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KOH MAK, THAILAND
Authentic Koh Mak lies between the islands Koh Chang and Koh Kood. With its 16 square kilometers, Koh Mak is the smallest of the Three islands. Approximately 700 people live permanently on the island. Inland are mainly coconut and palm oil plantations. Koh Mak is mostly flat, with the advantage that you can easily explore the island by yourself with a scooter and some parts even by bicycle. In a few days you can explore all of Koh Mak with the wind through your hair. Along the way you will meet friendly locals who are happy to welcome you in their restaurant or resort. Koh Mak still has an authentic Thai feel, which is where the majority of visitors will come for.
There are hardly any high-rise buildings on Koh Mak and if there are, they are not higher than a few floors. There is also no 7-eleven supermarket here, and if it is up to the locals, there never will be. They like it to keep it local. There is currently one ATM machine in the middle of the island, so make sure you have enough cash because sometimes the ATM is out of order. Credit cards are not accepted in most restaurants.
Snorkeling at mysterious bounty island Koh Kham
A tropical paradise, with white beaches and a clear sea with colorful fish. Unusual is the never-finished super-luxury resort with pool villas you can stroll through.
Banana Sunset Bar
Banana Sunset is Koh Mak’s most popular bar. You can chill on a platform with cushions or have a sit at the tables, creating a very relaxed atmosphere. This bar is the place to be during sunset and happy hour!
Blue Pearl Bar, snorkeling and cocktails
A small but super fun bar built on a pier above the sea, the perfect starting point for your snorkeling session or a relaxing end of the day with a cocktail during sunset.
Koh Rayang is a small, beautiful, almost cute island with an even smaller white beach, just off the coast of Koh Mak. On the island is a small, now run-down resort that once had only three rooms. What a paradise! You can still go there, rent a kayak from the Sabai Beach resort from Ao Kao Beach.
The Kingdom of Somchai’s Affection
The Kingdom of Somchai’s Affection is a mysterious, erotic sculpture garden in the middle of a small forest. The area no longer seems to be maintained, so the sculptures are slowly crumbling and nature is taking over. A little bit creepy!
Viewpoint Cape Tukata
For the active folks who like to see things from a distance. As far as we know the only “viewpoint” on Koh Mak. You reach the viewpoint via a narrow path uphill in about 10 minutes. It is a nice combination with the next door Pebble Beach.
Koh Wai, snorkeling and wildlife
Koh Wai is a small island not far from Koh Mak. You can go there as a day trip or as part of a snorkeling trip. Sleeping on the island is also possible, but facilities are limited. There is electricity only at certain times and shopping is definitely not a thing here. What is there instead? Beautiful, lush, small bays, clear water, good snorkeling and not even a handful of (basic) resorts. A speedboat or slow boat will get you there in 30 minutes or 1 hour for 450/300 baht from Koh Mak
Koh Kradet, deer island
If you are a real deer fan, then Koh Kradet is your island! Because Koh Kradat is mainly populated by deer and they are the big attraction of the island. There is also an even smaller, photogenic island next to Koh Kradet with only one palm tree on it. You can get there in 10 minutes by boat from Leam Son Beach on Koh Mak and costs 200 baht pp. They were unable to convince us.
Party on Koh Mak?
Koh Mak does not look like a party island at first glance. There are no bars that stay open until late. Still, house parties are sometimes held on Koh Mak. But if you don’t like it, you won’t notice it either, because the smaller, more private parties are often held on secluded stretches of beach. Is this your thing? Ask around among the locals. The island is so small that if something happens it will be known to most.
On Koh Mak, traffic is very rarely jammed and you certainly won’t encounter exciting hairpin turns like on Koh Chang. Therefore, Koh Mak is also a fine island if you have had much scooter experience yet. Because the island is virtually flat except for a few steep hills, cycling is for the most part a great alternative.
On several places on the island there are signs for (bicycle) routes, although you will not easily get lost on Koh Mak.
On Koh Mak you don’t have to pay a deposit or leave your passport behind when you rent a scooter or bike, a copy of your driver’s license is enough.
There are a number of pickup trucks/taxis on the island. Upon arrival at the pier, cabs are ready to take you to your hotel or resort. You pay 50 baht per person for this. Some hotels offer a free pick-up service and wait for you at the pier.
A special feature on Koh Mak is that you can also rent your own golf cart and drive it yourself! For 1,000 baht, you can rent a six-seater golf cart for 24 hours that you also get to drive yourself and explore Koh Mak with your friends or family! The rental company is located on the pier of Ao Soun Yai Beach.
How to get to Koh Mak
From Trat, the mainland closest to Thailand, it takes between 45 minutes and an hour to get to Koh Mak. To get to Trat from Bangkok, you have several options. You can buy a bus ticket, rent a private cab or take the plane. Obviously, the plane is the fastest option.
From Koh Mak to Koh Kood several boats depart daily and visa versa . The speed boat takes 30 minutes and the slow boat an hour. Transportation on Koh Kood to your hotel or chosen beach is included in the price.
From Koh Mak to Koh Chang is about 1 hour by speedboat and 2 hours by slowboat. Several boats leave each day.
Because flying in Thailand is often cheap if you book well in advance, this is definitely worth considering.
For the most up-to-date boat, bus and plane times including prices for Koh Mak, check out 12GoAsia and/or enter your departure date and city in the table below. Have a great trip!