Ko Lipe – Thailand’s Maldives – general information, how to get there and the islands on the way
Ko Lipe is one of the most amazing islands in Thailand, and many say it is the most beautiful one. This is why Ko Lipe and its surrounding area have been nick named “The Thailand’s Maldives”. The name Ko Lipe means the paper island, in the Sea Gypsies language. The Sea Gypsies discovered Ko Lipe island and settled there.
Ko Lipe is every tropical islands lover’s dream – one of nature’s miracles with many great beaches, soft white sands and magnificent clear turquoise waters. Snorkeling sites can be found near the beaches, as well as plenty of resorts, shops, restaurants, massages and lively nightlife in the pubs on the beach.
Just like other quality locations in Thailand, such as Hua Hin or Khao Lak, Ko Lipe is well known and popular with many tourists around the world and in the season it is so crowded with tourists that a hotel room can be pretty hard to find if not booked in advance.
In this article I will describe the ways to get to Ko Lipe and the islands on the way. In a different article I have elaborated more about its beaches, resorts, nearby islands, snorkeling, restaurants, pubs, nightlife, etc.
Click here for my article about Ko Lipe
General information about Ko Lipe and its surrounding area:
Located across from the southern tip of Thailand on the border of Tarutao National Marine Park, you will find Ko Lipe. The island which is not part of the marine park, and therefore can be built on, has become a lively tourist center!
The island was first discovered by the Sea Gypsy tribes, (Chao Ley tribe), as they were wondering from island to island looking for good fishing spots. The Thai government gave the Sea Gypsies permission to settle on the island and they live there in a small village not far from Sunrise Beach.
How to get to Ko Lipe:
here is a short summary of the ways to get to the island;
Ko Lipe is located in the Andaman Sea approximately 60 Km. from the mainland. During the season, (November – May), you can cruise to it from many different places – either from the mainland, (Pak Bara and Trang), or from other islands, (located to its north), such as Ko Lante, Ko Phiphi, etc. There are ferries to it all through the day. During the rest of the year, it can only be reached from Pak Bara and there is a ferry only once a day.
The ferry will take you to a floating pier in Ko Lipe. From that pier you can take a longtail boat to the beach of your choice. The floating pier is located in Pattaya Beach or in Sunrise Beach, depending on the season and the winds.
The ferries leave from the main pier at Pak Bara and take about an hour and a half which includes 2 stops on the islands on the way. There are different agencies which offer this service and there is also a speedboat but it turns out that the time difference between them is small so I recommend taking the ferry which is better and more convenient.
Another simple way to get to Ko Lipe is by taking a speedboat from Ko Lanta – this cruise takes about 3 hours.
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