We pretty much adored every part of our trip to Klong Prao Beach on the beautiful island of Koh Chang. Not yet as touristy as what we’d experienced in Bali, Koh Chang truly captured our hearts. We would have stayed longer had our visa allowed, but alas, it’ll remain a brief, wonderous stint in time – like the summer fling you never want to forget.
>> The beach <<
Many may say that the beach here is too narrow. I disagree. In the morning, it was just wide enough for me to put the sunchair in the shallow water so I could sunbathe and get a cool down when the tide passed over my feet, as well as get shade from the palm trees without having to sit twenty feet away from the water. It’s also narrow enough that no one ever sits in front or behind you – the closest people next to you are at least five feet to either side. After lunch, the tide starts moving out, so you can lay (or Eric’s case: roll) in the sand. To me, the perfect beach day.
>> The swings <<
Oh, the swings! I haven’t had so much simple fun in so long. The pure bliss of sitting on a swing that could entertain me for hours as a kid still entertains me for hours in my twenties. The swings were right outside our hotel on the beachfront, but as long as you find a spot to walk onto the beach from the road (through a hotel I’m sure would be okay), you can find these swings. Walk along the beach and swing along the way. Not to be missed.
>> Looking for shells <<
Whenever the tide went out, the water revealed millions of tiny spiral shells, some of which were bright magenta! There was even one night we saw hundred of sand dollars crawling back to the ocean – all still alive, we didn’t keep any and just watched.
>> The wildlife <<
The crabs are pretty entertaining to just sit and watch as they scurry around the beach. The sea birds here are beautiful and sing a really unique song.
>> The National Park Scenic View <<
If you have the opportunity to rent a motorbike, car, or driver, drive south on the island’s main road. You’ll pass a scenic view area on your right hand side once out of Klong Prao Beach. It’s worth a stop to see the surrounding islands and water.
>> KA-TI Culinary <<
I’ll admit, I didn’t really love the food we tried near our hotel, Paradise Resort and Spa. We’ve had much better restaurant and street food in Bangkok. However! We did score one gem in our short time there: KA-TI Culinary. A little restaurant with a front porch seating area (that has a tree growing right through it!) with large portions, real Thai food, and decent prices. We ordered the red curry shrimp and the stir fry tofu/vegetables. We also tried the must try veggie spring rolls: fresh and crispy deliciousness. The last must try on the menu: the rum/coconut ice cream dessert. OH. MY. GLOB. I am a bit of a pirate, aka I love rum, but due to expenses I haven’t really drank much of anything on this trip so this was a splurge and the right kind of splurge.
>> The sunsets <<
Had we been awake in time for the sunrise, we probably would have loved that, too. Stick around on the beach until 6ish PM and watch the sun go down. Watching the sky turn to embers is totally worth it.
I really don’t have much for this list here, honestly, which is awesome! I would say the food in general was a bit lackluster for us overall on our trip, but perhaps we didn’t know the best spots to go. I’m sad to admit that the snorkel trip we took was probably our least favorite part of this trip. I personally would not choose to go again as we spent more time on the boat than in the water, and the beaches were not as nice as those that we already had on Koh Chang. All of the tour boats (looked like big tours and private boats) dock at the same spots and, as a result, there are more people than fish in the water. We did see a cool leopard colored octopus and I hear people have been fortunate enough to see whale sharks (sweet!), but other than that it was mostly rocks, sea urchins, and small schools of fish. Sattra Tours did supply us with great equipment and enough food, all with kind staff, so if this still interests you, then please don’t let us deter you!
All in all, I want to write an open letter of thank you to Koh Chang. You came at the right time that I was struggling with something personally and you were a pure, relaxing, bliss-full breath of fresh sea air. Thank you.
P.S. The different beaches of Koh Chang seemed to have different vibes. I, personally, liked Klong Prao Beach the best – it was quiet, shaded, and beautiful. We checked out Lonely Beach one day and it was chill; a younger crowd of backpackers, with bars and a wider beach. White Sands seemed to be the most upscale and busiest in town, although we didn’t check out the beach.