2011 Posts

December 30th – Customers Free Prize Draw

This is a quick message to let all of our advertising customers know that we will be holding the draw for the winner of the Customer’s side of our free prize draw on Monday January 2nd in our office at 5pm. So please feel free to join us and (if you are a customer) see if you have won a computer, phone or camera. If you can’t make it then don’t worry, we will be letting winners know directly and publishing the winners here and on our Facebook page. Please note that the competition for our readers is still open until February 20th, see below for details.

December 24th – WIN STUFF!

Christmas eve seems like a good day to announce our prize draw to celebrate 10 years of the Koh Chang Guide.
In fact we are doing two – one for readers and one for our advertisers.
You will probably be interested in the readers one where our prizes are a Toshiba netbook, A Samsung Galaxy Mini phone and a Kodak Camera. And all you have to do to enter is to send us an e-mail.
All the information that you need is here so go on, and good luck!

We will be drawing the winner in our advertisers prize draw in the next few days and we’ll post the winners here and on our Facebook page.
Oh and by the way, here’s wishing that you all have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
December 22nd – Christmas Presence

koh chang guide issue 41 coverAs our way of wishing you a merry christmas we thought we’d make the latest issues of our Koh Chang Guide and Treasure Map available on the site for you to read at your leisure as you digest festive feasts. Scroll down the page or just open the Koh Chang Guide here, the Treasure Map front side here, and the other side here.
You will notice that there is a competition to win a load of free stuff which is also open to our online readers – more details on that in the next few days.
By the way we also updated all the detailed maps of Koh Chang and around on the website so if you look through our Koh Chang map section then you’ll get the most up to date local maps.

December 3rd – Flood Fight!

koh chang flood fightWe’re back. There was a bit of a gap there whilst we finished the latest issues of our Koh Chang Guide and the Treasure Map. Happily they are with our printers now and we finally have a chance to update the site. The weather is great, actually a little hot for the time of year, the island is getting busy and the high season is upon us. This really is the time to get down to the island.

We know it is short notice but the first event to draw your attention to is the “Flood Fight”. This is a Muay Thai boxing show and competition in aid of relief for victims of the recent floods. The show features some famous Thai boxers and is being held in the space next to Kacha Resort on White Sand Beach. It kicks off, as it were, at 4pm this afternoon and should hold some good entertainment value.
klong prao seafood on koh changWe spent an enjoyable afternoon at Klong Prao seafood the other day. It is located in a cracking location on Klong Prao beach where a lagoon meets the sea. It doesn’t seem to be particularly well visited by tourists but the food was spot on, service was good and it is a fine place to sip a cool beer as you watch the sun setting.

We have just added some interesting new listings to our Koh Chang property section. These include a couple of small businesses in Bailan Beach as well as a plot of land on Koh Mak ideal for a house or a business development.
view from koh chang naval shrineThere is plenty more coming to the site in the next weeks – we will be continuing to share our massive archive of Koh Chang Photos with you and as part of our forthcoming ten year celebrations we’ll be giving away a camera, an android smartphone and a notebook computer. Stay in touch.

The view to the right is rather splendid and can be enjoyed by ascending the 121 steps to the new Thai Navy shrine opposite the Bangkok Trat Clinic at the top of the hill out of White Sand Beach. That is of course a lot of steps but it is a nice spot. and worth the climb.

Here are a couple of pictures that we took on Koh Mak when we visited recently. It’s a nice place if you want to chill out but there isn’t much in the way of parties except for Monkey Island’s didgeridoo jam nights. And make sure that you pack some insect repellent because sandfly bites aren’t amusing at all.

NewspaperDirect

On the subject of good business opportunities that are available on Koh Chang we should mention that the Exclusive Koh Chang distribution license for NewspaperDirect International is currently available. This is a business that makes over 1500 newspapers from 90 countries available to print on demand. They represent international titles such as The Times, Le Monde, The Australian, Deutsche Zeitung and The New York Times as well as a huge number of other titles. The business is already being successfully operated by nine successful and long serving partners elsewhere in Thailand. There are limited technical requirements to implement the business on the island and local marketing and sales support, training and 24 hour technical support are provided. The initial start-up expenses are very low and it is definitely a good business opportunity. You can find more about this opportunity at this website.
November 8th – Still safe to come to Koh Chang.

We may be in danger of repeating ourselves here but just to re-state there is no flooding in Koh Chang. Koh Chang is not flooded. No flooding here – no siree. Koh Chang is a big mountain in the sea – even if there was a flood like the one Noah built his ark for we would still be OK. The airport is still open in Bangkok. It is on the same side of Bangkok as Koh Chang. You can come to Koh Chang and completely avoid Bangkok. We have food and drink and the island is half full of tourists and absolutely open for business. You can still get here. We’re not flooded. Flooded is not where we’re at. There are deserts that are more flooded than us. We are as un-flooded as it is possible to be. KOH CHANG IS NOT FLOODED!!!!

There, sorry, just wanted to make ourselves absolutely clear.

Now the main upcoming event of note is the Loy Kratong festival celebrated on full moon night which is this thursday the tenth. This is a nice low-key Thai festival which involves the floating of little banana stem boats on any available bodies of water (but not floods of course because, as mentioned above, Koh Chang doesn’t have any of those). If you’re on Koh Chang then head to th ebeach in the evening where the candles on all these little rafts makes for a picturesque sight. Alternatively you could visit the fair at Klong Prao temple which is an interesting and authentic Thai cultural experience involving beauty pageants of various ages and genders, rides, stalls and meat on sticks.

koh chang golf courseThis new Pitch and Putt golf course is nearing completion at Siam Royal View. It’s in an attractive setting and adds another activity to the expanding list of things to do on the island.
They aren’t sure of prices and opening hours yet. We’ll let you know all the details as soon as they tell us.
2 Pearl Beach Resorts For Sale

Never let is be said that we aren’t generous. We have not one but two different Pearl Beach resorts available for sale.
The first is an attractive place with six double rooms and a larger family room. There is space for a bar and restaurant and a long lease is available. The asking price is 2 million Baht.
The second place is on a large (2 Rai) plot of hillside land with good sea views. There are five bungalows and bar and restaurant and there is plenty of room for further development. The asking price for thsi place is 3 million baht.
If you are interested in either of these places then get in touch with us and we can give you more information and arrange a viewing.

 

October 28th – Latest Flooding Information

If you’re coming to Koh Chang or elsewhere in Thailand in the near future then you probably have some concerns about the heavy flooding that you have seen reported on the news.

1 – The first thing to stress is that Koh Chang has not been affected by the flooding. Here in Eastern Thailand we are experiencing normal weather for this time of year; a lot of sun, a little bit of rain, but no floods!

2 – Flights into and out of Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok are currently operating as normal. This is Bangkok’s main Airport; it is the airport that your plane is flying to if you have a flight into Bangkok booked.

3 – So you can still fly into Bangkok airport and travel down to Koh Chang.

BUT large areas of Bangkok are now flooded and it might be an idea to make arrangements to head straight out of the city when you arrive instead of staying the night at a hotel to break up your journey. There is a travel centre at the airport or you could just arrange for a taxi to take you down here. 4,000 Baht is a very good day’s work for them so get haggling!
The information being provided by international news agencies and governments is generally pretty ordinary. We suggest looking to local Thai news for the latest information. The Bangkok Post and Daily Nation have good and up-to-date information.

And in Local News..

koh chang bang bao beachWe took a drive down to Bang Bao on a lovely sunny day yesterday. The sea was clear and calm and the island definitely felt like it was getting busier; it’s really starting to feel like the high season again. The weather has been clear and calm in the day and quite windy for an hour or two in the small hours.
I also noticed that while we were away last weekend someone had done a reasonable job of filling the worst of the craters, bunkers, crevices and cracks that have developed on the road over the last few months. Could it really have been the local council? Bravo to whoever it was anyway. Driving straight is a possibility again – at least on the straight bits. Now all we need to do is to terraform the Martian surface of the road through White Sand Beach and make it passable for human beings again.

New Maps Arrive

This morning we took delivery of 15,000 copies of our new Treasure Map. These came by van from Bangkok so there’s further evidence, if you need it, that communication links are open. We’ll be distributing them soon.
Thailand International Cricket Sixes 2011

koh chang cricket clubThe Koh Chang Cricket Club hit the international scene in a big way at Harrow International School in Bangkok last weekend as entrants in the 16 team Thailand International Cricket Sixes tournament.
It took the team a little while to adapt to playing on a field rather than a beach and also to facing opponents who were; fit, mainly sober and who bowled really, really, fast.
But the team had a good go at playing for Koh Chang, had a whale of a time and won some friends (if not any games) in the process.
You’re always welcome to come for a far more relaxed game at our Chai Chet Beach home at Lay Lay Tong Bar. Mail us for info.
October 13th – Flooding Update

If you’re coming to Koh Chang, or elsewhere in Thailand in the near future then you probably have some concerns about the heavy flooding that you have seen reported on the news. The first thing to stress is that Koh Chang has not been affected by the flooding. Here in Eastern Thailand we are experiencing normal weather for this time of year; a bit of sun, a bit of rain, but emphatically no floods. The worst affected areas are to the north of Bangkok on the mainland but flights into and out of Suvarnabhumi Airport in Bangkok are currently operating as normal. So fear not, if Koh Chang is your destination, as it should be of course 😉 ,then your trip should not be disrupted.
If you are planning to travel elsewhere in Thailand here’s a handy link to a website that has all the latest information on the flooding. And be sure to spare a thought for the many thousands of people affected by these floods – this helpful Bangkok Post page gives some information on flood relief charities and how to donate.
October 6th – New Maps

We’ve just put our latest detailed maps of Koh Chang and around up on the site. There are two new ones up there; Bailan Beach is now considered grown up enough to have its own map and we have also included a map of the Trat’s mysterious, hardly explored, Mainland Beaches. You never need to get lost again!
October 1st – New picture galleries

kai bae viewpoint koh changWe’ve just posted a few more sets of photos of Klong Prao, Kai Bae and Lonely Beach onto Flickr so take a look and enjoy. Soon we’ll have a massive archive of all our pics here on the site, keep an eye on this page for news.

And, dear readers, if that’s not excitement enough for one day then you’ll be happy to know that paper versions of our new guides are being distributed all over Koh Chang at this very minute. We’re the magazine that never sleeps.
September 19th – New Guides Online!

We have now made our new Koh Chang Guide and Koh Chang Restaurants, Bars and Spas Guide available online. Click the links or croll doooown this page and you’ll see them. Hope that you like them.
September 13th – Come Another Rain Down

flooded road on koh changWe’re back! Not that we actually left Koh Chang for very long but we had two new guides to prepare so site updates got rather overlooked in all the excitement. Of course we’d have had more time if we had more staff. If by some miracle you’re a Thai national living on Koh Chang and you’re interested in working for us for good basic pay and opportunities for commission then please come and see us in our office next to the main post office at Chai Chet. Anyway we’re back with a vengeance and you can expect all kinds of goodies over the next week or two including our new guides available online, updated maps and the next additions to our photo galleries.

So what’s the latest on Koh Chang? There’s been very heavy rain over the last few days with accompanying flooding. But it has been sunny for most of today, much of the rainwater has drained away now and all the roads are passable. For once mainland Thailand has been much worse affected than here on Koh Chang and many areas in Trat and neighbouring Chantaburi province have been heavily flooded. The pattern over the last couple of years has been for the heaviest rain to fall in September and into early October. We’ll keep you posted and our fingers crossed.
Ferry controversy

chai chet sunsetThere has been much outcry from island residents over the past week due to a change in pricing policy by the Ao Thammachat-Ao Sapparot ferry. In the past a discount was offered for return tickets with no requirement to state the date of return. Now passengers have been asked to give the day of the return leg of the trip and if they travel on a different date than the one originally stated then the ticket is not valid. The alternative is to buy more expensive one way tickets every time.
We just called the ferry office to ask what was going on and they told us that (in a masterpiece of customer relations) they have now stopped selling return tickets altogether. They were still selling returns yesterday though so this might be disinformation. You now pay 80B one way as a passenger or 30B if you have a resident’s card and 120B for a car or 80B with a resident’s card.
What about the resident’s card I hear you ask? If you don’t already have one they aren’t issuing new ones at the moment and the staff don’t know when they will next accept applications. Simple it ain’t. Alternatives: #1 – Centrepoint Ferry; #2 – Swim.
Bailan Beach Bar Business Buying Bonanza!

There is a nice business opportunity available at Bailan Beach. A popular roadside bar set in a huge 1,600 sqm garden is available. It is a good opportunity for someone who wants to come in and take over a well-established enterprise and save on all the hassle of setting one up for themselves. The bar comes with a limited company with two work permits for foreign nationals. There is a very long 15 year lease on the land and a reasonable annual rent of 100,000 Baht. The long lease and large land area offer a great opportunity to expand with accommodation.
The bar has a solid online presence with a Facebook page and is highly rated by Tripadvisor. The owners are leaving to take up an opportunity to develop a business on Koh Kood island. The asking price is 1,400,000 Baht or 34,000 Euros. If you’d like to know more then contact us and we’ll put you in touch with them.

NewspaperDirect

On the subject of good business opportunities that are available on Koh Chang we should mention that the Exclusive Koh Chang distribution license for NewspaperDirect International is currently available. This is a business that makes over 1500 newspapers from 90 countries available to print on demand. They represent international titles such as The Times, Le Monde, The Australian, deutsche Zeitung and The New York Times as well as a huge number of other titles. The business is already being successfully operated by nine successful and long serving partners elsewhere in Thailand. There are limited technical requirements to implement the business on the island and local marketing and sales support, training and 24 hour technical support are provided. The initial start-up expenses are very low and it is definitely a good business opportunity. You can find more about this opportunity at this website.

Klong Prao Chinese Food

iyara food center koh changIyara Food Center and Mui Ing Seafood are two new Chinese Thai restaurants that have recently opened in Klong Prao village. We’ve tried them both with favourable results. Iyara Food Center has a very economical nine item menu. The food is prepared in no time at all and it tastes good – can’t argue with any of that and it’s perfect for a quick decent meal. Mui Ing with some nice lantern-led decor is a more sedate and relaxed place with some interesting stuff on the menu and a chef who cares about their food. Also recommended.

Vegetarian Festival

If you fancy a real challenge then you might want to participate in the Thai-Chinese “Jay” vegetarian festival which begins on September 26th and lasts for 11 days. Participants can’t eat any meat or fish, eggs or animal produce or any of a whole bunch of vegetables considered to have a strong smell and taste including garlic, onion and coriander. Chilli of course is still OK though, you just couldn’t ask the Thais to cut this out of their lives, even for eleven days.
Just to add to the challenge you’re not allowed to drink or exercise any carnal urges you might have. And many people wear white through the whole fast. Interesting might be a better adjective to use than fun.
If this seems like too much to ask then it is at least worth checking out some of the vegetarian food that is made specially for Jay, there’s lots of Tofu and some interesting things to try. Norng Beua 2 in White Sand Beach is a good place to check it out.

 

Flickr Galleries

koh chang big fishI guess it’s a sign of age that deliberately misspelt website names like Flickr drive you mad. Couldn’t they afford one letter “e”?
Anyway the website itself is actually very good and we are using it to load up some galleries of the thousands of pictures of Koh Chang that we’ve collected over the years. They also have a little gallery feature that we’ve dropped into this site so you can view a slideshow of our first gallery of pictures of White Sand Beach by visiting our Gallery page We’ll be adding lot more galleries over the coming weeks.

July 29th – A Genuine Hideaway?

aunchaleena resort koh changThis is the private beach at Koh Chang’s biggest resort. Can you guess where it is? Probably not since Koh Chang Grand Lagoona, at the end of the road past Bang Bao village isn’t nearly as well known as some of the other places to stay on Koh Chang. This is a shame since it is set on an enormous stretch of land with a river, a large lagoon and a nice waterfall next door. They have rooms on land and also on a variety of different houseboats. As well as the beach they have a swimming pool on board a large custom-built barge and even if you aren’t staying there you’re welcome to visit and use the facilities – they currently charge a small fee for entry but this includes bicycle hire. It’s worth a trip.

A Good Idea

big waves on koh changLast month saw a government-sponsored two week Russian language course which my wife signed up for and attended after reading about it at the government labour office in Klong Prao. This free course, which was taught by Michael Tumanov of Vanalee Resort in Bailan Beach, aimed to give a basic grounding in Russian language to make communication easier with the ever growing number of Russian visitors to Koh Chang.
Let us give credit to government where it’s due, What a great idea.
Apparently there are plans for similar courses in the future which we wil lbe sure to let you know about. Spasibo!

Hole in the Ground (Great Song)

holes in the road on koh changkoh chang road worksAs you can see they’re digging up the road in White Sand Beach again. This time they are removing the traffic island running up the hill out of the beach that was put in only a couple of years ago. It never really served any purpose so its removal isn’t that big a deal, unless it allows vehicles to get up even more speed before they career into the pedestrian mayhem that is White Sands.
But surely all of this effort would have been better spent filling up some of the massive holes in the road like this one outside Alina Resort. Our mate Dave can testify to the immediate danger of this hole since he came off his motorbike in it the other night and now has all kinds of cuts and scrapes including a foot that would do a mummy proud.

July 16th – Mainland Beaches

centara chaan talay resort tratAt this time of year it is a good idea to have a little break from Koh Chang now and again. So we took a drive down to the Thailand : Cambodia border at Hat Lek last week stopping off at most of the beaches that run down the coast between Trat and Klong Yai. There are some excellent beaches down there with long empty expanses of sand. The photo to the right was taken from Centara Chaan Talay Resort about 45 kilometres from Trat Town and it is something of a hidden gem. If beach parties are your thing then forget about it, but if you want a top quality resort offering genuine peace and quiet on a lovely white sand beach then you might want to consider a visit. They have some excellent low season special offers on at the moment as well.
There are a few other resorts down the coast that are oriented more towards weekend Thai visitors that are worth a visit if you are on a slightly lower budget. We should have a new map of the area ready for you in the near future so keep an eye out for that.

 

Saphan Hin

saphan hin waterfall trat provinceOn the wayto the border we stopped at Saphan Hin waterfall. This is at the end of what is a fairly poorly maintained path but is well worth the fifteen minute walk through the jungle. The falls themselves aren’t very high but there’s a lot of water plunging over them, especially at this rainy time of the year and the river valley is really nice. Apparently the pools below the falls are a popular weekend swimming spot for locals but since we visited in the middle of the week we had the place to ourselves.

Monster
giant beetle on koh changThis beauty flew, yes flew, into our garden the other day. He (she?) was about 15cm long and despite looking like something from one of your nightmares he proved to be a very polite guest, munching away on a piece of sugercane and generally minding his own business.
Then a Thai lady came along, gave him a kiss, and took him away to build a little home for him.

We don’t make this stuff up you know. This is Koh Chang.

June 9th – Say Hello and Wave Goodbye

It’s been a while and the world has changed a lot since you last heard from us. We’ve changed as well. If you take a look up to the top of your screen you will see that we’re in a new home. We have moved this site from our horrid old uncatchy address of www.whitesandsthailand.com (don’t know who thought up a mouthful like that) to the new, sexy, www.Koh-Chang-Guide.com. You see we’re a guide, and we’re about Koh Chang; it does exactly what it says on the tin. So for the near future you can still reach us through the old and the new addresses but you might want to bookmark our new one.
There’s probably a few issues with things not working quite right that we need to iron out. If you find any let us know and we’ll buy you a beer or a Pat Gapow or a pie or something.

New Maps Now Available Online
Our new Koh Chang Treasure Maps are currently up in Bangkok being printed and won’t be available until the end of the month. However you lucky readers of this site can get a preview by clicking front and back or the map images above.

Electricity

sunset on koh changAs the first leak from our roof drips and pools on the floor we can officially announce the beginning of the rains. Koh Chang is getting the schizophrenic weather typical of this time of year. Yesterday began with two hours of torrential rain and by mid-afternoon it was blisteringly hot.
One big thunderstorm two days ago dropped a tree on power lines and plunged most of the west coast into darkness for a couple of hours. It turned out that electrical workers had tried to cut this tree down earlier since it was hanging over the power line ready to fall. National Park officers apparently prevented them because trees in the National Park are protected. A worthy sentiment but perhaps misdirected in this instance.

Into the Valley – Klong Son Resort Available For Lease

A pretty good opportunity for someone who is interested in stepping into running a well established resort in the Klong Son valley. This place has been going for over five years and is set a couple of kilometres inland in a chilled-out riverside location. There are 8 bungalows as well as a bar and restaurant area and plenty of room for expansion. A lease of at least five years is available at just 200,000 a year and they’re even throwing in the use of their pick-up. If you’d like to know more then get in touch with us.

 

The animals went in two by two

elephant on the koh chang ferryThis recent arrival to the island probably needs a few tips on where to get a decent meal, so here goes;
Full Moon Cafe in Klong Prao are doing some really good Mediterranean style Kebabs. They cost only 80 Baht and are served with salad and sauces in a flat bread wrap. They come recommended, at least the first two in any day do. Believe me, three’s pushing it a bit.
Across the road at La Cabra you can get some of the best food on the island. Thip can cook pretty much any Thai or foreign dish you can think of. Spanish meatballs, pies, home-made sausages, fresh bread, chilli, Indian curry… the list goes on and on. Pick from the menu or just ask what’s the dish of the day, you won’t be disappointed.

Recycling

koh chang recyclingPictured here is perhaps the world’s most optimistic recycling service at Siam Beach in Lonely Beach, we wish them luck.
Recycling is big news on Koh Chang at the moment as a huge campaign led by posters all over the island urges everyone to use the plastic bins provided to separate their refuse for recycling. This is brilliant and definitely a step in the right direction, but (and there’s always a but isn’t there?) it would be so much easier for us to recycle our waste if they provided us with some of the plastic bins pictured in the photos. It’s still plastic bags at the side of the road here at the Koh Chang Guide’s offices. Perhaps the plastic bin budget got spent on big posters? One step at a time I guess

April 29th – Walking on the Beaches…

empty beach on koh changHere’s a photo taken yesterday on White Sand Beach just to remind you of the sultry tropical charms of the paradise island of Koh Chang, at least the bits of the island that that look like this. As you can see there’s plenty of room on White Sand Beach for your beach mat at the moment. After the Thai New Year holiday the tourist high season gradually winds down and May and June are perfect times to visit Koh Chang if you want a bit of peace and quiet. The monsoon, at least back when the weather wasn’t going all weird on us, doesn’t generally start until late June. So if you can stand the heat, then get into the kitchen.

New Maps Now Available Online

Our new Koh Chang Treasure Map arrives on the island today so if you’re here then you can pick up a copy. If you’re elsewhere in the world then you can acquire a copy through the magical realms of cyberspace by clicking front and back.

songkran parade on koh changAt last we’re safe from the water throwing mayhem that is the Songkran festival. Koh Chang now has a firmly established second Songkran on the 22nd and 23rd of April and this culminated in a big parade involving many floats of various and delightful peculiarity. Mother Nature, that great ironist, decided to rain on the parade again but since everyone had already soaked everyone else nobody seemed to mind.
This idea of celebrating events more than once seems to have done wonders for tourism on Koh Chang and in the light of this there are apparently plans to have festivals on the island to celebrate the Kutchi New Year on June 22nd, the Coptic Orthodox New year on September 11th and also the New Year of the Murador Aboriginal tribe of Western Australia on October 30th. Koh Chang will also be holding an early Christmas on August 12th. Nah, just messing with you.

the mercy center visits koh changThe Kids from The Mercy Center just left Koh Chang after their annual visit, hosted by 15 Palms on White Sand Beach. The Mercy Center is a Pattaya-based humanitarian organisation who provide help to needy children in Thailand.
If you would like to find out more about their activities, to volunteer your help or to make a donation then they can be contacted on 086-688-5867 or at www.mercypattaya.com

The Koh Chang Pony Rehabilitation Centre (KPR), featured in our last update, has just relocated from their old home in Klong Son to pastures new in Klong Prao. They always welcome volunteers who are willing to forefeit some time to help out with the ponies’ general maintainance and care. If you would like any more information, please contact Charlie via the KPR website (www.PonyProject.org) or call on 089 723 4278.

tree frog on koh changThere’s no story to accompany this Tree Frog photo. He’s just pretty cool.
Filming on Koh Chang begins today for the German comedy Turkish for Beginners ( T?rkisch f?r Anf?nger) . They may still be looking for extras for more scenes being filmed over the next few days. They are paying 2,000 Baht a day so if you’re interested in taking part call Danny on 089-755-3569.

Property: There aren’t many good small plots of land left for purchase on the main road, at least not in good locations. But here’s one on the main road in Klong Prao just 100 metres from the turning to Amari Emerald Cove Resort. The plot is Chanote land title (the best) and covers 0.8 Rai or 1,280 sq.m. and would be perfect for pretty much any kind of tourism related business. The land is priced at 5.5 Million Baht. If you are interested then get in touch with us.

A 1 Rai plot of residential land with a recently completed house and all amenities is available in Klong Son. The house is situated right on the river in a private spot close to the centre of the village. Again, if you are interested then get in touch with us.

March 30th – History From Below

koh chang 10 years agoSet the settings on your time machines to ten years ago, set the location to White Sand Beach and after you step, dizzy and disorientated, from the apparatus the view that you see should correspond roughly with the image to the right. It’s always interesting to consider the rate of development on Koh Chang by looking at photos from the not too distant past and seeing just how much has been opened/closed, built, chopped down and the like. This picture is taken from outside Ban Pu Resort looking south. Expect a shot taken from the same spot today in the next issue of the guide, assuming of course that the photographer isn’t mown down by a passing truck full of building materials whilst standing in the road taking it.

The weather is a frequent topic on this site… and here we go again. It’s been freezing here on Koh Chang. Well, not freezing in truth, but it is about 27C. in the day and dropping to a wind-blasted 16C. at night. That might not seem much to you arctic-hardened dwellers of the extreme north but it is very unseasonal for Koh Chang. It should be in the mid thirties now and this paragraph should be complaining about the oppressive heat instead of the cold. Still it is at least dry here and we are sparing a thought for those suffering in the dreadfully flooded South of Thailand and also for all of those tourists who are currently unable to travel to destinations such as Koh Samui.
What with all this crazy weather and earthquakes and so on such this is usually where people start muttering about ancient Mayan prophecies and 2012 armageddon and so on and forth. Although you might want to consider the possibility that it is probably just crazy weather and earthquakes and so on and that there’s nothing to worry about.

landslide risk on koh changIf you do want something to worry about then here is a real disaster waiting to happen. Consider this photo of the compacted pile of excavated mountain between Klong Son and White Sand Beach. This is the result of work done at the end of last season after part of the road fell away in a landslide. Basically a load of mountain was cut from the “up” side of the hill, carried across the road and placed at the top of the very steep slope on the “down” side of the hill. This pile of earth is unsupported by any kind of concrete core or cladding and it hasn’t been stabilised by planting any kind of stabilising vegetation. When the heavy rains come over the next few months isn’t it likely that it will fall away and give us a repeat performance of last year’s landslides? Let’s hope not.

koh chang pony rehabilitation centerThanks to Emma and Matthew for sending us some info on the Koh Chang Pony Rehabilitation centre based in Klong Son to share with you. It is a worthwhile endeavour and worthy of your attention so please read on.
The Koh Chang Pony Rehabilitation Centre (KPR) is a non-profit organisation which seeks to provide homes for abused, neglected and mistreated ponies. It is currently run and funded completely by Charlie, who hopes that one day the centre can be completely self-sufficient as a result of both donations and volunteering. KPR is currently home to six ponies; Rambo, Bozo, Hunter, Koffee, Obama and John – all of which have made monumental progress from the injured, sick and scared ponies they were when they were rescued. However there is still so much to be done and KPR is in dire need of volunteers who are willing to forefeit some time to help out with the ponies’ general maintainance and care. If time is of the essence, and you still want to contribute, donations of money and/or pony gear would also greatly appreciated. There is also accommodation on site available to volunteers, all proceeds of which go directly to KPR. If you would like any more information, please contact Charlie via the KPR website (www.PonyProject.org) or call on 089 723 4278.

Property: There aren’t many good small plots of land left for purchase on the main road, at least not in good locations. But here’s one on the main road in Klong Prao just 100 metres from the turning to Amari Emerald Cove Resort. The plot is Chanote land title (the best) and covers 0.8 Rai or 1,280 sq.m. and would be perfect for pretty much any kind of tourism related business. The land is priced at 5.5 Million Baht. If you are interested then get in touch with us.

March 22nd – New Guides Now Available Online

Our new Koh Chang Guide and Koh Chang Restaurants, Bars & Spas guides are now available to download. Just click the images on our front page, give them a couple of minutes to download (big files), and enjoy!
The print versions won’t be available for a week or so so at the moment this is the only place you can get the latest issues.

March 8th – Things to do Today

koh lao yaRight: all our visitors have gone back home, the latest issues of The Koh Chang Guide and Koh Chang Restaurants, Bars & Spas are off at the printers so we can get back to the important task of updating the website. So here we go. The first thing you’ll notice is that we have updated all of our detailed maps so they are all bang up to date again. No excuses for getting lost then.
You can now also download the latest issue of The Treasure Map by clicking the icons above. The new guides will be available soon

But of course you will all be wanting to know where this alluring sandy strand of beach to the left is. Koh Lao Ya is the answer and a rather lovely spot it is too. Located just to the south of Koh Chang there is one resort on two privately owned islands that are connected by a bridge. We hired a speedboat for the day and visited this island as well as uninhabited Koh Khlum and backpacker friendly Koh Wai. A pretty fine way to spend a day. The water visibility was excellent and there was some really good snorkelling off all three islands.

fish at koh waiWe found this seething ball of reef fish off Koh Wai. Throw a bit of food in the water and all hell breaks loose.

If you find yourself in Laem Ngop on the mainland with a little free time then a visit to the Black Sand Beach is recommended. There is a visitor centre and a boardwalk through dense mangroves to a pretty small but endeniably black sanded beach. It’s a pretty cool place. There were some good photos of the place on my camera that I regrettably left on the ferry so here’s hoping that whoever swiped it is enjoying them. It is clearly signposted on the right just a few hundred metres down the road from Laem Ngop to Trat.

koh chang 7 eleven tourSometimes you need to think outside the box, to forge ahead on behalf of mankind down new and untrodden paths. It was with this pioneering spirit that we managed to devise a new and rather fascinating island tour. Since Koh Chang has such outstanding natural beauty what with the emerald rain forest and azure sea we thought that we’d celebrate it by being the first people ever to undertake a tour of all of Koh Chang’s 7-Elevens. Safe in the knowledge that this had never been attempted before (for it is a truly foolish way to spend one’s time) we hired a taxi and did it. There are nine 7-elevens on Koh Chang for those of you that care. We went to all of them, obtaining liquid refreshments therein and it was all mightily entertaining. Won’t be doing it again in a hurry though.

If you are looking for entertainment on Koh Chang tonight then why not drop in to Jungle Queen on White Sand Beach and catch a live performance from Fantuzzi who will be playing a set incorporating Latin, Reggae and Afro Funk music.

February 14th – The Food of Love

tom yam soup on koh changSorry for the lack of recent updates. We’ve had friends and family over and have been doing all kinds of tourist activities, of which more in the next exciting episode. This quick posting is largely because I was sick of that monkey picture on the front page.
I recalled that it was valentines day today when the Petrol station attendants seemed far more interested in selling me roses than petrol. I think a gift of a magic fluid that gives motor power to your prefferred choice of transport is a splendid gift to show one’s love, but I’m probably in a minority.
Anyway since a large part of the last month has seen us eating out at many of the island’s restaurants, partly due to family and friend entertaining and partly because the poor missus fell off a bike and broke her leg, I’m in a great position to recommend somewhere on Koh Chang to take your loved one for that extra special Valentine’s Day meal.
We often mention Iyara Seafood but we went there again recently and it was great so we’ll mention it again. Fresh seafood in a fantastic setting over the water where the lagoon meets the sea. Surprise that special person with a free post-meal boat trip to see the fireflies and we guarantee they’ll be brimming over with love.
Ruan Thai is another seafood-over-the water option in Bang Bao where you really can’t go wrong. Their Chu-Chi Mackeral is a stunner. Buddha View leads the pack when it comes to western meals on Bang Bao pier.
Most of the White Sand Beachside resorts have dining on the sand. They are all pretty reasonable but we particularly like the food at Lagoon Resort. Also of note if you and your sweetheart have hearty appetites is the all-you-can-eat buffet at 15 Palms, they have good pizzas too. If you can bear to drag yourselves to a roadside setting then Norng Beua 2 and The Dancing Chicken are two economical White Sand Beach restaurants that prepare cracking Thai food. The chef at Norng Buea must be an octopus or something given the lightening speed at which all of your orders appear on your table.
It can be surprisingly hard to find places that do really good Thai and Western food so if your Valentine’s meal involves multi-cultural dining then Monkeys in White Sand Beach is a fine option. Their Thai food tastes like Thai food should and their Western Food tastes like Western food should.
Hungry Elephant just opposite the Post Office at Pearl Beach remains one of the island’s hidden gems. It is THE place to go for good steaks at reasonable prices and everything else is pretty good too, we go there all the time.
So there are plenty of options for your special Valentines meal. Hope you’re grateful, all that research has put about ten kilos on me.

January 4th – Communication Breakdown

monkey on koh changSometimes the language barrier seems almost insurmountable.
Spare a thought for our mate John who jumped in a taxi about 10pm the other night at one end of White Sand Beach and asked to be taken to Monkeys Bar & Restaurant about one kilometre away. He doesn’t know the island very well but he realised that something had gone badly wrong about 10 minutes later as the taxi started up the hill at the back of Kai Bae.
It seems the taxi driver had taken his “Monkeys” instruction at face value and was scouring the island looking for monkeys in a bid to arrange a late night primate viewing for his customer. John cut his losses, paid the driver and got another taxi back to the pub.

High Seas, Low Seas

pod of dolphins at koh changSome images this time to show the good and bad sides of life in a Thai Marine National Park.
You don’t see them very often but there are dolphins in the waters around Koh Chang. These ones came over and played in the wake of Eco-Divers dive boat for about ten minutes the other day much to the delight of the people on board the boat. Obviously the presence of the Dolphins in local waters is a good sign since it suggests the presence of fish and indicates that the local marine ecosystem isn’t in such bad shape.

fishing net on dive site at koh changBut before everyone starts patting each other on the back they might want to take a look at this. This is a picture taken yesterday of a fishing net caught on the reef at Hin Luk Bat, a rocky outcrop that has one of the Koh Chang area’s best diving and snorkelling reefs.
Of course all fishing is illegal in the National Park and is, at least in theory, prevented by local National Park staff.
fishing boat on dive site koh changThis, of course, begs the question why the fishing boat pictured thought it would be OK to fish the site in the middle of the day in the presence of dive boats with cameras. Perhaps they believe that the National Park lacks the resources to enforce the law and protect the Corals of the local reefs.
Certainly the National Park staff can’t be everywhere all the time so we would like to help the National Park to trace the boat in question and prevent them from fishing the reefs in future.

The Thai writing on the side of the boat reads, อริยสิน, followed by a large 12 and then the numbers 5300 and 00335. We hope that they make them walk the plank!

Update: OK it seems Hin Luk Bat is just outside the national park so presumably anything goes in terms of drag fishing and reef destruction. So instead of making them walk the plank at the end of cutlass it might be a better policy to just ask the boat owners nicely not to kill all the coral and spoil everyone’s fun. I’m sure they’ll take the suggestion on board, as it were.

Sounds unlikely but we’ve just updated our Property Pages with some new stuff that’s for sale.
The highlight has to be the Bang Bao bungalow resort on 5 rai of land that is going at the once only, never to be repeated, we’re giving it away price of 3 Million Baht. This one will sell fast, get in while you can!
The print versions of our the new issues of our Koh Chang Guide and the Koh Chang Treasure Map arrive tomorrow so if you are here on Koh Chang then be sure to pick up copies. Oh, and we hope that you have a happy New Year!

 

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