PHOTO: Enjoy the near deserted beaches of Koh Lanta. (photo via Flickr/Y-Not?)
A secret archipelago in Thailand is hiding some of the country's best beaches says a new report in the Guardian. Plagued by booming development, popular destinations such as Phuket and Koh Samui are being overrun with tourists, but on the country’s west coast a southern island chain is home to stunning and secluded beaches where the masses have yet to descend.
Part of the reason these places remain a secret is that they certainly take an effort to get to, but once there, some might say that “heaven awaits.”
One example is Haad Farang (Haad Sai Yao) on Koh Muk.
“Framed by jungle-draped limestone karsts, this small but striking bay has serene waters free of riptides, making it safe for families to splash around in the sun. As its nickname implies – farang is Thai for foreigner – you’ll find a large concentration of backpackers here. Still, with only a few sun-loungers and a couple of ramshackle food stops, it’s a far cry from the chaos of Chaweng beach on Koh Samui or Kamala on Phuket,” writes Diana Hubbell.
And if that sounds like paradise, Ao Sabai is even more secluded.
“Walled in by dramatic bluffs and a smattering of palm trees, Ao Sabai feels like a secret hideaway. It may be on the petite side and its sand is more amber in color than postcard-perfect alabaster, but the seclusion more than makes up for it,” says Hubbell.
Koh Rok Nai and its twin Koh Rok Nok lure are aided by Koh Lanta National Park, protecting them from overdevelopment — and it’s easy to see why visitors would want to make the trek.
“Technically, both are part of Krabi Province, but the spectacular scenery more than merits the more than two-hour longtail boat ride from the Trang islands,” writes Hubbell.
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Its pristine beaches are also unspoiled by any accommodation but for those who are feeling adventurous, it’s possible to get a government-run tent.
One thing is for sure: Don’t forget your snorkeling gear.
For more details on reaching these far-flung locations and finding accommodations, read on here.