Ang Thong National Marine Park

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Country rank: 38 out of 46 Places To Visit In Thailand

Sub-Region: South East Asia


Weather:

Ideal duration: 1 Day

Best time: March - October (Read More)

Nearest Airport: Samui Airport (Check Flights)

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"The Bay of Wildlife"

Ang Thong National Marine Park Tourism


An exotic tropical paradise, situated in the Gulf of Thailand, Ang Thong National Marine Park is a protected archipelago of 42 islands. With unusually spectacular scenery, the Marine Park features Limestone Mountains, thick jungles, white-sand beaches, waterfalls, surreal lakes, unexplored caves and small hikes leading up to breathtaking viewpoints. The serenity of these islands is so captivating that one of the island’s lake – Lake Emerald – was featured in the movie ‘The Beach’ starring Leonardo Dicaprio.

The island is a protected area of more than 100 kms square where a variety of exotic species of mammals, sea creatures, birds, reptiles and trees reside. These islands will force you to get in touch with your adventurous side as there are numerous adventure activities offered by the Marine Park such as hiking, snorkeling, kayaking, diving etc. If you’re not an adventurous person, you can just choose to relax by the beach amidst all the tropical beauty and have an equally great time.

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The restaurant on the main island is open from 8 am to 10 pm. To fit your tour in a day’s time, it is best you leave from your accommodated destination early in the morning as it takes a couple of hours to get to the Marine Park. The Marine Park’s entrance fee for an adult foreigner is 300 Baht and for children, it's 150 Baht. For Thai residents, the entry fee for an adult is 50 Baht and for children, it's 25 Baht.

Emerald Lake
Emerald Lake
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The Emerald Lagoon is situated in Ko Mae Ko (Mother Island) and is a must-visit. The Movie ‘The Beach’ was shot in this very same spot. It is in the middle of the island surrounded by Limestone cliffs and linked to the sea through an underground tunnel due to which it’s a salt lake. You can reach this spot after a climb of nearly 40 minutes. The climb is worth the panoramic view of the Park offered by the lake spot. However, swimming is not allowed in the lake.

Kayaking

There are a number of kayaking trails through the Marine Park which provides spectacular sights of the Park. You can stop your kayak on an island and enjoy the beaches.

Snorkelling
Snorkelling is one of the many water-sports offered here. Some areas have clear shallow waters perfect for snorkelling. The coral reefs in the Park can be explored through snorkelling and scuba diving.

Camping
Camping gear and tents can be rented out from headquarters in Ko Wua Talap. Only certain designated spots are available for camping. Check with the authorities about them.

Viewpoint
Ko Wua Talap
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On the island of Ko Wua Talap, there is a 30-minute hike to a viewpoint proving the best view of the entire stretch of the island in the Gulf of Thailand. This is an iconic picture-perfect view and should not be missed.

  • There are no pets allowed in the Marine Park.
  • Touching the corals should be to a minimum.
  • Take all the rubbish back with you.
  • Remember to carry a lot of water and to carry a high SPF sunscreen.

Trips to the Ang Thong Marine Park are organized day trips from Koh Samui, Koh Phangan and Koh Tao. It is not possible to explore all 42 islands of the archipelago in one day, but you can manage to visit the most popular ones such as Ko Sam Sao, Ko Wua Talap and Koh Mae. There are no resorts here, but there are five bungalows set up on ko Wua Talap each accommodating between two to eight guests. Camping is allowed on certain grounds of the Marine Park. To keep the Marine Park from losing its authenticity due to extensive development, only a few selected licensed tour operators are allowed here. Only one of the 42 islands is inhabited by a sea-gypsy community who lead a traditional fishing lifestyle.

Ang Thong
The forests found here are Limestone Mountain forests, Beach forests, dry evergreen forests and very little Mangrove forests. Ang Thong Lady’s Slipper Orchid is an endemic species of plant found here. The islands consist of smaller animals with 16 species of mammals, more than 50 species of birds, 14 species of reptiles, and 5 species of amphibians. Some of these include Langurs, crab-eating monkeys, silver-haired bats, little herons, oriental pied hornbills, hill mynas, lizards, iguanas, Green turtles, hawksbill turtles, butterfly fish, angel fish, parrot fish, blue-spotted fantail rays, black-tip reef sharks, snappers and many more variety of species.



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How to Reach Ang Thong National Marine Park

Since the islands are a protected area, there are only government approved tour boats allowed here. There are day-tours organized from Koh, Samui, Koh Phangan and Koh Tao. These boats can be anythi... (Read More)

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