Koh Larn, commonly called as Coral Island, is located off the coast of Pattaya, Thailand. Situated just a 30 mins scenic ferry ride from Pattaya Pier, Koh Larn is particularly famous for it’s white-sand, clear-water beaches in contrast to mucky water of Pattaya’s beaches. Due to presence of corals and diverse sea life, this Coral Island is perfect place to enjoy beaches and under-sea activities like Sea Walk and Scuba diving.
When should you go to Koh Larn ?
Beaches are something, one can visit round-the-year to experience a different aspect to it every-time. However, if you want to avoid yourself from getting burned in sun, then best months to visit are from November to February otherwise March to August is also a good time to indulge in beach activities. Rains may drench your day if planned in September and October. Clouds were in our favor when we visited in September. Those kept playing hide and seek with Sun without raining, keeping the weather pleasant.
How to reach Koh Larn ?
When we checked online, there were various tour packages to Koh-Larn costing good amount of money making us wonder if the trip to Coral Island can be conveniently done on our own or not. Ultimately, we decided to do it our own way which later turned out to amazingly economical and effortless.
Being an Island, you have to travel by sea to reach Koh-Larn. We chose the Ferry ride from Bali Hai Pier of Pattaya running almost every hour. Costing only 30 THB/Person, ferry can take you to Naban or Tawaen beach port of Koh Larn in just 30-40 mins. You’ll have to shell out 300 THB/Person if planning to go via Speed Boat taking just 15 mins. In order to efficiently explore the Coral Island, we started from Tawaen Port and returned from Naban Port. We’d recommend you do the same if it suits your timings. Make sure to check ferry timings beforehand on internet to avoid any rush at last moment.
Exploring Koh Larn Coral Island !
Koh Larn is a beautiful small island with tiny mountains and six main beaches along-with few smaller ones. The most popular and crowded are Tawaen and Samae beach, while Tien and Nual beach being serene and quaint. One full day is pretty enough to explore Koh-Larn if started early from Pattaya like us. However, you can also stay overnight in many accommodations at the Island, specifically near Naban Port which is most inhabited area of Coral Island.
As soon as we reached Koh-Larn, we could easily spot the difference in water quality of its pristine white sand beaches as compared to Pattaya beach. Tawaen beach was abundant with tourist even at 9’o clock, with adequate food-joints and market including 7-11 store. After a quick breakfast we stepped towards beach to indulge in some fun and activities. You can rent a locker for your luggage and a beach-chair for sunbathe.
We were planning to scout for someone organizing the under-water sea walk, when an Agent came to us with a package of beach activities. Soon we encountered more such agents as we started stroll on beach. We were particularly interested in exploring the adventure under sea and hence after 2-3 attempts of negotiating we successfully bargained a deal costing only 1500 THB for 4 People including transfers by Speed boat. You can opt for other activities like Parasailing, Jet Ski and Banana ride and grab a deal accordingly.
Soon we enjoyed the speedboat ride too which took us off the coast of Tawaen beach to a small ship where sea-walk was being performed. After some quick instructions from the crew, we stepped inside sea with a huge vessel covering our face. Once we stabilized at sea-bed breathing normally, we started this walk to remember! It was altogether a fantastic experience walking 15 meters deep inside a sea watching marine life. Though there were not too dense coral reefs but walking amidst numerous tiny colorful fishes made it worth.
Now it was time to explore other parts of Coral Island which are nearly 2-3 kms from each other. One way is to traverse this distance by Baht Bus costing 40 THB/Person for each ride which are available at most of the beaches. Walking will consume more time requiring endurance as terrain is not plain and includes climbing road over hills. The best way is to hire a scooter for 200-300 THB for the whole day to effectively explore the island. Scooters are available for rent only from Tawaen beach and Naban port. You can make a deal to pick it up from Tawaen and drop at Naban or vice versa.
We started our ride to Tien Beach through clear winding roads on our scooter. After a 10 min drive from Tawaen beach, we reached a much serene and barley crowded Tien Beach. Only a few water sports activities and beach-side shacks were present at Tien Beach. It is the best beach if you want to relax in rippling waves of ocean away from mass. Next, we began riding towards Samae beach which is in proximity of Tien Beach. Samae beach is second most popular beach of Koh Larn and hence had good number of tourists enjoying. We too spent some time swimming and clicking pictures. There are many small restaurant and food joints on Samae beach to relish local Thai sea-food.
Due to our return Ferry time approaching from Naban port, we skipped Nual beach and Giant Buddha. We returned our scooters at Naban port which is most populated part of Koh Larn, including residential areas of local villagers. We changed our drenched clothes to get ready for our journey back to Pattaya. Moreover, you’ll find changing rooms and restrooms on all the beaches across the island charging 10-50 Baht/Person depending on utility.
Our day long excursion to Koh Larn came to an end as we embarked our Ferry ride back to Pattaya. We captured everlasting memories and experienced amazing under-sea life through an adventurous walk. Tell us your experience from Koh Larn in comments below or if you have any questions and we’ll be happy to help you out!
In case you’re planning a trip to Thailand, then check our Itinerary for Bangkok and Pattaya. Read another trail of us to get a Sneak Peek into Vibrant Nightlife of Bangkok and Pattaya. Also, do check out our Trail to cultural side of Bangkok and Pattaya.