Looking for tranquility, exclusivity, pristine beaches, rainforests, beachfront luxury resorts minus the horde of tourists? Head to Khao Lak in Thailand. Surrounded by rainforests on one side and the Andaman sea on another, what sets Khao Lak apart from other popular beach spots in Thailand is the lack of tourists.
This luxury resort destination has gained popularity only in the last decade. We recommend seven things to do in Khao Lak before everybody else catches on...
Snorkeling, diving and taking day trips to the Surin or Similan Islands
What better way to kickstart your beach vacation than calming your stressed senses on pristine islands surrounded by the turquoise sea. Boasting crystal clear underwater visibility, colourful corals, marine life, white sand beaches and lush green vegetation, both Surin and Similan Islands are highly recommended for diving, snorkeling, and abundant marine life spotting. Encounters with dolphins, reef sharks, sea turtles are pretty common. You can opt for a full-day speedboat tour to either of the islands inclusive of breakfast, lunch, English-speaking guide and more.
Exploring the Khao Sok National Park
An endless canopy of tropical rainforests and wilderness, waterfalls, limestone or ‘karst’ mountains, caves, close encounters with wildlife and rafting in lakes earns Khao Sok National Park the top spot on the Khao Lak itinerary. There is no dearth of activities at this National Park. Get the most of Khao Sok by choosing customized jungle tours offered by many tour companies. These tours include two or three-day packages comprising many activities such as Khao Sok river tubing, jungle cooking experience, half-day hikes, hot springs and viewpoint tours, overnight camping treks, night safari, Cheow Lan lake trip, traditional Thai performance and more, all within the national park. Private transfers to Khao Sok take about two hours and can be organized by your resort.
Sea-cave canoeing and kayaking at Phang Nga Bay
Phang Nga Bay is a must-do day trip. Popular for its splendid limestone cliffs and rock formations, Phang Nga Bay is home to serene islands, mangrove forests and many species of birds. The best way to explore the beautiful islets of Phang Nga Bay is to use a canoe or a kayak that can make it easy to pass the caves and tunnels under the limestone cliffs. The advantage? You can rave about this memorable experience forever! Don’t forget to kayak to the ‘James Bond Island’, locally known as Ko Tapu. ‘The Man with the Golden Gun,’ was filmed here.
Indulging in gastronomic delights
Being an upscale resort destination, Khao Lak will never fail to please the foodie in you. And there is not just Thai food but a wide range of exotic cuisine to explore, from all over the world. We highly recommend the Vongole restaurant that claims to have the largest saltwater pools in Thailand. The restaurant offers fresh, delectable seafood straight from the Andaman Sea besides traditional Thai cuisine. If you ever imagined dining amidst the cacophony of mangrove trees with never-ending views of the Andaman Sea, then many restaurants in Khao Lak will not fail to impress you. Our other recommendation is Pam’s Restaurant and Bar.
Relax in your private pool villa
Imagine sipping cocktails from your private deck while taking in postcard-perfect views over sun-kissed nature and pristine waters – all of this while staying at the first modernist sanctuary in Khao Lak...
Stop dreaming and start packing! All of this and much more await at the incredible Casa de la Flora, a modern masterpiece merging cutting-edge architecture and unique design in a tropical location. The impressive 36 cube-shaped villas, beautifully decorated with designer touches, make Casa de la Flora a private hideaway away from the crowds - just minutes away from the tranquil Bang Niang Beach in Khao Lak.
Or at the stylish La Vela Khao Lak
Sitting on a pristine stretch of sand by Bang Niang beach, the resort is currently ranked in the top 10 hotels in Khao Lak on TripAdvisor - and is a true architectural gem inspired by the maritime trade era.
Imbued with rustic charm and modern indulgence, La Vela Khao Lak boasts the finest facilities in a spectacular setting, including the blissful Qaqula Spa, three stylish restaurants and cafes, a state-of-the-art gym, a kid's club and a gorgeous free-form swimming pool surrounded by swaying palm trees.
The jewel in the resort’s crown? Kokulo Beach Club - the first beach club in Khao Lak. Located beside the resort’s swimming pool, the beach club effortlessly blends cutting-edge design with delicious food and DJ sets – all of this plus a side of glorious views over the Andaman Sea and access to a pristine beach.
Indulge in a fly & flop getaway
Sitting on a pristine stretch of sand within Khao Lak National Park, Robinson Club takes A-list grandeur to a new level. The waterfront resort boasts nine pools, eight bars and restaurants, blissful WellFit Spa, Kids Club and high-end service, making it the ideal tropical island escape for all ages.
Indulge in an A-list tropical beach escape that’s sure to leave you sun-kissed, stress-free and satisfied in no time.
Visiting the International Tsunami Museum
The Khao Lak region was hit hardest by the devastating Tsunami of 2004 that struck South Asia. Head to the museum to learn more about this natural phenomenon and its catastrophic effects – you'll also be giving back to the local community, as a substantial portion of the entrance fees is donated to Tsunami victims.
If Khao Lak beckons you again soon, we wouldn’t blame you one bit.