Khao Lak Beach Pictures
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Khao Lak beach.
Khao Lak is a tranquil beach resort with soft sand and mid-market beach bungalows and resort hotels, about 60kms north of Phuket island and 100kms north of Phuket town.
Khao Lak doesn't do brash tourist resorts or Patong packaged people. It is more about soft yellow sand, clean warm seas, low-profile, discreet buildings catering to mostly European families, couples and scuba divers who are on the way to some of Thailand's best diving off the Similan Islands (50 kms from Khao Lak) or Surin Islands (60 kms away).
Pre-Tsunami beach cafés. We trust they are back in action and thriving.
Tsunami control centre and shelter in Khao Lak, photo by Ray Googin.
On December 26 2004 a massive tsunami hit east Thailand's coast, including Khao Lak, with great loss of life. Now coastal reconstruction has finished and tourism numbers have recovered.
There is now a tsunami warning control centre and refuge on the Khao Lak coast.
Typical mid-market beach bungalows on Khao Lak shore.
Main attractions other than the large, comfortable beach: Khao Lak is quiet (compared to most of Phuket), easy to reach from Phuket airport and hosts mainly mid-range accommodation.
The Similan Islands are the destination of choice for serious scuba divers or snorkellers who don't mind the 2 hour ride to get 50kms offshore.
A couple of pretty waterfalls with swimming facilities (Chong Fah and Lampi) less than an hour's drive away make good day trips from Khao Lak, as does Takuapa Old Town with its old colonial architecture, market and riverside restaurants.
Khao Sok National Park offers rainforest activities including jungle treks and elephant rides, waterfalls, river rafting and canoeing. Khao Sok is an hour's drive drive northeast of Khao Lak.
Downsides: Very limited night life and eating-out options; chunky waves early in the season; ageing Scandinavian folk overload in some areas.
A Spirit House on the beach, keeping the spirits up.
A forested road running alongside Khao Lak in Phang-Na province.
Khao Lak beaches weather:
The best time to be on these beaches is December to March, with the obvious caveat that around Christmas and New Year the place will be packed and prices will be higher than during the low season.
The worst time would be May to October when many facilities will be closed and heavy rains may be frequent, along with rough seas, seaweed on the beach, mould and mosquitoes!
Bargain prices might be obtained during April and November if you're a gambler!
Khao Lak beach in 2012.
- fly to Phuket international airport and take a taxi for the 75kms to Khao Lak. Buses don't go from the airport, though they do pass by on Highway 4 about 5 kms away.
- fly to Krabi international airport and take a taxi or mini-bus from there.
- take an overnight bus from Bangkok's Sai Tai terminal in the south of the city.
- take a bus from Phuket bus station running every couple of hours and taking 2 hours.
- take a daily minibus from Krabi.