Koh Kood Island: Thailand Best Kept Secret
February 2, 2024
By guy yefet

Welcome to paradise! On this blog, you will find everything you need to know before you visit Koh Kood island: Thailand Best Kept Secret

Koh Kood Island: Thailand best kept secret

Koh Kood Island(Ko Kut)- although it is the fourth largest island in Thailand, it is not known to many tourists, and it's a shame!

After I spent 4 days in Bangkok, I went to Koh Chang for a few days and from there to Koh Kood.

The island of Koh Kood is located in Trat province and is one of about 52 islands, most of them uninhabited and the most famous of which are Koh Chang (the third largest island in Thailand), Koh Mak, and of course Koh Kood - which I will detail in this series of articles.

Koh Kood is the southernmost island of this group of islands and is right on the sea border separating Thailand and Cambodia.

Update: In January 2024, I visited Ko Kood for the second time. I was happy to find that Koh Kood retained its charm as if nothing had changed.

There is still no 7-Eleven. The locals are still charming, and the island remains quiet and unique.

Also, some new places have opened, 2-3 more bars compared to the last time I visited, and now you can find more places to stay for those traveling on a low budget and for those who prefer not to stay in expensive resorts.

khlong chao beach ko kut

The island is about 40 km from the mainland, the island is about 25 km long and about 12 km wide, and the topography is reminiscent of Ko Chang - most of the island's territory is mountains and cliffs covered with rainforests, coconuts, and tree plantations.

The local population is about 2,000 people, concentrated in 2 fishing villages - Ao Salad and Ao Yai.

All the beaches on the island are located on the western side of the island. From the northern part to the southernmost - all virgin beaches, soft sand, and clear sea water with a turquoise hue - and even in the peak of the season and on holidays, you will not experience congestion and crowding as happens on quite a few beaches on other islands.

On the shores of Koh Kood are scattered a multitude of resorts - from the insanely luxurious (like Soneva) to the most basic bungalows and homestays - a great variety of accommodations that will suit every pocket and each one.

ko kut island beach

Who is Koh Kood Island suitable for?

Perhaps it is worth noting right now that Koh Kood Island will suit some people, but others may not suit it - so you should know what to expect from vacationing there.

Less suitable - for those looking for parties, bustle and noise, hordes of tourists, hawkers on the beach, entertainment, jet skiing, nightlife, shopping, etc.

It would be suitable - for those who are mainly looking for a tropical island that the tourism industry has not reached yet.

Pristine beaches with soft sand and clear sea water, peaceful and calm, to stretch out on one of the excellent beaches, watch the spectacular sunsets with a drink in hand and delicacies from Thai cuisine - simply a magical and tropical paradise Which is a place of refuge from the hustle and bustle of intense life - a type of places that are becoming less and less even in Thailand.

ko kut empty beach

When to visit Koh Kood?

As we know, Thailand is a relatively tropical and rainy country (on an annual average) - but the days of rain and the amounts of rain are not evenly distributed between the months of the year but are mainly concentrated in certain months.

The best time to visit Koh Kood is from November-May.

Most of the rain on Koh Kood (as well as on the nearby islands - Ko Chang and Koh Mak) is in May - October, and it is simply a matter of large amounts of rain during this period.

Therefore, this is the weak season (May-October) for Koh Kood and Ko Chang, and also some businesses are closed during this season - despite this, even in the less favorable seasons, you can find quite a few sunny days.

From May to October - there is a lot of precipitation in the area and I recommend avoiding vacationing in this area as much as possible during this period.

*Keep note: Thailand is a tropical country so rainy days can occur in any month and any region of Thailand.

ko kut during sunset

How to get to Koh Kood?

Koh Kood is one of the few remaining virgin islands in Thailand. An island where the tourism industry has not yet become mass and commercialized - a magical island with untouched nature, beaches with soft sand, crystal clear waters, and a peaceful and calm atmosphere which is hard to find on other islands.

Koh Kood Island is located in Trat Province, about 350 km from Bangkok.

The island is about 40 km from the land, on the sea border between Thailand and Cambodia. To experience it yourself and not just look at the pictures - of course, you have to get there physically.

As in most Thai islands, there is no airport on the island itself, but on the land (in Trat province) - About 30 km from Laem Sok Pier is the main pier from which you sail to Koh Kood.

koh kood thailand island

3 options are available to get to Koh Kood:

• Flight (to Trat) + shuttle (to the pier) + cruise

• Drive (to the city of Trat and from there to the pier or directly to the pier) + ferry

• Ferry from Koh Chang (also Koh Mak) to Koh Kood

I visited Koh Chang before I visited the island, so I took a ferry from Koh Chang to Koh Kood (which, by the way, you can stop at another small and pristine island between the two called Koh Mak)

For those who are interested, you can also reach Koh Kood directly from Bangkok. You can order a travel ticket from Bangkok to Trat that includes the cruise from Trat to Koh Kood + a taxi from the port where you will get off Koh Kood to the hotel entrance.

If you already come to this area in Thailand, I recommend first spending a few days in Koh Chang and then moving to Ko Kood.

Click here to book a van + ferry combo ticket from Bangkok to Koh Kood.

How to get around Koh Kood?

You can't rent a private car on Koh Kood or get to Koh Kood with a private car using a ferry as you can do on Koh Chang. Also, in Koh Kood, there is no organized public transportation along the beaches like in Koh Chang.

On the other hand - the island is large (the fourth largest among the Thai islands), so moving from coast to coast by reasonable walking is not a realistic option.

If you are interested in moving around the island independently - the way to the unit is to do it with a two-wheeled vehicle (scooter) and you can rent a scooter and move around with it.

scooter in ko kut

Unlike Ko Chang, where there are quite a few cars on the road, as well as the road along the western beaches, there are sharp ups and downs and bends that are dangerous for scooter riders - Ko Kod is easy to get around with a scooter.

Despite the ease of driving a two-wheeled vehicle in Koh Kood - I recommend it only to those who have experience driving a two-wheeled vehicle, and of course, only if you have an appropriate driver's license.

road in koh kood

Neighboring islands near Koh Kood

In Trat Province, the southeastern province of Thailand bordering Cambodia, there are about 52 islands, most of which are uninhabited. The most famous islands among the Trat Islands are the 3 islands - Koh Chang (the third largest island in Thailand), Koh Mak, and Koh Kood (the fourth largest island in Thailand).

These three islands, despite their proximity, are quite different from each other - the quality of the beaches, nature, the variety of resorts, the level of development and movement within the island, the atmosphere, and more.

Koh Chang - the third largest island among the Thai islands (after Phuket and Koh Samui). Of these three islands, Koh Chang is the most developed and the most touristic, including nightlife and more - but less commercialized and "industrial" to a large extent than Phuket and Koh Samui.

Of these three islands - Koh Chang can be reached by car on a ferry.

Koh Mak - is located between Ko Chang and Koh Kood (about 20 km south of Koh Chang) and is the smallest of the three islands. Unlike the other two islands - Koh Mak has no mountains, cliffs, and jungles, no streams, waterfalls, etc. In terms of development and atmosphere - no nightlife, bars, parties, shopping, etc. - very quiet and calm.

Where to stay in Koh Kood?


Soneva Kiri

Soneva Kiri is the most luxurious hotel in Koh Kood, with 2-6 bedroom villas, each with a private swimming pool, sea view, and private gym. More at the hotel: a spa, a selection of restaurants, a wine cellar, a chocolate bar, and a children's club.

check availability & rates

mid range

Shantaa Resort

Shantaa Resort is a boutique resort owned by a local family. However, the experience they deliver could out-class many top resorts around the world. The premise is clean and well maintained, the rooms are pristine with silky smooth sheets, and the bathroom is semi-open with nature infused.

The Kayak & surfboard serve free of charge. As for the food, it’s top-notch Thai cuisine at an amazing value. If you would like food other than Thai, they also have a wide selection of international dishes.

check availability & rates


Kuba Bungalows

Kuba Bungalow is a fantastic place to stay with excellent hosts.
It's very affordable you can stay in a tent for only 11$ or in a bungalow that cost 25$. Great value for the price.
The bungalows are good quality, the garden is beautiful, and the atmosphere is perfect.

check availability & rates

Things to do in Koh Kood

1/ Relax at the Beaches

The spectacular beaches of Koh Kood are undoubtedly the highlight of this beautiful island and offer visitors a wonderful atmosphere of boundless freedom, with facilities for the well-being of bathers, chilled fruit smoothies, warm turquoise waters, and caressing breezes.

There are quite a few great beaches in the area that are worth visiting, wading in the water and enjoying a pleasant day in the sun with some particularly photogenic pictures.

If you want to go from coast to coast differently, you can rent a kayak and enjoy a leisurely cruise.

Klong Chao beach

Klong Chao Beach is the main beach of Koh Kood.

This is the most popular and populated beach among the other beaches of Koh Kood. Here you will find restaurants, cafes, shops, and even an ATM - but you will not find souvenir shops, tattoos, tailors, and the like, as you will find on all the tourist beaches on other islands.

Klong Chao beach is excellent - stretches for about 600 meters, with soft white sand that laps into crystal clear sea water and turquoise shades - simply a little piece of paradise, and no wonder it has become a popular beach over the years.

Klong Chao Beach has a wide variety of the finest resorts on the island located right on the beach. You will find hostels and homestays located in the back of the beach and along the banks of the river that flows to the beach on the northern side.

It is important to note that even at the height of the season, including holidays and long weekends when many Thais come to the island, you will not feel any congestion at the beach and will continue to feel as if it is your private beach.

koh kood thailand

Ao Tapao beach

South of Klong Mad Beach stretches the longest stretch of beach in Koh Kood, about 1 kilometer long - Ao Tapao Beach.

Ao Tapao beach is undoubtedly one of the prettiest beaches on Koh Kood - a long and wide strip of beach with soft and pleasant sand and clear sea water in many shades of turquoise.

The wide beach is decorated along its entire length with rich vegetation - various palms, coconuts, and other trees that provide shade and great beauty.

There are 5 resorts scattered along this long beach - 2 old resorts and 3 new resorts have been added to them in recent years.

Right on the beach, you will not find luxury resorts but mid-range resorts. At the back of the beach (not really on the beach), you will find several resorts and homestays.

Along the road stretching along the back of the beach are several restaurants (including pizza, pancakes, and more), cafes, simple shops, and also a rather rare commodity in Koh Kood - a small bank with one of the few ATMs on the island.

In addition, the island's hospital, a police station, a school, and the island's administration offices (town hall) are located along the road in the area.

koh kood island

Bang Bao Beach

South of Klong Chao Beach is Bang Bao Bay.

Bang Bao beach is one of the most popular Koh Kood beaches. There is the possibility of good snorkeling right close to the beach. Here you will find several mid-range resorts.

A small disadvantage of Bang Bao beach is that at high tide, only a narrow strip of the beach remains in some of the bay - but the resorts in the area prepared large areas for sitting near the water line at high tide.

Even if you are not staying at one of the resorts on Bang Bao beach - I recommend stopping by for an hour or two, enjoying food or drink on the beach along with the pleasant atmosphere and the spectacular view of the bay.

bag bao beach koh kood

2/ Explore the island with a scooter

One of the things you should do is rent a scooter and go around the island. The roads are very comfortable to drive, there is never any traffic, and it feels very safe to go around with a scooter on the island compared to other places in Thailand.

With a scooter, you can reach the various beautiful beaches or stop at a beautiful viewpoint and explore the island.

ko kut ao tapao

Just pay attention to the fuel in Koh Kood. There aren't gas stations like you know. Many locals sell a liter of fuel in empty Coca-Cola bottles.

It's funny to see it for the first time, but it's part of the authentic experience of this island.

You can always negotiate the price of the scooter, usually, the price ranges from 200-300 baht per day, but if you take it in advance for a certain number of days, you can close at a certain price.

If you know you are staying 4-5 days on the island, I recommend renting in advance for the entire period to get the best price because this will be your only way of making friends on the island during your stay.

koh kood thailand scooter

3/ Spend time at the only bar in Koh Kood

Koh Kood Island is very far from touristic islands such as Koh Phangan, Koh Samui, or even Koh Tao, so you won't find crazy nightlife or nightlife in general.

However, there is something special about it and instead of clubs and nightlife, you can spend time in perhaps the only bar on the island that is open until late (everything is relative).

In the evening, most of the tourists and people on the island concentrate at Tawan Eco Bar, a very cool Rastafari bar where you can enjoy a young and cool atmosphere and live music every evening.

bar in ko kut

4/ Snorkeling and diving

It is enough to put your head in the water near the coast and between the bays to understand that Koh Kood is a great destination to explore the underwater world and indeed there are some of the most beautiful diving and snorkeling sites you can find in the Kingdom of Siam.

You can take a professional diving course in Ko Kood.

It's not the cheapest place for diving in Thailand, but the uniqueness of Koh Kood is that you will be alone without the tourist, for example, in Koh Tao.

There are several diving clubs where you can rent suitable equipment and also rent a motor boat that will take you to recommended diving spots further from the coastline.

snorkeling in ko kut

5/ Do some hiking

Within the island, there are several great hiking trails, some of which you can go on your own, while others are recommended to hire the services of a local guide.

The most beautiful routes pass through the tangled rainforest that covers the interior of the island where there are impressive rivers, mangrove forests, and spectacularly beautiful waterfalls.

Among these waterfalls, the most beautiful and popular is Tok Khlong Chao - a point not to be missed when visiting the island, where you can enjoy a pool of fresh and clear water.

klong chao waterfall koh kood

6/ Waterfalls in Koh Kood

In addition to the beautiful Tok Khlong Chao, there are quite a few magical waterfalls that are spectacular in their beauty and less touristy, so if you found the first one too busy for your taste.

Ask for directions to Hua Ngu or Khlong Yai Ki and enjoy a private waterfall in the heart of wild nature.

waterfall in koh kood

7/ Be impressed by the oldest tree in Koh Kood

On Koh Kood island there is a huge ancient tree that is 500 years old! (at least according to what the locals say).

True, it's just a tree, but it's impressive and worth hopping on the scooter for a little visit.

You may rarely find people on the way. However, the visit is worth it if you are a nature lover.

8/ Visit the fishing villages

When you are on the island, set aside at least half a day to visit the fishing villages that dot the island. It is not just a tourist attraction - fishing is an important and central profession in Koh Kood.

These villages are simply spectacular. The atmosphere in them is calm and perfect for a leisurely walk.

You can also ask to throw a net into the water or give up and jump to the end of the process when you sit in one of the many restaurants that offer fresh seafood at ridiculous prices.

Some traditional fishing villages on the island allow you to glimpse into traditional Thailand and enjoy an authentic and non-commercialized experience.

Don't be mistaken, the locals are aware of (and appreciate) the tourists who visit the place, but the local fishing industry is not just for show but is a central and most important profession on Koh Kood Island.

fishing village in koh kood

9/ Watch the sunset

Nothing better than ending the day on the beach and watching the sunset.

As in many Thai islands, the sunsets are crazy, and of course, this is something that you can't miss.

Grab yourself a beer and enjoy the spectacular sunsets at Koh Kood.

I found myself on a pristine and beautiful beach with rocks where I was alone, me and the sunset. There is nothing more perfect than ending the day.

sunset in koh kood island

Where to eat in Koh Kood?

JK Khao Kaeng

A small local restaurant run by a very charming family, the food is particularly delicious, the atmosphere is excellent, and the highlight is the warm hospitality from the restaurant owners.

During my entire stay on the island, I returned to him every day, especially to eat only at his place, a variety of classic Thai dishes, a selection of fresh fish, and prices very comfortably. I felt at home. Highly recommended!

restaruant in ko kut

Noochy Seafood

Incredible seafood and service. A variety of fish and seafood with many different chicken options. The quality is top, and prices are super fair.

The place is always full. The food is delicious, and the atmosphere is excellent. All the few tourists of the island gather every evening to eat at the restaurant.

The location is a little away in the east, but it's a fun scooter ride getting there and seeing the clear starry sky at night.

Chaiyo Restaurant

A great place to try authentic Thai food.

You may have to wait a while because they only have one chef. But it's worth it.

This is a real Thai kitchen and provides tasty and fresh meals! They even cook corn noodles (see meal with squid).

Very welcome and warm staff. Highly recommend this place!

I couldn't find anything better for so cheap. You must try it at least once during your stay on the island.

Tawan Eco Bar

Although it is a bar, it is an excellent place for coffee and live music.

A charming and relaxed atmosphere that makes you forget about all your troubles, this is the bar where I would mostly spend my evenings with a good coffee or beer and enjoying live music. Cool place to end the day.

What you should know before you visit Koh Kood?

Koh Kood is simply a paradise, whose beauty lies in the quietness and authenticity of the island and its inhabitants.

Beyond the resorts, there are almost no tourist sites, markets, or shops on the island - and that's the beauty of it.

There are no distractions, no shopping, only nature and more nature, and some of the most beautiful and original beaches that the Gulf of Siam has to offer.

Most tourists have never heard of the island Koh Kood, and only a short time ago, it entered the consciousness of people around the world due to the luxury hotel on the island.

The name of the luxury hotel is Soneva Kiri.

The price starts from 1000$ per night and can reach up to 8000$ per night and it is very luxurious, it offers villas that can have up to 6 rooms with a private swimming pool, a private gym, a sea view, a pampering spa and more full of surprises that the hotel offers, you can reach this hotel by speed boat and even by private helicopter that the hotel offers!

Now let's put the luxury hotel aside for a moment and tell you a little about the magical island of Koh Kood, the beautiful island of Koh Kood is covered in rainforests surrounded by rivers with waterfalls and pristine and charming beaches.

The island is more suitable for people looking for quiet, but if you want to enjoy some of the attractions that the island offers, you can enjoy bike trips around Koh Kood, diving, and trekking, and if you like fishing, then Koh Kood is just for that!

ao tapao beach ko kut

Tips for a successful vacation in Koh Kood

• Equip yourself with cash in advance - Koh Kood currently has only two automatic cash withdrawal machines (ATM). Therefore it is highly recommended to equip yourself with cash (Baht) in advance that will be enough for you during your stay on the island.

• Choosing the beach to stay in - it is very likely that you will be on the same beach for the entire vacation period on the island. This is what will largely determine the quality and the experience there.

There are different beaches, and you will choose the one that suits you according to location and location.

• Choosing the resort - as above, it is likely that you will stay at the same resort in Koh Kood for the entire vacation period on the island.

Most Koh Kood resorts, especially the finest ones, have a small and limited number of rooms - you should book them in advance, especially during the peak season and if your vacation falls on a holiday Thai or long weekend.

• Bring with you what you need for vacation and spending time at the beaches - sunscreen, hat, swimsuit, sunglasses, and everything you and your child need for a few days - Koh Kood has a few simple shops that sell mostly basic products.

• If you intend to rent a scooter or walk in the evening - be equipped with a flashlight.

Keep in mind that on most beaches, what connects the main road to the resort on the beach is a dirt road, and the area is dark.

• Arriving at Koh Kood - the time needed to move from Bangkok to Koh Kood (without a flight) is at least 7-8 hours.

You should know that the last ferry from Trat (Laem Sok pier) to Koh Kood is at about 2:30 p.m.

So if you want to leave directly from Bangkok, you will have to leave early in the morning. The organized transfers from Bangkok to Koh Kood leave at 6:00 a.m. from Bangkok to get to the ferry in time.

ao tapao ko kut

Final thoughts about Koh Kood island

Koh Kood is one of the most beautiful islands in Thailand.

I came to the island intending to stay 4 days. In the end, I spent almost two weeks there.

Maybe not everyone will have the same experience as me, but something about this place is so magical. This island is not touristed at all.

amazing beach in koh kood

There is no 7/11, the island itself is not commercialized yet, and there are indeed luxury hotels, but the beaches are so beautiful, the most beautiful I have seen in Thailand.

I can't believe it and the big plus is that most beaches are empty of people! Especially if you rent a scooter and drive a few minutes from the central area, which is small anyway because there is no center in Koh Kood.

I spent two weeks in heaven, two weeks of a dream.

There are a limited number of hostels and dorms on the island, but that's all the magic.

The backpacking atmosphere is admittedly not the best and almost non-existent there compared to Koh Chang for example.

There aren't many hostels to sleep in, but that doesn't mean you can't travel to Koh Kood alone.

I came to Koh Kood alone, knowing that it is more of a couple's destination with luxury resorts. I met 4-5 backpackers in seconds since we all stayed in the same place.

Maybe I was lucky and met a great company that made my stay there so magical.

One way or another, I can say that Koh Kood Island is suitable for those who want a romantic couple's honeymoon and also when traveling alone and want to escape from the crowds and commercialization that exist on other islands in Thailand.

koh kood sunset time

In conclusion, Don't miss this island!

In the future, Koh Kood may go through the process of commercialization and the tourism industry as happened in the past to other islands in Thailand.

It is also an opportunity to travel in an area that is less known to most tourists - the eastern provinces of Thailand that stretch from Bangkok to the Cambodian border - with a combination of a trip/vacation in Koh Chang together with a calm vacation in Koh Kood.

I hope this Koh Kood travel guide will help you plan your vacation to Koh Kood, and I am sure you will enjoy one of the prettiest islands in Thailand!

Thanks for reading!

My Travel Resources

Here are some websites I use whenever preparing for my next journey anywhere around the world.

  • Book affordable flights on Expedia, a great website that show the best routes and flight deals to your destination.

  • Find a budget-friendly deal on all sorts of accommodation types on Booking.com.

  • Buy the most flexible and budget-friendly travel insurance at SafteyWing.

Read My Other Blogs:

Annapurna Circuit Solo: The Detailed Itinerary

The complete guide to solo travel in nepal

3 Days In Kathmandu: The Ultimate Kathmandu Itinerary

12 best reasons to visit nepal

Scotland road trip Itinerary for 14 days

How to plan the ultimate norway road trip

15 most amazing places in Norway

2 days in bergen norway

8 most scenic routes in norway

3 Day Madrid Itinerary

how to spend weekend in Amsterdam

2 weeks in sicily: the perfect sicily road trip

how to spend 3 days in prague

Disclaimer: some links on my site are affiliate links. If you choose to purchase through these links, I may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. By using these you are directly supporting Guy On The Road to remain an independent travel blog. Thank you!