Published on November 7, 2019
A VISIT TO PARADISE ISLAND: Koh Lanta Thailand
By Shana Kongmun
Koh Lanta is not an unknown island and yet, at least in the low season, it still feels very much off the beaten track. For those seeking great shopping and big city life, Lanta is not the place for you. But if you are seeking an island with that authentic local feel, then Lanta may fit the bill.
Developed enough that you still have signal on your phone and high speed WiFi if you just can’t go unconnected but relaxed enough that you can leave it all behind should you so choose. Getting to Koh Lanta readies you for the slow pace of life. From the airport is an hour or so drive to the pier where you drive on to a barge for a short but leisurely ride over to Lanta Noi. From there you have to drive to Lanta Yai (the big island) over a bridge and through winding roads to the beaches.
Most people choose Phra – Ae or Long Beach as it is known, which is, quite literally, long! Five kilometers long, it is a short drive from Saladan village and the port. Swimming on this beach is also quite good as the gentle slope in the water makes it fun for kids, adults and all those in between. Water sports are available but unlike busier islands, the ubiquitous and noisy jet skis are not filling the swimming areas.
Long Beach is dotted with resorts, restaurants and bars making it a fun 5 kilometer stroll and even better place to relax and watch the sunset. If you want something even quieter, give the beaches to the south a try.
Hotels and resorts on the island run the full gamut, if you want a hut on the beach, you can find it. Or if luxury is your thing, Lanta has that on offer too. Layana Resort is a luxury resort on Long Beach, mid-range resorts include Lanta Sand Resort. Pimalai Resort and Spa, further south on Kan Tiang beach, is the first and most well-known luxury resort. It has definitely earned its reputation for an amazing destination for a beach holiday.
On Lanta, you can lounge by the beach, by the pool or rent a motorbike or car and drive around the island. There are cooking schools that dot the island, Time for Lime is the oldest and has a great evening vibe. After you finish your class you can sit next to the beach and watch local children play football with their flip flops as goals. Nothing feels more local than that!
If you are looking for an island that has a great beach, a chill vibe and great food, Lanta may be just the place for you.