Koh Lanta is an absolutely beautiful place. We spent our first week on Koh Lanta on the East side of the Island in Old Lanta. We absolutely loved it. It was quiet and relaxed and laid back. But be warned, if you stay there, you pretty much have to rent a scooter (assuming you have a license and insurance) because there is very little to walk to and what passes for a taxi in this part of the world (usually, the back of a pick up truck but sometimes a side cart attached to a scooter) is very expensive for this part of the world (we payed $13 to get across the island one way). So, what did we do in our first week (besides visiting Lanta Animal Welfare)?
We played on swings over the ocean at various beachfront bars and restaurants.
We rented a scooter to get around the island. We put about 200 km (124 miles) on the scooter in one week. Given that Koh Lanta is only 6 km wide and 30 km long, you can tell we drove quite a bit. Robert has finally admitted that I’m getting better on the back of the scooter — I finally figured out that the secret is to act like you are riding a horse (plant your ass on the saddle, sit up straight, relax, and let your hips and your feet do most of the work). Note the lovely plastic helmet we were given — I’m pretty sure its only use is to collect some of the gore if you get into an accident, as it certainly isn’t going to protect any heads.
We spent hours watching the sea eagles. They fly over the ocean and hunt all day. They are stunning. We even had some hang out in the trees by our hotel.
We visited beautiful beaches. This one is Bamboo Beach. There are two cafes that overlook the beach and one cafe on the beach. We stopped both on the overlook and at the beach and I recommend you do the same. Be forewarned however — the hill I had to walk up is the hill up from Bamboo Beach.
We visited a nice little restaurant called Caoutchouc at low tide and watched birds hunt for dinner while I drank the most amazing ginger lemonade soft drink concoction.
I rode in a long tail boat (Robert was under the weather that day). Careful though, as your ears will be ringing by the end of the day from the engine noise.
I was on a long tail boat for the “four islands” tour. The “highlight” of the day was supposed to be a visit to the Emerald Cave — you swim through a short little cave passage in the dark and emerge onto a hidden beach. And, it could have been a real highlight. Except for the hordes of people. Most of whom could not swim.
I spotted a horn bill. I saw two of these in a tree on the beach during my four islands tour. How cool is this guy (or girl)?
And, we found additional places for great views while enjoying our lunch.
More to come from week 2!
Always been curious abut Koh Lanta and riding by scooter around the island sounds fun (did the same many years ago in Lake Toba in Sumatra).
Those lines of tourists quite off-putting though…are they mostly Chinese tourists there these days?
Nope. Most of the tourists are Swedes and other Europeans.
I should also add that Koh Lanta is an amazing place (at least during shoulder season, which is when we were there). Friendly people, good food, beautiful beaches. The only time it felt crowded was on excursions like the four islands tour. You should give Koh Lanta a try.