Not yet a member of Airbnb? Then click here for $ 38 off your first booking!

Sea View Resort and Spa

8. Sea View Resort and Spa

Private beach Fantastic view Gorgeous breakfast

$$$ – This resort offers everything you could ask for in a luxury stay on a tropical island. With its multiple swimming pools, playgrounds, kayak rentals, snorkel rentals and a lovely beach, Kai Bae, right on your doorstep, this is the ideal place to stay for families.

Garden Resort

9. Garden Resort

Beautiful bungalows Quiet location Nice breakfast

$$ – This gorgeous resort is situated in a beautiful and quiet location near Kai Bae Beach. The bungalows are beautiful, clean and all lie around a swimming pool. There’s a small village with shops and restaurants nearby and because of its central location, you can get to Lonely Beach or Klong Prao by motorbike in no time.

Nature Beach Resort

10. Nature Beach Resort

On the beach Nice bungalows Swimming pool

$ – If you would like to spend the night on Lonely Beach, Nature Beach Resort is your best choice. Their bungalows are clean and very comfortable. The atmosphere is laid-back, it has a nice swimming pool and a restaurant with a sea view. The only downside is that the music played at the swimming pool doesn’t stop until midnight – which shouldn’t come as much of a surprise to anyone wanting to stay at Lonely Beach.

Restaurants in Koh Chang

We’ve had some excellent meals on Koh Chang. Over the last years, the selection has become much wider, which is, of course, good news if you’re a tourist! From traditional Thai dishes to freshly baked bread, Koh Chang has plenty culinary delights on offer. These are our 10 recommendations, in completely random order.

1. Buddha View Restaurant

28 Moo 1 Bang Bao Pier
A perfect setting for a romantic dinner on the water. Good staff and a wide selection of both western and Thai dishes. Definitely worth a visit!

2. Blue Lagoon

30/5 Moo 4 Klong Prao
Our favorite lunch spot on Koh Chang, especially because of its amazing location: it’s surrounded by a magnificent mangrove forest. Food is excellent as well.

3. Aire Beach Cafe

Left of the entrance of Lonely Beach
Hip and trendy beach café round the corner from Lonely Beach. Natalie, an American, will prepare you the best smoothie bowls with fresh health shakes.

4. Lisca Beach

Southern tip of Bailan Beach
Small Italian restaurant on the beach with a great atmosphere. Go there to have a burger or a pizza if you want a break from all the Thai food. Nice spot near Bailan Beach!

5. Ido Ido Restaurant Chill Out

32 Moo 1 Klong Kloi Beach
This is Ido Ido, where you can have traditional Thai food for next to no money! It has a relaxed vibe and service always comes with a sincere smile.

6. Porn’s Bar & Restaurant

36 Moo 4 Kai Bae Beach
Nice beach restaurant with a view of the small uninhabited islands on the horizon. Ideal place for a barbecue and enjoying a cocktail at sunset.

7. El Greco

23 M1. Bang Bao Pier
Nice place to go in the evening, with a very pleasant atmosphere, that serves good Greek food on the wooden piers of Bang Boa Pier. It, of course, will cost slightly more than a Thai meal.

8. 15 Palms

1/2 Moo 4 White Sand Beach
The best place for enjoying a bite to eat and a drink during sunset. It has comfortable beanbags and the atmosphere on White Sand Beach is great.

9. Crust Bakery

9/40 Moo4 Ban Kai Bae
Would you like a familiar breakfast with some nice bread and a cup of coffee? Then go to the Crust Bakery, on Klong Prao Beach’s main road.

10. Sea Paradise

Centrally located at Klong Kloi Beach
The best Thai meals on Koh Chang can be found on Klong Kloi Beach, at the small-scale Sea Paradise Restaurant. Their Pad Thai is absolutely divine.

Transport in Koh Chang

From Bangkok

Domestic flight Trat + ferry

  • Travel time: 2 hours
  • Cost: ฿ 3,000-5,000 pp

From Bangkok (Don Muang Airport or Suvarnabhumi Airport) a Bangkok Airways flight will take you to Trat’s airport in less than an hour. The airport is situated about 20 minutes away from Koh Chang Pier, from where you will take the ferry, which will take about 45 minutes.

Bus to Trat + ferry

  • Travel time: 6-7 hours
  • Cost: ฿ 1,000 pp

The cheaper alternative is to travel by bus (or minivan). Minivans to Trat leave from Bangkok’s touristic parts (such as the Banglamphu area). Ekamai and Mo Chit bus stations have comfortable long distance coaches that depart every hour. These will take you to Trat bus station in 5 or 6 hours. From there, you can take a taxi to Koh Chang Pier. Finally, you take the ferry to the island.

Getting around

Songthaew

Songtaews are shared taxis with fixed routes in between the beaches. A ride will cost you anywhere between 100 and 400 Thai Baht. The drivers usually work with fixed prices, but you can always try to haggle.

Motorbike

Renting a motorbike on Koh Chang is an awesome way to explore the island. But be aware, the roads can be quite treacherous. There are a lot of turns and hills and the asphalt is extremely slippery after it rains. Don’t take any unnecessary risks. Rent is 200-300 Thai Baht for 24 hrs.

Rental car

Trat’s airport is only twenty minutes away from Koh Chang Pier. Here you can rent a car for any number of days. Since Koh Chang can easily be reached by car ferry, this way, once you’re there, you’ll always be able to get around. Rent is ±1,000 Thai Baht for 24 hrs.

Weather in Koh Chang

The best time to visit Koh Chang is during the cool season from November – April.

November – February

Regarding the weather, the cool season is the best time to visit Koh Chang. Sunny days, agreeable temperatures (not too hot) and relatively little rainfall. This is Koh Chang’s high season, so it will be busy.

March – May

The hot season on Koh Chang means A LOT of sunshine. Expect it to be very hot (scorching!). The hot, dry season will come to an end around May and will bring with it the first real rain showers.

June – October

Koh Chang’s rainy season can be pretty rough and turbulent. Some hotels and restaurants will close and open again at the end of October. There will also be sunny days, of course, but count on rain. Lots and lots of rain!

Map of Koh Chang

Continue your journey to...

Koh Kood
Koh Samui
Bangkok