At a GlanceLikely to lớn meet: Tourists, divers, daytrippers, some backpackers, travellersThe Beach: None, up the road at Bang Bao Beach (Klong Goi)Accommodation: Homestay, boutique resorts, bit of backpackerFrom 300bt fan rooms up khổng lồ 6,500bt for 2 room cottage Resorts: Nirvana (currently closed), Resolution, BhuvarinAppartments: Tranquillity BayMotel Rooms/Guesthouses: Alysia Springs, Buddha View (currently closed), Chilli House, Bang Bao ParadiseBungalows; Cliff Cottages, Cliff ViewBackpacker: Coconut Garden, Hippy Huts, Rasta Beach Restaurants: Seafood on the pier, some local cheap eats, some fusion Ruan Thai, Chow Lay, Buddha View (currently closed)Coffee Shop: Bang Bao Delight (currently closed)Nightlife: Sunset style, all very low key Bars: Buddha View (currently closed) , Rasta View Other: Dive Shops, Snorkeling Boats, Fishing Trips, Shopping, Minimarts, Pharmacy, ATMs, Post Office, Ticket agentsHighlights: The pier, the seafood, boat trips & diving, shoppingLowlights: Lack of immediate beach, daytrippers on the pier
At an Island Pace – Bang Bao
Bang Bao used to lớn be a classic thai fishing village with life centred around a narrow pier of traditional wooden stilt houses và boats moored up ready for sea. On land, more houses, some with their own small jetties, were dotted around the beautiful large bay, local shops clustered along the little soi leading from the main road down khổng lồ the pier & a school & temple sat on the mountain side.
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Nowadays, much of that has changed as tourism has replaced fishing as the principal source of income và the village has established itself as the island’s main point of departure for the myriad of competing trips exploring the archipelago, both above and below water.
The stilt houses have been converted into the odd homestay, a few dive shops, a handful of large seafood restaurants but, in the main, into a plethora of almost identical shops, rammed lớn the gunwales with souvenirs. Small offshoot structures have been added with guesthouses or private dwellings and around the cất cánh itself, there are resorts, bungalows & a large condo development.
The pier itself has been extended to accommodate the numerous dive, speed and snorkel boats, with them tied up two or three deep along the now concrete jetty, which sports a new lighthouse at its far end. At the start and end of each day, as the tourists set out và return, the narrow walkway leading up lớn the boats is the busiest place on the island.
Nonetheless, outside of rush hour, there is lots to lớn explore và sitting out over the water for lunch or dinner is still a great holiday experience. Whilst this is not a beach area, that is another couple of kilometres further south at Bang Bao Beach (Klong Goi) or back to lớn Lonely Beach to the north, there is good accommodation from budget to boutique around the bay and on the pier.
The atmosphere is peaceful and laid back, with a few boats still fishing và unloading their catches & locals living their lives in amongst the hustle and bustle as they have always done. There are also some quite wonderful views thrown in for good measure.
Northern Side of bay | Pier | Southern Side of Bay
×Bang Bao has been particularly hard hit by Covid-19’s business downturn. We have removed businesses we know will not return and marked selected others as currently closed – at this stage, it’s impossible to lớn say if they will restart in the future or not? Separate to lớn this, all venues will of course also adhere to lớn the regularly changing Covid rules.
Around The Bay, Northern Side
Heading south from Bailan Beach, the road snakes và curves around the coastline, skirting through the forest past the odd staff building và the newly constructed Reggae Hill, a bar and restaurant. DARA (currently closed), a private rehabilitation centre, sits at the top of the last hill, before you drop down into the outer reaches of Bang Bao itself.
Here, construction is now in full swing of the Aquarius project – hotel, villas, shopping & restaurant mall (that’s the bit on the left). Principally aimed at the booming market for affluent Chinese, it straddles all the way along the cliff on this coast và is the largest project to hit Koh Chang for many a year. Scheduled opening is for 2022/23. The Hong Kong investors are also developing the offshore island of Koh Man Nai, which you can see from the Koh Chang viewpoint between Kai Bae Beach & Lonely Beach.
Shortly after the building works, on the corner with Coconut Garden, its own bungalows up on the hill above, a small road leads right towards the sea. This takes you lớn the north side of the bay, where you’ll find a selection of bungalows, resorts and homestays spread out right the way along the hillside & water’s edge.
The narrow street first passes the track down to lớn a car parking area, which you can also access from near the pier & then the gated entrance up to lớn the cliff side area of Aquarius – this will be the hotel section and its development is also now up và running. The villas will ultimately link from the khách sạn here back over the hillside to lớn the mall area you passed on the way in – it’s one big old site.The Resorts
After a few more twists and turns, the back road reaches Cliff View Resort, bungalows in tiers up the slope and next door, Cliff Cottages. Now under the wing of BB Divers, this is a mixture of a/c rooms along the front and on the hill, alongside glamping tents, which overlook the little cove beneath, a great spot for snorkeling.
Nirvana Resort (currently closed) sits at the other over of this cove và it too has its own cliff-edge walk and sunset viewing-deck on this side.
The road goes straight through Nirvana Resort and out the other side, curving past Homestay Bungalows before climbing up past a small Italian development of pool and restaurant and reaching Bhuvarin Resort & Resolution Resort, both of which have their accommodation và pools tiered down the steep slopes towards the water.
At the very end, you can drop down to Khao Nok Homestay with its restaurant, bungalows and wooden jetties. Beyond them, it is possible khổng lồ venture down a tiny track to the naval shrine at the end.
This shrine is dedicated to Admiral Chumphon Khet Udomsak, the founder of the bầu Navy and is one of several on the island, the others being outside of white Sand Beach and in the very far southern corner after Long Beach. All commemorate the loss of lives suffered during WWII, when the French Navy clashed with the bầu fleet off this coast, sinking three of its ships, the so called Battle of Koh Chang.
On The Pier
Back on the main road, after passing the motel, Alysia Springs, the route reaches the turning down khổng lồ Bang Bao Pier itself, with a good cheap little thai restaurant opposite as well as the local school & temple. Another cheap diner (currently closed) used by the songthaew taxi drivers sits on the corner, whilst various other local shops, motorbike rentals and food stalls line each side as you head down towards the sea.
Towards the end of the street, Sunny Inn is tucked away down a small plaza on the right with Koh Chang Divers at the entrance và Seascape và BB Bungalows, long stay rooms và bungalows, across the way. Scuba Dawgs has now been folded into BB Divers, so their siêu thị has closed.
At the bottom, where the ubiquitous 7-11 dominates the beginning of the pier, the street opens out into a oto park on the right hand side, with Bang Bao Post Office at the rear. A taxi rank is on the left.
Bang Bao Boats, long term boat services to Koh Wai, Koh Mak and Koh Kood, has its ticket booth here, see Koh Chang Island Hopping (currently closed) for more details. A small street squeezes between the buildings leading to car parking for the boat companies.Restaurants & Accommodation
Walking down the pier, passing a wooden jetty on the left leading to lớn the very good local clinic, souvenir shops & ticket booths run from one khổng lồ another, with Tee Fishing, a very well stocked outlet for the enthusiasts & Peace Moon, bespoke handmade jewellery, tucked in amongst them. Walkways branch off khổng lồ the homestays of Koi Sea House, Good View, White House, Televille & the restaurant, Chilli House.
Across the way are the seafood restaurants of Ruan Thai and Chow Lay. Very popular with Thais và tourists alike, they offer vast menus of dishes such as seabass steamed in lime, soft shell crab with black pepper or raw prawns with chilli dip – a table by the water for a long lazy lunch is still a special holiday memory.
Continuing down the pier, a second Peace Moon lies before the stilted wooden jetty leading to Barracuda (now closed permanently), a cosy bar/restaurant over the water, with the dễ thương Bangbao Paradise Homestay alongside.
Next up, BB Divers has their main office, with Bang Bao Delight, the coffee shop and bakery a few doors further down. Buddha View (currently closed), a very popular chill-out restaurant with simple rooms, is accessed down a small side alley immediately afterwards.The over of the Pier
At the end, as the pier begins to xuất hiện out, another offshoot walkway leads past the simple guesthouse of Ocean Blue before reaching the last remnants of the semi- abandoned Koh Chang Sea Hut, now just a solitary building after the government removal of its illegal individual designer huts.
After this, the pier becomes purely functional with the boats tied one against each other, tours, dives và local fisherman having prime spot at the start & towards the end, fishing boats from the offshore fleets, in port to fill up with freshwater & diesel.
Many of these are squid boats which use light khổng lồ attract the catch và can be seen at night from the different beaches, their powerful high watt bulbs, seemingly equidistant from one another, creating an impression of a distant shoreline as they bob away on the horizon.
Around The Bay, Southern Side – Bang Bao
After the turning down to the pier, the road starts out for the kết thúc of the island passing the temple, cheap bungalows at Hippy Huts & then running directly behind the vast condo development of Tranquility Bay, which dominates the southern side of the bay. Rasta View và its huts at Rasta Beach, both reggae inspired establishments, are found along the way.
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It is now just a short way to lớn Hat không đúng Noi, a tiny strip of sand which is trang chủ to some chill-out beach bars, restaurants and small guesthouses. Beyond this, another kilometre or so brings you out at Bang Bao Beach Klong Goi, the last area on this west coast.