If you are planning a visit to Khao Lak for a dream holiday, you may be asking yourself what does that part of Thailand have to offer? Khao Lak comprises a series of traditional fishing villages located to the south of the country, that nowadays are tourist-oriented. One of its main attractions are two of the most important National Parks in Thailand, but there are many more. Let us give you some advice in the form of a list of the top things and places to see in Khao Lak.
If you ask any Thai what to do in Khao Lak, most certainly they will recommend a visit to the national parks; some of the more significant ones are close to the region. Khlong Phanom is one of those, just like Khao Lak it’s situated to the south of Thailand, was declared Natural Park in the year 2000 and it’s been very well kept since then.
From the Surat Thani province and straight to the Phanom district, access to the Park is very easy. Once there you will find more than 400 square kilometres of lush vegetation and a wildlife sanctuary; wild forests, limestone mountains, water streams, caves… And all that natural wealth is hugged by the Phuket mountain range.
If you have an explorer’s heart, look no further – this is your place. 125 kilometres of jungle and tropical forests. You won’t stop discovering waterfalls and pathways, and a wealth of wildlife in all of its splendour.
It started off as a coastal park, but in 1984 a decision was made to include the interior forestal regions and in doing so, securing protection for the basin and preventing its drying out. If a beautiful cascade is what you’re after, you shouldn’t miss the tiered Lam Ru Waterfall, 5 levels and active all year long.
Exploring new markets is always exciting: all the things old and new you can find there, and the local people you can meet, their habits, their ways and their gastronomy. It’s not far from Khao Lak Beach and the best time to visit is Wednesdays and Saturdays. There’s all kinds of local food, pre-cooked dishes, desserts, but also other products like handicraft and souvenirs. And if you ever wondered what it’s like to eat insects, this is your place!
Going to the beach in Thailand is practically mandatory, but the Khao Lak beach is the quieter choice. A place to escape from noise and crowds. 5 kilometres from La On, it’s the perfect place to lay down and listen to the rumour of the waves, the sound of the tide sweeping your worries away. We strongly recommend staying late for the beautiful sunset.
Buddhism is the main religion in Thailand, practised by the vast majority of the population. In a country where religion played such a defining role in shaping the nation, temples are still an important part of the social life. These stunning temples are more than places of worship and are well worth your visit.
If cascades and waterfalls are your thing and you are up for something special, don’t doubt it, this spectacular waterfall will make your day. Get your hiking gear on and come to the Khao Lak rainforest where the Ton Chong Fa waterfall is located. You can swim, clean yourself and be refreshed so you can keep discovering Thailand.
A truly stunning location with the most spectacular sands and crystal clear water, making it look like out of a dream. The ideal place to relax or to practise some sport. You can go diving and snorkelling and discover the treasures of light and fauna under its waters. And if you fancy a cocktail, you got it.
The most popular destination to enjoy nature is the Khao Sok National Park, the perfect place to wander among lakes, cascades and jungle paths, while admiring the stunning flora and fauna. And the beach is just an hour away!
The sheer size of the Park can be a bit overwhelming (as an example, the different tours you can book take a few days each to complete) so plan your visit accordingly: its 739 square kilometres are divided in two main parts, the Khao Sok Village area and the Cheow Lan Lake. The wildlife will amaze you, from all kinds of birds or elephants.. to the rafflesia plant and its enormous flowers.
If you feel overwhelmed by the magnitude of the Park, several activities and tours can be booked to help you experience it in smaller bites. Some more daring, like a trek through the jungle making camp deep inside of it. It’s an incredible opportunity tailored for the most adventurous travellers, but reaching the Cheow Lan Lake after a two-day hike from the village is well worth the effort: the region is home to some spectacular caves to behold.
The Similan Islands are the crown jewel of Thailand for divers. The ocean around here is peppered with mysterious shipwrecks to explore. Sunken vessels like the HTMS Prathong, MV Sea Chart or the Boonsung, a most curious ship to inspect. Through the cracks on the hull you’ll observe creatures like crabs, shrimps or the lionfish.
If diving so deep is not your thing, do not worry, the exceptional clarity of the water makes the area ideal for snorkelling. And of course you can always stay on the shore and relax on the sand, but if the need for adventure arises… equip your gear and dive, it’s a fantastic experience.
Whether you are a photography enthusiast or just an admirer of beautiful vistas, you should make a stop at the Andaman viewpoint: there are fields, hills and the sea on the horizon. A great place to rest, grab something to drink or eat and watch the sunset. Besides, the romantic setting is just the right background for a proposal: if your loved one is on your mind, take them to the viewpoint… and go for it!
Hopefully this extensive selection of places to visit has helped you decide what to do and where to go in Khao Lak, a true paradise waiting to be discovered. You can visit it by yourself or with your loved ones and it provides a heady mixture of relaxation and adventure. You won’t get bored!
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By the time your vacation is over, you will not want to leave.