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April 2017
Songkran in Phra Pradaeng                                          Bangkok International Gift Fair and Bangkok International Houseware Fair 2017                                          Sand Pagoda Ceremony on Lai Day                                          Phuket Bike Week 2017                                          Songkran in Chiang Mai: Paweni Pi Mai Muang 2017                                         

Charming Koh Chang: Thailand's Unspoiled Treasure Island


Often overshadowed by the more commercialized Southern island counterparts of Koh Samui and Phuket, Thailand's Koh Chang has remained refreshingly unspoiled and tranquil. The island is truly a place of tropical clichés – palm–fringed beaches, turquoise waters, lush mountainous jungle and the scent of coconut in the air. Named the 'elephant island' due to its shape, Koh Chang is all the more attractive because of its proximity to Bangkok (a 4–5 hour drive followed by a ferry trip).

The sublime elephant island is one of 52 located off the coast of Trat that comprise the Koh Chang Marine National Park. It is also Thailand's second largest island and more than 70% of its natural rainforests remain undisturbed. Whilst its inviting white sand beaches provide the perfect opportunity for R&R, the hilly surrounds also attract those looking for adventure.

The most popular and most commercial beach on Koh Chang is Had Sai Khao (White Sand Beach), where most visitors venture due to the number of accommodation and activity options. Klong Son Beach is quieter while Had Kai Mook (Pearl Beach) is pebbled and allows for sightings of large clams on the sand. Laem Chaichet is a small cape that rounds into a secluded bay and ideal for watching the sunset. Kai Bae Beach is also perfect for settling in to enjoy the spectacular sunsets, with its sandy beach, and dive shops providing opportunities for snorkeling, canoeing and diving.


When the sun, sand and sea begin to lose their charm, a number of other activities are available on Koh Chang. Take a Thai cooking class at the Aiyapura Resort and Spa or try elephant trekking (Chang Chutiman Tour, 089–939–6676) into the rainforests and pomelo orchards. A number of spas are scattered throughout the island offering massages and other beauty treatments. For something a little more physical, hiking routes–with varying levels of difficulties–can be enjoyed, many including a trip to the waterfalls. Don't miss the thousands of fireflies that light up the mangrove forest in the cooler months. Finally, no Thai island is complete without a few temples, and Koh Chang is home to Wat Bang Bao, Wat Khlong Prao, and Wat Khlong Son.


When the sun, sand and sea begin to lose their charm, a number of other activities are available on Koh Chang. Take a Thai cooking class at the Aiyapura Resort and Spa or try elephant trekking (Chang Chutiman Tour, 089–939–6676) into the rainforests and pomelo orchards. A number of spas are scattered throughout the island offering massages and other beauty treatments. For something a little more physical, hiking routes–with varying levels of difficulties–can be enjoyed, many including a trip to the waterfalls. Don't miss the thousands of fireflies that light up the mangrove forest in the cooler months. Finally, no Thai island is complete without a few temples, and Koh Chang is home to Wat Bang Bao, Wat Khlong Prao, and Wat Khlong Son.

Koh Chang is enjoyed by both backpackers and luxury travelers, with a number of five–star hotels with private beaches and enough activities on–site to ensure a guest never has to leave the premises, as well as Robinson Crusoe style, wooden bungalows without air–conditioning or indoor plumbing for the true survivor. For a tourist destination so close to Bangkok, Koh Chang has managed to retain much of its natural wonder while providing a wide array of activities to satisfy any kind of vacationer.

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