Koh Lanta is a beautiful district in the Krabi Province in Thailand – it attracts many tourists each year thanks to its glorious white sandy beaches and stunning scenery.
It is an island setting, which gives it an even more profound vacation vibe, and when you look at what the many beaches here have to offer, I wouldn’t blame you for packing your bags and jetting off before you’ve even finished this article! But don’t hurry off just yet; I’ve put together a list of some of the best Koh Lanta beaches that I am sure you are going to fall in love with as much as I have.
A Brief Introduction To Koh Lanta
The district of Koh Lanta is set across an impressive 52 islands and lies on the Krabi province’s southernmost tip. The area is ideally situated for travelers visiting Phuket and other busier sites nearby and makes the perfect tropical getaway for anyone looking to escape the hustle and bustle.
In days gone by, Koh Lanta was recognized as one of East Asia’s back-packing hotspots. Still, more recently, many exclusive hotels and clubs have been established, particularly on the largest of the 53 islands – Koh Lanta Yai.
One of the biggest draws of Koh Lanta is its gorgeous beaches, for the most part, completely unspoiled – anyone looking for a truly tropical vacation would be hard-pushed to find anywhere more immaculate than this. But there is a lot more to the region than first meets the eye.
Lush green jungles are the backdrop for those pristine sandy beaches I mentioned. This scene is further complemented by many impressive smoky mountains, especially in the more southerly parts. It’s little wonder that Koh Lanta attracts tourists from every walk of life with its diverse scenery and ample opportunity to spend time outdoors in the beautiful climate.
7 Best Koh Lanta Beaches
Let’s begin by establishing that unless you are armed with weeks and months to explore all 53 islands, you’re going to have to select a handful of beaches to visit during your stay – and I won’t lie, you are spoiled for choice.
What you are looking for on a beach will depend highly on which ones attract you the most, but I have put together a list of 7 of the best Koh Lanta beaches that offer a little something for every taste.
01. Klong Dao Beach – Best For Families
If you are traveling with your kids, there is no doubt that they will be eager to get onto the sand and enjoy a day of sunshine, swimming, and fun, and one of the best Koh Lanta beaches to do this on is Klong Dao.
This is a 3km long beach, so you and your family have plenty of space to run free and make the most of your outdoor time. It was also the first of Koh Lantas beaches to open to the public.
You could quite easily spend your entire vacation on the sand and the surrounding areas thanks to the significant number of hotels, restaurants, bars, and shops that line the space between the jungle and the sand. Everything from luxury resorts to cheap and cheerful eateries – there’s something for everyone.
If you are only planning a flying visit, Klong Dao is a great choice since it is one of the most accessible beaches in the district thanks to its proximity to Salandan village, which is the main entrance port onto the island. However, it is worth remembering that if you’re looking for something a little quieter, you won’t find it here. Being the easiest beach to access, it is, of course, the one that attracts the most visitors.
02. Kantiang Bay – Best For Scenery
If your heart is crying out for some beautiful scenery, then planning a trip to Kantiang Bay will not disappoint you. The beach is often referred to as being the most picturesque in Koh Lanta, and with its secluded location, it is also one of the more quiet offerings. Sitting on the south end of Koh Lanta Yai, Kantiang is a real gem.
Lush, green trees line the blindingly white sands, and the crystal clear, blue oceans and a smattering of perfectly placed rocks make this beach appear to be right off the front of a holiday postcard. It would be easy enough to simply sit on this beach for an entire day and breathe in the natural wonder that surrounds you.
However, this is also a great location to get active. The beach is well known for its excellent swimming opportunities, and since it is relatively quiet here, you won’t be competing with other swimmers to get the best ocean spot.
If you want to spend more than a single day here, some gorgeous luxury resorts are very close by, but this is also an area that has long been popular with backpackers.
03. Long Beach (Phra Ae Beach) – Best For Parties
On the north of Koh Lanta Yai lies Phra Ae beach, a three and a half kilometer stretch of powdery white sand that leaves nothing out in terms of an active and entertaining getaway.
One of the most prominent features of this beach is the vast array of places to eat, drink, and be merry, which attracts so many people looking for a more lively vacation.
Once again, there is a diverse range of places to party here, with many high-end resorts lining the beach for those who want to celebrate in the lap of luxury. In contrast, some very budget-friendly options will allow you to paint the town red without breaking the bank.
Where scenery is concerned, there is a beautiful contrast of pristine white sand on the north end and very rocky terrain on the south end. If you’re looking for somewhere to swim, the north is your best option, and thanks to the very mild tide here, swimming is extremely safe.
Heading down to the rocky southern end of the beach will give you some excellent photo opportunities.
While a lot is going on on Long Beach, due to its generous length, it isn’t hard to find a quieter spot for those moments when you want to get away from it all and look out over the stunning blue ocean.
04. Klong Nin – Best For Sunsets
Anyone looking to invest in beachfront property in Koh Lanta will likely find Klong Nin to be one of the best places to do this. The beach is lined with several attractive residential properties, and thanks to the more westernized way of life here, the area is very popular with tourists.
During the hours of daylight, Klong Nin is an excellent beach for swimming since the water is very calm here – this could be a good option for families who want somewhere safe for the kids to take a dip. It is also a favorite spot of sunseekers.
However, if you want to see an incredible Thai sunset, heading to Klong Nin at dusk is an absolute must. I can’t reiterate enough that this is a sight that has to be seen to be believed and will remain with you for the rest of your life.
Once the sun goes down, there are plenty of nightlife options with great bars and restaurants along the beach. I mentioned that the culture here is more western than other areas in Koh Lanta, and this means that you tend to pay a little more for food and drink than you would in other places, but it’s still not going to leave you broke by the end of your stay.
For lengthier stays, Klong Nin is an excellent choice because it has many shops and amenities. In recent years, it has become a favorite spot for people looking to purchase beach-related goods and keepsakes thanks to the unique shopping area just off the beach.
05. Relax Bay – Best For Tranquility
Many people head to a tropical beach to do absolutely nothing at all. A few days chilling out at Relax Bay will undoubtedly leave you feeling rested and recuperated, and it’s not hard to see where the beach gets its name.
If you’ve been to Long Beach, Relax Bay is very accessible by following a small mud track. Once there, you won’t find anything like some of the busier beaches; there aren’t vast arrays of shops or places to eat. There are a few quiet resorts at Relax Bay and nothing but pure sand and sea as far as the eye can see.
This is a brilliant vacation spot for couples or single people looking to kick back, but when you’ve had enough of looking out over the stunning scenery and lying on the soft white sand, I’d suggest you take a walk to the south end of the beach.
Down at the southern end, you will have plenty to discover, such as an access point that leads to another secluded bay. But what’s even better are the two ‘secret’ beaches that can be reached here and that aren’t widely advertised – you’ll likely get your very own, private piece of heaven.
06. Klong Khong – Best For Budget
It’s no secret that going on vacation can be a costly venture – but, in my opinion, definitely one that’s worth it. However, a trip to Koh Lanta doesn’t have to include exclusive resorts and high-end luxury to be a delightful trip. In an area with so much natural beauty, many people opt for a more budget-friendly trip.
Klong Khong – sometimes called Klong Kong, is a rockier beach, but this gives you the chance to get into the water and enjoy the marine life with a spot of snorkeling – and you’ll be amazed at the variety of colorful species that call this area home.
Along the beach sit many more affordable accommodation options, so you can still get an ocean view even on a budget. And thanks to the lack of westernization here, there are a lot of traditional Thai eateries that will allow you to try out the local cuisine and get a flavor for local life.
The variety of activities here leave nothing to be desired, and aside from the snorkeling, there is the chance to swim at high tide. Away from the beach, there are a lot of bars, making this one of the preferred places for a night out, but it tends to be pretty tame so even if you’re not looking to party, you will still be able to find somewhere relaxed and laid back for a few evening cocktails.
07. Klong Jark – Best For Nature
If you’re traveling to Thailand with the image of lush jungle and true outdoor exploration, then some of the busier and more touristy beaches might not be the best place to begin. While they have some glorious scenery that cannot be seen anywhere else in the world, Klong Jark offers an opportunity to get back to nature and experience Thailand in its rawest form.
Now, I’m not going to lie; this beach is nowhere near as accessible as some of the others that we have discussed so you need to be willing to go the distance if you want the prize. But it is a journey well worth taking.
You’ll be getting away from it all as this is one of the best Koh Lanta beaches for peace, but the real attraction comes in the form of a waterfall that brings in locals and tourists alike. Is there anything more fitting when a tropical vacation comes to mind than bathing under a waterfall surrounded by green trees and white sand?
There is a popular elephant trek nearby, so nature and animal lovers will be more than sated. There aren’t many hotels and resorts here, so it pays to book in advance if you’re looking to stay here.
Koh Lanta is one of Thailand’s real gems with hundreds of stunning beaches and incredible scenery; it is little wonder that so many people are drawn to this place.
While the Koh Lanta district comprises 52 islands, the main one, Koh Lanta Yai, is where you will find most of the action.
No matter what you are looking for from a beach, whether it’s peace and quiet or somewhere to get involved in water activities, you will find a beach that will be perfect for you.
I’ve picked out some of my favorite Koh Lanta beaches, but I’d also highly recommend exploring as much of this breathtaking area as possible if you have the chance.