I’ve been thinking about going to Koh Chang for a while, as it’s one of Thailand’s most beautiful islands. It’s only about a 6 hour drive away from Bangkok and doesn’t cost more than a few hundred Baht to get to. That’s why I decided that going to Koh Chang and explore the island on a motorcycle would be a great idea.
Not only is Koh Chang easily accessible by plane from Bangkok, there are also several minivan services and government bus services going to and from the island all day long. I opted for the government bus leaving from Ekkamai bus station. It only cost me about 300 Baht to be taken all the way to Trat. From Trat there are pickup truck taxi’s that go to the ferry point for 80 Baht, including ferry fare.
Once the ferry reached the shore of Koh Chang, the only option seemed to be a similar pickup truck service. They were already waiting for us at the dropoff point. These guys were charging prices that are a bit on the expensive side. The going price to go to the south of the island is 150 Baht per person. Once I got all the way there they tried to charge me an additional 100 Baht because my hotel was further than expected.
Entrance to the guesthouse
Wooden houses on stilts are very common on the island. I rented one for 450 Baht per night without a fan. The weather in Koh Chang is similar to that of Bangkok but a little cooler at night so air-con isn’t really necessary.
Most of the complex where I was staying at, was built atop a pond. This means wobbly passageways and wet clothes if you make a misstep. The place was at the most southern part of the island, making it a very quiet area to be in. The hammock on the porch makes it a perfect idyllic place to relax at.
The beach was located about 2 minutes of walking away from my hammock. As with most beaches in Thailand, there are just a handful of people on it throughout the day. These are dominated by foreigners, local Thai people are too busy working to lay on the beach.
Motorcycles can be rented for 200 Baht per day. It’s the best way to travel around the island but also the most dangerous. Motorcycle accidents are so common on these islands that most insurance companies don’t even cover them anymore. I’ve seen 2 accidents occur already during my short stay on Koh Chang. The combination of inexperience, alcohol, and recklessness ends a lot of lives every year, unfortunately.
Finding the deserted places of the island is easy to do on a motorcycle. Although there are not as many beaches as on other popular islands like Phuket, there are still some beaches out there where you won’t be bothered by a single soul.
One of Koh Chang’s deserted beaches
My plan was to drive around the island entirely and end up where I started. It was only at the end of the road that I realized the road doesn’t go all the way around. At one point I was a few hundred meters away from my cottage with a bit of jungle in between. One day they might complete the road but as it stood, I had to drive all the way back from where I came, about 2 hours of driving. Luckily for me, Koh Chang is not a very big island.
Literally at the end of the road there was a little hidden restaurant where they served great Massaman curry and cashew nut chicken. It was complemented by some blue rice, which I haven’t really seen before. One of the best dishes I’ve had in Thailand for a long while. It cost me about 350 Baht in total.
I spend my last day hanging around on the beach, enjoying banana shakes for 50 Baht each. The weather is very enjoyable at this time of year, not too hot and almost no rain at all.
And that ends my 973 day journey around Asia. After more than 2.5 years of travelling I’ve decided to go back home and live a more normal life again. It’s been fun and maybe I can do it again some time.