Koh-Phangan-Hiking

A Complete Guide For Koh Phangan Hiking
     - 8 Best Koh Phangan Hikes

Koh Phangan Hiking


Koh Phangan is not just about big indulgence of booze. It’s a beautiful island with a lot of natural resources and hidden beaches to explore. When you have gotten bored with the usual parties on Haad Rin, start to explore more of Koh Phangan by going through our list of best places to go on a Koh Phangan hiking. Most Koh Phangan hiking takes place in Than Sadet National Park, with different hiking types from medium to heavy. So you had better make sure that your health level allows you to take these Koh Phangan hikings. One thing for sure is that your efforts will be highly rewarded. Perhaps you will find an alternative party route to that of the Haad Rin Pub Crawl or perhaps you will find some secret beaches on Koh Phangan that can be your very own heaven for the day.

Koh-Phangan-Trekking

Hike in Koh Phangan

 

8 BEST KOH PHANGAN HIKES

1. Khao Ra hike Koh Phangan, the highest peak of the island

Central and by far the most famous one in Koh Phangan hikings. Path is a bit steep and takes 1.5 to 2 hours to reach the 630m high top, but the reward is glorious – on a clear day, the view spreads across Chaloklum, Thong Nai Pan and neighboring Koh Tao and Koh Samui and sometimes even the whole mainland!

As the highest mountain on Koh Phangan, Khao Ra’s elevation can be somewhat a bit of challenging among Koh Phangan hikings, but the view on top will be well worth it. At the height of around 630 meters, you will have spectacular views of Chaloklum and the east coast. Please don’t look towards the direction of the airport and keep your gaze on the mountains. At the entrance, you will be asked to pay 20THB which will include a bottle of water. Try to stay on the well-trodden paths as there are some tricky bits that might get you lost.

The early morning is the best time to do this hike is on Koh Phangan, while it’s not too hot and humid as well. You may spend up to four hours on the whole hike up and down. So do remember to bring enough water with you. Proper hike shoes with good grip are necessary since there are places where the ground might be slippery or full of loose stones.

How to get to the Khao Ra hike

How to get there: Following the main road to Chaloklum, find a right turn marked with the ‘Khao Ra Bungalows’ poster sign. Once you are on this path, follow the next left until you stumble upon a bridge, which is a clear sign that you are on the right way. Make sure you have downloaded the App ‘maps.me’ on your mobile phone so that if you get lost, you will always have a helpful navigation.

Khao-Ra-on-Koh-Phangan

Khao Ra on Koh Phangan

 

 

2. Bottle Beach hike

On a more adventurous day, experience a typical Koh Phangan hiking and head to the Bottle beach. Expect to get tired as it will take you at least 2 hours and 2kilometers one way. Good news is that if you don’t feel like going back on foot, there is a taxi boat which can take you to Chaloklum of Koh Phangan. The beach itself is known by the only path leading to it, marked by empty bottles. This means that it is rarely crowded and boasting the title of one of the most beautiful beaches on Koh Phangan – powder sand and pure blue water, surrounded by the jungle and all of its energetic creatures.

How to hike to Bottle Beach

There are two hiking paths to bottle beach on Koh Phangan, both starting at the end of the paved road near Haad Khom. The longer coastline path is about 3km, while the shorter jungle path is about 2km long. There are clear signs on both Koh Phangan hiking trips. You will see the coastline trail extending to the left with blue and yellow arrows. The jungle trail starts on the right with a blue sign that says “Bottle Beach Walk, Back by Taxi Boat”, with a telephone number on it. Along the way, you may find some plastic bottles attached to the branches. This is not rubbish. Instead the bottles are given a second life with the function of marking the way to bottle beach. That's where the name of Bottle Beach comes from!

The biggest difference between the two trails is that the coastline trail is obviously closer to the sea, and there are some good perspectives along the way. But it takes about 1~1.5 hours longer than the jungle trail, where most of the places you hike are jungle and there are fewer scenery along the way. Both hiking trips are free. If you don't pack food beforehand, don't worry. There are four resorts along the beach, each with its own seaside restaurant. Therefore, after hiking, you can reward yourself with a cooling coconut, a delicious lunch and a relaxing swim in the waters of Bottle Beach on Koh Phangan.

If you start your trekking early in the morning, you will get plenty of time to take rest and refresh in the sea before heading back (which you need to do far before the sunset!)

Hiking-Trail-on-Bottle-Beach

Hiking Trail on Bottle Beach

 

3. Bottle beach viewpoint hike

The Bottle Beach viewpoint arguably has the most beautiful view in Koh Phangan. The summit has panoramic views of Bottle Beach and the surrounding area. It's truly a breathtaking view and a must-see for anyone exploring Koh Phangan.

If you are already on Bottle Beach, the start of the hike is located behind Bottle Beach resort No. 2. There is a sign indicating the way, which is pretty easy to notice. If unsure, ask resort staff members for help. The path from here is pretty straightforward. You'll pass through lots of jungle and need to climb over big boulders. In the wet season, the mosquitoes can be troublesome so repellent is necessary. The climb takes less than an hour, and before you know it, you'll reach the huge rocks at the top. Overall, the Bottle Beach viewpoint hike isn't too hard and people of average fitness levels can handle.

Bottle-Beach-Viewpoint

Bottle Beach Viewpoint

 

4. Haad Yuan viewpoint and beach hike

The hike to the hidden Haad Yuan beach settled on the Southeast coast of Koh Phangan has it all – serious climbing, wonderful views, relaxing paths and authentic jungle vibe that awaits once you finish the hiking. Many think that this hike is the most beautiful, though at times also the toughest one on Koh Phangan. You shall start around famous Haad Rin, where the Full Moon Party happens. A lot of sweating is expected as the beginning of the trek is very steep and humidity as high as the rainforest enjoys it, so do remember to prepare water and wear proper shoes that won’t twist your ankles. But don’t get scared – your way back can be much easier. And if you are not in a mood for more hiking, relax, enjoy the dusk painting the sky and sea and find a taxi boat which will take you back to Haad Rin.

Make sure you are in the northern part of Haad Rin. It will be a little difficult to find the beginning of the trek, so do not be too shy to ask the locals, they know everything. And the good thing is that this is the most difficult part. Once you find the road, it will be very easy to follow. It will take you around two hours to reach Haad Yuan and a bit more if you decide to go further North, towards Haad Tien.

Haad-Yuan-Hiking-Trail

Haad Yuan Beach Hiking Trail

 

5. Navigation Haad Rin to Haad Yuan trek

One of the best hikes to do in Koh Phangan is from Haad Rin up the east coast to the nice and serene beach of Haad Yuan. It can only be reached by long tail boat or by jungle trail. Those brave enough to take the jungle trail are rewarded with great views as well as a decent Koh Phangan hiking.

Once you are on the trail there is little problem of getting lost. There is only one trail and it is a well-worn one. The biggest problem is getting on the right trail when you leave Haad Rin. The first quarter of the trek is a continual steep climb. After that the trail levels out and the jungle clears at points to reveal some great views. The final part is a wooden rickety walk by the rocks that leads you to the beach at Haad Yuan.

At Haad Yuan you will find some hippy style bars and resorts as well as the eco resort called Pariya Resort. You can’t mistake the place as the bungalows are round. Ask around if you want a long tail taxi back to Haad Rin.

Treking-Trail-From-Haad-Rin-to-Haad-Yuan

Treking Trail From Haad Rin to Haad Yuan

 

6. Dom Sila & Phaeng waterfall hike

You will enjoy a nice 1.5-hour long Koh Phangan hiking around the park’s nature trail, which features the Dom Sila Viewpoint. As you reach the viewpoint only after maybe 20min of hiking up a moderate incline and can turn to go back down after, it would be a good choice for anyone seeking to get a wonderful view over Koh Phangan without having to hike too far. Many people just can’t get over how blue the water and sky are. You can then continue around the trail ad stop to dip your legs at its various natural pools.

How to get to Dom Sila viewpoint and Phaeng waterfall

Phaeng waterfall is located in the middle of Koh Phangan with a decent road going straight to the parking area of the waterfall. It’s only a five-minute drive from one of the other Koh Phangan waterfalls, Paradise waterfall. All the local attractions are pretty well signposted on Koh Phangan, so if you’re travelling with your rental scooter just type the below address into Google Maps and it’ll be easy to find!

Phaeng-Waterfall-Hike

Phaeng Waterfall Hike

 

7. Haad Khom viewpoint hike

Haad Khom is a 20-minute Koh Phangan hiking to a beautiful scenic viewpoint in the north of Koh Phangan. Facing the northwest, it is a good place to enjoy the sunset where you can see the beautiful scenery in Chaloklum Bay.

You mainly follow a small slope through the jungle until you reach a huge rock whose road sign is Haad Khom viewpoint There are several hidden places to sit down and enjoy the sunset without being bothered by others. This may not be one of KOH Phangan's most impressive views. But this is a beautiful and serene place. It's not far away and is an ideal place to indulge yourself in nature.

Haad-Khom-Viewpoint-Hike

Haad Khom Viewpoint Hike

 

8. Ang Thong Marine Park hike

Hiking at Angthong Marine Park is probably one of the best in Thailand although it is not on Koh Phangan. But if you have the time to do a day trip to the Ang Thong Marine Park, then it is well worth going!

At park headquarters on Koh Wua Talab Island (Sleeping Cow) there is a path leading up the side of the rocks to take you as high as over then 500 meter above to sea level with terrific view. This will take maybe 60 minutes to walk up but is well worth it. Please be warned this is not a hike for the faint-hearted.

The climb is rewarded by viewpoints every 100 meters. They only become more and more beautiful, leading you on to the top. The views were worthy. Although it would be amazing to watch the sunset from this vantage point. Unfortunately, with no lights and the trail being what it was, it would also be a suicide mission. We highly recommend to head back down before dusk.

Make sure you have good footwear as there are sharp limestone crags which will be your foothold, especially towards the peak. With a wonderful view of all the Ang Thong islands, the ending of the hike is well worth it. Beware though, the hike is very steep in some parts and provides questionable ropes to hang onto. But this hike alone will justify your trip to Ang Thong.

A day boat tour is the only way to get to the Ang Thong Marine Park. However, you can also choose to stay for the night on the main island of Ang Thong.

Ang-Thong-Marine-Park-Hike

Ang Thong Marine Park Hike

 

General tips for hiking in Koh Phangan

Hiking in Koh Phangan is one of the best things to do on the island. The mountainous landscape of Koh Phangan offers many beautiful jungle and coastal trails with stunning viewpoints and nature along the way. Here some general hiking tips to make your Koh Phangan hikes as fun as possible!

Things to keep in mind when visiting the Koh Phangan waterfalls:

  • Use maps.me as offline navigation. The best Koh Phangan hiking map is the maps.me app which is very accurate on your GPS position and shows all the trails in Koh Phangan.
  • Bring enough water. Always carry drinking water with you as most waterfalls are located in the dense jungles and it get’s very hot. You will be thirsty after the hiking as well! For the short hikes you had better bring at least 0,5 liters water. But for the longer hikes lasting for 1~2 hours, bringing at least 1 – 1,5 liters water per person is highly recommended.
  • Wear proper hiking shoes. For example, special shoes which have good grip and can get wet because sometimes you have to cross a little stream of water. Good grip is most important, hiking in flip-flops is a bad idea! Be very careful about where you step! The trails and rocks near the waterfalls can get slippery from all the moisture. Also watch out for rocks with dangerously sharp edges!
  • Bring a towel or extra shirt. Don’t forget to bring your swim clothes, a towel and dry clothes. There are actually several reasons for this. This towel is suitable for sitting on the observation deck or the beach. But this is also useful for wiping all the sweat, really! This extra shirt is fine when the other shirt is soaked in sweat, so you'll still have a dry one for the way back.
  • Don’t forget mosquito repellent. So many mosquitoes in the jungle. And they are searching for people with sweat! So do remember to spray mosquito repellent before you begin the hike and bring it with you throughout the hike.
  • Certainly don’t forget to bring your camera or at least your smart phone to seize some of the nice scenes and interesting moments you will encounter on your way.