History & Geography of Koh Kood (Ko Kut)[singlepic id=81 w=320 h=240 float=left]
Koh Kood (Ko Kut) is the last Island in the Eastern Thai waters and very close to the Cambodian border. It sits next to Koh Chang and Koh Mak and is actually the fourth largest Island in Thailand. The original settlers on the island were both Thai and Cambodians who apparently fled to Koh Kood in search of refuge after the French claimed the city of Padjantakiri in 1904. The island offered opportunity for rubber and coconut cultivation, not to mention the rich seas in the area for fishing. Koh Kood was largely inaccessible for many years due to political problems with Cambodia. However, these issue now resolved, the Island has recently opened its doors and is slowly becoming more popular to tourists seeking an ‘Untouched Paradise’.
The Island of Koh Kood – Thailand’s best kept secret
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Koh Kood is mostly covered with thick ancient jungle, coconut trees and rubber tree plantations. There are several small mountains which make for some very rewarding trekking. The mountains here are not so high, and the views are well worth the effort. There are also several streams and waterfalls. Klong Chao Waterfall is particularly spectacular and a popular place to swim and cool off. With three tiers, it brims with glittering water all year round. Klong Chao Waterfall was once visited by King Mongkut (King Rama VI) and was given the royal name ‘Anamkok Waterfall’ in commemoration of Ong Chiang Lue, a Vietnamese King taking refuge in the Kingdom of Thailand during the reign of King Rama I in the late 18th century. Klong Yaiki is another refreshing waterfall found more to the north of the island and is well worth a visit. Inland there are several ancient trees which are well exploring. Our jungle expert Bui will happily guide you to enjoy the massive 500 year old Makka Tree or the huge Chaiyak which both stand deep in the ancient jungle. We also have monkeys and wild boar, which are a highlight to see if you can spot them. Koh Kood is definitely an island for those with a passion for nature.[singlepic id=83 w=570 h=490 float=center]
It’s not all about the diving in Koh Kood! The Island has a lot to offer and visitors who come here usually find it difficult to leave. Many people re-visit year after year, drawn by the relaxed and laid back pace of life and natural beauty of the island.[singlepic id=80 w=320 h=240 float=right]
There are a number of stunning beaches and beautiful bays with crystal-clear waters – perfect for lazing the day away and relaxing during your stay here. Some of the more popular beaches are Taphao Beach, Klong Chao Beach, Klong Hin Beach and Phrao Beach. Besides relaxing on these tropical stretches of white sand, snorkeling at the beautiful coral reefs is also popular and magical way to spend your time. The Koh Kood waters are home to a stunning variety of marine life which can be explored free-diving and snorkeling the shallows. If you want to be a bit more adventurous, kayaks and canoes are available for rent from a number of resorts. The Klongs (rivers) are a gentle alternative, but sea kayaking is also a lot of fun! Klong Chao waterfall can be reached by Kayak and it’s a peaceful paddle, during which you can also enjoy the beautiful bird life of the Klong. Some of the more expensive Resorts on Koh Kood offer Banana/Donut-boat-trips and water-skiing. Visitors can do drop line fishing at the beaches and bays or rent a boat over night (about 3000 Baht) in order to try night time fishing. The village Aow Salad (Baan Aow Salad) in the Salad Bay (Aow Salad) is located in the northeast part of the island. It is the biggest fishing village on Ko Kood and fresh seafood can be bought every day. It’s a fun day trip and an interesting glimpse into the local way of life.
The night sky on Koh Kood is another natural wonder as light pollution here is minimal and star gazing is a magical way to pass the evening.
Koh Mai Si is a small island situated to the northwest of Koh Kood. There is a local pearl fishery on this island and visitors are welcome to come and look at the pearl production and buy pearl products.
Situated close to the National Marine Park, visitors can also visit any of the 52 nearby islands for snorkeling and other activities. Koh Wai is a small paradise situated approximately 6 kilometers south of the southernmost end of Koh Chang. The island is about 3 kilometers long, in the widest point 1.5 kilometers and has some very beautiful sandy beaches. Koh Wai is reached daily by a boat starting at 3.00 pm from the Laem-Ngop-Pier. The travel time is 2.5 hours and costs 130 Baht. Interconnecting ferries also run to Koh Chang, Koh Maak, and Koh Kradat, which has many deer and will soon be open to visitors for safari.
For those planning on traveling to Cambodia, Koh Kood is an ideal stepping stone to the Cambodian border. This is also useful for anyone who needs to renew/extend their Thai Visa. There is now a weekly speedboat departing from Koh Kood to Haad Lek, the Cambodian border. This leaves every Friday from Doy’s Guesthouse in Klong Chao and the trip takes about an hour.
As previously mentioned, Koh Kood certainly has some catching up to do in terms of modern conveniences. But that kind of adds to the charm of the island. You won’t find any of the usual 7Eleven stores, Starbucks, McDonalds or Burger Kings, but we like it that way.
The Island has an essential infrastructure which includes a hospital, a couple of schools, a police station, electricity (mainly for state-run facilities), water and telephone system. Fuel and solar energy are the main source of power on the island.
However, there are no banks or ATM’s on the island. Some of the resorts and hotels have money changing facilities but these usually charge a fairly hefty exchange rate. Visitors are strongly advised to bring cash.
Koh Kood Climate
The climate of Koh Kood is tropical and the weather is typically warm and pleasant during the tourist season, which is generally from October to May. Average temperatures on Koh Kood are around 28° C (87° Fahrenheit) between October and February, and 30° C (84° Fahrenheit) between March and May. The tide is high in the morning in the cool season (in November) and at night in the summer time (in March).
The best time of year to visit Koh Kood is therefore in late October until the end of February because of its relatively cool, dry and sunny weather. Of course tourists are welcome year round and we have our hot season up until the end of May. June is when the monsoon season usually begins and we typically experience our heaviest rainy period between June and September. Visits are certainly still possible during this period however some of the ferry and speed boat services may be limited due to high waves.