Koh Lanta (or Ko Lanta) is an island in Thailand with many white sandy beaches, forests, coral reefs and incredible underwater life.
Description of Koh Lanta
Located on the Andaman Sea, the island is part of the province of Krabi.
It is well known to the French because it is where the reality and adventure show of the same name was filmed, broadcast on TF1 since 4 August 2001.
The main island is 6 km wide and more than 30 km long, and is located about 70 km from the city of Krabi.
A paved road runs along the beaches of the northern part of the island most of the way to the southern tip.
The last 8 kilometres lead to the headquarters of the Ko Lanta.
The geography of the island is generally made up of mangroves, beaches and rainforest covered mountains.
The people of Krabi and Koh Lanta are a mixture of BuddhistsThai-Chinese, Muslims and sea gypsies.
The majority of the population in rural areas is Muslim.
The region, however, does not suffer from religious tensions and people live in peace and harmony.
Koh Lanta climate
The weather in the region is tropical, there are only two seasons: the hot season from January to April and the rainy season from May to December.
Temperatures during the year average between 25ºC and 32ºC and the average annual rainfall is 2569 mm.
Rain in this region comes heavily and quickly over short periods.
When to go to Koh Lanta?
The best time to visit Koh Lanta is between November and April, when the region's climate is less warm than usual.
During this period, the island receives a lot of dry winds from the north, resulting in blue skies and starry nights.
From May to October, the region receives a lot of rainfall, more on average than in the rest of the country.
During this period, the island receives a lot of humid south-westerly winds, resulting in a mixture of dry and humid days.
The sea remains at 29°C all year round.
History of Koh Lanta
The island was originally called Pulau Satak, which is Malay for "the island of the long beach".
It was not officially named Koh Lanta until 1917. The name, of uncertain etymology, is said to come from the Javanese lanta, which is said to designate a utensil used to grill fish.
The name could also be derived from the Thai lan daa, which in combination with Ko would translate as "the name of the country". the island of a million eyes" .
Things to see and do on Koh Lanta
The main beaches
C'is the most popular beach on the island.
It is a white sandy beach with clear water that stretches for 3km, it is located 2km from the port Saladan.
There are many hotels of all categories in Klong Dao.
It is the perfect place for those who are looking for a quiet beach but still in a lively area with many agencies, restaurants and bars.
This small beach is one kilometre long and is a famous place for snorkelling because of the beautiful corals.
It is located 18 kilometres south of Baan Saladanis theone of the most beautiful beaches on the island.
This range is called Long Beach by tourists, it is located in the north of the island and forms a crescent over 4 kilometres long.
It is a quiet area where you can easily find hotels and bungalows.
The old town: Lanta Old Town
It is a small village located on the east coast of Koh Lanta.
Years ago, the former city of (Lanta Old Town) was the commercial centre of the island and had its only port.
It was a safe trading place for Arab and Chinese merchant ships.
Today, the old town is an important district, with a post office, police station, Buddhist temple, Chinese temple, harbour and the island's only hospital.
It is a pleasant place to visit, with a multitude of quality restaurants and many shops selling handicrafts for the shopping.
Khao Mai Kaew Caves
The cellars of Khao Mai Kaew are located in the centre of the island, with beautiful rocks and impressive stalactites and stalagmites.
To visit these cellars, you will need a guide, it costs 200 baht per person.
There are many agencies that offer courses and rides in scuba divingMost have French-speaking instructors.
In these beautiful seabeds, you can observe many species of fish such as manta rays and sometimes whale sharks.
Visits to the islands
A very common activity during the high season, the agencies offer you to discover the most beautiful islands of the region by boat.
Visit to the mangroves
You can visit the mangroves by kayak or canoe, a beautiful walk through the labyrinth of trees and small canals.
A good way to observe the many species of plants as well as animals such as monkeys, lizards, birds...
The routes are usually completed in half a day.
The gypsies of the sea
Known as Chao Le by the Thais, the gypsies of the sea (Sea-Gypsy), have occupied this area for several hundred years.
The gypsies of the sea live apart and do not mix too much with other local populations.
They have their own customs, beliefs, rituals and even their own language.
Orchid nursery farm
This orchid farm is located near the beach Pra Ae and entrance costs 30 baht per person.
Other activities on Koh Lanta
Find a hotel in Koh Lanta
You will have no trouble finding hotel accommodation, but if you come between November and February, the high season in Thailand, or during important celebrationsIt is best to book in advance.
Transport: getting to and around Koh Lanta
The nearest airports to Koh Lanta are those of Krabi, Trang and Phuket.
Krabi and Trang have boat connections to Koh LantaThis is the easiest way to get to the island.
It is possible to fly direct to the airport in Krabi, from Bangkok, Singapore or even Kuala Lumpur.
Mini van and boat by express transfer
The quickest way to get to Koh Lanta from the airport of Krabi or that of Phuket is to take the express transfers which includes a trip in mini van and in fast boat.
From the airport of Krabi, a mini van will take you to the port in 45 minutes to catch the first boat.
This fast boat should then take 15 minutes to get to Saladan à Koh LantaYou will then be transferred to your hotel by car.
The total duration of this express transfer should then be about an hour and a half for a cost of 2450 baht per person and 1225 baht for children.
Several buses leave daily from BangkokIt takes between 12 and 15 hours to get to Krabi, From there, it is necessary to go to the pier to take the ferry.
Private buses start from Kao San Road, ihese are very comfortable sleeper buses. They usually leave in the evening. You should check with the agencies.
Public buses depart every 30 minutes (between 17:00 and 21:00) from the Bangkok South Station for the Krabi bus station.
From Krabi to BangkokBuses leave every 30 minutes between 16:00 and 18:00.
From Bangkok North Station (Mo Chit) Buses leave every day at 18:35.
The island is only served by boats.
There are many private boat companies offering travel to and from Koh Lanta.
Cost of the journey (depending on the company and the season):
Koh Lanta - Koh Phi Phi: between 200 and 350 baht
Koh Lanta - Krabi: between 200 and 400 baht
Koh Lanta - Koh Phi Phi - Phuket: between 450 and 700 baht
The nearest train station to Koh Lanta is in the province of Tranglocated in the south of Krabi.
This station is 950 kilometres from BangkokThis is about a 12-hour journey.
Getting around the island
Most hotels and tourist services, such as diving agencies, have trucks that can meet you on arrival on the island or take you on excursions.
The rides offered by the motorbike taxis are not very expensive, it will only cost you about 100 baht for a day.
Photos of Koh Lanta
Video on Koh Lanta
Koh Lanta maps
Official map of the island
Tourist map of the island
Source: wikipedia.org wikitravel.org ; Photos : Koh Lanta Beach : Neitram, Ban Saladan Pier, Ko Lanta : Puzzlement, Bungalows, Ko Lanta : Puzzlement, Sunset, Koh Lanta : Phil WeaverLong boat, Ko Lanta : Puzzlement, Koh Lanta Beach : Neitram, Koh Lanta Beach 2 : Michele Ann Jenkins