Ahh paradise. Koh Lanta is a place to relax and spend days in the sand. It’s a stark contrast from neighbouring Koh Phi Phi and has quite a lovely atmosphere. I’ve confessed my love for Koh Lanta in the past, its no secret. Although It was one of our favourite Thai Islands there comes a time when you need to get up off the sand and do something.
waiting for the car ferry to cross the short distance to Lanta Noi
secluded Hua Laem Ngu Beach
Since we had rented a scooter for our time in Koh Lanta we could easily access all parts of the island. Koh Lanta is a fairly large island so I feel as though atleast a few days with a scooter is necessary to see all that Lanta offers. We explored the southern tip and the wonderful beaches there and also the north more touristy areas. When we had arrived by ferry I noticed Lanta Noi, an unattached island kissing the tip of Koh Lanta. We did not know too much about this island other than the fact I assumed it was fairly empty. We took a car barge across to the other island. It takes about 5 minutes and cost 13 baht total for 2 people plus the motorbike. Having no idea where to go once we disembarked we just simple drove and picked at random which way to turn when we were met with forks in the road.
couldn't resist picking up a few seashells that caught our eye
Our first stop was Hua Laem Ngu beach. The long stretch of sand sparkled with the many unbroken sea shells that was a clear indication of where the tide rises to. We spent some time taking pictures and appreciating its seclusion while picking up a few shells for future art projects.
After running into our first dead end we promptly headed the opposite direction and found some of the most beautiful scenery we had seen in Thailand. People don’t usually describe Koh Lanta in the same way they do other Thai islands but it is appreciated for its seclusion and overall beaches. What we were seeing completely blew me away and surprised us both. We had no idea that Koh Lanta was also framed by small islets. Life on Lanta Noi gives you an idea of how life was like on Koh Lanta Yai before tourism picked up.
one of the many rubber farms around Koh Lanta Noi
There are both palm and rubber tree farms scattered everywhere and fishermen's houses over the water. Every twist and turn of the road offered stunning views and we often stopped to push our way through the brush and get at the waterfront. Although there are no sand beaches on this side of the island the views are nice on their own.
small islets on the east side of the island
feeling good to be in the drivers seat again
Colin was starting to feel bad that I was always on the back of the scooter and suggested I give it a go without him on the back since we almost had a disaster of me dropping us both previously. I was eager to drive since back home in Canada I get around town on a Vespa. I zoomed off confidently and when I felt it was time to come back I began to make a U-turn. As soon as I did a large group of devious monkeys came onto the road behind me, one giving an especially angry stare. I knew not to hang around for too long, we have encountered this look many times in the past few months in South East Asia and if often ends in someone being slightly mauled or bags being stolen.
the roads on Koh Lanta Noi are in good condition, many of them are brand new
We spent a half day driving around the island and exploring local roads while getting lost and waving to smiling children. It was a nice break from sitting on the beach and a welcome adventure.
rickety docks and fisherman's boats make for interesting photos