Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Little Ko Chang Andaman Side Updated

Last visited March 2011

They don't come too much more relaxing and off the beaten track than the small beaches with only one budget resort on the north-west coast of Ko Chang.


KO CHANG(Andaman) aka Little Ko Chang is a smallish attractive island up near the Burmese border, accessible from Ranong. It has several quiet beaches and a surprising number of bungalow places, and would appeal to old hands wanting to an find an island like Tao, Chang (eastern Gulf) etc were like in the “old days”. Ragers and people looking for mid-range and higher accomm will be disappointed, however.

Modified Google Earth image showing Ranong Islands area.

Main features of Little Chang. White lines are concrete tracks, purple unpaved paths, pink trekking tracks.

I put ? after Sapaan Hin on the mid east coast because although I thought the area was named thus, one later map indicates Sapaan Hin is actually the area around the domestic pier in the north east. UPDATE - since doing the map I've found out the position shown is right.
Note that few tourists use the northern pier - it is a long way from the main beaches. Most travellers come in on the Chang ferry. Those heading for Ao Siad (Ao Lek) in the south mainly use the Ko Phayam ferry as do visitors to the bungalow place at Sapaan Hin, if it is open.

Map from Andaman Island Hopping.
A full size version plus bungalow info can be seen here.


THE BEACHES


AO YAI
Most of Little Chang's travellers stay on this 3km long curved beach on the west coast. Over a dozen bungalow operations are spread out along here.

Ao Yai extends from north of Cashew at bottom to just past Sawasdee in south - with over a dozen bungalow places along this 3km stretch. There are another 3 on the headland to the right of Sawasdee. Note that I cranked up the vertical exaggeration a bit when I modified this Google Earth image - nevertheless the mountains in shot are pretty impressive.

It is a quiet beach - there is no fishing village and it appeared two or three long tails handle the boating needs of the bungalows. On my latest trip I saw one low key bar but it seemed well away from bungalow areas. Lonely Planet mentions silty water - well it was as clear as anywhere else when I visited (both in March) except for the first 2 m or so off the beach where the swash backwash was leaching rutile (that black sand which makes additives for heat resistant metal) from under the top layer of white/yellow sand. Note however, from some stuff I've read since leaving, sea water clarity may be a bit trickier early in the dry season, say Nov, Dec, when the flow out of that big river separating Thailand and Burma is still pretty full on. My March visits were right at the end of the dry season. I saw no jelly fish, which also are often seasonal.

I actually think of Ao Yai as 5 different areas:
North beach - the 1500m stretch from bottom of Google image to the small inlet just south of the concrete road.
Central beach - next 600m past the inlet to where the purple track hits the beach.
Rocky area - a further 400m of seaside rock.
South beach - about 400m to the far headland.
Headland area.

Northern Ao Yai

Northern Ao Yai has the nicest sand and deep water low tide, particularly close to camera in the first 300m from the headland. It also catches the sunsets well - the curve of the bay means places the far end of Ao Yai are facing more north than due west.

Moving south away from camera (Northern Ao Yai ends approx opposite that boat in far background) the water shallows a bit at low tide and the sand seems to have more debris from the casuarina trees and a bit more of the darker rutile strands.

There are 5 or so bungalow resorts along this 1400m stretch - plus the temple area in the south. I stayed at Cashew Resort this latest trip, although I did like the looks of all the other places, particularly Andaman Hill Bungalows against the northern corner with some neat looking bungalows built up the steep hillside.

My 250 baht bungalow in the jungle at Cashew Resort.

Cashew was the first bungalow resort on the island, and is now the biggest with over 30 bungalows of varous styles and prices. Run by the obliging and attentive Mr Meow, it is spread over about 300m of beachfront with several rows of huts - but also has some cheaper options a good 200m from the beach in the jungle behind. Well they call it jungle - I’d class it as tropical beach scrub.
Cashew is popular - all the places near the beach were taken so I got the jungle. At 250baht it was good value - clean, solid construction, airy, enough room for 2 and gear but not 3, lots of shelving and clothes hanging space, comfy queen bed-net in good repair, big bathroom with western toilet, spacious veranda with hammock, feet washing tap and peaceful bush outlook (50m to the next bungalow). Very quiet at night. No fan (no 24 hour electricity). Some parts of the bush access track were not lit well at night.

Cashew’s restaurant is set back more from the beach than most places on Northern Yai and has some sitting bales out the front.

Food good, prices towards the lower end of budget bungalow restaurants with plenty of mains under 100 including rice, small Changs 45 (March 2011). Service a bit slower than the normal super quick bungalow place thing, but this joint gets good crowds. This is one of those places where you take your order into the kitchen, grab your drinks from the fridge.

Beach out front of Cashew reasonably nice. Casuarinas drop a bit of debris but provide shade into mid afternoon. Water deep enough low tide for good swimming not too far from shore.


Central Ao Yai

South of the creek entrance, the beach continues for another 600m or so until the rocky area. Sand here seems more stained with rutile and the water tends to be a bit shallow close to shore at low tide. There are 3 or so very laid back bungalow places behind the casuarinas, plus a small beach bar which seems far enough from places that noise would not be too much a worry.

Low tide shot of central beach area. Creek entrance is background opposite those sea rocks.


The Rocks

Sand gives way to this elevated rocky section south of the central beach area. There are a couple of bungalow places high behind the rocks including the very popular Ko Chang Resort.


South Ao Yai and the Headland Area

Past the rocks is the final stretch of sand. Seen at low tide here, this beach gets a bit skinny at high tide. A path bridges a small stream at the end of the beach and continues across a low saddle (white arrow) to Ao Laetawan. A side track to the right goes to handful of bungalow places with elevated views of the bay, including the yellow arrowed Nature View which has got to be my next abode when I return to Little Chang. Please excuse the shaky arrows - my “Paint” skills aint.

Nature View has a neat sun deck and pier area close to the water. The restaurant is immediately behind some 5 meters higher and the bungalows are built on the hillside a bit higher. That's the public longtail ferry from Ranong at the pier. The south beach is in background. I had just trekked up from Ao Siad in the islands south via the mountain path when I took this shot - had a wonderful swim off the end of the pier.

South Beach has 3 or 4 places to stay including the attractive Sawasdee which was my home when I first visited the island in 2006.

My Sawasdee bungalow - 250 baht in 2006, 350 in 2011. Main changes in 2011 - bungalow had been refurbished and there seemed to be twice as many (only 5 or so 2006).

Back in 2006 the first Ranong bound bus that came along at Khao Lak was the daily Visa Run coach from Phuket, so I flagged it down. This worked out real well because its first stop is the Immigration Office at Ranong, which is a short distance to the Chang-Phayam pier. A 20 baht motorcycle taxi got me to the pier with just enough time to grab a cup of coffee and a bottle of Mae Khong before jumping on the mid-day long tail which takes supplies and passengers to the resorts on Chang’s most popular beach Ao Yai on the west coast after dropping off at the north-west beaches - and to Ao Dah Deng just to the south of Yai. The trip cost 140 baht (150 in 2011) and takes about an hour. The journey downriver at Ranong is pretty interesting as are the multitude of big and small Burmese islands once you get to sea.

A girl at the Ranong pier showed me some photos of her place, Sawasdee with rather attractive 250 baht bungalows. They looked pretty good to me so I said sure. Sawasdee is last bungalow on Ao Yai, right down the southern end, so I had a chance to check all the places as we dropped stuff and people off (at most of the places guests waded out to help unload the bags of ice, groceries and bottles of booze etc, a kinda carnival atmosphere)- all the bungalows looked okay. The beach is definitely nicest up the northern end, but it wasn’t shabby at Sawasdee, particularly at low tide when quite a wide sandy spit was exposed. Sawasdee faces north so you get great views of those Burma islands, but not the sunsets you can see from further up the beach.
However westward facing AO LAETAWAN is a 5 minute walk across a small bridge over a creek and a low divide. Nice beach with 3 rather funky looking bungalow places and some great big granite rocks at each end, perfect for downing a hit or 10 of Mae Khong as the sun sinks behind another Burma island (the border actually runs north-south here).

Sun setting over the big Burmese islands (image Panoramio-Yoav Menachem)
My 250 baht Sawasdee bungalow was the best value on the whole 10 island 2006 trip - fairly new and in great condition (built a few weeks before the tsunami - owners Nui and Fon told me the water was a meter deep in the bungalows but did not cause too much structural damage whereas places further up the beach not protected by the headland copped it much worse). It had a king size bed (double++) and plenty of room for two people and their gear, a mirror in the bathroom (so many places don’t, makes shaving etc a real hassle) plus little extras like a hammock across the big verandah, a broom, a tap at the foot of the stairs for washing sandy feet and lots of lines and hooks for gear etc. They handed out a detailed island map showing all bungalows, roads (really only paths wide enough for two motorcycles to pass), hiking tracks and viewpoints. The bungalows and the grounds were spotless. Fon did a tourism course (in OZ of all places!) and it showed. The small restaurant was more attractive than usual - beam and pole construction with some elevated sitting platforms like Balinese bales. There were also some of these out just behind the beach, along with some hammocks and lazy chairs. Plenty of trees beachfront for good shade until late afternoon. Food was not expensive and Nui, Fon and Fon’s mum are pretty good cooks. Altogether I can thoroughly recommend this place. tel 077-820177, 086-906-0900, 086-168 7908, Google for the website.

Taking it easy on a Sawasdee bale.


Ao Laetawan
The path across the low saddle from southern Ao Yai is only about 400m long. Laetawan is perfect for someone wanting an even more laid back location than Yai itself. There are 3 bungalow operations here including well regarded Mama's which has relocated from Ao Siad/Ao Lek in the islands south.

About two-thirds of Ao Laetawan. Nice enough beach, water seemed not too shallow at low tide. The trekking path to the south leaves the far end of the beach and moves above the rocks for a short distance out of frame.


Ao Siad/Ao Lek
This is the southern beach area facing Ko Phayam - even more relaxed than Ao Laetawan. Some maps, websites etc call it Siad, others Lek. There are 3 or 4 places to stay, but when I visited in March '11 a few places mentioned in my research had closed down and there was one new joint. Long running Ao Lek Bungalows and Tommy's Garden were still going strong.
Access is different - most people get dropped off from the Phayam ferry - and you can also come down from Ao Yai on Ko Chang Bungalow's morning boat to Phayam (make sure they know you want to be dropped at Ao Siad beforehand). You need to contact your bungalow to make sure a boat is sent out in both cases - the bigger ferries can't access the beach.
It is possible to walk from Ao Yai taking a much flatter route than the mountain trekking track, but having done it with a light daypack I wouldn't want to try the 2 hour or so walk with a full travellers' pack.

There are actually 2 beaches at Siad/Lek - let's call them Siad 1, the longer eastern beach which extends from above the G in TOMMY'S GARDEN to near the end of the headland bottom right. And Siad 2, the small beach to the left where Tommy's Garden is located.
Tommy has his own boat whereas other places seem to use a small local boat contracted by the ferry company.
I modified this oblique Google Earth image which might be clearer if you click to enlarge. You can see where the mountain trekking track leaves the main path to the village at centre-top of image and where it leaves the small beach at Ao Kai Tao top-left.

Siad 1 is over a km long with a few interruptions by low fingers of rock. There is another 400m or so behind camera. Beach is not up to the standard of Ao Yai, but the chill factor makes up for this. Ao Lek Bungalows is on a low hill immediately behind the sand in the area of the camera.

Green Banana beach bar - this place was behind the camera on the previous shot.


Siad 2 is a nicer beach than its eastern neighbour - looks a bit wet here in this low tide shot but that's not the impact of high tide - rather of heavy overnight rain. The track in back of Siad 1 continues another 5 minutes behind a small headland and then drops down to Tommy's Garden, the only place on Siad 2. BTW, water deep enough for a good swim reasonably close to beach low tide.

I've wanted to stay at Ao Siad/Lek ever since my first visit to neighbouring Ko Phayam when I saw a few people jumping off the ferry into a small boat to access this remote spot. So on my latest visit to Phayam I got the girl in the minimart near the Phayam pier to telephone Tommy's Garden to so I could be picked up mid bay off the ferry. The people at Tommy's mixed the message and thought I was coming in off the ferry from Ranong - fortunately a dude going to Ao Lek Bungalows was on my ferry, so I hooked a lift in the tiny boat other bungalows use to meet the ferry and walked across to Tommy's.

Tommy's Garden is the only place on this small beach. That's the beachfront restaurant standing out. There are about half a dozen beachside bungalows mainly to the left at 300b when I visited in March '11 and another 4 or 5 250b huts on the hillside behind. The beachside jobs are in a reasonable garden setting - the hillside is more natural bushland. Place seems popular, running at about 80% when I visited, which was more shoulder season than high.

View from restaurant of Tommy's Garden across to Ko Phayam. Food here pretty good, seemed about average price wise for budget bungalows. Friendly quick service.

My 250b hillside bungalow at Tommy's Garden. This was a very basic old-style backpackers' thatch walled bungalow. Bit squeezy for 2 people and their gear, very thin double mattress as against usual king or queen, net not in good repair, squat toilet, no basin, byo toilet paper and towel, no external door lock. Big deck with tree filtered sea views. Paths a bit dodgy with some areas needing a torch at night and one water pipe trip-booby trap. My first thought was this joint didn't hold a candle to my 250b bungalow at Cashew on Ao Yai earlier in the week. Perspective needed - you don't get too many 250b bungalows in the Andaman away from low season these days - and so on that basis Tommy's hillside job was okay. Thing is I didn't move to a better seaside bungalow when I got the chance later.

Tommy heads back home after dropping me off at the Phayam to Ranong ferry.


The Northern Beaches

Probably more accurately the north-western beaches.
North of Ao Yai is a stretch of mountain backed coastline which contains 3 nice little bays, each with its own bungalow place. The beaches here seemed pretty okay when our ferry called in to drop off guests and provisions from Ranong.

This is Hornbill Bungalow's beach. Others at Contex and Sea Eagle were similar. I think Rasta Baby shares one of these beaches.


Sapaan Hin

Sapaan Hin from the passing Phayam ferry - might be worth clicking image to expand. Sapaan Hin Resort is behind the small rocky section mid shot with 2 small beach areas each side. In 2006 I trekked across here on a track which comes over the hill behind from the Ao Siad-village path - the resort was very laid back. But it seemed closed in 2011. I haven't any 2006 pix because they were the days when I used to travel real light.


TREKKING KO CHANG
You can still probably do the walk to Sapaan Hin, but latest visit I didn't notice the signposts off the main track that existed in 2006.

The mountain-rainforest walk from Aos Yai/Laetawan to Lek Bay near Ao Lek/Siad via the national park rangers' beach at Ao Kai Tao is the biggy and the best - see the second Google Earth image map above for the route.
The track leaves the inland end of Ao Laetawan above the rocks - look for the plastic water bottle markers on trees. It runs above the rocks for a short distance and then turns sharply uphill. From there it undulates through thick forest to Ao Kai Tao.

From inside the picnic shelter at Ao Kai Tao. My trekking companion told me there is often a park ranger stationed here, but not when we passed thru. Some trekkers heading the other way said they met some enthusiastic farangs pushing dope here. We didn't see them either.

Look inland-south a bit from this shelter for a bridge which takes the track further south. It climbs across the saddle and then drops thru very good rainforest to meet the main village to Ao Siad/Lek path about 5 minutes away from those beaches. If you are walking the other way the right-angle turn was marked by more bottles on the scrub.
In all it will take 90 to 120 minutes to do this walk. Mostly good rainforest, no killer uphills heading south, but if you are heading north you will find the last 10 or 15 minutes going up to the first saddle a good workout.

You don't have to retrace your steps to get back to Ao Yai/Laetawan - simply head north up the path to the village (about an hour) and then turn left (west) down the concrete path 20 minutes or so to Ao Yai.

Village to Ao Siad/Lek walk.
This is a nice flatish walk down the island, the first km or so is concrete, giving way to a dirt path. Distance is about 5km and will take maybe 80 minutes. Near Ao Said 1 the track veers right. Takes another 10-15 minutes to get across to Ao Siad 2 and Tommy's Garden.
My trekking companion commented on how the creek crossings were now bridged much better than previous years.

A couple of unexpected bungalow places along this path. Chilli Garden above was about 2km south of the village in the middle of nowhere - a new place run by an enthusiastic Scot who rushed out and earbashed us about his rather impressive garden area - he was a landscape gardener back home. I'm not sure how travellers are supposed to access this place, but he didn't seemed to be concerned. He had a nice restaurant and some equally attractive bungalows behind almost finished.
Further south where the path first hits Lek Bay was a similar newish joint run by a young local with colourful bungalows. At least he has a pier out thru the mangroves. But this is still 20 minutes from the nearest okay beach - Ao Siad 1.
And further south again where the path turns right towards the beaches is a newish bar restaurant, once again in the middle of nowhere.


Ao Yai to Village walk - this would be done by most visitors. The concrete path runs from the temple area just north of the small creek estuary approx central beach, turns inland at the estuary and makes its way eastward to the village. Less than 2km. Slight uphill sections along here - no effort.

Concrete path Ao Yai to village. Main island industry is either rubber trees pictured or cashew trees.

About 500m from the beach is a small store and restaurant on the right - a track leads off here and goes down to southern Ao Yai - The Bakery with yummy fresh baked stuff sits all by itself a few hundred meters along this side track from the turn.
Back on the left (north) side of main concrete path a bit closer to town is a very good restaurant run by two Swiss expats - excellent inexpensive food tends to attact a good crowd.

The village is a cluster of about a dozen houses and a couple of shops at the intersection of the east west and north south concrete paths. The inevitable school is out of town another 400m or so eastward past which the path peters out at a mangrove inlet.
Above is the busiest village store which was doing a roaring trade when we called in on our circular Siad-Laetawan-Yai-village-Siad trek, but maybe because cockfights were just finishing in a nearby back yard.

The small size of the village is down to the fact that the island has only a few hundred residents, quite a few of whom live in rural homesteads. There seems to be no local songthaew (I only saw 2 four wheeled vehicles on my wanderings around the island) and no motorcycle-taxis. The locals either walk or use their own motorcycles or a few bicycles.

Trek to the northern beaches.
I started out heading that way, but the various paths which seemed to be in the right direction (the north of the island is criss-crossed with paths) were not sign-posted, and I ended up at the north east pier. Nothing outstanding along that route, I missed the Burmese and Thai villages in the north east Lisa Jennings mentions in her trip report below.
To get to the northern beaches requires a major climb and drop which could involve some outstanding views - one route I'll have to get good directions for on my next visit.
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This island is the perfect place to relax, wander the beach, swim, sun or shade it out or take a hike along the trails through the forest, cashew and rubber tree plantations. I did see some signs for diving and snorkeling trips to the Burma islands and the Surin Isands. You can hire motorcycles and mountain bikes.
This is not a good snorkelling island. I did have a look along the headlands both ends of Ao Yai and saw the usual fishies and a bit of fringing coral but visibility was only fair and could be worse early in the tourist season when the run-off from the nearby big river between Thailand and Burma is high.

OPEN WET SEASON?
From what I understand, most places close down. The Ranong area is equal wettest in Thailand along with the Trat area. Ao Yai would be exposed to the westerlies except maybe at the southern end. I did read somewhere that Cashew stays open, but like a dill forgot to confirm this when I stayed there latest trip.


From the personalities point of view I was struck by the lack of gap year girl and lager lout types. What we had here were young couples, families and a few other younger travelers mainly Euro in origin, particularly German. Aint it interesting how the Germans flock to the more out of the way places? Plus more than the usual number of older long time traveller types - with a new visa a relatively simple two long tail trips away, you can see the attraction.
UPDATE - latest trip also saw an enthusiastic bunch of older Euro retirees at Cashew - apparently they spend the worst 2-4 months of their homelands' winters on little Chang. Not stupid.

For divers Aladdin Dive Cruise runs boats to the Surins and Similans and does instruction - Google website.


GETTING TO LITTLE KO CHANG

Ferries.
FROM RANONG
- The Ao Yai service leaves around 9 in the morning and 2-3 in the afternoon from the Saphan Plaa pier. Times can vary a bit depending on tides which can leave the ferries high and dry at dead low tide. One poster said he got a fairky late bus into Ranong and still managed to get the ferry which didn't depart until after 4pm that day.
- There is also a public ferry goes to the north-east pier around mid-day, but this is a long way from the tourist beaches and I haven't seen any motorcycle taxis etc on little Chang.
- You will need the Ko Phayam ferry from the same Ranong pier for Ao Siad/Lek in the south of Chang. Times are approximately the same. I asked if the Phayam speedboat will drop people off on southern Chang - apparently not.

FROM PHAYAM
- catch a returning Ranong bound ferry to get off in the bay adjacent Ao Siad/Lek. Remember to arrange with your bungalow to pick you up.

Heading to Ao Yai on the Ranong-Chang ferry.

- Phayan to Ao Yai. Ko Chang Resort runs a ferry down to Ko Phayam at around 9am returning approx 4pm. This is a great deal easier than having to return to Ranong and swap ferries as I did back in '06.

GETTING TO RANONG
Flights
Google Ranong Air for daily flights from Bangkok and Phuket.

UPDATE early DEC 2011 - seems Ranong Air is out of action. However Happy Air is running Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from Bangkok.
UPDATE OF UPDATE (crikey!!) - from Dec 14 2011 Ranong Air is running again Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays.

Buses
FROM BANGKOK - there are quite a few services from the Southern Bus Station to or thru Ranong. The trip is about 10-11 hours. There is an overnighter leaving around 8pm which according to people makes Ranong in time for the morning ferry.

FROM PHUKET - daytime buses run approximately hourly. 5 to 6 hours.

FROM SAMUI/PHANGAN/TAO - there are buses and minibuses run across to Ranong from Surathani and Chumpon. Note Chumpon bus station is about 5km out of town which makes the minibuses more convenient.

FROM KRABI AND PHANG NGA - there are a few direct buses to Ranong from Krabi bus station. These tend to call in at Phang Nga. If the timing is bad you can get more frequent services to Takua Pa and change for Ranong.

FROM RANONG BUS STATION TO SAPHAN PLAA PIER
This is about 5km. I paid 70 baht in the reverse direction in March '11 for a motorcycle taxi - no doubt way too much but I was in a hurry to make a local red rattler to Kuraburi for the Surin islands.
I read a website post early 2011 from a traveller managed to bargain a taxi down to 70 for her family from the bus station to the pier. Seems pretty good to me.
I have twice used Kiwi Guesthouse's SUV shuttle which takes guests down to the ferries in the morning for 100 each. Kiwi is at the end of the northern-most of the 3 wide lanes that run up to the bus station from the main road - its rooms are not great and overpriced but I have used it twice after arriving on a bus from Phuket around 11pm - couldn't be bothered looking for a joint uptown that late. The lady who runs the joint is very efficient - knows the best deals on the island and can 'phone for vacancies and book you in. She seems to get good prices.

Note the Ranong minibus station is in another part of town, further from the pier although I reckon the 70baht motorcycle taxi fare would still easily work.

There is a songthaew starts from town central and runs along the main road near the pier - but negotiating the zig zag backstreets to the pier is a bit of a trick on foot.


TRIP REPORT FROM FEBRUARY 08
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Lisa Jennings was on the same Similan Islands live-aboard snorkelling trip I did in late January 08. She wanted a nice and non-touristy island on the way back to Bangkok. Little Chang fits the bill on all 3 counts. This is what she emailed me:
"I visited Ko Chang in January, 2008. It's definitely still one of the more laid back islands in Thailand. It sure doesn't have that touristy feel you get on the other Andaman islands, and the bungalows are rustic and cheap. Most are 200 baht, with some nicer ones with big porches right at the edge of the ocean for 400 baht.
This island is super friendly during the high season, and great for solo travellers! The travellers and thais I met here were very sociable. Ko Change seemed to attract a different type of traveller, and a few people I met had spent several weeks on this island.
There are walking trails all over the island, some paved, some pretty adventurous. Don't miss the Burmese and Thai villages on the northeast coast. Take the trail along the west side of the island to get to the villages, don't go through the mangroves like I did. :-) Watch for the hornbill birds - big and really cool to see. A few people said they had seen big snakes, but I never saw one.
I met a family in the thai village that invited me into thier one room hut. The father climbed up the coconut tree, barefoot, and twisted off a coconut for me. He hacked off the top and I sat there trying to talk with them for a couple hours, drinking the coconut milk. As I left, he wanted to give me the amulet around his neck, although I prostested. He insisted, so I gave them my hat. Such nice, friendly people on Ko Chang.
There were many good places to eat at the different bungalows on Ko Chang. Full moon and Hornbill were my favorites, and I tried to sample most of the bungalow's cooking. There is an excellent bakery that is a little hard to find the first time. Take the inland trail near Golden Bee. Brownies, muffins, fresh whole grain bread, omelettes, all that stuff you crave when you've been in Thailand a long time! Run by a super nice australian guy and his super gracious thai wife. The beaches are pretty nice on Ko Change, the accomodations are rustic, it's quiet and the nightlife is pretty much non-existent. It might have been my favorite island in Thailand."

Thanks Lisa. Below are a couple of shots she sent me.
Nice shot back towards the mainland from one of the tracks in the north of the island.


This is part of AO YAI beach looking south - Sawasdee Bungalows is behind that section of rocks in the background and AO DA DENG, the sunset beach, is thru the low saddle area further back.

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If you visit little Chang you might also be interested in nearby:
KO PHAYAM

SURIN ISLANDS

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XXXX - If you have any questions, please ask them in THE FORUM rather than below. I don't get a chance to check all threads daily, but unless I'm travelling I'll try to monitor THE FORUM regularly.

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THERE ARE ACTUALLY 2 BEACHES AND ISLANDS BLOGS (for reasons explained in " About This Site" accessed thru the index) SO THERE ARE MORE BEACH AND ISLAND PAGES HERE

4 comments:

Bogstandard said...

Just back from Ko Chang; great, quiet island. Quite difficult to get accommodation, as people tending to stay for a few months. Loved Context in north-west area.
Thanks for all the info x

dnky said...

Been here twice and completely loved the place.

As we are planning next winter holiday, a question: do you know a place around south-east Asia (or elsewhere) that could be compared to Little Ko Chang (as laid back atmosphere & people, quiet & tranquil place, accommodation cheap bungalow next to the ocean).

Let us hear your recommendations!

tezza said...

May be a bit late - I don't check these individual pages very often. Some suggestions:
- northern end of Ao Khao Kwai, Ko Phayam
- Har Pla and Sunset Seafood on Ko Koh Khao's north west beach.
- Ao Toh Koh and Ao Rantee on Phi Phi's laid back east coast
- north beach Ko Jum
- Paradise Beach Resort Ko Ngai
- possibly Kradan Island Resort (am staying there in a few weeks, will have updated info on my Kradan page) and Ao Niang Beach resort Ko Kradan.
- Bulone Resort Ko Bulon Lae

tezza said...

Um, just thought of a few more:
- Island Hut and all on Ao Tookata, Ko Mak
- Good Feeling, Gran Ma Hut and Ko Wai Paradise's 3rd beach (most northern) bungalows, Ko Wai
- Tree House, Long Beach big Ko Chang.