The laid-back island of Ko Lanta, has kilometres of white sand beaches for you to kick back and relax on. While firmly on the tourism radar, it isn't overrun like nearby Phi Phi and manages to retain some of its charm. It's relatively easy to explore and find a secluded spot or soak in some reggae beach bar vibes - See our Ko Lanta's Beaches highlight for more info.
Unless you're looking for the hedonistic level of wild partying on places like Ko Pha Ngan, Ko Lanta has a type of beach to suit most people.
Beaches line the west coast, with calm waters perfect for swimming and a few excellent snorkelling places off the beaches with dive sites nearby. If you fancy catching a glimpse of a more traditional way of islander life, head over to the east side of the island to the village known as the Old Town with its old teakwood houses. It’s a superb day trip, or you can stay longer overnight if you want to really soak it up. Mu Ko Lanta National Park occupies the far south of the island. Within it at the southernmost tip, is a magnificent old white lighthouse sitting on top of a rocky outcrop with a beautiful beach just below, providing stunning views.
If you find the beach that's ticking your boxes, there's every chance you won't want to leave....
Ko Lanta consists of two islands, Ko Lanta Noi (closest to the mainland) and Ko Lanta Yai, connected to each other by a bridge at the very north of Ko Lanta Yai. There's little tourism infrastructure on Noi, so when shortened to Ko Lanta, travellers are referring to Ko Lanta Yai. Usually, the first stop via ferry or car is the small main village of Baan Saladan - the tourism hub of Ko Lanta. It’s now difficult to imagine this was once a sleepy fishing village, with all the concrete, overhead cables, shops and tourist facilities around. Although reminders remain, with some old stilted wooden houses now acting as cheap guesthouses, and the best seafood restaurants on the island serving up their catches of the day. The lively night market is worth checking out for more good local food, centrally located it’s easy to find.