The main marine attractions in Trang on the southern shores of Thailand are – cruising the coastal waters along with many outstanding opportunities for snorkelling and scuba diving.
However, there are also some spectacular sights to see, including several caves for you to explore as well as a number of picturesque waterfalls for you to admire and as many beautiful beaches on which to relax.
The region may not measure up to the same exacting standards as Krabi or Phuket, its nearby neighbours, but it is nevertheless an up-and-coming tourist destination which is well worth visiting.
The province offers 200 kilometres (102 miles) coastline with more than 46 offshore islands as well as a lush hilly and scenic inland landscape dotted with caves and waterfalls.
The area is also noted for its distinct historical interest because, in 1899, rubber trees were first introduced to Thailand and so began the cultivation of what was to become one of the major commodities in this southern province.
Trang may be currently less developed than other parts of the Andaman coast, but it certainly retains much of its local character affording a wonderful insight into traditional southern lifestyles. Having said this, go and discover it all for yourself.
Best Time to Visit the town of Trang
Many of you may already know that the best time to visit Thailand is between November and April because of its cooler weather and this southern region is no exception. However, if you want to see the waterfalls at their most spectacular, it’s best to visit towards the end of the rainy season in September and October.
The Best Beaches on the Andaman Sea
There are beautiful beaches along the southern coastline of the Andaman Sea, of which several splendid beaches are in Trang. Spend the whole day relaxing with a good book or simply go swimming in the clear ocean waters. It’s your call.
Hat Pak Meng located 40 kilometres (25 miles) out of town is possibly one of the nicest beaches you could visit in the region. It’s made that much more marvellous by a seven-kilometre sandy shore which stretches around a lovely bay and very often deserted thus giving you a lot of space for yourselves.
The offshore seascape is made that much more dramatic by several limestone outcrops. From Pak Meng Pier you can hire a boat to take you to some of the most famous destinations and attractions.
More Beaches to Visit
Hat Chang Lang situated a little further south and nestled within the beautiful Chao Mai National Park, is a similarly attractive beach to that of Hat Pak Meng.
Hat San and Yong Ling are two very pleasant beaches also lying further south of Hat Pak Meng beach. They are distinguished by the natural beauty of their rugged cliffs and mountain caves.
Hat Chao Mai also set within the Chao Mai National Park is a pretty pine-fringed beach backed by limestone hills with caves. An added bonus here is the simple restaurants serving excellent seafood. From the beach, you could take a ferry to Koh Libong Island and or hire a sea canoe to paddle the surrounding waters.
Hat Samran is a splendid beach with a lovely tranquil setting which can easily reach by boat via Yantakhao south of Trang.
The Best Islands
There are several offshore islands, some with caves just waiting to be explored and as many excellent snorkelling and scuba diving opportunities on offer.
Koh Muk is the most famous offshore island in the region with its main attraction being that of Tham Morakot also known as the Emerald Cave. You need to be aware that you can only enter this cave by swimming through an eighty metre rather dark and narrow tunnel at low tide.
Though the roof of the cave has since collapsed, once inside you will be enchanted by the sunlit scenery of its lovely lagoon and its sandy beach surrounded by 360 degrees of sheer cliffs. You can reach the island from Pak Meng Pier on Hat Pak Meng Beach.
Koh Kradam is one of the most beautiful of all the islands here. It forms part of the Hat Chao Mai National Park and is a place where you’ll find several rubber and coconut plantations. The island also has several beaches and plenty of coral reef. On the west side, facing Ko Mak island, there is a rather pleasant diving site which can easily be reached by boat from Pak Meng Pier.
Outer Islands to Visit
Koh Libong is the largest island in Trang, where reasonable beaches, several fishing villages and a traditional lifestyle coexists. It can be reached by boat from Kantang at Hat Chao Mai Beach
Koh Sukorn also known as Koh Mu Island is a great place to visit should you be wanting a nice quiet place to relax. It has a few fine beaches and the waters around here offer some of the best opportunities for both snorkelling and diving. The island can be reached by boat from Paliean.
Koh Ngai is a great little place to visit by boat from the pier at Hat Pak Meng. The island here is a one of a kind with bungalow accommodation and a sandy strand of shoreline both wonderfully complimented by a beachfront restaurant.
There are several special events held in Trang each and every year and most are related to Thai culinary traditions. Locals love celebrating these joyous occasions and tourists also love to participate in these wonderful events too.
A great cake festival is held in August and a festival devoted to roast pork in September, both of which are marked by parades, fairs and various other forms of entertainment.
Then there is also a vegetarian festival celebrated in October. Although there are various vegetarian festivals held throughout Thailand, all having their own unique characteristics, but in this town, the festival is of Chinese origin.
As with some of the other vegetarian festivals such as those in Bangkok and Phuket, this festival is celebrated over a nine day period featuring ceremonies at local Chinese temples and parades in which devotees perform remarkable feats of self-mortification.
Getting to Trang
Trang is situated approximately 830 kilometres (500 miles) from Bangkok. Thai Airways International operates daily flights between both the airports and bus coaches leave daily from Bangkok’s Southern Bus Terminal. There are also two overnight southbound trains leaving from Bangkok. More information for this can be obtained from the State Railway of Thailand.