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Koh Lipe or Koh Lipe Island is the southernmost Thai island in the Andaman Sea near the Malaysian border. It can be reached either from Thailand or Malaysia’s Langkawi island. Koh Lipe resides within Tarutao National Marine Park as part of the Adang-Rawi Archipelago along with Koh Adang and other nearby islands.
Koh Lipe is also referred to as Thailand’s Island Paradise. Read on to find out why.
Koh Lipe has three main beaches with Pattaya beach being the main docking port for boats coming and going from the island. This flurry of activity all day changes the atmosphere of the beach making it one of the less appealing options when looking for a chilled beach to spend the day or for swimming. The one-kilometre sandy strip is lined with all types of accommodation, a few restaurants and bars and is the main entry point for Walking Street. After the sun goes down, the beach is very lively along with Walking Street. It does have a party vibe and you can catch a beach fire show and enjoy late-night beats.
As the docking beach, Pattaya has nightlife spots aside from its soft white sand in its fame. Its hotels and resorts go from mid-range to high-end. There’s a lot of boat traffic but the beachfront resorts make the waters secure for swimmers by roping off some areas.
Ananya Lipe Resort on Pattaya Beach is among Koh Lipe’s hotels with swimming pools. It also has an on-site restaurant and a bar and a garden on its grounds. It has garnered reviews calling it “the best hotel in Koh Lipe” with helpful and amazing staff. Family-friendly, too, with their family rooms and terrace.
Bundhaya Villas. Bundhaya Villas, another of the hotels with an outdoor pool, restaurant with free Wifi for its guests. Even if it is right next to the ferry landing stage, the area near the pol and the restaurant overlooking the bay is relatively quiet.
Sunrise Beach is the largest beach on the east of the Koh Lipe and the most popular. Its 1.2km strip of white sand is narrow at the southern end and broadens as you head more north. Most Koh Lipe resorts (with friendly hotel staff especially in the best hotels) line the northern end of the beach along with many restaurants. There’s good snorkeling all along its coastline to see its abundant marine life. In high season this beach can become crowded as people enjoy sunbathing on the sand directly or on sun beds by its aqua calm waters. In the low season, it becomes the departure point for day trips to islands nearby such as Koh Adang.
One wonderful hotel in this location is Serendipity Resort Koh Lipe. It’s commented as the perfect place to experience the best of the island with easy access to the lively and must-see destinations on the island. With hotel accommodations like charming rooms and pool villas, “friendly and service-minded hotel staff,” great views and fantastic food from breakfast to lunch and dinner, this property is just an easy 5-minute walk away to the beach.
Idyllic Concept Resort is another of Koh Lipe’s hotels with an outdoor pool It also has a pool bar and restaurant. Its villas get wonderful views of the Andaman Sea, aside from a private balcony and minibar and luxurious facilities like separate indoor and outdoor rain showers. Offering good buffet breakfast, an outdoor pool with a pool bar and restaurant, its amazing location makes it an ideal destination.
As per its name, Sunset Beach is the most popular area nearing dusk as people come to enjoy watching the sun go down. This small beach is situated on the west coast and is only 400m in length. It’s less developed than the other main beaches with a handful of beach bars for visitors to grab a drink at night after sunset-watching and a few beachfront bungalow resorts. This beach has a very calm laidback atmosphere and its calm waters make it perfect for swimming.
In 2014, the national park had taken over a large part of the beachfront land, thus leaving this tiny strip where people want to see the best sunset in Thailand and not much to explore. It is, however, just a 15-minute walk to Walking Street. It also has some notable hotels that take in good reviews from guests, making it still a good destination to stay.
Asara Private Beach Resort. This is the best place to recharge and relax, with its spa and outdoor pool features. It has a great location, giving guests a beautiful view of the sea and the beachfront from their cozy rooms. Adult guests have access to free breakfast as part of their room service each morning of their stay.
Sawan Resort. Among the Koh Lipe hotels, this resort has air-conditioned spacious rooms with a balcony overlooking the grounds. Guests have also given high value for money reviews for Sawan Resort.
Pattaya and Sunrise Beaches have mid-range to high-end hotels and Sunset has mid-range and a few luxury accommodations. For budget resorts and hotels, you can find them in the area of coves on the western part of the island or inland, in the Walking Street area. There are hostels, a camping spot, guesthouses and small hotels with air-conditioned rooms. Koh Lipe’s whole area is not that big that the nearest beach would be just a minutes walk away.
Sawan Resort is one of Koh Lipe’s budget hotels with good reviews. It is ranked the no. 1 among the best budget hotels on the island. With comfortable amenities and great staff service, “outstanding” according to one guest’s comment.
Mali Resort is another one with positive reviews. It has Balinese-style beachfront bungalows giving great views from inside. It has a bar and the cold drinks were appreciated. The resort offers snorkeling trip where the guests are taken on a longtail boat straight from the beach in front of the hotel. Breakfast is not buffet but delicious.
These hotels and resorts mentioned are just a few of the wide array of accommodation options available on Koh Lipe. The hotels and resorts mentioned here are those that have been consistently getting good reviews – for the hotel staff service, for the features, for the amenities and facilities.
Bilia is located between Sunset and Pattaya beaches and is characterized by rocky surrounds which makes it more secluded. This sandbar is much quieter than other beaches around the island and offers very good snorkelling.
Koh Lipe Walking Street
Like most islands in Thailand, there is a Walking Street that is the centre of commerce and entertainment. Most businesses, shops, bars and restaurants operate along the street the 480-metre long road. The street comes alive in the evenings and is full of people coming to shop, eat, drink and have fun. It doesn’t have a decadent party atmosphere but rather a late dining vibe catering to travelling foodie families and couples.
Sanom is just a short walk along a wooden sidewalk from Pattaya Beach. It features vivid turquoise waters striking contrast against the powder white sand and excellent diving. It has a secluded feel to it like Bilia.
There is only one temple on the island, known as Wat Hantalay. The temple is located on a hill in the jungle on the road from Sunrise to Sunset Beach and monks live within the temple complex. There are two shrine halls, one with a statue of the Buddha and another with a statue of Brahma, also known as the “four faces Buddha.” Visitors are welcome to come and meditate in both these shrine halls.
Situated on the north coast is the tiniest beach on the island called Pitiusas Beach, measuring a mere 20 metres in length. The beach is serviced by one rustic resort and to use the sun lounges you need to be a guest of the resort.
Bulow is a 400 metre stretch of fine pure sand which is an extension of Sunrise Beach with exceptional views of the entire southern coastline of Koh Adang.
It is less busy than Sunrise and its calm crystal clear waters are fantastic for swimming and snorkelling. There is only one resort and restaurant here and nothing else, making Bulow beach a quiet little beach paradise.
Find more things to do in Koh Lipe
Of the lesser-known beaches, Bulow Beach is a 400 metre stretch of fine white sand which is an extension of Sunrise Beach with exceptional views of the entire southern coastline of Koh Adang. It is less busy than Sunrise and its calm crystal clear waters are fantastic for swimming and snorkelling. There is only one resort and restaurant here and nothing else, making it a quiet little beach paradise. Likewise, Billa Beach is located between Sunset and Pattaya beaches and is characterized by rocky surrounds which makes it more secluded. This beach is much quieter than other beaches around the island and offers very good snorkelling. Sanom is just a short walk along a wooden sidewalk from Pattaya Beach. It features vivid turquoise waters striking contrast against the powder white sand and excellent diving. It has a secluded feel to it like Billa Beach.
Situated on the north coast is the tiniest beach on the island called Pitiusas Beach, measuring a mere 20 metres in length. It’s a pleasant 20-minute walk from Walking Street through the centre of the island past Hantalay temple. The beach is serviced by one rustic resort and to use the sun lounges you need to be a guest of the resort.
Like most islands in Thailand, there is a Walking Street that is the centre of commerce and entertainment. Most businesses, shops, bars and restaurants operate along the street the 480-metre long road. The street comes alive in the evenings and is full of people coming to shop, eat, drink and have fun. It doesn’t have a decadent party atmosphere but rather a late dining vibe catering to travelling families and couples.
There is only one temple on the island, known as Wat Hantalay. The temple is located on a hill in the jungle on the road from Sunrise Beach to Sunset Beach and monks live within the temple complex. There are two shrine halls, one with a statue of the Buddha and another with a statue of Brahma, also known as the ‘four faces Buddha’. Visitors are welcome to come and meditate in both these shrine halls
A popular thing to do is visit some of the other islands in the archipelago. Koh Lipe’s quiet neighbour, Koh Adang is an unspoilt slice of paradise. Most visitors take a day trip and short boat ride to Koh Adang from Koh Lipe but there are one or two places to stay overnight if you wish or camping is another option. The island features tall pines, exquisite empty beaches, no roads or development. Snorkelling is sensational just 20 metres off the shore with coral reefs filled with tropical fish. The best way to discover the many beaches on offer is to charter a long tail boat for the day. Or visitors can hike up to one of three panoramic viewpoints of the beauty of Andaman Sea and Koh Lipe. Another hiking option is to see Pirate Waterfall which can be reached by a difficult 3 km trek through the dense and slippery jungle. The falls are about 7 metres tall and a source of freshwater.
Another option is to take a trip to Koh Kai. This tiny island is located between Koh Tarutao and Koh Adang and can be accessed via boat from Koh Lipe. It can only be visited as a day trip as it doesn’t have any accommodation facilities in which to stay. The island has a beautiful beach and is best known for its iconic rock arch formation at the end of the beach.
Koh Tarutao is the largest island in the archipelago being 26 km in length and 11 km in width. It is home to the national park headquarters. The only motorised transportation on the island consists of minitruck taxis and the motorcycles of the park rangers. Bicycles can be hired at some spots around the island. Visitors can stay at basic bungalows located throughout several bays around the island or rent tents. At Ao Ta Lo Woo Pier there is a historical trail that extends for 2 km. The trail will lead to a few historical buildings related to the political prison that was once built before World War II. Along the trail, there are visitor information signs detailing interesting facts about the dark history of the island.
Located along the beachfront, the Cabana Lipe Beach Resort offers comfortable rooms with free wifi, air conditioning, and a balcony. Each room is equipped with a flat-screen TV, a minibar, and a private bathroom with a shower.
During your stay at the Cabana Lipe Beach Resort, you can enjoy pampering massages or the cool, sea breeze while laying on the sunbeds at the beach.
The Serendipity Beach Resort is a beautiful Koh Lipe holiday accommodation option where you can enjoy a private beach front area with free wifi access. This beach resort-Koh Lipe also features an a la carte restaurant and a bar on site.
The Koh Lipe resort offers guests a bungalow with a balcony and a seating area. Each unit is also equipped with a sofa and a safety deposit box. Some units at the Serendipity Beach Resort also features a private pool and a stunning view of the sea.
The Ten Moons Lipe Resort offers you access to a luxury getaway along the southern corner of the Sunrise Beach and nearby Ko Lipe Pattaya Beach. Know as one of the best resorts in the area, the Ten Moons Lipe Resort feature air-conditioned bungalows equipped with a refrigerator, an electric kettle, shower, free toiletries, and a hairdryer.
Other travellers who have visited the property have attested to the resort’s service. Typically, guests at the Ten Moons are advised to wake up early morning to watch the sun rise from the horizon while enjoying an oriental-Mediterranean fusion cuisine prepared by the local chef.
Dong Talay Lipe Beach Resort is one of the most popular resorts and romantic hotels along the beachfront. At the resort, rooms come with a balcony. Guests are also offered access to various amenities and facilities, including an outdoor swimming pool, a bar, and a garden.
Are you travelling with your family? The resort offers families rooms with air conditioning, a safety deposit box, and their own private terrace. This makes the resort a good location for families looking to get more space at a decent price.
The Akira Lipe Resort is located along the beachfront of the Pattaya beach. The property features three swimming pools, a garden, and a gym. Families with children can also sign their kids up for a day at the on-site kids’ club and library.
The resort also features an on-site bistro restaurant that serves a wide range of Thai and European dishes. For travellers hoping to get cool drinks, the beachfront swimming-up pool bar provides a premium selection of international cocktails and smoothies.
The Akira Lipe Resort: Koh Lipe is located in the Koh Sarai Sub District in Koh Lipe Satun Province, Thailand.
Kathalee Beach Resort – Koh Lipe is a beautiful property situated at a beachfront location along Sunrise Beach. This beach resort – Koh Lipe provides guests a number of rooms with a flat-screen TV, air conditioning, a balcony, and sun lounger.
The staff at the hotel can also help arrange Thai dishes per person at a restaurant near Kathalee Beach Resort. Pampering massages can also be availed.
One of the best Koh Lipe resort, Idyllic Concept Resort is situated near the pristine waters of the island and offers guests a view of the Andaman Sea. Each unit in this resort comes with air conditioning, a flat-screen satellite TV, a private balcony, and a minibar. Each room also features a separate indoor and outdoor rain shower.
Want to stay at this resort? Our travel representatives can help you book a room at the Idyllic Concept Resort and include it in your Koh Lipe Holiday Package. We can also give you advice on the best deals available during your chosen stay dates.
For the latest news about travel restrictions, please visit our COVID-19 fact page. We regularly update the page with the latest guidance from the Thai government.
The peak season is January to March which sees droves of tourists hitting the island and the highest prices. The weather is spectacular with blue sunny skies, seas breezes and temperate evenings. The high season from November to May sees a steady stream of tourists visiting and the weather becomes hotter as it heads into April and May. The low season is the end of May to October when the island is the wettest but yet its greenest. Days are still warm but you will see more overcast conditions and rainfall. Some businesses close during the low season because there are fewer tourists overall. Any month during this season is the best time to visit Koh Lipe.
Given it is an island, supplies cost more to import so prices will be higher than the mainland, but comparable with other island tourist hotspots. Koh Lipe hotels seem to be more expensive with fewer facilities than the nearby islands like Koh Lanta. During the high season expect the average rates to be around AUD 110 per night for basic accommodation.
From the Thai mainland, you must take a ferry from Pakbara Pier, the main port in the southern province of Satun. To Koh Lipe, it costs about 650 baht and takes 90 minutes.
In high season Koh Lipe can be extremely busy. So if you’re looking for a less crowded Thai island experience, the neighbouring islands may be more of what you’re after such as Koh Adang. But if you’re set on visiting Koh Lipe then the low season from June until November might be a good alternative. During this time of year, it is cooler and rains on and off. The island becomes more peaceful and less crowded. Lipe hotels drop their prices so you can get good deals.
Most travellers recommend 3-5 days to take in the sights and relax. Beyond that, boredom may set in.
Koh Lipe is so small that you can walk to most places but if you prefer, there are motorbike taxis on hand to take you around. It is generally a set price to go anywhere on the island.
There is no airport on Lipe island. The closest is to fly to Hat Yai International Airport. From there you will need to go to Pak Bara pier and onward via ferry to Koh Lipe.
Yes since July 2020, Koh Lipe like wider Thailand is open for domestic tourism but Co-vid 19 safety precautions must be practised. There are limited ferries operating. Check directly with individual operators for more details.
It can take up to 5 hours via ferry departing from Rassada Pier Phuket to Lipe island with ferry services operating twice daily.
Koh Lipe is 183 km by sea or 375 km by land from Krabi.
How to get to Koh Lipe from Bangkok the quickest way is by taking flight to flight to Hat Yai International Airport in Southern Thailand. From Hat Yai, you will need to go to Pak Bara Pier in Satun, the main pier for Koh Lipe, which takes about two hours from the airport. The ferry from Pak Bara Pier to Koh Lipe costs about 650 baht and takes 90 minutes.
The cost of living in Koh Lipe is a bit more expensive than in the other islands but travelling costs there are not much different from going to the other islands.
Koh Lipe is a small L-shaped island in the southwest of Thailand near the Thailand-Malaysia border. It belongs to the Satun Province in the Adang-Rawi Archipelago, immediately on the outskirts of the Tarutao National Marine Park. (Although it is also regarded by some as part of the park). The name Koh Lipe (also spelt Ko Lipe, Koh Lipeh, Koh Lipey) means “paper island” in the language of the Chao Ley, the sea gypsies who were the original inhabitants of the island.
Koh Lipe is small, yes, but as Thailand’s “island paradise” as declared by visitors, you wouldn’t be satisfied with a mere weekend stay. And it’s an island, so you might read on this “travel guide” for your Koh Lipe holiday. – Walking shoes – you’ll be doing a lot of walking, if not swimming or snorkelling so you must protect your feet – Breathable shirts – these are lightweight, easy to dry, and best to be of natural fibres. – Light water repellent wind-breaker jacket for light showers or a windy day. – microfiber towel – another light and quick dry travel essential. Easy to pack too. – Camera – Swimsuits (at least a couple) Power bank – universal adapter – water bottle – a common must-bring to Thailand, to be sure your – drinking water is safe – daypack – for all your stuff when going around the island or island hopping – Large backpack – Get one with good weight distribution, large enough for all in this list and other stuff, with a lot of pockets and slots to organize your things.
Definitely! Koh Lipe is small enough to walk around anywhere.
There is not just one single best beach in Koh Lipe. Dubbed “island paradise” for the many amazing beaches, Koh Lipe can boast of the following beaches recommended highly by travellers and guest reviews. Pattaya Beach. It is the biggest and most visited among the beaches of Koh Lipe, situated on the southern tip of the island. A good spot for snorkelling (as well as beach volleyball and frisbee games) but not for swimming since this is the landing point for ferry boats during tourist season, as well as fishing boats. The bay around Pattaya beach is large enough for kayaking trips. Significantly, Pattaya Beach is what makes Koh Lipe called a party island, being the hub for parties and nightlife activities with a number of beach bars and resorts with exciting nightlife events. Sunrise Beach. Also known as Hat Chao Ley Beach, Sunrise Beach is located on the east side of Koh Lipe, five minutes from Chao Ley, a town inhabited mainly by sea gypsies. Thus, its location makes it an excellent spot to watch the sun rising. Hence, the name Sunrise Beach. At the same time, Sunrise Beach is a popular snorkelling spot because divers don’t have to go far to enjoy the colourful marine life, plus the breeze is refreshingly cool throughout the day in the area, making Sunrise Beach a favourite hang out of sunbathers too. Sunset Beach. Called Hat Pramong in Thai, Sunset Beach is The Place for watching the spectacular sun setting down on the clear water of the Andaman Sea and fade into the horizon. On a secluded lagoon in the western side of Koh Lipe, it is regarded as a great spot for relaxing or for swimming. Sanom Beach. Another secluded beach with powdery white sand with calm waters in varying tones of turquoise for swimming or just sunbathing. There is a small jungle nearby so you’ll have mynah birds, parrots, hornbills as company sometimes. Sanom Beach is more popularly known for great diving opportunities, even called world-class by some divers, plus it is a short walk away from Pattaya Beach. This beach hosts some seaside bungalows and a dive centre. Billa Beach is a small secluded beach fronting the Andaman Sea, not as populated as the other beaches, so you can be assured of relaxing in peace and quiet. There are also beaches on the north and west coasts of Ko Lipe that most visitors don’t know about. The Pitiusas Beach, Secret Beach and Bulow Beach. Beyond Mountain Resort you can get to that tiny “secret” beach from which you can have a great view of neighbouring Koh Adang.
Koh Lipe has been declared on lockdown as of Thursday 5 August 2021, by the governor of Satun province when 32 new covid-19 infections were confirmed after the rapid antigen testing had been done. “All transport to and from the island will be halted for two months while the province implements disease control measures, treats infected patients and sends supplies to residents of the island,” said Ekarat. “After two months, we will evaluate the situation and consider reopening the island for tourists.” The announcement also declared the barring of fishermen not only around Koh Lipe, but including Adang and Bulone islands, to minimize the risk of the virus going to the other islands.
Small as Koh Lipe is, the island has an approximate 800 resident population.
It is pronounced as Ko Lee-pae. Phonetically, it is pronounced as ” lii-bay” with emphasis on the first syllable with “Koh/Ko” pronounced “gaw” (G with a very terse vowel).
The size of Koh Lipe is not big enough to have an airport. From the other big cities in Thailand, you fly to Hat Yai airport, the nearest to Koh Lipe and also one of the major hubs of southern Thailand. From Hat Yai, you take a shuttle bus to Pak Bara pier, from which there are ferry boats that will take you to Koh Lipe. There is a 67-kilometre distance between nPakbara Pier to Koh Lipe, and the ferry boat ride will take an hour and a half.
From Trang Airport, one can get to Koh Lipe in three ways – Minivan-speedboat that will take 4 hours; private car then ferry that will take an hour and 15 minutes; and minivan then bus then ferry that takes a total of almost 5 hours. From the Trang Railway Station, on the other hand, one can book the travel online and choose one of 2 direct services daily from Trang to Koh Lipe. From the station, a minivan takes you to the pier from which to take a speedboat to Koh Lipe. The whole trip will take around 3 hours and 45 minutes.
With more than 30 islands nearby and much more coral reefs so accessible, snorkelling in Koh Lipe is still one of the best snorkelling experiences in Thailand. Guest reviews recently state that the increasing popularity of the island should not deter travellers from visiting because accordingly, there is nowhere in Thailand or even Southeast Asia can one have fantastic snorkel spots in great condition and within easy reach. Here are the most recommended sites in Koh Lipe.Sunrise Beach. Just near this beach are 2 smaller islands, Koh Kra and Koh Usen (across Idyllic Resort). Sunrise Beach is shallow but the water around the 2 neighbouring islands are deep enough to let divers see the rich marine life, like the colourful fish species and coral reefs. In the north side of Sunrise Beach, there is also a spot in front of Mountain Resort where snorkelling is good regardless of low or high tide levels. Sunrise Beach has a good number of shops from where to rent masks and fins at reasonable costs.Sunset Beach. Another area in Koh Lipe with good snorkelling sites (not much for swimming, though) is Sunset Beach. The left side of Sunset Beach turns into a deep cliff for really incredible snorkelling. The corals start off Sunset Beach so it would be best to dive at this spot during high tide.Pattaya Beach. Both sides of Pattaya Beach gives the best spots for snorkelling in this area. On the northernmost tip of Pattaya Beach, in front of Site Resort is a small beach called Zanom Beach, where really fantastic snorkelling just off the beach is possible! Around the middle area of Pattaya Beach is a good spot but a little farther to the water. At the same time, the water on Pattaya Beach can be “crowded” when the ferry boats pick up and drop off passengers.
Langkawi, an island of Malaysia is near enough to Koh Lipe that you can get there by boat. There is a regular Koh Lipe Langkawi ferry route that connects Thailand to Langkawi Island. There are 3 boat options to Langkawi – speedboat, high-speed ferry, regular ferry. These boat trips do the Koh Lipe Langkawi route up to 7 times weekly, with the trip taking from one hour to an hour and a half.
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