I had 48 hours in Bangkok earlier than my flight to Melbourne. I might both spend it procuring within the many glittering malls in Thailand’s capital metropolis or I might park myself on the powdery white sands of the closest seashore and swim in azure waters. The thalassophile in me selected the latter.
A fast Google search on the ‘closest seashore to Bangkok’ threw up the islands of Koh Samet, Koh Larn and Hua Hin. I flipped a coin and went with Koh Larn.
Meals market at Pattaya
I hopped aboard Bangkok’s BTS skytrain and alighted at Ekamai bus terminal, from the place hourly buses by Roong Reuang Coach depart to Pattaya. A THB 130 (Rs 320) ticket bought me a snug seat on a two-hour AC bus trip to Pattaya from the place I hoped to catch the final ferry to Koh Larn. I missed it by a whisker, so I stayed the evening in Pattaya — exploring its well-known nightlife and avenue meals market and wakened early the subsequent morning to catch the 8am ferry from Bali Hai Pier.
Strolling Road, Pattaya
The ferry is a gradual and satisfying 45-minute trip for THB 30 (Rs 75) — the quicker route is a bumpy speedboat trip for round THB 200 per particular person. Nobody insists you put on a life jacket, although it’s advisable to slide one on and when you’re not terribly seasick, you’ll be able to even sit alongside the edges of the ferry dangling your legs over the South China Sea within the Gulf of Thailand, watching the ferry’s wake create patterns within the water.
The fading Pattaya skyline from the ferry to Koh Larn
The ferry stops at both of the 2 piers on Koh Larn — Na Baan Pier or Tawaen Seaside Pier. If you happen to don’t find yourself staying on any of the island resorts, you’ll be able to take the ferry again to Pattaya — the final one leaves at 5pm from Tawaen and 6pm from Na Baan (timings could differ). It’s a 10-minute stroll to the top of the Tawaen pier so wrap up in time lest you miss it (I virtually did!).
Koh Larn or Coral Island
Koh Larn, also referred to as Coral Island, has round seven lovely seashores. It’s a small island, so it’s simple to hop from seashore to seashore by way of the songthaew (THB 40/Rs 97) or on a rented motorcycle (THB 200-250/Rs 490-615).
Na Baan bustles with vacationers
If you happen to alight at Na Baan Pier, you’ll be able to stroll across the group centre dotted with cafes, memento retailers, motels and a 7-Eleven, earlier than exploring the remainder of the island. There’s a stall that blends smoothies from varied mixtures of fruits and it’s thrilling to know if mango and dragonfruit tasted nearly as good as you imagined it to be! Keep away from selecting something that’s not simply accessible in Thailand… like avocado.
Koh Larn has a Windmill Viewpoint, from the place one can take pleasure in a panoramic view of the island lazily stretching out into the ocean.
I meant to take a look at all seven seashores however by the point I reached the third one, I fortunately plonked myself on a deck lounge and let the ocean swallow my bold plans with the solar.
Seashores of Koh Larn
The principle seashore on Koh Larn is Tawaen within the northern a part of the island. Weekends, particularly, can get crowded right here as vacationers and locals troop in from Bangkok.
A brief stroll away from Tawaen is Thong Lang Seaside. Simply off the seashore, there are coral reefs the place you’ll be able to snorkel. Then there’s Sangwan, which is the second-largest seashore, and Samae seashore, which is half a km lengthy and has a hilltop viewpoint.
Nual Seaside is the closest ‘correct’ seashore from the Na Baan Pier so when you like a little bit of crowd, then you’ll be able to head right here. It’s additionally referred to as the Monkey Seaside although I didn’t spot any (which was most likely for the most effective!).
Each vacationer often finally ends up having a favorite seashore and among the many three seashores I visited – Nual, Tien and Tawaen, Tien was mine. A stroll down a raised pathway to the seashore, white sands, turquoise waters, no distributors harassing you, few vacationers, contemporary fruit smoothies, cans of chilled beer… Tien ticked all of the packing containers. The seashore is greater than half a kilometre lengthy, so you’ll be able to stroll down leisurely, swim or sunbathe.
All of the seashores have sundecks which could be rented for round 50-100 THB for the day. One can carry meals and drinks or purchase them from the eating places or stalls.
Most seashores even have enjoyable actions like banana boat, jet ski, water scooty and even paragliding when you’re into water sports activities.
Click on right here for some fabulous drone footage of the island and its seashores.
The walkway to Tien Seaside and (proper) the powdery sands of the seashores of Koh Larn
SEAS THE DAY
Attending to Koh Larn from Bangkok: A two-hour bus trip from Bangkok’s Ekamai terminal to Pattaya, adopted by a ferry or speedboat trip to Koh Larn. There are additionally direct buses from Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi airport to Pattaya.
Getting round Koh Larn: Hire a motorcycle for 200 THB (contains gasoline) or hop on to the tuk-tuk which takes 40 THB to any seashore.
Keep: It’s also possible to keep at any of the resorts on Koh Larn or keep in Pattaya and make day journeys to the island. The motels are costlier in Koh Larn.
Issues to do: Seaside-hopping, parasailing, paragliding, banana boat, jet ski, underwater sea strolling, glass backside kayaking.
Eat: Contemporary fruit smoothies and seafood.
Contemporary fruit smoothies ought to be in your checklist of issues to strive