Paddling all the way

, Adventure

A sea kayaker’s paradise, Thailand offers plenty of opportunities for both first-time paddlers and the serious marine explorer. While kayaking at any of its islands, you can explore enigmatic lagoons, mysterious 75-million-year old caves and float over colourful coral reefs.

Thailand is renowned for its idyllic beaches, dramatic coastlines, Buddhist monuments, mouthwatering cuisine and much more. Here, unique and remote limestone islands sprout from the sea, several reaching heights over a thousand feet with some shaped like eerie-looking animals. Many of these isolated islands feature dramatic sea caves and sheltered, pristine beaches.

Koh Chang

Koh Chang is one of Thailand’s most beautiful islands with long, white, sandy beaches. The island is also home to a wide range of wildlife. The numerous small islands surrounding the main island are great places for snorkelling, diving and sea kayaking.

Koh Samui

A four-hour trip north and west of Koh Samui will take you to the calm environment of Ang Thong National Marine Park. You can kayak around the wonderful natural sights of the park or climb up to the mountain top to take a look at the green panoramic view! Kayaking through caves and around the Koh Pee Island is another prominent attraction at the marine park. After landing the kayaks on the beach, you can take an easy and spectacular climb through a dense rain forest and narrow trekking paths to arrive at the Green Lagoon, a beautiful emerald salt water lake.

Wua Talap Island

If you want to take your exercise beat further, kayak to the Wua Talap Island, headquarters of the National Marine Park. Here, you can rent bungalows and tents and spend the night. Once there you can indulge in various activities like trekking to the viewpoint, visiting the Bua Boke cave, explore the beaches or go snorkelling. Species of Finless Porpoises, Dusky Langurs, Pied Hornbills and Bryde’s whales can be found in and around the park in numbers.

Krabi

Passing mangrove, canyons and caves, guided tours around Krabi take you to the three areas around Ao Luk in the north of the province: Ao Thalane (mangrove and canyons) is the southern tip of Phang Nga Bay; Bor Thor (ancient limestone caves) and Koh Hong (an island with a ‘hidden’ lagoon at its centre).

In every place, however, you’ll be able to observe wildlife up close. Several species of birds like hornbills, kingfishers, little herons can be easily spotted, as well as monkeys. At the Hong Island, you can observe marine life, including brightly coloured crabs, tropical fish and birds, and the giant monitor lizard.

Once ashore, you can check out the elephant sanctuary and surrounding conservation area. All in all, the Krabi region offers eco-tourism of the highest order and is possibly the best spot for sea kayaking in Thailand.

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