Snorkelling Koh Chang
The waters surrounding this stunning island are ideal conditions for snorkelling Koh Chang. When the sun is shining and the sea is calm, it’s the perfect environment for exploring the underwater world. Many visitors opt to book an organised half or full day excursion when it comes to snorkelling Koh Chang because many of the best snorkelling spots are a quick boat journey away from the island.
There are various different tours available, which cater for all budgets. Snorkelling trips out to the National Marine Park at Koh Rang have become an integral part of any visitor’s stay on Koh Chang. Occasionally the trips can get a little busy (mainly during peak season) but often the sea conditions are excellent here, with calm water and great visibility, making it a top choice. Choose from very large wooden tour boats carrying 100 or more, to less crowded but more expensive food buffet cruises.
Many companies will give you the choice of a 3 island tour or a 5 island tour. More than likely the transfer to and from your hotel will be included, as will all food and drink throughout the trip (with the exception of alcohol if available) and snorkelling equipment (mask and snorkel only). If you are not a confident swimmer don’t let that put you off snorkelling Koh Chang. Life jackets are provided on the boat trips and can be used by customers as a floating aid. Snorkelling Koh Chang and it’s surrounding islands is a fun and interesting activity which the whole family can enjoy together.
With nearby Koh Rang being to most popular snorkelling spot, many of the tour companies plan their trips around this island, visiting outlying reefs and smaller islands throughout the day. With the guides being such experts on the local marine life, they’ll take you to all the best possible spots where you’re sure to encounter lots of fish and pretty corals. All companies offering snorkelling trips on and around Koh Chang have a slightly different itinerary, but to give you an idea of what to expect we’ve pulled together two examples as a guide.
3 Islands Boat Tour
The half day boat tour normally begins around 10.30-11am, allowing for a lie in and slightly later start to the day. From Koh Chang you’ll often head straight for a small island called Koh Wai where the boat will either stop at Paradise Resort or Koh Wai Pakarang Resort. It may be that your chosen tour also stops at a couple of beautiful beaches on the south eastern side of Koh Wai called Ao Yai Ma (Grandma’s Huts). After Koh Wai, your tour may head west to Koh Klum which is an even smaller island and offers another fantastic place for snorkelling. Over lunch time you will be able to sit with other customers and enjoy local food and drinks. Tours normally arrive back to Koh Chang around 4pm.
5 Islands Boat Tour
The full day tour begins with an earlier start, normally departing from Koh Chang around 9am. After an hour cruising on the boat you’ll reach Koh Rang where you’ll spend some time exploring the waters, getting up close and personal with the varying marine life. Either side of lunch you’ll get the opportunity to snorkel around two rocks; Koh Yak and Koh Yak Lek. Normally the sea is calm around both rocks with great visibility. Mid afternoon the boat will head back towards Koh Chang. Some tours anchor up half way back for a spot of hook and line fishing and then quickly visit Monkey Island too. You’ll get back to Koh Chang around 4pm with plenty of time to spare before sunset.
Private Boat Hire
There is of course the option to hire your own private speed boat, yacht or long tail boat when snorkelling Koh Chang. If you are exploring the island as a large family or with a group of friends, this is a great way to see everything as you’ll be able to create your own itinerary. There are various companies on the island who will be able to give you a quotation on how much a full/half day would cost.
Important note: If you are visiting Koh Rang as part of your snorkelling trip, you will be required to pay an entrance fee to the National Park either when you arrive or depart the island. Adults cost 200 THB and kids cost 100 THB. This is not normally included in the tour fee so remember to take some extra cash with you.
There are various departure points on the island, however, the majority of organised tours leave from the main pier, Bang Bao, which is to the far south west side of Koh Chang. If you would like to stay in Bang Bao we recommend checking out Bhuvarin Resort or Ocean Blue Guest House if you are on a budget.