Although many of the resorts in Khao Lak remain open all year, the Dry Season (November to April) remains the most popular time for visiting, with the Christmas and New Year holidays being particularly popular (but consequently more expensive). This part of Thailand does have a tropical climate and in the Wet Season showers may be fierce but are rarely long lasting. The sun can be intense at any time of the year.
Off season excursions may appeal to the tranquility seekers or those looking for a bargain but at all events prepare for the heat by wearing a hat, using appropriate sunscreen and consuming adequate supplies of water.
If you do come between May and October, be prepared for some of the bars and restaurants to be closed and the sea conditions to be unfavorable for bathing. Also tours to the nearby islands may not be available during this period. It is wise to check with your hotel.
Things to Do
Once you have made it to the beautiful Thai region of Khao Lak, you will undoubtedly want to make the most of your visit and without a shadow of a doubt there is something here for everyone.
The beach enthusiast will be delighted with the 25 km stretch of beautiful white sands which face the Andaman Sea. The sea is warm for bathing but be aware of local conditions by checking with your hotel or the local life guards. Also be conscious of the dangers of the tropical sun, especially during the midday period. In most resorts you can hire a sun shade for a few baht.
Diving and Snorkeling
There are world class sites for both these activities off the nearby Similian, Surin and Tachai Islands. Boats leave at regular intervals from Tap Lamu Pier (about 25 minutes’ drive from Khao Lak Town). You can get more details from any of the local travel companies. It is possible to learn to Scuba Dive locally and you can shop around for good value courses. Snorkeling is a cheaper alternative and it is also superb here. Whichever method you choose, the tranquil crystal clear waters will give you hours of sea-life observing pleasure.
There are many beautiful walks in the nearby Khao Lak Lam Ru National Park or you can walk to one the waterfalls at Lampi or Chong Fah. Pick up a tourist leaflet to get routes and maps. Naturally the walks along the beautiful beaches are magnificent.
There is a night market at the town of Bang Niang on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays. As is the custom in Thai markets, it is expected that a little bargaining should take place and the price the vendor first quotes may be his own wishful thinking. However, it is good to remember these are industrious people who need to earn a living. There is nothing to be gained by haggling to the last baht. If you want the item, think about what it might cost in your own country! As always a smile goes a long way in the bargaining process.
Thai food is world famous and local chefs in Khao Lak pride themselves on their ability in the oven or on the wok. You will get delicious food in many local restaurants. If you are a sea food lover you will appreciate the freshly caught local delicacies. Keep an eye open for places where the locals eat and of course you should enjoy meals at some of the many beachfront restaurants watching the sun slip magnificently below the horizon.
There are many other attractions in the area including an elephant farm, a turtle conservation unit, Thai cookery or language lessons or maybe you just like to do a little people watching!
Whatever your tastes, you will not be disappointed by a visit to the wonderful region of Khao Lak.