Walk on white sandy beaches with a fresh coconut in your hand. You will arrive at a picture-perfect tropical island where you want to stay forever! An unbelievable exotic destination that has everything you need to have the perfect holiday. This is Koh Lipe, Thailand.
Koh Lipe is a paradise island in the southern of Thailand’s Satun Province near the Thailand/Malaysia border. The three main beaches of Koh Lipe are Sunset Beach (west), Sunrise Beach (east), and Pattaya Beach (south). The island is famous for it’s white sandy beaches, turquoise blue waters, coconut trees, snorkeling and scuba diving and its relaxed atmosphere!
Map of Koh Lipe: Source: http://www.thailand-guide.com/koh-lipe
How to get there
There are several options, but we arrived from Langkawi by boat which takes around 1.5 hours. Tip: bring something warm to wear, because sometimes the air-condition is turn up high which makes it freezing. Also, bring some travel sickness tablets, you may need it when the sea is rough. Book your boat ticket in advance, there is no need to print the ticket, as long as you have your QR code on your phone. You need to register before entering the boat and you should do this at the departure gate at least 1,5 hours before departure from Langkawi. Upon arrival, you need to pay 200 bath per person as an island fee, this is normal and you need to pay in cash. It’s a bit of a hassle to get there, but once you have arrived, it will be worth your time.
Where to Stay
Koh Lipe has become very popular over the years, so therefore we advise you to book your accommodation in advance to avoid disappointment, especially during the high season (nov – feb). Unfortunately, prices are quite expensive compared to other destinations in Thailand. A hut on the beach for €20,- a night? Forget it. During Christmas we paid at least 100 euro per night. But we don’t want to discourage you, Koh Lipe offers a variety in accommodations, with not many big resorts, yet. Here are some of our recommendations:
- Cast Away Beach Resort (sunrise beach, mid range)
- Andaman Resort (sunrise beach, midrange)
- Serendipity Resort (sunrise beach, high end)
- Bundahya Beach Resort (pattaya beach, mid range)
- The Box Resort (walking street, mid range)
Tip: Also check on Airbnb, a lot of guesthouses and hotels also sell their rooms on there.
Things to do
Koh lipe is famous for snorkeling and diving! The incredibly clear water and excellent visibility makes snorkeling very famous on this island. There are many shops on the island that offer snorkeling trips and a full range of PADI and SSI courses.Koh Lipe is surrounded by over 30 islands and hundreds of reefs. You will find a lot of small colorful fish at Koh Lipe, but keep in mind that the coral isn’t what it used to be. Most of the coral is dead because of global warming and the suncreams people use. Ingredients like oxybenzone can harm the oceans. Tip: We use Dermalogica or Badger Sunscreens.
Where to eat & drink
From Thai green curry, Phad Thai, Tom kha kai (spicy soup) to Som Tam (Papaya salad), it’s all so delicious, healthy and fresh! They always use fresh herbs and lots of greens. There’s something for everyone, it’s doesn’t matter if you are vegetarian or vegan, enough options. There’s s a great variety in food on the island: From tasty Thai street food to fresh fish you will find right at the beach.
Tip! Learn these words to save you from a chilli pepper disaster! Spicy = mai pet, A little bit spicy = pet noi, Very spicy = pet mak
Best Breakfast & Coffee
- Elephant Koh Lipe
- Bloom cafe (amazing coffee!)
- Tropicana (healthy/vegan options)
- Maya Bar (walking street, great music and cocktails!)
- Sea la Vie beach bar (Sunrise beach, the food is not so good, but at night the music and vibe is amazing)
- Reggae bar (Pattaya beach)
Best Western food
- The Box (walking street)
- La Luna Italian Restaurant
Best Thai Food
- On The Rocks Restaurant at Serendipity Resort (perfect for a romantic dinner!)
- Cast Away Restaurant (great for lunch!)
- Elephant Beach Bar (Sunrise beach, great Pad Thai!)
Koh Lipe Beaches
Koh Lipe has three beaches and because the weather doesn’t change much throughout the year, it’s perfect to lay on the beach..but which one is the best?
- Sunrise Beach
This is the best beach, hands down. The water is crystal clear, the sand is white and you can find a lot of quiet spots. All parts of this beach are good, but we relaxed in the middle a lot, next to the Elephant Beach Bar. There is some shade from the trees so great if you have small children. If you walk to the left side of Sunrise beach, you will find yourself a zandbank in the water, great for taking those tropical photo’s! And if you walk towards the right end of the beach (towards Ten Moons Resort), you have a small beach cove, that not everybody knows about. Here you can chill in hammocks and drink fresh coconuts.
- Sunset Beach
This beach has the sunset (hence the name) but it’s smaller doesn’t have many beach bars to chill. Because of this, the beach is more quiet and popular with the older crowd. Worth taking a look at!
- Pattaya Beach
This is the beach where all the boats arrive and depart to/from, which makes it the busiest and less attractive beach. At night you can find some bars here with loud(er) music, but there are some restaurants at the end that are nice enough to eat.
Our advise is to stay on Koh Lipe for at least 4 to 6 days in order to enjoy the island to the fullest. Take in account that it rains more from April through September, but that doesn’t mean you should skip this magical island. Apparently the average temperature is always around 26 degrees, so no matter what time you visit Koh Lipe, the weather will typically be the same. Yes, it takes some time to get there, but once you step on the white sand, you will feel right at home.