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A lovely island off the coast of Krabi, Koh Lanta is known for its relaxed way of life and long sandy beaches. Offering a more “grown-up” vibe than its famous neighbour Koh Phi Phi, here are some of the best places to enjoy beautiful views, swimming, and sunbathing in Koh Lanta.
Kantiang Bay is often said to be one of the most attractive beaches on the island of Koh Lanta. At the south of Koh Lanta’s main island (Koh Lanta Yai), the slightly curved sands are protected by large headlands and the background is rugged forest. The trees next to the beach provide welcome shade in the heat of the day. One end of the beach is rocky but the rest is great for swimming. Fairly secluded, it’s a great place to take pictures, bask in the sunshine, and enjoy a peaceful atmosphere. Just remember to take away any litter and do your part to keep the beach clean and beautiful.
At the north of Koh Lanta Yai, Klong Dao is one of the busiest and most popular beaches of Koh Lanta. Stretching for three and a half kilometres, there are many beachside accommodations to choose from, along with an assortment of small shops, restaurants, and bars just a short stroll from the sands. The wide beach is good for sunbathing at any time of the day and the waters are shallow with few rocks, making it ideal for families.
A relaxed spot in the middle of the western coast of Koh Lanta’s largest island, Klong Khong is one of the best beaches for budget travellers; basic beach bungalows help cost-conscious travellers to spend less. The abundance of beach bars make it one of the island’s top places for partying too, though the parties are more likely to be chilled-out affairs than raucous all-nighters. There’s a range of eateries along the beach, selling mainly Thai fare and western favourites such as pizza, pasta, burgers, and baguettes. A nice place to unwind and take it easy, swimming is only recommended at high tide due to the rocks.
Phra Ae, also known as Long Beach, is a pretty stretch of sand with several luxury hotels and higher-class resorts. Accommodations are fairly spread out, making it possible to find a reasonably quiet patch of beach even during high season. Stick to the northern end of the beach if you want to swim; there are fewer rocks and the sands are wide. Towards the south, Phra Ae gets quite rocky, though the scenery is photogenic. Take a stroll along the shore and discover several small sandy bays that have been separated from each other by large rocks. You’ll likely find an array of interesting seashells, but think twice before taking any natural souvenirs away with you!
Khlong Nin is one of Koh Lanta’s most unique beaches. It’s a good place for swimming and sunbathing, but it really comes into its own of an evening, with people coming from all over the island to watch the sun go down from one of the beach bars and restaurants. Many have comfy seating right on the sands, letting you feel the sand between your toes as you admire the changing colours of the sky before darkness falls. Although there are only a few beachfront accommodations, there are more great places to stay just across the road from the beach. Prices are usually a bit cheaper as you move a short way from the sands too, and you can still be on the beach within a couple of minutes.