Picture Perfect Paradise
With so many truly stunning tropical Thailand Islands in which to discover and uncover, you would need to extend your vacation or you would almost certainly need to keep coming back time and again to this remarkable Asian country. Although these options are more easily said than done, I have on many occasions, accomplished both due to my passion for travel and in particular my passion for all things Thai.
Let’s face it, whether you are an outdoor adventurer, a beach lover or a party animal, these beautiful islands around Thailand are such huge travel magnets that you would simply loath to leave. I sincerely hope your passage throughout these island pages will enlighten and inspire you as my journeys did.
And while you’re about it relaxing around on the pure soft white sand while lazily gazing across stunning crystal clear waters, you can indulge yourself in a vast array of water sports activities too.
You could go snorkelling amongst the numerous colourful coral reefs while diving amongst spotted rays, tiger fish and an assortment of tropical marine life. You could even try your hand at deep sea fishing for barracuda, marlin or giant grouper fish. You could go kayaking through the many hidden caves around the islands or try your hand at rock climbing. The opportunities are endless.
And the fun does not stop here either as there are loads more to do on these idyllic tropical Thailand islands. There are also super parties, fantastic clubs and discos, spectacular cabaret shows, exciting festivals and events, vast amounts of interesting attractions, not to forget excellent restaurants for fine dining and lots more to keep you, your family and everyone else happy and fun-filled. Once bitten, you will want to come back for more so go out there and enjoy yourself. You will not be sorry as it could easily be your best holiday ever.
The West Coast
Phuket is the largest of all the Thailand Islands and by far the most attractive beach destinations here. There are beautiful white sandy beaches with backgrounds of lush tropical forested hills and valleys full of coconut groves and rubber plantations. This island also has all the modern creature comforts to make your vacation more memorable.
The Similan Islands are positioned in the heart of Ko Similan National Park and about 90 kilometres (55 miles) north-west from the island of Phuket. These magnificent islands, of which there is a total of nine, are rated as one of the top ten dive sites in the world where you can enjoy some of the best scuba diving ever. The turquoise waters, perfectly clear visibility coupled with some amazing underwater marine life and superb scenery, is truly mesmerising.
The Andaman Coast
Panyi is a fishing village built on stilts alongside a gigantic limestone cliff island and a great stop-over to enjoy local cuisine on offer at the restaurants there.
Phang Nga Bay
Phang Nga Bay has many hidden treasures. The islands here offer many thrilling insights to some of the most stunning sanctuaries in Thailand. These include the limestone stacks of Koh Khao Phing Kan island and Koh Tapu island made famous by the James Bond film. There are many mighty limestone enclaves on Koh Hong Island and impressive stalagmites and stalactites at Tham Lot Island.
If this is not enough, there are eerie caverns containing paintings and discarded seashells left behind by prehistoric man such as those found at Tham Hua Gralok, also known as Skull Cave. An impressive 15 metre-long golden reclining Buddha and a large Chedi containing the bones from a family of ex-local governors awaits you inside Suwan Kuha Cave. Thanbok Koranee National Park is an exquisite region of miniature waterfalls amidst beautiful limestone scenery.
Koh Yai Noi is an idyllic island on the edge of Phang Nga Bay almost equidistant from Phuket, Phang Nga and Krabi and offers breathtaking maritime views from every angle. This would be a great getaway opportunity to escape and explore some of nature’s true natural beauty while still being able to indulge in activities such as rock climbing, elephant trekking, hiking, diving, kayaking and swimming.
Phi Phi Don & Phi Phi Ley are located approximately 45 kilometres (28 miles) equidistant from both Phuket and Krabi in the southern end of the Andaman Sea. Phi Phi Don is arguably one of the most alluring of all the Thailand Islands due to its dazzling soft white sandy beach, its inviting crystalline clear turquoise waters and its awe-inspiring rocky limestone backdrops.
The Gulf Coast
Koh Samui is the third largest of the Thailand Islands. Originally dubbed as having the biggest coconut plantation in the world, but soon changed when backpackers started arriving here in the 1970’s. Though a great number of the plantations still exist, they are mostly confined to the cool forested hills of the interior. Ko Samui has become a top international destination for tourists turning it into one of the biggest income earners. Here you’ll find a modern airport, dozens of luxury hotels, fancy restaurants and world famous beaches.
Koh Phangan is home to the full moon and half moon parties. Ask anyone who has been here and they will all tell you that this is the ultimate party island. Ko Phangan is also host to a variety of other parties too, so much so that the island will invent additional ones just to have another great time.
It is the perfect refuge if you are seeking more than just fun in the sun. It is the place to be and be seen. It may be rugged and rustic and lacking in alluring beach scenes, but you don’t come here to see the beauty, you’re here to party.
Koh Nang Yuan is a picture perfect group of three tiny Thailand islands positioned just one kilometre north-west of Koh Tao Island. Thanks to a fine white soft sandy causeway, the islands provide unsurpassed and spectacular beach scenery.
You can simply relax on the beach, swim and snorkel in the crystal-clear emerald green waters, have a drink at the bar, grab a bite to eat at the restaurant, hike up to a majestic 360-degree viewpoint or just go and explore the magical island.
Koh Tao or Turtle Island is so named because it resembles the shape of a turtle nosediving towards Koh Phangan to the south. Once a backpacker’s paradise, but now recognised as one of the best locations for scuba diving due to its diverse dive sites all in close proximity to one another.
The East Coast
Koh Samet is a beautiful island conveniently situated 180 kilometres (108 miles) from Bangkok and only 80 kilometres (48 miles) from Pattaya on the north-east coast of the Gulf of Thailand. Although huge tourist related development began shortly after the island was declared a national park in 1981, this 6-kilometre long island boasts dazzling soft white sandy beaches and sparkling blue waters.
Koh Chang is a fabulous getaway island where the sky seems a lot bluer and the air a lot cleaner. You can dive in the cool, clear waters of a number of the island’s waterfalls or you can simply relax on one of the numerous pristine beaches.
Koh Chang is the second largest island in the country and the principal island of a national marine park archipelago of 52 islands scattered around the Gulf of Thailand. There are virgin rain forests, abundant pristine beaches with fine white sandy shores, two scenic waterfalls and some extremely rare wildlife.
Koh Mak Island, also known as Koh Maak Island is a small piece of tropical paradise situated 20 kilometres (12 miles) south of the same archipelago of 52 islands on Koh Chang Island on the eastern shores of Thailand. There are two stunning white sandy beaches complimented by crystal clear waters, lush virgin rainforests, coconut and rubber tree plantations making this a tropical island gem.
Koh Kham Island is a true tropical treasure paradise belonging in part to the national marine park archipelago of 52 islands set in the Gulf of Thailand and situated approximately 22 kilometres (13 miles) south-east of Hat Bang Bao Bay at the southernmost end of Koh Chang Island. It is also within reasonably easy reach from Ao Suan Yai Beach on the northern shores of Koh Maak Island.
Koh Kood is the fourth largest of the Thailand Islands and the second largest of the 52 island archipelago located on the east coast in the province of Trat. The island lies south of Koh Chang and is considered one of the perfect places for lovers of nature as it retains a somewhat sensual beauty with its natural forested interior. Koh Kood is a utopia not overly affected with commercialization.