The search for an undiscovered paradise is quickly pushing travelers south-from Krabi toward the Malaysian border and dozens of islands near Trang and Satun. Several years ago, Ko Lanta was an offbeat destination inhabited only by Muslim fishermen who couldn't understand why anyone would visit their hot, remote island. Ko Lanta today has over adozen bun galows stretched along
the west coast, from the northern village of Ban Sala Dan down to Ban Sangka U at the southern tip.
Ko Lanta archipelago consists of over 50 islands, but only Ko Lanta Yai (Big Ko Lanta) and a few small islets have formal accommodations. Ko Lanta offers some fairly goodbeaches almost completely untouched by mass tourism, and a bit of skin diving over offshore coral beds. Another sidelight is the near complete dominance of Islam on the island, a worid where Mus lim mosques vastly outnumber Buddhist wats.
Ko Lanta has a few drawbacks. The isolatedlocation demands at least two full days ottravel from Bangkok or Phuket, though direct boat service is now offered from Krabi and Ko Phi Phi. Secondly, the sand ranges from fairly good crystal to rough volcanic rock depending on the beach.
Ban Sala Dan
The largest village on Ko Lanta is where most boats from Krabi and Ko Phi Phi terminate. Ban Sala Dan is a typical Thai fishing village, with several cafes overlooking the bay and Ko Lanta Noi - new spots like La Creperie, which serves French crepes and sells boat tours. Motorcycle rentals are available from Petchpalin-Restaurant. Money-exchange services wiH probably arrive by the time you visit.
Kor Kwang Beach
A few bungalows are located west of town on the rocky promontory called Laem Kor Kwang. The beach itself (Kaw Kwang) is nicely curved and absolutely deserted, and has aquamarine waters with a few fishing boats.
Klong Dao Beach
Nearly all the bungalows on northwestern Ko Lanta are situated on a two-km stretch of sand called Klong Dao. The perfectly straight beach with rocky outposts at both ends is shaded by casuarina trees rather than much-preferred palms.
South of Klong Dao is a beautiful four-km beach with excellent pure white sand and small surfin the winter months.
Ban Pra Ae
A fishing village at the south ern end of Palm Beach, has some abandoned huts under groves of palm trees and new bungalows up on the hill.
Klong Khong Beach
Nine km south of Ban Sala Dan is a smaB beach with limited sand but plenty of offshore corals for diving and anexcellent grove of swaying palms. Marina Huts, just south of the small village of Ban Klong-Khong, is a beautifully situated guesthouse with about 30 A-frame bamboo huts for B50-120, plus a tent campsite on grassy lawns. Kerosene lamps substitute for electricity—a welcome touch that hopefully won't change with the arrival of mass tourism.
Klong Nin Beach
The road splits at Ban Klong Nin, forking south to Laern Tanotand other beach bungalows, and east across the hilly spine to Ban Ko Lanta, from where boats depart to the mainland. Klong Nin is a five-km-long, perfectly straight, and absolutely deserted beach with a handful of fishing boats pulled up over tons of white sand. Great potential here.
Kan Tiang Beach
Eighteen km south of Ban Sala Dan is the final series of coves and deserted beaches.
You can read Koh Lanta hotel reviews and booking hotels in koh lanta at triponsale.com