Ko Lanta is a large island just south of Krabi Town and north of Trang, Thailand. It is 25 x 11 km (15.5 x 7 mi) and shaped like a reversed comma “,”. People go to Ko Lanta Island to relax at a resort or homestay on the beach and to enjoy picture perfect small waves and sunsets and delicious meals.
There are many things to do on Ko Lanta, and we’ll give you 25 of the best ones here below to keep you busy on your vacation to this charming island.
Don’t Miss these Fun Things to Do on Ko Lanta Island
- Relax on Stunning Beaches! Enjoy the sun, sand, and clear turquoise waters on popular beaches like Long Beach, Kantiang Bay, and Phra Ae Beach.
- Explore Mu Ko Lanta National Park. We’ve seen a lot of national parks in Thailand because we go looking for wildlife during day and night field trips. This park is so beautiful. It’s mostly on the beach, but they do have a rainforest hike that is challenging (up a hill) and it’s also great fun. Go here for photos. Definitely go here if you have kids and want to enjoy perfect ocean! Don’t miss the Klong Chak Waterfall.
- Snorkel or Dive in Crystal Clear Waters. Discover the underwater wonders of Ko Lanta by snorkeling or diving in the vibrant coral reefs teeming with marine life, such as Hin Daeng and Hin Muang dive sites. You can bring your snorkel gear to the national park beach too!
- Take a Kayaking Adventure. Rent a kayak and explore the hidden coves, mangroves, and limestone formations along the coast of Ko Lanta. The water is often calm, so you’ll have a great time.
- Experience Thai Cooking Classes. Join a cooking class to learn the art of preparing authentic Thai dishes and get a taste of the local flavors. Either go with the program or ask them if they’d be open to teaching you about some dish you already know you want to learn.
- Visit Old Town. Explore the charming Old Town of Ko Lanta, with its traditional wooden houses, quaint shops, and delicious seafood restaurants. OK, this is a bit overboard here! Charming is really stretching it. It’s rundown in our eyes!
- Witness the Sunset at Lanta Lighthouse. Head to the lighthouse viewpoint in the southern part of the island for breathtaking panoramic views and a stunning sunset experience.
- Embark on a Boat Tour. Take a boat tour around the nearby islands, or even go to the Phi Phi Islands, to discover pristine beaches, snorkel spots, and breathtaking landscapes.
- Get Thai Massage and Spas! Indulge in relaxation and rejuvenation with traditional Thai massages or visit wellness centers offering yoga classes and holistic therapies.
- Enjoy Fresh Seafood at Local Restaurants. Savor the taste of freshly caught seafood at the local restaurants and beachside eateries.
- Visit the Lanta Animal Welfare. Spend time volunteering or interacting with rescued animals at this renowned animal welfare organization. They take care of an incredible number of animals that are stray. They neuter and spay them and offer adoptions. Thailand’s dogs and cats are neglected and it’s a real tragedy. Do what you can!
- Take a Motorbike or Bicycle Ride. Rent a motorbike or bicycle and explore the island at your own pace, discovering hidden beaches, local villages, and scenic viewpoints. PLEASE learn how to use the brakes effectively. See our RENTING MOTORBIKES article. Make sure you use the left brake for almost all stops. The right brake controls the front wheel and will send you skidding out of control if you don’t use it right.
- Go Rock Climbing. Challenge yourself and enjoy the adrenaline rush by trying rock climbing at the popular climbing spots on Ko Lanta. You probably already know about rock climbing in Railay – don’t you?
- Join a Sunset Cruise. Sail into the sunset on a relaxing sunset cruise, enjoying stunning views, refreshing drinks, and a memorable experience.
- Visit the Sea Gypsy Village. Learn about the unique sea gypsy culture at the Chao Leh Village and witness their traditional lifestyle and craftsmanship. To be honest, this too is not going to be exciting for 99% of you. There are some demos for how they do things that might be educational.
- Explore Koh Lanta Old Town Pier. Stroll along the picturesque pier, visit the local shops and art galleries, and enjoy the vibrant atmosphere of this cultural hub. As more shops open, this will become good again. Post-COVID many places are shut down.
- Discover the Emerald Cave (Tham Morakot). Take a boat trip to Koh Mook Island and swim through a dark cave to reach the hidden lagoon with its mesmerizing emerald waters. Make sure the boat you’re on has life vests.
- Enjoy Water Sports. Engage in thrilling water sports activities such as jet skiing, paddleboarding, or kiteboarding, available at various locations on the island, but nowhere near the national park.
- Experience Thai Boxing (Muay Thai). Watch an exciting Muay Thai match or even take a training session to learn the techniques of this traditional martial art. Many people use Muay Thai as a way to stay in shape. It gets the entire body moving and stronger!
- Go on a Nature Hike. Explore the lush rainforests and hiking trails of Ko Lanta, enjoying the diverse flora and fauna along the way. There are paths at the national park we recommend, and there are other paths through the forest you can take at your own risk.
- Discover the Culture at Lanta Cultural Center. Visit this center to learn about the local culture, traditions, and history of the island and its inhabitants.
- Relax in Natural Hot Springs. Take a soothing dip in the natural hot springs located north of Lanta and an easy day trip if you want to get off-island.
- Visit the Gypsy Village Market. Experience the vibrant atmosphere of the weekly Gypsy Village Market, where you can find local handicrafts, souvenirs, and delicious street food.
- Go Fishing! Embark on a fishing trip on a boat and try your hand at catching some of the abundant marine species found in the waters around Ko Lanta. You can also fish at the rocks on the northwest side of the island. Some guy was catching small grouper there last time we visited.
- Enjoy Live Music at Beach Bars. Unwind from the stress of the day in the evenings by visiting the lively beach bars, where you can enjoy live music, cocktails, and a relaxed ambiance. Now that pot is legal in Thailand, you can be sure the prices have dropped and the quality has improved dramatically. Try some of the various strains!
Ko Lanta used to be a respite from the traffic and craziness of Ao Nang. Today it is overbuilt and full of closed shops as people went insolvent during COVID. Some places have reopened, but only a fraction of what was there before.
There are still some stunning places on the beach where you can stay and rent out AIR BNBs or lovely resort accommodations on the southwest side of the island.
Find out more about Ko Lanta Island here >