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KHAOSOK DISCOVERY

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Simply Elegant Stay

Uniquely vacation, visit us .

“Khao Sok Discovery” is one of the leading tour operators and travel agent in Phuket island, Thailand. Specialize in organizing quality tour packages, day trip to Khao Sok National Park and Cheow Lan Lake.

KHAOSOK  DISCOVERY

We have co-operated with many travel agents in Thailand

and worldwide travel agents our teams are experienced, expert in eco-tourism industry, reliable and friendly with environmentally. Khao Sok Discovery is founded by the inspiration and with a number of reasons created by big city that pushed us to make change and look for some thing or other to balance the lives after having spent time in big city that is full of confusions and uncertainties besides other reasons that are hard to find in materialism world. 

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PROGRAMS KHAO SOK NATIONAL PARK & CHEOW LARN LAKE

The recommended tours and activities in Khao Sok are Jungle safari, Cheow Larn Lake, hiking , canoeing, bamboo rafting ,fresh water swimming, which will give you the experience of a lifetime.

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1 Day Cheow-Lan Lake Explorer

1 Day Trip Khao Sok Cheow Lan Lake 

Longtail Boat & Motor

from  ฿5 ,6 80

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1 Day Trip Khao Sok Discovery (Canoeing)

1 Day Trip Khao Sok Khao Sok National Park Elephant Bathing &  Canoeing

from  ฿ 3,6 00

1 day trip khao sok discovery (bamboo rafting) .

1 Day Trip Khao Sok Khao Sok National Park Elephant Bathing &  Bamboo Rafting

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2Days 1Night Cheow Lan Lake Explorer (Overnight At The Raft House)

2 Days 1 Night Trip Khao Sok Khao Sok National Park Elephant Bathing Lake Explorer

from  ฿ 11,800

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3 Days 2 Nights  Jungle & Lake Explorer  (Overnight At Khaosok Boutique Hideaway & The Raft House )

3 Days 2 Nights Trip Khao Sok Khao Sok National Park Elephant Bathing Lake & Jungle Explorer

from  ฿ 16,800

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3Days 2Nights  Jungle & Lake Discovery  ( Overnight At Khaosok Boutique Hideaway )

3 Days 2 Nights Trip Khao Sok Khao Sok National Park Elephant Bathing Jungle & Lake Discovery

from  ฿ 15,300

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All  PROGRAMS KHAO SOK +

Khao sok information guide.

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KHAO SOK NATIONAL PARK 

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Khao Sok National Park (sometimes written Khoa Sok, Khoasok, or Khaosok) located in Surathani province is one of the best well known tourist attractions in Thailand and worldwide tourists for its oldest rainforest, amazing limestone, fantastic waterfall, large mangrove, giant trees, the biggest flower and various kind of wildlife animals can be found here in Khoasok National Park more than 48 mammal species such as Wild elephants, Monkeys, Gibbons, deer, bear, wild dog, marbled cat etc. and more than 187 kind of birds, thousands kind of butterflies and insects. Nowadays hundreds of tourists leave from Phuket, Phang Nga and Krabi heading to Khaosok for day trip or package tour overnight. Khao Sok is the perfect place for Jungle walk, night safari tour, bird watching, canoeing trip, Elephant trekking excursion,

camping and many more activities.

TESTIMONIALS What our customers are saying.

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“More than 10 years of experience”

Review us on .

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"Excellent day would recommend to other! Staff very friendly "

Contact Details

Sun Leisure World

Khao Sok: Adventurous Full Day Jungle Trek...

  •   22K Booked
  • Full Day Tours, Khao Sok
  • 60.75 USD / Person

Full day Jungle Trek from Silver Cliff Resort in Khao Sok

Full day Jungle Trek from Silver Cliff Resort in Khao S...

  •   7K Booked

Khao Sok Silver Cliff Resort: One Day Stay in the Deluxe Cliffside Room and River Tubing Experience

Khao Sok Silver Cliff Resort: One Day Stay in the Delux...

  •   11K Booked
  • 47.25 USD / Person
  •   6K Booked

Khao Sok: Full Day Lake Trip

Khao Sok: Full Day Lake Trip...

  •   18K Booked

 Half Day Jungle Trek & Night Safari with Bamboo Cooking

Half Day Jungle Trek & Night Safari with Bamboo Cookin...

  •   19K Booked
  • Half Day Tours, Khao Sok
  • 54.00 USD / Person

Khao Sok: Adventurous Half Day Jungle Trek

Khao Sok: Adventurous Half Day Jungle Trek...

  •   11K Booked
  • 40.50 USD / Person

Khao Sok: Elephant Care Tour from Silver Cliff Resort

Khao Sok: Elephant Care Tour from Silver Cliff Resort...

Khao Sok: Half-day Elephant Care Tour from Silver Cliff Resort

Khao Sok: Half-day Elephant Care Tour from Silver Cliff...

  •   9K Booked
  • 84.38 USD / Person

Night Safari Adventure & Hiking Tour in Khao Sok

Night Safari Adventure & Hiking Tour in Khao Sok...

  •   20K Booked
  • Night Tour Tours, Khao Sok
  • 27.00 USD / Person

Car Transfer from Khao Sok to Thalane Beach in Krabi

Car Transfer from Khao Sok to Thalane Beach in Krabi...

  • Khao Sok Tours
  • 91.13 USD / Person

Comfortable Transfer by Car from Khao Sok to Krabi Airport

Comfortable Transfer by Car from Khao Sok to Krabi Airp...

  • 97.88 USD / Person

Comfortable Transfer by Minivan from Khao Sok to Krabi Airport

Comfortable Transfer by Minivan from Khao Sok to Krabi ...

  • 114.75 USD / Person

Comfortable Transfer from Khao Sok to Bangkok by Car

Comfortable Transfer from Khao Sok to Bangkok by Car...

  • 371.25 USD / Person
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Welcome to Khao sok centre tours

WE ARE THE ORIGINAL COMPANY MORE THAN 20 YEARS IN KHAO SOK NATIONAL PARK, OUR COMPANY POLICIES: SAFETY STANDARD & PROFESSIONALITY, REGISTERED AND APPROVED BY THE TOURISM AUTHORITY OF THAILAND LICENCE NO. 33/07658

answer the call of the wild

Whether you are on armchair explorer vicariously visiting Khao Sok or a rugged adventure about to embark on a trek traversing the park' s uncharted terrain, you are about to enter part of the oldest and richest terrestrial ecosystem on Earth.

The world has spared few places as wild, wonderful or wildly diverse as Khao Sok National Park. Together with two wildlife sanctuaries (Klong Saen & Klong Nakkha) and two adjacent national parks (Sri Phang nga and Klong Phanom Nat. Parks),

TOUR PROGRAMMES

(Start from Phuket, Khao Lak, Krabi and Suratthani)

(Included overnight at Khao Sok River Lodge) (Start from Phuket, Khao Lak, Krabi and Suratthani)

(Included overnight at  Floating Bungalows) (Start from Phuket, Khao Lak, Krabi and Suratthani)

All Tour Programmes

TESTIMONIAL

These reviews that our clients have recently submitted are the best way to learn more about our Khao Sok Centre Tours’s level of service and customer support

For information

Address: 6/2 Moo 6 T.Klong Sok, A. Phanom, Suratthani 84250 Thailand

Tel: +66 (0)89 725 2277, +66 (0)77 395 165 Fax: +66 (0)77 395 166 E-mail: [email protected] Web Design by Express Data

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Home / Top Phuket Tours / Khao Sok Tours

Khao Sok Tours

Easy Day Khao Sok Tours let you discover the Khao Sok National Park . The park is the most popular Eco-tourism destination in southern Thailand. Khao Sok is home to hundreds of species of mammals & birds including gibbons, horn bills and the world’s largest flower, the Rafflesia.

Khao Sok Discovery Tour

Khao Sok Tours - Elephant Jungle Discovery

Price in Thai Baht per person:  3,300

Day tour from Phuket into Khao Sok National Park. Sightseeing, Elephant Jungle Bathing and a canoe or Bamboo rafting trip along River Sok.

Fun for the whole family. Available all year around and a great all-weather activity. So enjoyable on Sunny & Rainy days.

Jungle Discovery Overnight

Overnight Tours into Khao Sok National Park

Price in Thai Baht per person: 9,550

Immerse yourself in the tropical jungle of southern Thailand. Stay overnight in a comfortable luxury Boutique tent resort .

A 2 days / 1 night overnight tour package into the famous Khao Sok National Park including Elephant Bathing, Kaying or Bamboo rafting plus a trip onto Cheow Lan Lake.

Lake & Jungle Overnight Tour

Explore Khao Soks amazing Cheow Lan Lake

An overnight package trip from Phuket Island to explore Cheow Lan Lake and the Jungle of Khao Sok national park.

Stay overnight in a floating raft resort on the lake. Enjoy Elephant bathing, kayaking through the tropical rainforest.

Khao Sok Lake Tour

Jumping into Cheow Lan Lake

Price in Thai Baht per person: 5,650

Don’t miss this Khao Sok Lake Adventure. Discover Cheow Lan Lake by longtail boat on this Day tour from Phuket Island into the heart of Khao Sok National park.

3 Day Khao Sok Jungle & Lake Safari

Khao Sok Lake Bamboo rafting

Price in Thai Baht per person: 13,750

Sign up for a 3 days / 2 nights Khao Sok Overnight Safari from Phuket. A great adventure with overnight stay in Raft House on Cheow Lan Lake and a stay at the Boutique Jungle tent Resort.

Plenty of fun and adventure wait for you in Khao Sok. Sign up now for one of our Phuket tours. Prefer a private tour? Check out our Private Khao Sok Tours.

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get in Touch now with our Easy Day Thailand tours team and let us help you to choose the right experience for you. If you have any questions please do ask. We always happy to answer.

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Khao Sok Lake: National Park Tours & Floating Bungalows

Khao Sok Lake, Cheow Lan, Khao Sok National Park, Gui Lin

The only local tour operator on Cheow Lan Lake!

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Have a look at some of our most popular tours at Khao Sok Lake!

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WHO  IS KHAO SOK LAKE?

We are khao sok lake (not koh sak) offering overnight tours on cheow lan lake in khao sok national park, thailand. for over 10 years we have been the only local tour operator in the area; proud to share this unique destination with the world. when you book with us you can be sure that you are helping to keep this amazing destination preserved for future generations. learn more about our mission, our tours , and the khao sok lake  floating bungalows that make this a once in a lifetime experience.

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KHAO SOK LAKE

Though we now operate independently, Khao Sok Lake owes our success to the efforts of our home office in Kuraburi.  Andaman Discoveries  has been a leader in  Sustainable Tourism  for over 14 years and continues to work in this important field everyday. With the cooperation of our partners in  Ban Ta Khun  near  Cheow Lan Lake   we can offer you the opportunity to support the local economy by traveling responsibly. Join us in our efforts and discover these charming  floating bungalows  of Southern Thailand. Check out what unique   Lake Tours  await you at this once in a lifetime destination!

KHAO SOK NATIONAL PARK

No visit to Southern Thailand is complete without a stop off in Khao Sok National Park. We are conveniently positioned between the travel destinations of Phuket, Krabi, Pang Nga and Koh Samui. A visit to  Cheow Lan Lake  is a once-in-a-lifetime experience featuring towering limestone cliffs, breathtaking hiking, ancient jungle, wild elephants and ancient cave explorations at thi unique travel destination!

Stay on Khao Sok Lake

© 2016 Khao Sok Lake Co.,LTD. 20/18, Moo 3, Khao wong, Ban Ta-Khun, Surathani, Thailand 84230, TAT license no. 34/01518

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  • About Khao Sok National Park
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Complete Guide to Khao Sok National Park, Thailand

You have undoubtedly seen pictures of Khao Sok National Park – it is quite unique with its towering limestone pinnacles rising out of the beautiful emerald water of Cheow Lan Lake. Featuring centuries-old rainforests and limestone karst cliffs that are so distinctive to this part of Thailand, you should not miss this park.

As the largest protected park in Southern Thailand, it boasts an extensive trail network, tons of outdoor activities, an abundance of wildlife, and plenty of jaw-dropping scenery. And luckily, Khao Sok has managed to remain off of the radar for most travelers. As such, it is still relatively unaffected by over-tourism.

Staying overnight in a rustic floating bungalow on Cheow Lan Lake was the highlight of my entire trip to Thailand!

I have put together this guide to Khao Sok National Park. It highlights some of the park’s top activities as well as explains how to get to the park. If you’re up for an adventure and interested in experiencing more of Thailand than booze buckets and Full Moon Parties, then you should add Khao Sok National Park to the top of your Thailand itinerary !

Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase or booking through one of our links we may earn a small commission (don’t worry, it’s at no extra cost to you).

Khao Sok National Park: Everything You Need to Know

Why you should visit khao sok national park.

Khao Sok National Park, Thailand: Longtail Boat on Lake Cheow Lan

Stretching across 280 square miles, this massive park encompasses some of the oldest rainforests found in the world. Khao Sok is home to hundreds of species of wildlife. You can find gibbon and macaque monkeys, Asian elephants, and leopards. Plus, there are over 300 species of birds, including the great hornbill bird. It’s even rumored that there is still a small population of tigers in Khao Sok National Park though none have been spotted for decades.

Khao Sok National Park includes the small village of Khao Sok and the man-made Cheow Lan Lake. It is a huge aquamarine-colored reservoir that was created when the Ratchaprapha Dam was constructed in 1987. The lake is surrounded by majestic jagged limestone mountains and cliffs, including the picturesque “ Three Brothers ” – the most famous rock formation on the lake.

Whether you choose to hike to a hidden waterfall, go spelunking in one of Khao Sok’s many limestone caves, swim in the refreshing water of Cheow Lan Lake, or simply relax in your overwater bungalow, Khao Sok has something for every taste!

Where is Khao Sok Located?

Khao Sok National Park, Thailand: Cheow Lan Lake

Out of the hundreds of national parks found in Thailand, Khao Sok is one of the most breathtaking.

Located in the scenic Southern province of Phang Nga, the park actually sits in between some of the most popular tourist destinations in the country. It’s easily accessible from cities like Krabi, Koh Samui, and Phuket.

Surprisingly, Khao Sok National Park is much less frequented by tourists than the nearby islands of Southern Thailand. It remains more raw and untouched. If you’re tired of the overcrowded beaches of Phuket, Phi Phi Island, and Koh Samui , then escape to the solitude of Khao Sok.

How to Get to Khao Sok

Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park, Thailand: Sunset

From Surat Thani The nearest airport to Khao Sok National Park is Surat Thani (airport code: URT). There are dozens of bus companies that travel between Bangkok and Surat Thani as well as an overnight train.

From Surat Thani, it’s a ~2.5-hour minivan ride to the entrance of the park. A minibus ticket will cost you ~300 THB (~$10) and you can check all of your options on Bookaway . There are also public buses to Khao Sok from Surat Thani starting at around 120-220 THB. Although, you’ll probably find it much easier to just take a minibus for a few dollars more. 

Check Minibus Schedules from Surat Thani

From the Gulf of Thailand If you are coming from the islands in the Gulf of Thailand – Koh Samui , Koh Phangan, or Koh Tao – the ferry will drop you off at Don Sak Pier which is ~40 miles east of Surat Thani.

Most travel agencies on the islands can help arrange your entire trip. So when your ferry arrives at Don Sak Pier, you’ll transfer directly to a minivan or bus that will take you to the national park. It’s better to arrange the direct transfer in advance so you don’t have to waste any time in Surat Thani.

If you prefer to book your own travel you can also easily book combo ferry-bus tickets online on Bookaway.com .

The bus ride from Don Sak Pier to Koh Sak National Park should take ~3 hours.

Check Ferry & Bus Schedules from Koh Samui to Khao Sok

From Phuket and Koh Phi Phi Another option is to fly to Phuket International Airport (airport code: HKT). From there it’s a 3-hour bus, minivan, or taxi ride north to Khao Sok. And if you’re coming from Koh Phi Phi you’ll need to catch the ferry back to Phuket first.

Check Transportation Options on Bookaway

From Krabi and Railay Bay The Krabi Airport (airport code: KBV) is approximately the same distance (~3 hours) as Phuket is from Khao Sok National Park. As with the options above, it’s easiest to book a minivan transfer online or with a local travel agent.

Regardless of where you are coming from, you’ll likely get dropped off at the main road junction to Khao Sok. It is about one mile from Khao Sok village.

Most of the guesthouses and hostels are within walking distance of this junction. However, if you have heavy bags or your accommodation is further from the main road, you can get a tuk-tuk at the drop-off location for about 50 THB (~$2) per person.

If you are staying in a higher-end hotel or resort, they generally provide a free pickup service. Just make sure you notify them in advance of your arrival time.

What to Do in Khao Sok National Park

Khao Sok National Park, Thailand: Hiking Trails

If you enjoy hiking you will definitely want to explore Khao Sok on foot! Dozens of hiking trails around Lake Cheow Lan lead to limestone caverns, stunning viewpoints, and cascading waterfalls. One of the park’s most popular hikes leads to Ton Kloi Waterfall and other great hiking options are the western trail to Than Sawan Waterfall and the northern trail to Sip Et Chan Waterfall .

Foreigners are generally discouraged from hiking in the park on their own. While it is technically allowed to hike in the park without a guide, there is a high chance you’ll get lost due to the thick forest and often unmarked trails.

Khao Sok National Park, Thailand: Rafflesia Flower

While you’ll save a little money by trekking on your own you’ll probably find it more enjoyable to go with a guide that knows the way and can help you spot and identify interesting plants and animals along the way. If you’re lucky you might even spot a Rafflesia , the world’s largest flower!

You can arrange a hiking guide at the Khao Sok National Park Headquarters or through your accommodation. Be aware that leeches are quite common in Khao Sok, even when you’re not in the water. It’s best to always wear long pants when hiking and check your legs often for the little blood-suckers.

Another activity that you must do in Khao Sok is to hire a longtail boat and explore Cheow Lan Lake. Also, depending on the season, bamboo rafting, canoeing, and tubing may be available on the river that runs near the village of Khao Sak.

And the adventures don’t have to end after sunset! I would highly recommend arranging a guided nighttime jungle safari tour. The jungle really comes alive at night! There are so many opportunities to see creatures that you wouldn’t normally spot during the daytime.

Entrance Fees

The entrance fee for Khao Sok National Park is 300 THB per day . If you’re visiting on an organized group tour then the ticket price may already be included in the cost of your tour (make sure you ask beforehand). If you’re visiting the park independently then you’ll need to pay the entrance fee each day you plan on being in the park.

What to Do in Khao Sok Village

If you opt for a multi-day tour of Khao Sok National Park, you’ll most likely spend a day or two exploring the small village of Khao Sok before or after your group tour. And if you choose to explore the park on your own, you’ll probably want to use Khao Sok village as your home base for arranging day hikes and other adventures.

During the day, you can take a Thai cooking class or find a swimming pool to cool off from the heat and humidity. And don’t forget to visit Wat Tham Phanthurat , a nearby Buddhist temple overrun by wild monkeys. Or you can rent a motorbike for the day and explore further afield. 

Where to Stay in Khao Sok

Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park, Thailand: Floating Bungalows

In Khao Sok village, there are accommodations to fit every budget and style of travel. You’ll find affordable hostels, mid-range bungalows, luxurious resorts, and even tree houses. The best places to stay in the Khao Sok village are the Rock and Treehouse Resort , the Montania Lifestyle Hotel , and the Khao Sok Jasmine Garden Resort .

But if you are headed to Khao Sok, then you must spend a night (or two or three) in a floating bungalow on Cheow Lan Lake. It is one of the most unique experiences in Thailand!

An overnight stay in a floating bungalow is often included on multi-day tours of the park. If you prefer to arrange your trip to Khao Sok independently, you can book a stay in a floating bungalow. You can use sites like Booking.com and Agoda.

Take note that the bungalows on Cheow Lan Lake are accessed via longtail boat and the departure point is at the Ratchaprapa Marina which is ~40 miles east of Khao Sok village. Some resorts provide a free boat transfer while others do not so make sure to ask before booking your stay.

The Best Floating Bungalows in Khao Sok

Khao Sok National Park, Thailand: 500 Rai Floating Village (Floating Bungalows on Cheow Lan Lake)

500 Rai Floating Village

If you want to pamper yourself during your stay in Khao Sok National Park, look no farther than 500 Rai Floating Village ! The most luxurious floating bungalows on the lake by a long stretch, this resort has beautiful wooden bungalows, an onsite spa, and even a floating swimming pool. After spending a couple of nights here you’ll probably never want to go back to dry land.

Check Prices on Booking.com

Khao Sok National Park, Thailand: Panvaree Resort (Floating Bungalows on Cheow Lan Lake)

Panvaree Resort

Backed by tall limestone cliffs, the location of Panvaree Resort is one of the most impressive of any floating bungalows on Cheow Lan Lake. You’ll have free use of kayaks and you can arrange other activities like a tour of the lake by boat or a hike in the park. Panvaree Resort also offers a free transfer via a longtail boat from Ratchaprapa Marina once per day.

Khao Sok National Park, Thailand: Keereewarin (Floating Bungalows on Cheow Lan Lake)

Keereewarin

Keereewarin has everything you need for an amazing trip to Khao Sok – clean and comfortable wooden bungalows, free use of kayaks, and an idyllic setting. The restaurant is delicious and quite affordable. And you’ll have your own private balcony where you can watch the sunset each evening. It’s perhaps the best value on Cheow Lan Lake!

Khao Sok National Park Luxury Tour

If you want to experience the absolute best of Khao Sok on a tight schedule, then you should check out this 2-day/1-night luxury tour . It includes pick-up at your accommodation in Surat Thani, Phuket, or Krabi. You’ll be transported to Cheow Lan Lake where you’ll ride a longtail boat through the amazing scenery before trekking through the jungle and exploring two caves. You’ll spend the night at the posh 500 Rai Floating Village where you can swim in the lake or go kayaking.

The next day starts with a morning safari walk through the jungle before another scenic longtail boat ride across the lake. You’ll then be transferred back to Surat Thani, Phuket, or Krabi.

Book a Luxury Tour of Khao Sok

Tours of Khao Sak National Park

Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park, Thailand

For a truly unforgettable experience, I recommended booking an overnight tour of Khao Sak. These 2-day/1-night tours typically include meals, activities inside the park, and overnight accommodation in a rustic floating bungalow.

The floating bungalows are typically pretty basic and you should probably anticipate shared bathrooms. It’s more like camping than staying overnight in a hotel, but this only adds to the charm and adventure. The floating bungalows usually come equipped with kayaks and paddleboards. You can explore the lake in the afternoon when you arrive or early the next morning before your tour departs.

While it is possible to see the park independently and stay in one of the National Park’s official bungalows, it is a bit easier to experience the park as part of a group tour – especially if you’re short on time.

The online booking system to book the park’s official bungalows is confusing and complicated to do on your own. Instead, you can just book a group tour and sit back and enjoy the adventure. Plus, if you do a group tour, the guides are skilled at spotting wildlife that you’d most likely miss.

If you choose the overnight group tour, your food, accommodation, boat ride, and trekking guide are all typically included. If you add up all the costs associated with visiting the park independently, you may find that the savings are quite small.

When booking a group tour of Khao Sok, shop around at the many travel agencies in Khao Sok village to find the best deal. Or you can book a variety of tours of Khao Sok online on GetYourGuide .

Check Out Tours of Khao Sok National Park

What to Pack for Khao Sok National Park

If you are staying overnight in one of the more rustic floating huts, you may have limited or no electricity. So be sure to bring a portable battery pack to charge your phone, camera, and any other electronics.

Pack a headlamp for exploring the caves and hiking in the jungle at night. Stock up on bug repellant and wear long pants to fend off the leeches and mosquitos.

You may also want to invest in a dry bag to store your valuables while you’re kayaking or crossing streams.

Finally, take note that while you’re trekking in the park or staying in the floating bungalows there will likely be no Wi-Fi and little phone reception. Take care of any task that requires internet before you head into Khao Sok National Park. Then you can truly disconnect and enjoy the adventure!

I hope you have an unforgettable trip to Khao Sok National Park!

Planning a trip to Thailand? Check out our favorite books and travel guides.

Thailand Travel Guide by Lonely Planet

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Guide to Khao Sok National Park & Cheow Lan Lake

About the Author:

Carrie Back

Carrie Ann Back is part-time travel writer and full-time globetrotter based in Southeast Asia. Recent bylines include Travel + Leisure, Parents Magazine, Postcards Magazine, Culture Trip, Matador Network, & more! Leaving her home in 2015, she has embarked on an around-the-world journey and has been traveling continuously ever since. Her most recent adventures include working in the Bolivian Amazon jungle, surfing in Sri Lanka, and exploring Laos via a slow boat up the Mekong River. She’s a proud member of the Cherokee Nation and is passionate about sustainable travel. She now lives in Siem Reap, Cambodia, with her cat Lil’ Mama. Most nights, you can find her munching down at the street food vendors.

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2 thoughts on “complete guide to khao sok national park, thailand”.

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the 2 day tour you suggest is only for 3 or more people is there a way around this?

khao sok travel agency

Are you able to provide more information on the luxury tour you took? When I click the link it only goes to the general website of tours on “get your guide”. Thank you!

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  • 13 January 2024

Your ultimate Khao Sok Travel Guide – Overnight tour to the lake

Thailand highlight: your ultimate khao sok travel guide including the overnight tour to the lake.

Khao Sok National Park was the highlight of my Thailand itinerary. Before travelling to Thailand, Khao Sok National Park was high on my list, especially the overnight tour towards Cheow Larn Lake. Located in southern Thailand, on the mainland, this beautiful destination offers a lush scenery. Next to the beautiful lake, for which you will probably visit Khao Sok National Park, the town is also surprisingly nice to stay. In this Khao Sok Travel Guide, I’ll explain everything you want to know about your stay and overnight tour. 

How to get to Khao Sok?

From koh tao, koh phangan or koh samui to khao sok:.

Fortunately, travelling from the islands on the east coast of Thailand to Khao Sok is relatively easy. Multiple boats are departing towards Surat Thani, the main connection on the mainland. I took the 7:00 am speedboat in the morning from Koh Tao , which also stops in Koh Phangan and Koh Samui. With this boat, I arrived in Khao Sok at 12:30 pm. The boat to Surat Thani takes between 3 hours (Koh Tao) and 1,5 hours (Koh Samui). It is possible to book your bus combined with your boat ticket at Lomprayah. Busses will wait for you upon arrival of the ferry and you will be directed to the right bus. You can book tickets at many tour offices on the islands, or pre-book your ticket online on 12go.asia .

From Pai , Chiang Mai or Bangkok to Khao Sok:

When you are travelling from or to either northern Thailand or Bangkok, the easiest option is to fly to Surat Thani Airport. From the airport, it is only a 1.5-hour drive to Khao Sok. Unfortunately, it is not possible to pre-book the minivan online on 12go.asia. However, it is possible to heat to the stand of Phantip Travel at the airport upon arrival (you need to arrive before 16:15). A bus ticket costs 300 baht including drop-off at your hotel. In high season this service might not be running, which leaves you to take a taxi (there is a taxi service available at the airport).

From Koh Phi Phi, Phuket or Krabi to Khao Sok:

From Koh Phi Phi, you can book a boat + bus combination to Khao Sok. The boat is leaving at 9 am and there is only one daily connection including the bus. Therefore, make sure to book your tickets in advance, especially in high season. From both Phuket and Krabi, busses/vans are running multiple times a day, lasting around 4 hours.

Khao Sok National Park - Overnight Lake Tour

How many days in Khao Sok?

Most tourists visit Khao Sok because of the overnight lake tour. Most tours start in the main town, where you can find accommodation and plenty of restaurants and bars. Because many tours leave in the morning, around 9 am, it is best to spend the night before in Khao Sok. Next to that, if you arrive in the afternoon, you also have the chance to do another afternoon or evening tour in the National Park. However, I think a 2-day/1-night tour of the lake is sufficient. 

Nevertheless, if you want to wind down and spend an additional day remotely, it is possible to book a 3-night/2-day tour. Also, it is possible to continue your journey to the next destination after the tour, as you arrive between 13:30 and 14:30 back at your accommodation. However, if you have the time, I advise spending another day in Khao Sok and continuing your journey the next morning to not stress about making your transfers.

Overnight cheow Larn Lake Tour from Khao Sok

|| where to book your overnight lake tour.

You can book the overnight lake tour at almost every accommodation in Khao Sok. Most accommodations don’t require prior booking, so you can book the tour upon arrival at your hotel or hostel. When I asked my hotel whether I could book in advance, they mentioned that only booking at the accommodation was possible. Therefore, no stress, it is always possible to join a tour. 

Nevertheless, reach out in advance, i f there is a specific tour you want to join,   . For example, the Smiley tour is popular with the younger crowd. Bear in mind, that all tours are advertised the same way, however, it depends on the accommodation what type of hut you will be staying in and what the exact tour looks like. At the end of this Khao Sok Travel Guide, I’ve also placed an overview of the best places to stay in Khao Sok.

Also, in this Khao Sok Travel Guide, I’ve described my experiences with the tour. This tour was booked with Tree Tops River Huts and executed by Khao Sok Happy Tour (the tour office is next to the bus stop). 

Khao Sok Overnight Lake Tour, Thailand

|| What does the overnight lake tour look like?

As mentioned, almost all overnight lake tours that you can book are pretty similar. The itinerary looks as follows:

Day 1: – Pick up around 09:00 – Drive towards the long tail boat departure point. The drive will be approximately 1 hour. On the way, you stop at a small village with a local market and 7/11 to stock up on snacks and drinks. Also, at most accommodations, you can buy some crisps, sodas and beer – Buy the national park and pier ticket and board the long-tail boat together with your guide – Arrival at the bungalows where you will stay the night and lunch – Free time to swim or canoe  – Afternoon safari where you will board the long-tail boat again. The activity depends on the weather and the tour, but on most occasions, you will visit one of the caves or do a short hike and visit a waterfall.  – Time to relax and have dinner at the bungalow, potentially followed by some drinks with your fellow travellers

Day 2:  – Morning safari at 6:00 or 6:30 to try to find some animals. Get up early so you can also watch the beautiful sunset on the lake!  – Breakfast at the bungalow  – Some more time to relax, swim or canoe and pack your bags – Long-tail boat back to the ‘harbour’  – Drive back to Khao Sok with some lunch on the way and a quick stop at the viewpoint

Khao Sok Overnight Lake Tour, Thailand

|| What to expect of the bungalows

If you book the standard tour (most of the time this costs 2500 baht), you will sleep in basic bungalows. However, there are also more luxury experiences available by booking the luxury tour option or booking a night at one of the overnight bungalows that can be booked through, for example, Booking.com.

However, for me, part of the charm of visiting the lake was staying in a more remote place for a night. I had a small bungalow, with two mattresses on the ground and a little ‘balcony’. There is no toilet or shower in the bungalow. However, on both sides of the accommodation, there is a shared toilet including a shower. As we were staying on the lake for 1 night only, most visitors chose to shower back in their accommodation in Khao Sok. Also, at the shared area lunch and dinner are served and snacks and drinks can be bought. 

Be aware that the bungalows are floating on the water, and therefore you have to be careful walking around.

Bungalows at Cheow Larn Lake during the overnight lake tour from Khao Sok

|| What to pack for the overnight lake tour from KHao Sok

A full Khao Sok Travel Guide should also give some directions on what to bring during your tour. As you will board a long-tail board and sleep in a small bungalow, they expect you to only bring a day-pack. If you book your tour at your accommodation in Khao Sok, they are happy to store your luggage. If you book directly with a tour operator, you can leave your luggage there. 

In my day pack I brought the following:  – Camera  – E-reader – (Head)torch – Bikini – Sunscreen – Set of clean underwear – Rain jacket – Microfiber towel – Long legging – Slippers / Sneakers – Extra pair of clothing – Mosquito spray – Basic toiletries (toothbrush, toothpaste, make-up wipes, contact lens kit,  – Dry bag/rain cover for your daypack

It is possible to charge your phone in the main area at the beginning of the evening. In that case, don’t forget your phone charger. Alternatively, you can take a power bank or limit the use of your phone ;). There is no wifi at the bungalows and not all providers have coverage at the lake. 

Sunrise in Khao Sok during the lake tour

|| Why visit khao Sok and the Cheow Larn Lake

The pictures in this Khao Sok Travel Guide already show all reasons why you can’t miss out on the Khao Sok Lake tour, when in Thailand. The lake and its bamboo bungalows are a unique experience and a great way to escape the busy cities. Next to that, it is a jungle, so you can spot different types of animals during your boat safari, such as gibbons and elephants. Lastly, it is a unique experience to wake up on a quiet lake while watching the impressive sunrise.

Khao Sok Overnight Lake Tour

|| Costs of the overnight lake tour

Most tour providers offer an all-inclusive fee for the 2-days/1-night Cheow Larn Lake Khao Sok overnight lake tour. When researching the tour, I felt that everyone offered the tour for the same price of 2500 baht (around €75). Next to that, there is a single surcharge of  1200 baht , however, when I booked the tour no one asked and I was lucky enough to be placed in a bungalow by myself. 

Next to the tour costs, you’ll have to pay an entrance fee to the park as well as a small fee to be able to use the pier with the long-tail boat. The additional costs at the entry of the park are 240 baht per person. Lastly, you have to pay for drinks (besides) water yourself. At our lake resort, a Chang beer cost 80 baht. 

Cheow Larn Lake Tour, Viewpoint

The Best Bars & Restaurants in Khao Sok

I have to admit that I was positively surprised when arriving in Khao Sok (village). Firstly, I had no clue what to expect, except for knowing the main town equals one large street. Nevertheless, in my mind, it was less modern than it turned out to be. Next to some decent Thai restaurants, there are fun bars with happy hour and a couple of great coffee bars. Therefore, I also recommend staying in Khao Sok village before and after your tour, instead of travelling to for example Surat Thani.

|| The Best Restaurants in Khao Sok

1. Black Stone Cafe – A backpacker favourite and a great place for a drink, a relaxed afternoon and some dinner. 

2. Pawn’s restaurant – One of the best Thai restaurants in Khao Sok and popular with travellers. Their curries are great.

3. Ciao Pizzeria – If you want to enjoy some non-Thai food, Ciao Pizzaria is a great place to go. They also have some nets to chill next to the restaurant. I was positively surprised by the quality of the pizza.

4. Low Budget Youth Restaurant  – Unfortunately the cook was sick and the restaurant was closed during my time in Khao Sok. Nevertheless, this restaurant receives high ratings and is also popular with backpackers.

Ciao Pizzaria Khao Sok

|| The best (coffee)Bars in Khao Sok

1. Black Stone Cafe  – I have to start with Black Stone Cafe again. They have a happy hour with cocktails and it is the perfect place to spend your afternoon with a book or have a drink in the evening.

2. Hungcup Slow Bar  – This coffee bar is located next to the famous Coco Hostel and offers good coffee and breakfast.

3. Little Wild Cafe Khao Sok  – The same coffee bar chain as Hungcup but this coffee bar is located at the end of the main street. The waffles are amazing.

4. Chill out bar  – Also this bar was closed during my time in Khao Sok, however, with so many good reviews it is worth giving a try.

5. The Heaven Bar  – An extensive cocktail and happy hour list, 2 floors and the opportunity to relax on the bean bags next to the water. 

6. Jumanji Bar  – This bar is a late-night bar in Khao Sok and mainly gets active in the high season. If you want to have some late-night drinks, this is the best place to try.

Little Wild Coffee Bar Khao Sok

- The best places to stay in Khao sOK -

Tree tops river huts - value for money.

During my stay in Khao Sok, I stayed at Tree Tops River Huts . Especially their riverside bungalows are a real treat as you are near the national park. At dawn, you see plenty of monkeys running around your bungalow. Also, they have a swimming pool and breakfast is included. The price of a bungalow starts at around €30 a night.

khao sok travel agency

Khao Sok Palmview Resort - Local vibe

One of the best-rated accommodations in Khao Sok is the Khao Sok Palmview Resort. This is a charming and peaceful resort, with all the facilities you might need during your stay and very helpful staff. The price of a cottage starts from €17 a night.

khao sok travel agency

Malulee Khao Sok Resort - Great tours

If you have a little bit more to spend, the Malulee Khao Sok Resort is a great option. I especially have heard great stories on the tour that was booked through the Malulee Resort. There is an on-site swimming pool available and bungalows start from €70 a night.

khao sok travel agency

Tanoshi Glamping - Unique Experience

If you are looking for a special experience that is slightly off the beaten track, then a night in Tanoshi Glamping is exactly what you are looking for. You will sleep in a glamping tent while having the opportunity to relax with great views and some tents also offer a luxury bath. A special experience you can get starting from €90 a night.

khao sok travel agency

Coco Hostel - Budget

The most popular hostel for backpackers and budget travellers in Khao Sok is Coco Hostel . All rooms have a balcony and the beds have curtains for more privacy. Also, the bakery next to the hostel is great. A bed in a dorm room starts from €8. 

khao sok travel agency

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Your ultimate Khao Sok Travel Guide - Overnight tour to the lake

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Your ultimate Khao Sok Travel Guide - Overnight tour to the lake

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Khao Sok National Park: The Complete Guide

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Things to Do

Water sports, best hikes and trails, where to camp, where to stay nearby, how to get there, tips for your visit, khao sok national park.

Khao Sok National Park in Thailand combines an aquatic and wilderness experience into one expansive park. Covering 285 square miles in Surat Thani Province south of Phuket , the park consists of a 64 square-mile artificial reservoir (Cheow Lan Lake) surrounded by karst cliffs and old-growth jungle.

The Ratchaprapha Dam that created the reservoir was completed in 1982. Prior to the dam’s completion and Khao Sok’s gazetting as a National Park, the area was overrun by Communist rebels, who were able to prevent loggers and miners from stripping the countryside bare. Thankfully free of rebels today, Khao Sok’s jungle and lake represent two different zones in the park, with two different experiences depending on which one you visit.

Visitors to the park must pay an entrance fee of THB 300 (about $9) upon entry. Between the official park activities and arranged itineraries from your Khlong Sok hotel or resort, you can create a Khao Sok to-do list that squeezes the most out of the jungle-covered karst landscape.

From the visitors’ center, you can pitch a tent, explore the jungle trails, and find your way to the park’s waterfalls and caves. From the Ratchaprapha Dam entrance, you can book boat safaris that explore the jungle skirting the lakeshore and the majestic karst cliffs rising from the water. Guided treks through the park can be arranged at the visitors’ center. Beyond the regular daytime treks, you can also arrange a “night safari”, where guides take visitors around well-established short trails after dark. Expect to encounter nocturnal animals like pygmy deer, slow loris, and a glorious chorus of grasshoppers and cicadas.

Private tour companies around Khlong Sok (and the hotels, by extension) can arrange other tours, like visits to the Khao Sok Elephant Sanctuary and their four rescue elephants; jungle cooking lessons using rustic materials like bamboo cylinders over glowing charcoal; and cycling tours of the Khao Sok countryside.

lkunl/Getty Images

The Sok River is accessible from the Visitors’ Center. Private tour companies can arrange canoe, rafting or rubber-tubing expeditions down the river, where you can paddle or drift with the current and enjoy the jungle sights and sounds while you float by.

Visitors to Cheow Lan Lake have far more watersports options available to them, and a much more striking backdrop to their activities: the karst cliffs and glowing emerald waters look glorious, particularly when seen from a kayak you’re paddling yourself.

Motorized tourist boats can also take tourists around the lake’s many corners. Regular lake tours make the most of the awesome lake views, while boat safaris hover closer to shore, all the better to spot native wildlife like longtail macaques, great hornbills, or even elephants pausing to take a drink!

Trekkers hitting the hiking trails in Khao Sok National Park will find the experience to be well worth the challenge. And it really is challenging, at least for the longer trails. For instance, the waterfalls are at their most scenic during the rainy season between May and November, and are a major attraction for hikers—but the rains also bring mud and leeches.

Beyond a few marked self-guided trails, the park requires that you hire experienced guides to take you through the longer ones. Guides charge THB 600 (about $18) for a half-day’s hike, and can be hired either at the Visitors’ Center, through private travel companies, or your local hotel.

The trails range from moderate to difficult. Threats from tigers and boa constrictors are rare, but the monkeys can be aggressive to visitors. Bring plenty of drinking water and mosquito repellent.

Wear loose-fitting long pants, long-sleeved hiking shirts , and hiking sandals . Hiking boots will only get wet and very, very heavy along the way.

  • Khao Sok Main Trail: The first section of this 2.8-mile trail extends east from the park’s western entrance, skirting the Sok River and going through thick jungle. This part is easy, and can be easily attempted by beginners. That’s not the case once you get past the halfway point, guarded by a ranger station. The trail gets muddier, and more dangerous for the less sure-footed, until the trail’s end at Ton Kloi Waterfall.
  • Bang Man Cave Trail: This scenic but challenging trail begins at the Bang Man Village and takes visitors right through a cave at one point. Hikes may be canceled without notice on account of the weather—heavy rains can flood the cave, killing any hikers foolish enough to be stuck inside.
  • Orchid Trail: starting at the Main Trail, the three-mile Orchid Trail veers south and crosses the Sok River through parts of the jungle that are overgrown with wild orchids and the Rafflesia, if you go during its blooming season from November to March.
  • Sip Et Chan Trail: starting at the park entrance, the Sip Et Chan Trail goes some 2.5 miles north along the Bang Laen River through thick jungle. Birds like bamboo woodpeckers and great hornbills may be spotted by trekkers along the way. The trail ends at the Sip Et Chan Waterfall, an 11-tiered waterfall where you can stop for a picnic before heading back.

Wuttisak Promchoo/Getty Images

The campsite next to the Visitors’ Center sits at the head of two trails into the park, and is the perfect balance of price and location for a full Khao Sok experience. Expect only basic, cold-water shower and toilet facilities and a rudimentary cafe in the premises. Tents, blankets, pillows, sheets and sleeping bags are also available for rent.

Outside the park gates, a few private properties offer camping and glamping experiences with a little more comfort.

  • Khai Jungle Experience : located just beyond the park entrance, this campsite offers a choice of tents or bamboo huts, set in the proprietor’s own back yard. Breakfast and dinner are also available, served from the outdoor kitchen. Rates start at THB 250 ($7.50).
  • Khaosok Boutique Camps : Just off Highway 401 some six miles from the Visitors’ Center, this camping-style resort provides guests with air-conditioned tents with furnished decks and bathrooms en suite. Its hillside location offers great views of the surrounding landscape. Other onsite facilities include a restaurant, cafe, and outdoor swimming pool. Rates start at around THB 1,800 ($53.50).
  • Tanoshi Glamping : Guests stay in large luxury tents with built-in hammocks and terraces overlooking Surat Thani. Located six miles from the park entrance, Tanoshi compensates for the distance with creature comforts and tour packages for trekking and other activities in Khao Sok.

You can choose from two types of park-run accommodations within the park grounds: the basic accommodations around the visitors’ center, and the floating cabins on Cheow Lan Lake. If you’d like to sample the private accommodations outside park limits, you’ll have more to choose from, for as high (or as low) a budget as you can manage.

Most of your accommodation options off the visitors’ center can be found in the nearest town, Khlong Sok. Your budget options (hostel beds or private rooms at budget hotels) can go for as low as THB 300 in Khlong Sok. The more you can afford to pay, the more varied (and more comfortable) your options: from bamboo huts to treehouses to luxury villas.

All Khlong Sok accommodations provide access to paid tours, car and driver packages, and boat trips to the lake.

  • Anurak Community Lodge : Don’t expect hotel-style comforts like a swimming pool or in-room TV. Instead, Anurak Community Lodge promises closeness to nature through stilted bungalows nestled close to the jungle. Prices start at THB 1,800 baht ($53.50) a night.
  • Baan Khao Sok Resort : This family-owned resort is a comfortable budget-boutique hotel in Khlong Sok, with garden bungalows and treehouses starting at THB 1,500 ($44.50) a night.
  • Montania Lifestyle Hotel : The establishment’s Thai-style villas and swimming pool overlooking the valley are among the Montania’s top draws: a great example of the kind of inexpensive luxury you can expect in Khlong Sok. Prices start at THB 1,800 baht ($53.50) a night.

Visitors to Cheow Lan Lake can stay on the waters, by booking a floating bungalow from either the Park or from private rafthouses. When you stay on a floating bungalow, you can take in the waters as you please: dive into the lake right from your bungalow; go kayaking; or enjoy the gorgous karst backdrop.

  • Nang Prai : This is Cheow Lan’s most popular park-run rafthouse, due to its central lake location and views of the karst cliffs that have granted it the nickname “Little Guilin”. Basic accommodations, but you can’t beat the view.
  • Khlong Kha : Set at the southernmost part of Cheow Lan Lake, Klong Ka is another park-run rafthouse with basic but scenic bamboo bungalows. Modern-style rooms are available, but are often booked long in advance.
  • Keeree Warin Deluxe Floating Villas : like Krai Son, Keeeree Warin enjoys the wildlife-driven advantages of its Klong Yee location; unlike the park-run rafthouses, this private establishment offers two-storey deluxe floating bungalows and electricity that doesn’t cut out late at night!
  • 500 Rai Floating Resort : this privately-owned rafthouse offers both “family” and “honeymoon” floating villas on Klong Long on the western end of Cheow Lan Lake. Their bigger villas are recommended for larger groups, and those with extra money to pay for creature comforts like air-conditioning, hot showers, and wooden finishes.

Chakkraphong Jinthawet/Getty Images

There are two entrances into Khao Sok National Park, separated by some 30 miles in between. The western entrance leads into the park headquarters from Khlong Sok. The eastern entrance goes to the Ratchaprapha Pier, where you can book rafthouse stays and boat safaris on Cheow Lan Lake.

The nearest airport to Khao Sok is Surat Thani Airport (IATA: URT). The Park entrance is also accessible by bus services from Phuket, Krabi and Surat Thani town. Public transport will only drop you off at the Park entrance and the on Highway 401; walk 1.2 miles to the Visitors’ Center once you disembark. To get to Ratchaprapha Pier, you can take a minibus from Surat Thani Airport, or hire a car and driver to take you there.

If you’ve pre-booked a stay at one of the hotels or resorts in the area, arrange a private pickup from the airport or any of the towns along the highway (Khlong Sok or Ban Ta Khun, the stop along Highway 401 to Ratchaprapha Pier).

  • Khao Sok is one of Thailand’s wettest areas, receiving record amounts of rainfall during the rainy season between May and November. The rain will determine the kind of activities you can do when you visit: activities like jungle camping and caving at Nam Talu will be banned in the rainy season. On the other hand, higher water volume and swifter currents make Sok River canoeing or tubing more fun during the rainy season.
  • Khao Sok’s caves can be visited through the park’s guided trails, but require some physical strength and agility to enjoy. Some caves are easy to explore, like the Pakaran Cave; Nam Talu Cave, on the other hand, requires wearing head torches and wading through an underground stream.
  • Some floating bungalows are run by the Park management. These offer little beyond the basics: mattresses on the floor, cold-water bathrooms, and electricity that cuts off at 10 p.m. Park-run bungalows can only be booked within two days in advance.
  • Large animals can usually be spotted along the lakeside during early mornings (no later than 7 a.m.) or before sunset. 

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Khao Sok National Park Travel Guide

Tucked away in the Thai jungle, half a day’s travel away from nearby tourist spots, Khao Sok National Park is one of the true gems to see in Thailand. Its remote position turns off many travellers looking for a convenient place to stop, so while it’s a popular spot to visit, it’s still not overrun with people. Planning a trip here can take time and effort, but you will be rewarded for your hard work!

A highlight of staying in Khao Sok National park is sleeping in a bungalow on the lake, and walking right out of your bedroom door to dive into the warm, clear waters of Cheow Lan Lake. We have just finished a three-day budget trip to the national park, where we stayed in one of these bungalows and had an incredible time! Along with swimming in the lake, you can take part in safaris and hikes, kayak on the lake, and try to spot lions, cougars, and elephants that live freely in the jungle.

Although it can be tricky to get to, Khao Sok is absolutely worth a few days’ visit during your time in Thailand. I recommend stopping here on your way from Bangkok to the islands, or vice versa. There is so much to see and do, away from the crowds of tourists that you find at other popular spots in Thailand.

Here is my guide to planning your trip to Khao Sok National Park.

How to get to Khao Sok National Park

Staying in a floating bungalow: packages vs diy, cost comparison of doing a package or diy trip, how to plan a package trip to khao sok national park, how to plan a diy budget trip to khao sok national park, staying in khao sok town, sights and activities to do in the national park, general information, what to bring with you, phone reception and internet, insects and wildlife, food & drink, sea sickness on the raft houses, bathroom facilities on the lake.

Khao Sok National Park is located in Surat Thani province in Thailand, closer to the islands on the east and west coast than to Bangkok. This makes it a popular stop for people travelling between the islands and Bangkok. Most people access the park overland, either by private taxi (if you have a large budget), minibus (if you are on a backpacker budget), or even by local bus (if you are on a tiny budget, and have lots of time). We got a minibus from Koh Lanta directly to Khao Sok National park for 700 baht per person, which we booked through a local travel agency the night before our trip.

Travelling north to Khao Sok National Park

If you are travelling from Phuket / Krabi / Ao Nang or any of the islands in the south (Koh Phi Phi / Koh Yao / Koh Lanta etc), then you can book your transport to the park via local travel agencies. These agencies can be found on any popular area for tourists, and the agents will arrange minibus transport for you. If you are on an island they will arrange a bus-and-boat ticket for you. This makes it very easy to travel to the park, as your transfer is taken care of from start to finish. Prices are not usually very high, but I tend to visit multiple agencies to check prices as some do charge more than others!

One thing to note when booking your transport is to tell the agent if you want to be dropped off in Khao Sok bus terminal, or by Cheow Lan Lake. These are 65km apart, so do make sure you are dropped off in the right place. Check your accommodation address to confirm this – or if you are staying in a raft house / floating bungalow then you want to go to the pier. 

Travelling west to Khao Sok National Park

If you are coming from Surat Thani, you can get a minibus or taxi from the airport to the lake.  These can be organised at the airport through the travel desks, or booked online on 12Go.Asia .

If you are coming from the east coast islands (Koh Phangan / Koh Tao / Koh Samui), you can buy a bus-and-boat ticket that takes you to Khao Sok National Park. You can buy these from local travel agencies in the town you are in, or else through your reception. Usually the journey involves getting a boat to the  mainland and a minibus or regular bus to the park via Surat Thani.

Travelling to Khao Sok National Park from Bangkok

The fastest way to get to the national park from Bangkok is to fly. Direct flights from Bangkok to Surat Thani take 1 hour and 124 flights run each week, so you should have plenty of choice. Prices start from as little £15 per person excluding baggage, so this can often be cheaper than getting an overnight train.

Once you land, you can get a taxi or minibus to Khao Sok National Park around 1 hour away. You can find a taxi driver at the airport, or else book your bus or minibus from the booking desks in arrivals. Expect to pay around 300 baht per person for a minibus to Khao Sok Bus Station (this is at the side of the road and not close to very much), or pay 350 baht to be taken to your hotel.

Take the overnight train from Hua Lampong Station in Bangkok to Surat Thani, then get a minibus or taxi to the national park.  This train takes 10-12 hours and sleeping carriages are available with flat beds so you can get a good night’s sleep. I’d recommend getting train #85 which departs Bangkok at 19:30 and arrives in Surat Thani at 7am, or if you’re a night owl you can get the #39/#41 which departs at 22:50 and arrives at 8am. If you didn’t feel like an overnight train, there is also a # 43 train which departs at 8am and arrives in Surat Thani at 16:45. This would most likely rule out staying on the lake for your first night.

You can book your train on 12Go.Asia – I have a post about booking night trains in Thailand which will help you. Once you arrive at the station, there will be taxis, buses, and minibuses waiting to take people to the park. You won’t struggle to find a way to the park – there will be agents waiting right outside the train shouting destinations and directing people to buses. It’s a busy terminal and super popular with tourists going to various islands and parts of the south.

Make sure you arrange to get dropped off at the right part of Khao Sok, because it is a huge area. Tell the driver your accommodation before you agree a price. Prices are usually around 200 baht per person for a shared minibus, and 1,200 baht for a private taxi.

You can take a bus the entire way from Bangkok to Khao Sok in 16 hours – this costs around 900 baht for adults and 750 baht for children. Buses leave at 6 or 7pm each day, arriving in Khao Sok at 10 or 11am the next day. This is obviously not the most comfortable sleeping option, but if you’re booking last minute it may be the only affordable option.

You can pre-book your bus online at 12Go.Asia . 

Travelling to Khao Sok National Park from Chiang Mai

The best way to get from Chiang Mai to Khao Sok is the same as getting from Bangkok: fly to Surat Thani and get a minibus or taxi to the park. It takes a little bit of time to get to the national park from Chiang Mai, so do plan enough time there to make the journey worthwhile!

  • Take a flight from Chiang Mai to Surat Thani airport and get a minibus or taxi 2 hours to the national park. Flights start from around £30-50 per person without baggage .
  • Here is the route and transport options for how to get from the airport to the national park. For the overland section, lots of accommodations offer transfers which I think would be the easiest way to plan in advance! Here’s a guideline on pricing from one resort: https://www.khaosokaccommodation.com/getting-here/

If you want to stay in a floating bungalow on the lake, there are two ways you can book this: package or DIY. Packages include your accommodation, transfers, meals, and all activities for the duration of your stay. Boat trips, hikes, kayaking etc are all included in this- the only extras are soft drinks and alcohol at your resort. Some of the higher-end resorts also offer taxi service from nearby towns too. Packages are super convenient – you just need to make one booking and your entire stay in Khao Sok is arranged. However, this convenience comes at a price – the most basic packages are 2,500thb / £63 / €75 per person per night. This is not much for your average holiday maker, when you consider that your meals and activities are included, but budget backpackers will struggle to budget for such a cost. I highly recommend a package if you can afford it, as it’s an easy way to holiday in a tricky location. Keep reading for information on how to book your package.

DIY trips are a less common way to stay on the lake, and it was very hard to find information online when I was planning our trip. However, with a lot of research, I managed to plan an excellent two-night stay in a floating bungalow on Cheow Lan Lake. It was exactly what I wanted, and cost 1/3 of the price of the cheapest package trip. This definitely wasn’t the most convenient way to plan our trip, and we had a few hiccups, but it was the only way we could afford to stay on the lake. I had the best few days, so I’m really glad we didn’t stay in the town! Details on how to plan your DIY trip to stay on the lake are below.

In summary – Packages are the most convenient way to plan your trip and they are much easier to plan. DIY trips take a bit more effort to organise, but are much cheaper.

Cost comparison of doing a Package or DIY lake stay

Packages for staying on the lake range from 2,500 to over 10,000 baht per person per night depending on which resort you opt to stay in. Everything is included in these packages apart from getting to Khao Sok National Park, and the national park entrance fee which is 300 baht per person, and the pier fee of 20 baht per person. These costs will be incurred on both the package and DIY trips.

Here is a cost comparison for a three-day / two-night stay for two people in the exact same resort on the lake.

The following is the price to book the trip as a package ( here is a link to show the package details )

  • Package: 21,000 Baht (5,250 per person per night)
  • Entry fees: 640 Baht

Total: 21,640 baht / £545  / €640 Cost per day per person: 3607 baht / £91 / €107 

In comparison, here is a breakdown of our DIY trip to this same resort:

  • Bungalow: 800 baht (200 baht per person per night)
  • Boat trip to and from the bungalow, two day tours around the lake, hiking, kayaking and meals: 3600 baht

Total: 5,040 baht / £125 / €150 Cost per day per person: 840 baht / £21 / €25

There are many more floating resorts on the lake, but I wanted to do a like-for-like comparison of how much you can save. While the prices above may not differ wildly for a mid-range or luxury traveller, they make a huge difference to a budget backpacker and can mean the difference between being able to stay on the lake or having to stay in the town.

Planning a package stay on Cheow Lan lake is pretty straightforward, and there are a great range of options depending on your budget.

If you are in a low- to mid-range budget, check out Khaosoklake.com where you can compare different floating resorts and packages and book online. This site is super detailed, and even though I didn’t book a package, I found it very helpful for planning my trip. Here are the packages that they offer, ranging from cheapest to most expensive and fanciest: 

  • Bungalow Bliss : These are the least expensive tours on offer, with prices starting at 6,400 baht / £161 / €189 per person per night for a simple bamboo bungalow. Bathrooms are shared with other guests, and the rooms do not have air conditioning or a fan. These are the bungalows that Tim and I stayed on –  budget backpackers wouldn’t mind the simplicity but if you like comfort you may struggle. Resorts included in the bamboo bliss tour are outlined here – there are plenty of photos so you can get an idea of what to expect. I do not recommend booking this tour for 1 night, as you can also book this exact tour here for 2,500 baht per person per night.  
  • Modern Comforts : The accommodation in these tours is a step up from bamboo bliss, with better facilities provided such as proper walkways, steps into the water, and even private bathrooms for an extra fee. Prices start at 6,900 baht / £173 / €204 per person per night for these tours, which run from 1 – 3 nights. Resorts included in the Modern Comforts tour are outlined here.
  • Lake Superior : Bungalows on the superior tour have amenities like private en suite bathrooms and beautiful tropical hardwood detailing. The rooms are more spacious, and food is to a higher standard. Air conditioning is also available for an extra 1,200 per night. Prices start at 7,900 baht / £198 / €234 per person per night. Resorts included in the Lake Superior tours are outlined here.
  • Luxury on the lake : These 1 – 3 night tours are the most luxurious offered as a package, with rate starting from 10,900 baht / £275 / €322 per person per night. Accommodation is of a high standard, with hardwood interiors, private bathrooms, air conditioning, and the best quality food and drink. Resorts included in the luxury tours are outlined here.

If you have a higher budget, or are coming to Khao Sok Lake for a special occasion, here are some luxury floating resorts you can check out – these are not booked as packages, but do have some amenities included which I have listed below:

  • Phutawan Rafthouse : These bungalows look stunning, and are a departure from the traditional style of the other floating resorts. Capsule rooms are 4,000 baht / £100 / €118 per night, which includes activities, meals, and boat tours to the top sights on the lake. However transfers are not included in the price, and add at least another 4,000 baht to the price – boat prices start at 2,000 baht each way, although their transfer prices don’t appear to be listed on the site. Some resorts charge as much as 3,500 for transfers on top of high room rates (I haven’t included these here).
  • Panvaree resort: This stunning luxury resort offers sturdy wooden cabins with modern en suite bathrooms and air conditioning for around €200 per night. Free transfers to and from the pier are included in the price, and many tours and activities are available to guests.  Each room has a balcony and steps right out onto the lake. There is a tour booking office on site where you can book your activities each day.
  • 500 Rai : If you really want to splurge in Khao Sok, then 500 Rai is the place to do it! These luxury 2 bedroom villas are even better than ones you would find on land, and are more like upmarket ski chalets. Each villa has it’s own private balcony leading out onto the water, the honeymoon suite even has an outdoor hot tub out front! There is a spa on site where you can have daily massages, and kayaks are available for all guests. Return transfers to and from the pier are included but food is not, so factor this in to your costs.

If you are planning a budget trip, here’s a little hack for you! The government-run National Parks website allows you to book floating bungalows at a really cheap price without having to fork out for a package. This website is a little hard to navigate, but it’s worth persevering for the savings.

Here is a short guide on  how to use the website to book your hut:

  • Click here to open the booking portal.
  • Click the British flag on the top right hand corner of the page to switch to English.
  • Go to Login -> registration and create an account as an ‘ordinary person’. You need this to book a bungalow.
  • Enter the required information, which is mostly personal info and also your passport number (this is a government website so I wasn’t worried about giving this info).
  • Click the green registration button and when your account is created, log in to continue (note that you log in with your passport number and the password you chose at registration).
  • On the menu bar at the top, go to Reservations -> Book Accommodation.
  • Search for ‘Khao Sok National Park’ in the national park field and enter the dates of your visit.
  • Click the red ‘search for home & camp’ button at the bottom of the page.
  • Scroll down and your results will appear. This will show all of the available bungalows for your dates.
  • Look at the ‘Zone’ field in each row, and the last item in that list is the name of the resort this bungalow is in. You’ll see ‘Nang Pai floating house’, ‘Krai Son floating house’ etc. There will be multiple entries for each resort as there are multiple bungalows available.
  • There are no details on this website about each of the resorts, but if you google the name of each one you will find Google reviews, TripAdvisor Reviews, or posts on travel blogs. Do this for each available resort to find which one is right for you. We stayed at Krai Son floating house and loved it! You will be able to see number of people in the bungalow, and facilities available in the results though.
  • Once you have chosen your resort, select any bungalow available in this resort from the list – they’re all the same, so you don’t need to worry about which one you choose.
  • Click the red button with a tick on it at the end of the row for this bungalow & a ‘booking success’ notice should come up.
  • Click on the cart icon (should show on the page with a timer next to it) to checkout.
  • Verify that the information and dates are correct and click ‘continue’.
  • At the moment, credit card payments are not possible on the site. You will instead have two options on the next page: Pay at a DNP station by 4:30pm that same day, or pay at a branch or ATM of Bank of Thailand by 8pm. The easiest thing to do if you’re not currently in a national park is to pay via Bank of Thailand. This is what we did and it’s incredibly simple.
  • Choose your payment option DNP / Bank of Thailand, then fill out your information and click ‘Save’. This will confirm your booking and you will be emailed confirmation along with a booking ID.
  • Bring this booking email to your nearest Bank of Thailand branch before 8pm (or the time listed on the confirmation email if it’s different), and hand it to the cashier. They will ask you to pay the balance plus a 10 baht processing fee and will give you a confirmation of payment slip. We weren’t asked to show this again, but keep it safe just in case as it’s your only proof of payment.
  • Once you have paid, reply to your confirmation to tell them the payment has been submitted. They will respond to say they have received the payment and your booking is confirmed.
  • Arrive at the resort you chose on your booking date and they will have your bungalow ready. In our case they were ready and waiting for us – everything was managed really smoothly.

How to get to your floating bungalow

Now that your accommodation is booked, you will need to book your activities, transport, and meals separately. Floating bungalows can only be accessed by boat, and the boat trip takes around 1 hour from the pier. It costs roughly 2,000 baht for a one-way private boat to take you to the lake bungalows, so this is not a good option for budget travellers. Here is what you can do instead:

  • Find other travellers to share a boat with to reduce the price.
  • Join an existing tour that is going to your resort, and travel with them for the day.

We joined a tour that was going to Krai Son for 1 night and we paid a reduced price to go with them. This 2 day / 1 night tour involved two full days of exploring the lake, all meals, hikes, kayaking, and transfers to and from the bungalow for 2,500 baht. We paid 1,800 baht each and because we stayed in Krai Son Resort for 2 nights, we did the first day of the tour on the way to the bunglows on day 1, and the second day of the tour on the 3rd day which returned us back to the pier. On the middle day, we were able to enjoy the resort on our own as everyone else was away on tours. This was a great mix of sightseeing and relaxing, so I would definitely recommend this approach.

If you are doing a DIY trip to stay on the lake, it makes sense to stay longer than 1 night as it’s so expensive to get the boat to the bungalows. With this approach, a two night stay cost us the same as the one night tour and we also had some personal time together.

Our tour was with Happy Tours, who run tours to many of the bungalows on the lake each day. I couldn’t find a website for them, but you can contact them on Facebook to enquire about a tour.

Staying in Khao Sok Town

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Many people opt to stay in the town rather than on a floating bungalow – this is usually best for travellers that are short on money or time. If you stay in the town you can do a one-day tour of the lake instead of staying overnight.

All accommodations will offer tours, drivers, and day trips to see the area, so you can book day trips and boat trips through reception. If you would rather book your tour in advance, Our Jungle House offers one-day tours of the lake for 1,500 baht per person (not including national park entry fee or pier fee of 320 baht per person). You may be able to find better deals if you wait until you’re in the town to book your tour though! There are many different hikes and activities you can do from the town too, which again you can book when you arrive at your accommodation.

Here are some great places to stay in the town, not far from the pier so you have the option to do a boat trip:

  • Khao Sok Homestay Resort : This simple, budget-friendly resort offers clean, air-conditioned rooms for 585 baht / £15 / €17 per night with breakfast included. Each room has a balcony with mountain views, and they have a lake on the property with water sports facilities. They also offer many tours and even cooking classes on site.
  •   Khao Sok Ecolodge : Stay in a safari-style glamping tent in this gorgeous eco resort which has a pool where you can cool off from the jungle humidity. The tents are seriously pretty and luxurious, and are €36 per night with breakfast – which isn’t bad for a 3-star resort. They also offer a paid airport shuttle if you are flying to Surat Thani. We were seriously tempted to stay here during our time in Khao Sok!
  • Anurak Community Lodge : Another accommodation we almost booked, these stilted bungalows are nestled in the jungle and have four poster beds that face floor-to-ceiling windows looking out over the beautiful scenery outside. All rooms are air-conditioned and have a private balcony. Group and private tours to the park can be arranged at the property, and they also offer table tennis, trekking, canoeing, bamboo rafting, cycling and bird watching. Arranging a cooking class is also possible. Rooms start at 1,800 baht / £47 / €55 per night.
  • Montania Lifestyle Hotel : If modern luxury is what you’re after, this 3-star resort offers traditional Thai style villas in beautiful surroundings. The swimming pool with mountain views is the real draw here, and the staff are very highly reviewed by guests. Rooms are the same price as Anurak at 1,800 baht / £47 / €55 per night.
  • Our Jungle House : Get back to basics by staying in a wooden tree house in the middle of the jungle at this 3-star resort. This is an eco-friendly accommodation option surrounded by rainforest and an array of wildlife. Through the resort you can book tours of the lake as well as river tubing, hiking and canoeing. Rooms start at 2,600 baht/ £67 / €79 per night for a double room, and family rooms are also available.

Here are some tips for visiting Khao Sok National Park, based on our experience here!

  • If you are in a budget bungalow, bring a sleeping bag liner . This is more comfortable to sleep inside than the sheets and blankets they give you
  • A travel towel for swims during your day trips, and also for showering at the budget bungalows as you don’t get towels here.
  • Portable chargers to charge your devices during the day – there is only power from 6-10pm each day.
  • Toiletries weren’t provided in our resort, so we had to bring our own.
  • A dry bag would be helpful to carry your things on boat trips – we were splashed a lot during one trip.
  • Trainers for hiking – you can’t do the hikes in flip flops.
  • Lots and lots of bug spray (we use Soffell which you can buy in any convenience store or pharmacy in Thailand).
  • A head torch or regular torch if you have one – or use your phone torch if not.

There is no phone reception across most of the accommodation on the lake, and wifi is only available in the high end resorts. We had zero reception or internet during our stay at the lake with our local Thai SIM cards.

If you are staying in the town there is reasonable wifi and 3G phone reception with local SIM cards.

Electricity

If you are staying on the lake, electricity is only available from 6-10pm each day. Our resort had a big charging area where we could leave our phones charge during those hours. There are no sockets in the bungalows.

Lights around the resort are solar powered, and everything goes off after 10pm. If you need to go to the bathroom after this, bring a torch.

The national park is filled with many different animals and insects, so if you are an animal lover you will really enjoy the safari boat trips. It’s possible to to see wild elephants, leopards, tigers, and sun bears on your safaris – but as they are wild nothing is guaranteed!

There are leeches in the jungle, which is why it’s important to wear trainers when you hike – and it would be a good idea to wear clothing that covers as much of your body as possible during long  hikes. We didn’t have a problem on our short hike to the viewpoint, but if you’re here in rainy season you may encounter them more often.

As you can imagine, there are lots of mosquitos so don’t forget to spray yourself regularly with insect repellent. Apart from that, we didn’t have much trouble with insects and we didn’t have any of them in our bungalow at any point.

All of our meals were included in our stay at Krai Son, as part of the tour we booked with Happy Tours. The breakfast, lunch, and dinner was massive each day and we were told we could have more of anything if we wanted it.  Tim and I both ate vegetarian food the entire time, and vegan options are available too.

For breakfast we had an egg-free pancake with fresh fruit, for lunch it was sweet & sour vegetables, green curry soup, and rice with fruit for dessert, and for dinner we had Massaman curry, omelettes, and rice with fruit for dessert. Free tea, coffee and water were available throughout the day also. If you didn’t have a reusable bottle, you were given one plastic bottle on arrival which you would refill from large drums when you needed it. This is done in an effort to reduce single use plastic usage which was great!

Beer, rum, whiskey, soft drinks, and snacks were available until 11pm from a little shop in the resort at your own expense.

This was asked a lot on instagram, so I thought I would include a section here on seasickness. The bungalows don’t move enough to make you seasick, as they are moored down. However you will need to take a 45 – 60 minute boat journey to get to the rafts as they are not accessible by road. Even though this is a lake, we still found the journey a little rocky at times, so keep that in mind if you do suffer from sea sickness.

In budget and mid-range bungalows, the bathrooms will be shared, while luxury bungalows have their own bathrooms. The bathroom facilities at Krai Son were excellent, and I have no complaints. There were two bathrooms and a cold water shower for each gender, which were cleaned throughout the day and were completely pristine during our three days.

I hope this guide is helpful for anyone thinking of visiting the national park, and that it can help any budget traveller to plan their trip! If you have been to Khao Sok and have any suggestions or recommendations – leave them in the comments below!

Thanks for reading! Steph x

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stephmylifetravel

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So good Steph! Thanks for going to so much effort

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This is very useful, thank you! Just a quick note – cougars are from the Americas and lions are from the savannah plains of Africa. I think you meant tigers and leopards which live in Asian equatorial jungles.

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This was very very helpful for planning and so comprehensive. You are so appreciated!

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Khao Lak, Thailand

The area collectively known as Khao Lak is actually a selection of several different villages that have merged together as the number of hotels in Khao Lak grows. Each year thousands of tourists are drawn to the beaches in Khao Lak to enjoy the beautiful Thailand weather. 

Khao Lak gets its name from the large mountain that is now mostly controlled by the Khao Lak national park. Khao Lak translates to mean “Main Mountain”. This mountain has been used by seafarers for many hundreds of years as a landmark marking the entrance to Thap Lamu harbor. 

For those wishing to travel around and see Thailand, there is no better place to make your base than Khao Lak. Airport transfers from Phuket to Khao Lak take just over an hour. The beautiful Khao Sok National Park and the famous James Bond Island in Phang Nga Bay are also just over an hour drive from Khao Lak center. For those who wish to experience amazing diving and snorkeling it is just as easy to get a speedboat to the Similan Islands and Surin Islands from Khao Lak.

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Khao Lak Map

CLICK HERE to check out our interactive Khao Lak area map.

Khao Lak Beaches

These days Khao Lak is segmented into the original village sections to make Khao Lak easier to navigate, namely Khao Lak Beach (sometimes referred to as Merlin Beach), Nang Thong Beach, La Own Beach, Bang Niang Beach, Khuk Khak Beach, Pakweep Beach, Leam Pakarang and Bangsak Beach.

It is possible to walk the full length of the town and further along the beach, although some areas are blocked at high tide when the sea reaches the sea walls infront of certain hotels.

The Khao Lak beaches are mostly perfectly safe for swimming. In most areas the water is shallow and the bottom is sandy. The majority of larger hotels also usually have lifeguards on duty, and red/green flags to help people keep safe in the sea.

In the monsoon seasons (May-Oct) however the sea can become very rough and the waves very large. It is not usually recommended to swim in the sea during these stormy times. It is always best to check for green flags before entering the water.

Getting to Khao Lak

Unfortunately, there is no Khao Lak airport, however both Phuket airport and Krabi airport are relatively close. The easiest way to get to Khao Lak is to fly into Phuket airport and get a taxi from to your hotel. The drive takes about 1 hour and 10 minutes from Phuket airport to Khao Lak.

It is also possible to get busses from places such as Surat Thani and Bangkok to Khao Lak. Khao Lak is conveniently located on the main road to Phuket so busses run regularly and you can get off in any area of Khao Lak you wish.

Khao Lak Hotels

Khao Lak has a whole range of hotels and resorts to suit all budgets and tastes. There are luxurious 5-star Khao Lak beach resorts and cheap and cheerful budget rooms and villas. It is easy to find a hotel in Khao Lak to suit everyone.

Click Here to view Khao Lak hotels on KAYAK. Or find great deals on Khao Lak with Agoda .

Khao Lak Weather

Khao Lak is generally warm all year round (average 28-30°C) with 2 distinct seasons. The dry season and the monsoon season. The Dry season is usually between November and April. This is usually the best time to visit as the weather is a bit more predictable.

May to October is a bit more difficult to predict. This is the monsoon season so expect rain. At this time of year, the weather can change in without warning. It can go from hot and sunny to howling wind and pouring rain in a matter of seconds. So, it’s best to be prepared. Luckily enough there is still plenty to do in Khao Lak when it rains, you just might get wet!

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Khao Lak Excursions

Click Here to check out all of our Khao Lak excursions and tours.

National Parks Near Khao Lak

Khao Lak-Lam Ru National Park – the Khao Lak-Lam Ru National Park head quarters is located in the mountain road and is usually one of the first sights people see as they arrive in Khao Lak for the first time. The most popular places to visit in the park are the Small Sandy Beach close to the park headquarters and the Ton Chong Fah Waterfall located about 12km inland from the national park visitor center.

Mu Ko Similan National Park – The Similan national park consists of 11 islands all arranged in an almost straight line just over 30 miles west of the Khao Lak coastline. These islands have become a Mecca for snorkelers and divers since the park opened in the late 1980s. One of the most famous views of the park is the amazing granite rock formations overlooking the pure white sandy beach and crystal-clear waters of “Donald Duck Bay” on the largest island (Isl.8, Koh Similan).

Mu Ko Surin National Park – The Surin national park is located to the north of the Similan islands and has become world famous for having some of the best snorkel and dive sites in Thailand. The Surin islands are also home to a tribe of Moken sea gypsies who are believed to have lived and survived in the Andaman Sea for over 4,000 years.

Khao Sok National Park – Khao Sok national park is the most popular national park in Thailand. Khao Sok is home to a rich and healthy natural rain forest which is claimed to be one of the oldest evergreen rainforests in the world. One of the major attractions of the Khao Sok national park is the Cheow Lan Lake where it is possible to stay overnight in floating resorts.

Khao Lak Nightlife

Khao Lak is nowhere near as lively as places like Patong or Patttaya, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have a good night out. Most of the bars in Khao Lak are friendly and easy-going beer bars where you can sit and enjoy a drink with family and friends while you watch the world go by. There are however a few more lively places for those who want a bit more of an energetic atmosphere;

Geko Bar – located in the street just behind Bang Niang night market, it is easy to walk straight past Geko Bar in the early evenings without even seeing it. This bar often gets busier later on and is popular with dive crews and young seasonal workers from Europe. Geko has a very chilled vibe with bar games such as pool and table football available for customers.

Thai Bar – This is one of the original bars in Khao Lak. Thai Bar has now moved from it’s original beachfront location to directly opposite Bang Niang Market. Each night the owner and his friends get out their guitars and enjoy the evening with a few drinks and a selection of Thai and Western hits through the ages. 

Moo Moo Cabaret – A great fun start to the night. Located almost next door to Degree opposite the Khao Lak Tsunami Memorial Park, Moo Moo’s is the first and only cabaret show in Khao Lak. Thailand has become well known for it’s ladyboy population and the Moo Moo show is a hugely fun and spectacular show with outrageous costumes, and dance routines that would put Las Vegas to shame.

Monkey Bar – Monkey is another great bar for live music. The house band plays a range of western music, usually classic rock with a few modern hits thrown in for good measure. Monkey Bar is located just down the road from the Happy Snapper on the Nang Thong main road.

Build Factory – This is Khao Lak’s only large night club. Outside there are tables and chairs for those who wish to drink and in relative quiet or strike up a chat with the brewery’s PR girls who float around ensuring peoples glasses don’t stay empty.  Don’t go thinking this is a typical sleazy girly bar however, their job is to keep people drinking. Once inside the resident band and DJ alternate throughout the night to keep the patrons up and dancing.

Things to do in Khao Lak

Khao Lak is a great centeral location for all kinds of excursions and onward destinations. Some of the best Khao Lak tours are just a short drive from most hotels in Khao Lak. 

Surfing in Khao Lak is also becoming very popular now, and is fast becoming known as Khao Lak Surf Town. The Memories Beach Bar is becoming one of the coolest places in Thailand, and is the best place for surf lessons in Khao Lak.

In the town there is a wide selection of restaurants in Khao Lak. There is something for everyone. A few of the Khao Lak restaurants will even offer a hands on Thai cooking class.

There are also many fully licenced and professional spa and massage shops in the main town, offering a range of health and beauty treatments. Including Aloe Vera massage for those who send to long in the sun!

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Khao Sok National Park Travel Guide: All You Need To Know, 2024

Arijana Tkalcec on Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park

  • Last updated: January 5, 2024

Arijana Tkalcec and Matej Span underwater selfie, Similan Islands, Thailand

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Khao Sok National Park was at the top of our list of things to do for our first 3-month visit to Thailand . And it was something that we didn’t want to miss, no matter what!

About Khao Sok National Park

Khao Sok National Park is one of Thailand ‘s most beautiful and diverse natural areas.  Located in the Surat Thani Province, the park covers an area of 739 km² and is home to a wide variety of wildlife, including elephants, snakes, boar, monkeys, and many species of birds.

Swimming in Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park

With its lush rainforest, abundant wildlife, limestone mountains, and stunning lake views, Khao Sok National Park is a must-visit destination for nature lovers.

From exploring caves and waterfalls to spotting wildlife, there are plenty of activities to enjoy in this stunning park. 

And the biggest attraction of Khao Sok is the vast Cheow Lan Lake.

Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park

The Cheow Lan Lake of Khao Sok National Park was artificially made in 1987 when they dammed the Pasaeng river to generate energy, control floods, and supply water for the region.

It took a few years for the area to fill up with water. And although some animal and plant species died at first because of it, it was a great idea to dam the river. Now, this stunning lake is again booming with animals and vegetation.

And the coolest thing there are the Cheow Lan Lake floating bungalows , the only places where you can stay on the lake, as no accommodation is allowed on the shore.

Floating bungalows, Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park

It’s a great natural preservation, where many animal species can be found, from birds, wild boar, monkeys, fish, black bears, and even elephants if you’re lucky.

khao sok travel agency

Did You Know?

Cheow Lan Lake of Khao Sok National Park is one of the only places in Thailand with free-roaming elephants.

Elephant at Cheow Lan Lake

Of course, you must be lucky to see the big animals. But at least you might be able to see some monkeys.

For all reptilian lovers, there are over 90 reptile species in Khao Sok National Park. And there’s likely even more hiding deep inside the thick forests.

Monitor lizard at Cheow Lan Lake

Khao Sok National Park is a gem of nature, but it’s no longer hidden , unlike what some others might say. Many travelers visit Khao Sok National Park daily since it’s now among the top things to do in Thailand .

But, it’s absolutely A LOT more relaxed than other nearby touristic places.

Areas of Khao Sok National Park

There are two distinct areas in Khao Sok National Park that you can visit, which are 67 km or 1-hour drive apart, the Khao Sok Village and the Cheow Lan Lake.

The first area, the Khao Sok Village, or the town where most people stay, is where you will likely do the Jungle Safari, go river tubing, kayaking, see caves and waterfalls or go trekking.

River tubing on Sok River in Khao Sok

And the second area is Cheow Lan Lake, known for its stunning water color, high limestone cliffs, and floating bungalows . The lake is usually visited on overnight or day trips from either Khao Sok or nearby tourist hotspots.

The iconic limestone cliffs coming out of the water at Cheow Lan Lake remind us of Ha Long Bay in Vietnam . 

Longtail boat on Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park

How to get to Khao Sok National Park

It’s easy to get to Khao Sok National Park in about two hours from Surat Thani and Krabi or about 3 hours from Phuket with many local buses, minivans, or even taxis.

There are no train connections to Khao Sok National Park. And the closest airport to Khao Sok National Park is the Surat Thani International Airport.

If you’re traveling from Bangkok down to southern Thailand , Khao Sok National Park is a convenient stop for a few days.

From: Bangkok

Bangkok to khao sok combo transfer.

We came to Khao Sok National Park from Bangkok on a combined transfer , an overnight bus to Surat Thani, and then another bus to Khao Sok Village.

The combo transfer worked great for us, as it was the cheapest way. And we arrived at Khao Sok Village right before check-in time in our accommodation.

We highly recommend this as it’s the most affordable and reliable way to have your connections line up perfectly.

Bus Ticket

Click here to book your combo transfer from Bangkok.

NOTE: The bus transfer from Bangkok only makes sense if you want to come to Khao Sok National Park in the cheapest way possible.

Bangkok to Khao Sok train or flight

The train or flight option is the most comfortable way to get to Surat Thani. From there, you have just 2 hours and a half ride in a minivan, bus, or by taxi to Khao Sok.

Tickets

Click here to book your train journey from Bangkok to Surat Thani.

Click here to find the cheapest domestic flights to Surat Thani.

From: Surat Thani

Coming to Khao Sok National Park from Surat Thani is convenient, with frequent vans for 8 USD in 3 hours.

Click here to book your van ride from Surat Thani.

If you’re renting a car in Surat Thani, the roads to Khao Sok National Park are great, with fantastic views along the way to enjoy.

Rent a Car

Click here to find car rentals in Surat Thani.

We want to rent a car in Surat Thani for our next visit and visit Khao Sok, then continue towards the Andaman Sea and Khao Lak. It seems like a great way to explore that whole area.

By the way, if you’re continuing your journey to Khao Lak, check out the Similan Islands and Surin Islands .

From: Krabi

The easiest way to get to Khao Sok National Park from Krabi is with a minivan transfer for about 11 USD, taking 5 hours.

Click here to book your transfer from Krabi to Khao Sok.

These buses go hourly from Krabi, from 7 am until 4 pm, and take from 4 to 5 hours to drop you at your Khao Sok hotel. (it says three and a half hours when booking, but it’s usually more).

From: Phuket 

Getting to Khao Sok National Park from Phuket is easy, with many minivans throughout the day that cost about $25 and take about 3 hours.

Click here to book your transfer from Phuket to Khao Sok.

From: Khao Lak

Frequent minivans and buses are going on the line between Khao Lak and Surat Thani that pass through Khao Sok National Park, taking about 1 hour and costing $17.

Click here to book your transfer from Khao Lak to Khao Sok.

From: Koh Samui and Koh Pha-ngan 

It’s straightforward to get to Khao Sok National Park from Koh Samui and Koh Pha-ngan on one of the combo ferry + bus/minivan transfers for about $17 in 7 hours. 

Click here to book your transfer from Koh Samui/Koh Pha-ngan.

Note: When you book the combo transfer to Khao Sok from Koh Samui or Koh Pha-ngan, you will first go with the ferry across to the mainland. And then sometimes transfer to another bus in Surat Thani before going on the final leg of the journey towards Khao Sok.

From: Koh Tao 

You can book a combo transfer of ferry + minivan from Koh Tao to Khao Sok National Park for about $35 that starts at 9 PM in Koh Tao and arrives at 9 AM in Khao Sok.

Click here to book your transport from Koh Tao to Khao Sok.

And if you don’t want to travel overnight, we recommend booking the tickets separately and not the combo transfer.

You can book the earliest ferry from Koh Tao to the pier near Surat Thani. And then a minivan/bus to Surat Thani (if it’s not included in the ferry ticket), and then a ride from Surat Thani to Khao Sok.

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Best time to visit Khao Sok National Park 

The best time to visit Khao Sok National Park is from December to April in the dry season .

Although the rainy season in Khao Sok National Park is also okay to visit because nature is very lush and there are even more animals, the waterfalls are full of water, and the river is in full flow.

So essentially, you can visit Khao Sok National Park anytime and have a great experience with plenty of activities to enjoy.

Longtail boat ride among high cliffs of Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park

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Top things to do in Khao Sok National Park

Although the main attraction and the biggest drive of most tourists coming to Khao Sok National Park is Cheow Lan Lake with its floating bungalows , there are many other things to do around.

Floating bungalows, Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park

Good to know: Some of the things you can do in Khao Sok are part of the Khao Sok National Park and require tickets, but not all.

1. Stay in a floating bungalow on Cheow Lan Lake

The top thing to do in Khao Sok National Park, and what the park is most famous for, is an overnight stay in a floating bungalow on Cheow Lan Lake .

Sunrise in a floating bungalow, Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park

The most common way to organize your overnight trip to the lake is to book it with your accommodation in Khao Sok.

We organized our overnight stay at a floating bungalow on Cheow Lan Lake through our stay at Our Jungle House and Our Jungle Camp (sister properties).

Read More

Read our detailed review of the trip and stay in a floating bungalow on Cheow Lan Lake.

There are different types of floating bungalows and accommodations on Cheow Lan Lake. And to choose the floating accommodation on Cheow Lan Lake, you need to speak to your accommodation or the travel agency.

That way, you can find the one closest to some of the attractions you want to visit. For example, if you want to go on a hike, you need to be closer to that trail’s starting point.

Floating bungalows, Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park

One of the highlights of staying overnight at Cheow Lan Lake is the possibility of seeing wild elephants.

Let’s hope you’re one of the lucky ones!

Elephant at Cheow Lan Lake

2. Observe wildlife on a Night Jungle Safari

Going on a Night Jungle Safari in Khao Sok National Park is a great way to see some animals you wouldn’t otherwise be able to see during the day, as they become active at night.

You can book the guided safaris directly at the national park headquarters or with your accommodation.

Civet cat, Jungle Night Safari, Khao Sok National Park

We didn’t know what to expect from the Night Jungle Safari. But it was a great experience, and we could see a lot of animals, from tarantulas to snakes to monkeys and more.   

Trekking on Jungle Night Safari, Khao Sok National Park

Our guide Rango was amazing. And we had a great time going through the forest trails and seeing some incredible animals. He excels in knowledge about spiders as he researches them.

Jungle Night Safari, Khao Sok National Park

Check his YouTube channel, RGSpider , if you want to learn more about spiders found in the area. But it’s in Thai. 😀

One of the coolest things we got to know at the Night Jungle Safari was that tarantulas are essentially blind. So if you don’t come close to them, they don’t see you, which is great because we’re not really fans of spiders.

Tarantula hiding in a hole, Jungle Night Safari, Khao Sok National Park

Also, there was this cool spider called the trapdoor spider. It digs a hole in the side of a hill and builds a door that it uses to grab nearby prey.

And we finally got to see what the famous cicadas look like.

Trapdoor spider, Khao Sok National Park

Cicadas are the animals that you will definitely hear when you come to Southeast Asia because they are crazy loud and tough to miss.

The story of the cicada’s life is quite sad because they spend about five years (some 17 years) in the ground before they come up. Then they lay their legs and live for a few more weeks before they die.

Note: Khao Sok is also famous for being the home of many leeches that are especially easy to come by during the rainy season. But don’t worry, as they don’t carry any bacteria, viruses, or toxins.

And the single coolest thing we saw on our night jungle safari was the super cute slow loris.

Slow loris, Jungle Night Safari, Khao Sok National Park

Fun fact: Khao Sok National Park is one of the only places in Thailand that still supposedly has tigers, although none have been seen for the past few years.

Together with Khao Yai National Park, Khao Sok is one of the best places for animal sightings in Thailand .

3. Go river tubing, kayaking, and canoeing

One of the adventurous things to do in Khao Sok National Park is river tubing, kayaking, or canoeing. And there are even some night safaris that you can do in a kayak on the river.

It’s something you can easily do even if you’re not visiting the official area of the National Park or Cheow Lan Lake.

Canoe and kayak on Sok River in Khao Sok

On our visit to Khao Sok National Park, it was the dry season. So the river in the Khao Sok Village was very shallow. We had to push ourselves from the shallows quite a few times when we got stuck. So it wasn’t as good of an experience as it would typically be.

River tubing on Sok River, Khao Sok

4. Go bamboo rafting on the river

Khao Sok National Park is full of rivers and streams, and one of the more peaceful things you can do is go on a bamboo raft down the river.

You can organize the bamboo rafting through your accommodation or any travel agency in town.

Bamboo rafting on Sok River, Khao Sok National Park, Thailand

Please note that the water levels of rivers and streams in Khao Sok National Park depend on the season.

As our visit was in January, in the dry season, the water level was about 2 to 3 meters lower than what it can be in the more wet part of the year.

Bamboo rafting on Sok River, Khao Sok, Thailand

We went down the river for about 20 to 30 minutes and stopped on the side of the river for a short coffee or tea break. They served us coffee and tea from bamboo cups that you can take as souvenirs. And the cool thing was that they boiled the water in bamboo sticks above the fire.

Arijana Tkalcec with bamboo mug tea, Khao Sok National Park

And you could also jump in the river for a short swim, but as it was very shallow, we didn’t do it. 

While going down the river on the bamboo raft, you can also see some animals. We managed to see some pretty monkeys.

Long-tailed macaque monkey, Khao Sok National Park, Thailand

5. Go hiking and trekking

There are quite a few hiking trails around Khao Sok National Park that you can do.

Although you must know that some of these hiking trails are inside a protected area and require a ticket and sometimes even a guide.

Khlong Phanom National Park

Hikes in and around Khao Sok:

  • Ton Kloi Waterfall Hike
  • Hike to Kaew Cave
  • Khlong Pae Nature Trail
  • Rafflesia Hike
  • Bang Man Cave Hike

> Find all the best trails on AllTrails <

For guided trekking, you can find more information on what’s currently available at your accommodation or the park’s headquarters. And then choose between different itineraries.

Hiking in Khao Sok National Park, Thailand

We went for a 45-minute hike up a hill to explore the Kaew Cave.

Fun fact: The Kaew Cave is actually in the Khlong Phanom National Park, which borders the Khao Sok National Park. And you might visit that park without even knowing. Yes, there are a lot of national parks in Thailand .

Arijana Tkalcec in Kaew Cave, Khao Sok National Park, Thailand

6. Visit waterfalls

There are some nice waterfalls in Khao Sok National Park worth visiting, especially after more rain.

Here’s a list of waterfalls of Khao Sok National Park that people love:

  • Mai Yai Waterfall
  • Ton Kloi Waterfall (7km trail that passes by many other waterfalls)

We decided not to visit any as they were mostly dry during our visit. But we plan to return to Khao Sok National Park again in the wet period of the year.

7. Go swimming

While the river in Khao Sok is not the best place for actual swimming, you can swim in Cheow Lan Lake.

Use your chance at the lake to cool off in the water, which is not really cold.

Jumping into the water at Cheow Lan Lake of Khao Sok National Park

8. Find the biggest flower in the world 

Another cool thing you can do in Khao Sok National Park is to hike for 4 hours to find Rafflesia , the biggest flower in the world.

The Rafflesia flowering season in Khao Sok National Park is between November and April.

Rafflesia Flower in Khao Sok National Park

We didn’t manage to go on this hike, as we had limited time in Khao Sok.

9. Cooking class

If you’re interested in learning more about Thai cuisine and even how to cook it, you can join a Thai cooking class in Khao Sok Village.

And if you stay at Our Jungle Camp or Our Jungle House , they also have their own cooking class.

Cooking class at Our Jungle Camp

And we also found this interesting cooking class called Khao Sok Jungle Cooking on Cookly (the site with the best cooking classes).

Things not to do in Khao Sok National Park 

One of the things we would advise against doing in Khao Sok National Park or any location in Thailand is visiting any of the elephant, tiger, or other animal shows or so-called sanctuaries.

Just because a place has ‘sanctuary’ in its name, it doesn’t mean it is actually a sanctuary!

These are often not true sanctuaries as they employ morally questionable tactics to get elephants and other animals to perform for tourists. We have yet to find an actual elephant sanctuary in Thailand .

Please check what “elephant crushing” is on Wikipedia or YouTube; you will understand why we do not support elephant tourism.

If you want to see free-roaming elephants in the wild, you can see them around Cheow Lan Lake or in the Khao Yai National Park, about 3 hours from Bangkok.

Elephant walking in a river at Yok Don National Park

If you really need to visit an elephant sanctuary in Thailand , please avoid the ones that offer elephant rides. And yes, even bathing/washing with elephants is questionable!

Try to find the one where feeding the elephants is the only interaction offered and even that in small groups. Also, make sure to read the reviews on Google. Select the lowest rating to see why people dislike certain places – that’s how you can find questionable practices. 

If you’re arranging the tour with your accommodation, please ask them which sanctuary they are working with. And do YOUR OWN research.

Together we can help these elephants have a better life by not supporting bad practices. 🙂

Arijana Tkalčec working in Rosies cafe in Hoi An

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Can you visit Khao Sok without a tour?

There are things in Khao Sok National Park you can do without a tour, like going for a trek or tubing down the river.

But you need a tour to go to Cheow Lan Lake or the night jungle safari.

Kayaking on Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park

How much does the entrance ticket to Khao Sok National Park cost?

The entrance ticket to Khao Sok National Park costs 300 THB or $9 per day for a foreign adult and 150 THB or $4.5 per day for foreign children.

Tip : If you buy your ticket for the Khao Sok National Park after 16:30, you can visit the park the next day with the same ticket.

That’s what we did. We bought the ticket for our night safari and then the next day used it again on Cheow Lan Lake.

Entrance tickets for Khao Sok National Park

How expensive is a Khao Sok National Park trip?

Visiting Khao Sok National Park for a few days costs between 150 and 250 USD per person , which includes a night or two in Khao Sok Village, staying in a floating bungalow on Cheow Lan Lake , and some activities.

Note: Khao Sok National Park isn’t the most affordable destination because the national park fees and tour costs do add up.

There are, however, different accommodation options now in Khao Sok. So you can go the luxurious way or even stay in one of the hostels.

Some of the possible tickets:

  • Ticket for the Khao Sok National Park for activities like Jungle Night Safari and visiting Cheow Lan Lake (300 THB – 9 USD)
  • Hike to Kaew Cave (or similar) in the nearby Khlong Phanom National Park (200 THB – 6 USD)
  • Pier fees at Ratchaprapha Marina (20 THB)
  • Coral Cave visit on Cheow Lan Lake (200 THB – 6 USD)

For example, we visited on the 4 days 3 nights Khao Sok Active tour package from Our Jungle House , costing about 250 USD per person for 2 nights in a treehouse and an overnight trip to Cheow Lan Lake. 

Schedule

Click here to check Our Jungle House’s tour packages.

Khao Sok National Park Tours

The most common way for visitors to explore Khao Sok National Park is an organized pre-booked tour package.

The tours to Cheow Lan Lake usually include meals and activities like night and jungle safari, trekking, and checking out a cave or a hike to a viewpoint.

However, they might not include entrance fees, so make sure to check that.

Lunch at Cheow Lan Lake floating bungalows, Khao Sok National Park

While you can do a lot in Khao Sok National Park alone, organized tours will allow you to cover more ground and do it more effectively.

And there are plenty of daily tours to Khao Sok that offer various packages of bamboo rafting, jungle hiking, river tour, or even a sunset cruise on the lake.

A Khao Sok National Park day trip from Khao Lak costs between 70 and 110 USD , and a day trip from Phuket or Krabi costs between 100 and 150 USD.

Day trips from Khao Lak

There are more daily tours to Khao Sok from Khao Lak, as the driving distance is smaller, so you have a more extensive selection.

  • Full-Day Cheow Lan Lake Tour
  • Half-Day Sok River Bamboo Rafting
  • Khao Sok Jungle Hike & River Tour
  • Cheow Lan Lake Sunset Cruise with Drinks
  • Khao Sok Lake, Cave, & Emerald Pool

Multi-day trips from Khao Lak 

  • Khao Sok Overnight Treehouse Trip with Meals
  • 2-day Cheow Lan Lake & Wildlife Tour
  • Khao Sok Wildlife 2 Days (focused on seeing wildlife)

Trips from Krabi

  • One Day Tour Khao Sok Cheow Lan Lake
  • 2-Day Khao Sok Jungle Safari

Trips from Phuket

  • Khao Sok National Park Jungle Safari Full-Day Tour
  • Full-Day Private Tour to Khao Sok Highlights

Is the overnight stay at Cheow Lan Lake floating bungalows worth it?

An overnight stay at Cheow Lan Lake is absolutely worth it because it’s a very unique experience staying in a floating bungalow on this vast lake surrounded by high limestone cliffs.

Floating bungalows on Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park

And the top thing you can do on the lake is to take one of the kayaks and go around the beautiful lake a bit by yourself. That was the highlight of our lake experience.

Sunrise kayaking on Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park

It feels like you are on the seaside, and it reminded us a lot of Ha Long Bay in Vietnam. But you will notice that you’re not on the seaside when you jump in the water. And you do not float.

Kayaking on Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park

Overnight trips to Cheow Lan Lake include a few activities like a hike or morning/night safari. And it’s during the safari that you can see free-roaming elephants.

However, on our first day, we were told by our guide that elephants moved to higher ground. So we decided to skip it (they did not see them). But we heard them while we were kayaking!

Where to stay in Khao Sok National Park

Whether you’re looking for a budget-friendly hostel or a luxurious escape, Khao Sok National Park has something for everyone!

Floating bungalow on Cheow Lan Lake

The top choice for staying in Khao Sok National Park is a floating bungalow on Cheow Lan Lake .

Floating bungalows, Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park

The scenery is stunning, and while it does cost a bit of money, it’s really worth it. And especially if you decide to give yourself more free time there and especially if you stay two nights and not only one.

Floating bungalows on Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park

Please note that the bungalows at Cheow Lan Lake are pretty basic . Though clean, the beds aren’t the most comfortable, the bathrooms are shared, and the power supply is usually limited to 12 hours from 6 pm to 6 am.

But we didn’t mind the basic accommodation.

However, if you want a more comfortable stay, there are some luxurious floating bungalows on the lake , the most famous two being the 500 Rai Floating Resort and Panvaree Resort .

khao sok travel agency

Important: If you’re staying on Cheow Lan Lake longer and plan to explore some other parts of Khao Sok, for example, going on a night jungle safari next to the park’s headquarters, it would take a lot of time and money to get there.

This is because you would first need to get a boat ride back to the lake’s pier and then another ride of about 1 hour to Khao Sok Village.

So that’s why everyone stays both in the village and on the lake.

Staying in Khao Sok Village

The best place to stay to explore waterfalls, go on treks, do a night jungle safari, go tubing, kayaking, or rafting down the river is in Khao Sok Village.

And Khao Sok Village is also the location of the park’s headquarters.

Khao Sok village at night

Nowadays, there are many accommodations in Khao Sok Village. That’s different from how it was about 10 years ago when Khao Sok National Park was still a hidden gem.

Our Jungle Camp and Our Jungle House

We stayed one night in Our Jungle Camp and another in a treehouse at Our Jungle House .

Treehouse in the jungle at Our Jungle House, Khao Sok

We loved it there and plan to return for a few more days.

And we would especially love to return to stay at one of the treehouses at Our Jungle House . A forest of high trees surrounds all the treehouses, and you can hear the sounds of birds, monkeys, and crickets.

It’s the closest you can get to living in the rainforest. It’s simply stunning there!

Treehouse at Our Jungle House in Khao Sok

Right next to the property on the river, we also saw a mangrove snake and a big owl. And to our surprise, during our breakfast at Our Jungle House , a monkey stole some fruit from our plate.

River tubing on Sok River in Khao Sok

The properties are connected by road. But the best way to go between is on this beautiful nature trail next to the river that goes through the forest and a rubber plantation.

Even though they are close to one another, each property has its own restaurant. And we got served some delicious food in both.

Night at the restaurant of Our Jungle House, Khao Sok

We highly recommend staying at Our Jungle Camp and Our Jungle House, as they are the top properties in the area.

They focus on preserving as much of the nature around them as possible. And they give back to the community through many initiatives and eco-efforts.

Earth house at Our Jungle Camp in Khao Sok

Where to eat in Khao Sok

Nowadays, the Khao Sok Village is equipped with everything for a comfortable stay. So you can find about 20 restaurants with local Thai, Italian, and other cuisines.

All the restaurants are pretty much along the main road in the village leading toward the National Park’s headquarters.

On Cheow Lan Lake, all the floating bungalow accommodations have on-site restaurants, providing you with breakfast and lunch. Ours was basic but pretty tasty.

Breakfast on Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park

They also have options for vegetarians and vegans or other dietary requests. But just make sure to let them know in advance.

How long to stay in Khao Sok National Park?

For most travelers, two to three nights in Khao Sok National Park is enough to see and experience the main things. But staying for a few more days is recommended, as nature is just phenomenal.

Beautiful nature of Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park

Travel tips and packing list

While there are different seasons in Khao Sok National Park, the packing list is about the same for all seasons.

1. Prepare for water activities

You will likely partake in at least one water activity. So we recommend bringing your swimming suit and a towel for drying off later. Also, it’s always smart to bring clothes that you are okay with getting wet or that dry quickly.

When you’re going on the river for bamboo rafting, canoeing, or on the lake, it’s advisable to take a spare pair of clothes so you can change into if they (when) they get wet.

As we were around water a lot, especially on the lake, we had our waterproof bag to put all our valuables like our camera gear, drone , and money.

Our overnight trip to Cheow Lan Lake was organized through our accommodation at Khao Sok Village, so we left all the baggage we didn’t need with them. And we only took our waterproof bag and one smaller daypack .

2. Protect your skin

2.1. sunscreen.

For your trip to Cheow Lan Lake, we highly recommend sunscreen as it’s very likely that you will be sitting somewhere where there will be sun directly on you. And since the boat ride can be up to 40 minutes long, you can quickly get sunburned.

As always, we highly recommend taking a reef-safe sunscreen . And yes, even though there are no reefs or corals here, it’s a lake that we should preserve. And reef-safe sunscreens are the best choice.

Read more: Environmental effects of sunscreen (Wikipedia)

> Click here to see our recommended reef-safe sunscreen <

2.2. Bring mosquito repellent

Khao Sok National Park is located in the tropics, and you’ll be in and around the jungle and rainforest. So make sure to bring mosquito repellent (natural if possible).

But we were somehow lucky and had no real problems with mosquitos. And our stay in the village had an excellent mosquito net.

When we arrived at our floating bungalow on Cheow Lan Lake , they said there were no mosquitos on the floating platforms for some reason. We had no problems, but we might have just been lucky. In places like this in our home countries, there would be thousands of mosquitoes, and we would be eaten alive.

3. Take light, breathable clothing

We traveled to Khao Sok National Park with our favorite clothes from Unbound Merino , which were great because the material is warm but still thin and light to pack.

And the best thing is that all our clothing from them is breathable. And if we get wet, all pieces dry fast. Plus, the clothing doesn’t smell, even after wearing it many times. So we can reuse the clothes a lot before washing them.

TIP: Use code SHIPPEDAWAY for a special 10% discount at Unbound Merino .

4. Bring your camera

Remember to bring an action camera like a GoPro to take some cool photos and videos and not worry about it getting wet. Or simply take a waterproof phone case .

Bring at least one power bank to charge your phone or camera batteries if there is no power on the lake. And take a universal plug adapter , as you might need it once the power is on.

5. Other useful things to take

Make sure to bring sunglasses, as when the sun is out, the glare from the lake is powerful. And you will be squinting your eyes so much that your head will start hurting (talking from experience).

We also packed our trusted raincoats that fit a camera bag underneath. But we didn’t need to use them in the end.

And we took our reusable water bottles to refill them and did not rely on the small plastic bottles the whole time.

Finally, if you wish to do a lot of night wildlife watching, take a headlamp. However, you will be provided one by your tour guide on your Night Jungle Safari.

Is Khao Sok National Park safe to visit?

Khao Sok National Park is safe to visit for all travelers .

khao sok travel agency

Need reliable Thailand Travel Insurance?

No matter the general safety situation, we always advise getting travel insurance for trips outside your country. We’re happy to recommend Heymondo , offering affordable plans for your Thailand trip. And best of all, they have great reviews from previous travelers.

Tip: Shipped Away readers get 5% off

Is Khao Sok National Park worth visiting?

Khao Sok National Park exceeded our expectations and is worth visiting for all travelers , from young to old, families with children, and backpackers.

Bamboo raft to Coral Cave, Khao Sok National Park

We are so happy that we went to the Khao Sok National Park, as it was one of the best experiences we had in Thailand .

Longtail boat ride on Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park

Hopefully, our extensive guide has given you enough information to plan a fun visit to Khao Sok National Park.

And if we missed something and you have any questions, leave a comment. We will try to answer to the best of our knowledge.

And don’t forget to read our detailed article about the floating bungalows of Cheow Lan Lake.

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Everything You Need To Know About Visiting Khao Sok National Park

Boat trip across Cheow Lan Lake, Khao Sok National Park, Thailand

From what to pack and details about the accommodation, to the amazing activities on offer, read this before visiting Khao Sok National Park, Thailand. 

If you want to take in Thailand’s raw beauty, then a trip to Khao Sok National Park should be at the top of your list. With epic limestone cliffs, a bright emerald lake and a chance to get up close to wildlife, our time in Khao Sok was the highlight of our trip to Thailand. 

In all honesty, we had several dilemmas about whether to visit Khao Sok National Park on our recent holiday. We were only in Thailand for just over two weeks, and from our research it seemed like Khao Sok was awkward to get to. To really soak it up we’d need two or three days there, with some big travel days at either end. We wondered whether it was worth it, or whether we should skip it and enjoy our trip at a slower pace.

Spectacular scenery in Khao Sok National Park, Thailand

So what happened? Well… we went for it! The adventure won, and what an incredible adventure it turned out to be! I’m SOOOOOO happy we visited. Khao Sok is genuinely one of the most stunning places I’ve ever been on my travels. The colours, the landscapes, the rawness – it’s a very special place. It reminded me a little of another favourite – Raja Ampat (a.k.a Indonesia’s secret paradise!)

Incredible limestone mountains in Khao Sok National Park Thailand

When we were researching our trip, we had lots of questions and while there are lots of great posts around, I couldn’t find one that covered absolutely everything. So, that’s what I’ve attempted to do. I really hope you find this Khao Sok travel guide helpful. As always, if you have any questions, please leave a comment at the bottom of the post or send me an email. 

The Ultimate Guide To Khao Sok National Park, Thailand

How to get to khao sok national park.

The majority of people travel by minibus to the town of Khlong Sok. The small town has several guesthouses and hotels, perfect for travellers keen to explore the region. After spending a few days in Ao Nang, we booked onto a bus from Krabi, while others reached the area from Khao Lak or Surat Thani – the closest airport to Khao Sok National Park.

A week before arriving in Khlong Sok, we contacted our hotel to check there was availability for on the 2 day/1 night tour of Khao Sok. We reserved two spots and then paid on arrival. We knew the tour included a few boat trips, accommodation and meals, but there was a lack of detailed information on what to expect.

If you’d prefer to book your trip in advance, I’d recommend this Khao Sok tour which is available via GetYourGuide.

Khlong Sok village, Thailand

Information About The 2 Day / 1 Night Tour of Khao Sok National Park

The two day / one night tour is the most popular option for visitors wanting to explore Khao Sok National Park. It felt like the perfect amount of time to soak up what the park has to offer. It gives you the freedom to immerse yourself in the impressive scenery, enjoy a few activities and stay overnight in a floating bungalow. You can do day tours to Khao Sok, but I feel like you’d be missing a lot! 

How much does the 2 Day / 1 Night Tour of  Khao Sok National Park cost?

We booked the tour through our hotel in Khlong Sok. We researched a few options online, but as the rate seemed to be standard across all of the tour operators, we decided it’d be nice to support our hotel. That way, we could also chat to them to confirm all of the key information once we’d checked in. 

The Khao Sok tour includes all transport (bus from Khlong Sok and the boat over the lake), lunch and dinner on the first day, plus breakfast and a snack lunch on the second day. It also includes one night’s accommodation in floating bungalows on Cheow Lan Lake. In terms of activities it includes a few boat and cave tours while in the national park.

There’s usually a charge of 300 THB per person to enter Khao Sok National Park. This was included in our tour price, but this wasn’t the case for everyone in our group, so it’s something worth checking when you book.

Obviously, if you do decide to book in advance via GetYourGuide, you can check the prices of the tours here .

Beautiful views of Chow Lan Lake in Khao Sok National Park Thailand

What is the 2 Day / 1 Night Tour of  Khao Sok National Park ?

I should probably add a disclaimer here, that not all tours will be exactly the same, and where you visit and the accommodation your stay in will depend on your tour operator. However, from my pre-trip research, most of the trips sounded pretty similar to one another.

As a guide, here’s how our tour was structured:

Day 1 – Khao Sok National Park Tour Schedule

Morning: Pickups from Khlong Sok village. One hour drive to Ban Ta Khun.

Stop in Ban Ta Khun market area where you can buy items including snacks, drinks, waterproof bags, head torches and sandals. We were told it would be a good idea to stock up on snacks if you get hungry often, or spirits if you don’t drink beer (as that’s all that’s available for sale at the floating bungalows).

Items for sale in Ban Ta Khun Market

Short drive Ratchaprapa Dam for Cheow Lan pier, then board a boat to the floating bungalows. The boat trip accommodation took around 45 minutes.

Check into accommodation and then enjoy a group lunch in the main restaurant area. Food throughout the trip was great and included curries, fish, rice and vegetables.

Afternoon: 5 minute boat trip to the start of the jungle / cave hike.

2-3 hours hike through the jungle to Nam Talu Cave. Then an adventure through the cave (more on that below!) and then back to the boats.

Relax time at the floating bungalows before the night safari and dinner, with options of swimming and kayaking

Night safari to see wildlife and landscapes

Evening: Group dinner – again more great curry and fish, followed by drinks (optional!) and bed.

Day 2 – Khao Sok National Park Tour Schedule

Morning: Early morning boat trip

Breakfast – pancakes, fruit and coffee

Relax time before checkout with options of swimming and kayaking

Boat trip to Pra Kay Petch Cave to see stalagmites and stalagtites

Boat trip to see the scenery of Cheow Lan Lake including a stop at the three limestone hills (iconic view!)

Stop off at a beach on the lake for a picnic lunch of rice packs and fresh fruit before heading back to the pier and catching a transfer back to Khlong Sok village.

Who books the 2 Day / 1 Night Tour of  Khao Sok National Park ?

I loved how mixed the group was for our trip to Khao Sok. Our tour group consisted of 22 people, aged between 21 – 65. There were a mix of nationalities too, including English, Dutch, Australian, German, Russian and Ukrainian. We were travelling as a couple, but there were small groups of friends, a few other couples and a mother and daughter. The tour guide gave all instructions in English.

Boat trip in Khao Sok National Park, Thailand

Tell me more about the activities on the 2 Day / 1 Night Tour of  Khao Sok National Park…

In addition to the boat trips to get to and from our accommodation, our tour included two cave tours and two boat trips.

Nam Talu Cave Hike

The hike to the entrance of Nam Talu Cave took around an hour, and involved walking along paths carved through bamboo forests, and crossing several streams and rivers. The route is very pretty, and it wasn’t long before I felt fully immersed in the nature of the national park.

Nam Talu Cave hike, Khao Sok National Park

At the entrance of Nam Talu Cave, we were equipped with head torches, and everyone packed essential items into dry bags. The cave is 850m long, and the route through is a dark, wet one! We spotted bats, frogs and spiders along the journey.

While you don’t need to be at peak fitness levels, you do need to be open to adventures and happy to clamber, walk and swim! If you’re claustrophobic, scared of the dark or not confident in the water, I’d avoid this element of the trip. I wore a bikini and water shoes for the cave trek (more on what to pack below), as it was really wet!

It took around one hour to reach the other end of the cave, and although I found it challenging and a little scary at times, it was one of those rewarding travel experiences that I’m SO happy I did!

Nam Talu Cave hike, Khao Sok National Park

Pra Kay Petch Cave 

On day two we visited Pra Kay Petch Cave. This was a much more relaxed adventure. It took just 15 minutes to walk through the cave, and inside were a beautiful array of stalagmites and stalactites.

Pra Kay Petch Cave

Boat Safaris In Khao Sok National Park

We went on two longtail boat safaris – in the evening of the first day, and early morning the next day. They were described as safaris as there was a chance we’d see some incredible wildlife. We did! There were lots of monkeys playing by the shore, plus we saw a few beavers and plenty of birds. I wouldn’t say it’s the most wildlife-rich place I’ve ever been, but it’s always amazing to see animals in their natural habitats.

Monkeys on the shore of Cheow Lan Lake, Thailand

Other activities in Khao Sok National Park

No matter where you’re staying, you can enjoy regular jumps into the lake, along with plenty of swimming and kayaking. It was definitely a refreshing way to wake up and a wonderful way to take in the landscapes.

If you don’t fancy the longer trip, you can also book day trips like this one to Khao Sok , which include a bit of time kayaking.

Kayaking in Khao Sok National Park

Khao Sok National Park Packing List : Useful Items

If you’re planning to spend a few days in Khao Sok National Park, then the best thing to do is decant your essentials into an overnight bag, and store your main backpack or suitcase at your hotel in Khlong Sok.

In addition to basics like clothes and toiletries, here are a few items I’d recommend packing if possible:

Insect repellent – There are plenty of really good insect repellents like this one . If you’re travelling with kids you might want to buy a specific children’s insect repellent too.

insect repellent

Bite relief – I usually take an after bite / anti-itch cream like this , that helps to soothe any bites. I also swear by this amazing Bite Away Pen , which sends a small electric shock to the itchy part of the bite. It takes a bit of getting used to at first (and sometimes hurts a tiny bit), but it does work. I’ve done a full review of the item (as it goes everywhere with me!!) so feel free to read more here . 

Travel towel – A fast-drying microfibre towel like this one will come in handy in Khao Sok. These are great not only for when you fancy a swim, but also when you want to sit down on the ground or to wipe your sweaty face on a humid day!

microfibre towel

Sun cream – It’s important to apply suncream throughout the day. I’d recommend finding a brand which isn’t too heavy on chemicals, or is almost totally natural, like this one made by Sun Bum . 

sun bum sun cream

Sunglasses – It’s important to protect your eyes when you visit a holiday destination like this one. I’d recommend investing in some high-quality UV protected sunglasses. I’ve owned a pair of these Ray Bans for a few years now and love them!

Ray Ban

Sun hat – You’ll definitely want a sun hat to protect yourself on all of those sunny days!

sun hat

After sun or aloe vera – Don’t forget some soothing cream incase you do burn. I really like this one made by Ultrasun . It’s lightweight and feels lovely on your skin.

Ultrasun after sun

Rain jacket – Check the forecast before you go. There are occasionally sporadic rain showers. As you won’t need it for warmth, I’d recommend a lightweight waterproof jacket that packs down small. Something like this would be perfect.

lightweight womens waterproof jacket

Daypack backpack – I used a small backpack for day-to-day adventures, which could fit a water bottle, camera, sun cream and bug spray. If you’re looking for something nice and small, lightweight, water-resistant and that will fit all your essentials, I’d recommend this daypack . It’s got some very handy zip-up pockets too!

lightweight daypack backpack

Reusable water bottle   – I always recommend packing a reusable water bottle for travel. Even if you can’t drink the tap water, it means you can top up from giant bottles or water coolers rather than buying lots of plastic bottles. Personally I’d recommend the  Chilly’s water bottles . I’ve got a few in different sizes and they are excellent quality!

Chillys water bottles are great for travel

Power bank – I’d 100% recommend taking a portable battery pack with you as charging anything here is difficult! I have a few made by Anker and they’re great quality and have lasted for a long time. This is the one I’m using at the moment , which is really small (similar size to my phone) but stores lots of charge and has a fast charging capability. 

Plug adapter – I pack this universal travel adapter for all of my travels. It charges multiple items at once, using plugs or USB and can be used anywhere in the world. It’s one of my fave travel gadgets! You probably won’t be able to charge items in Khao Sok if you’re in a basic bungalow, but I’d still recommend one for your time in Thailand.

Dry bag – For this trip I bought a dry bag like this . It’s made from a thick plastic and is totally waterproof. It was especially useful for the cave trip! These dry bags are perfect for adventures on the water, visiting waterfalls, or if you think it’s going to rain heavily. I’d recommend a small one for your phone and camera gear, or a larger one if you want to use it as your main bag for an activity.

Dry bag

Waterproof phone case – Similarly, if you want to take your phone out and about in the water, I’d recommend getting a waterproof phone case. There are quite a few to choose from, but I’d recommend reading the reviews! You need this to protect your phone and be 100% watertight after all! I bought these Moko cases myself and my partner and they’ve been great. We’ve used them on several trips snorkelling and to waterfalls now, and no leaks!

waterproof phone case

Water shoes – These are essential for the cave trip, but you can hire them at the accommodation or buy in the market if you don’t want to get them in advance.

Head torch  – also available to hire or borrow in Khao Sok.

Padlock – the doors of the bungalows didn’t lock, so bring a padlock if you’re nervous about leaving any of your belongings unattended.

I’d also recommend charging everything before your trip e.g. camera batteries, kindle, phone.

Do you want to hear something funny about our trip? As we were heading to Surat Thani Airport straight after our tour, we arranged with the tour guides that we’d take all of our luggage on the trip, rather than decanting down to an overnight bag for the tour as most people do. There was a big misunderstanding, and when we arrived at the pier on the lake, we discovered our suitcases had been put in the tour operator’s office overnight. They thought we wanted them to take care of them! So we arrived at the floating bungalows without any essentials. No toothpaste, no change of clothes… just cameras, suncream, phones and what we were wearing! We managed, but it wasn’t ideal as you can imagine. If you’re planning to arrange something similar – check everyone understands the plan.

What are the floating bungalows like in Khao Sok National Park?

So here’s where my experience might vary from what you find. As we booked via our hotel in Khlong Sok, we didn’t know which raft house we’d be taken to on the Cheow Lan Lake. To be honest, I was expecting to rough it for a night in pretty basic accommodation, but I was a little surprised by just HOW basic it was.

Our floating bungalows in Khao Sok National Park, Thailand

Our bungalow had one big double mattress on the floor, with a mosquito net over it… and that was it. There were a couple of sheets, and a light outside, but that was it. It didn’t lock (hence why I mention a padlock might be useful if you’re worried about the security of any of your belongings). There was no fan, but we managed to sleep ok as the temperatures were more comfortable by the evening.

Interior of our floating bungalow in Khao Sok (Raft house)

The bathroom situation was a little tricky too. There were two on either side of the site, but to reach them you had to walk across floating planks and then clamber up the side of a hill. There were toilets and showers there, but water was cold. However, the food in the restaurant was flavoursome and plentiful. 

Some of the photos I saw of the accommodation on similar tours looked a little bit less basic, so take that into consideration. To be honest, I really didn’t mind any of it as it was only for one night, and the overall experience was totally incredible, so please don’t let what I’ve said put you off. Just lower your expectations for the accommodation!

Fresh fish for dinner in Khao Sok National Park

There are a few luxurious options on the lake, if you’re looking for somewhere with a few more amenities. 

Luxury places to stay in Khao Sok National Park (Cheow Lan Lake): 

500 Rai Floating Resort – The smartest option on the lake, rooms here come with AC and en-suite bathrooms. Some have outdoor jacuzzis, plus there’s a pool and restaurants on site. 

Panvaree Resort – Rooms here have proper beds, balconies, terraces, en-suite bathrooms, plus a TV and fridge. 

Overall thoughts on the two day / one night tour of Khao Sok National Park

WOW, wow and wow!! I think the photos speak for themselves, but this is such a stunning area of natural beauty – you just HAVE to visit if you get the chance. It’s not the easiest place to get to, it’s not the most luxurious of experiences, but as soon as you get there, you’ll realise you made the right decision. I absolutely loved it!

While some of my blog content is sponsored, our trip to Thailand was a holiday, and 100% funded by us! I’ve written about this experience because I felt so passionately about sharing it – I just couldn’t keep it to myself. Any questions, please leave them in the comments below or send me an email. 

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Visiting Khao Sok National Park, Thailand

Chloe Gunning

With a passion for food, fun and adventure, Chloe is the content creator behind one of the UK's top travel blogs Wanderlust Chloe. From volcano boarding in Nicaragua, to sailing around Sicily and eating her way around Japan, her travels have taken her to some of the coolest spots on the planet. Named Travel Influencer of the Year in 2022, Chloe regularly works with a number of tourism boards, producing inspirational travel content across multiple platforms. Find out more about Chloe here.

13 thoughts on “Everything You Need To Know About Visiting Khao Sok National Park”

Hi can you let me know from where did you book the package.? can you share me the link or name of the tour operator I am planning to visit Khao Sok in Feb 2020 will be staying at Ao Nang so also help me in way yo reach the village from Ao Nang

Hi there – I booked through Green Valley Resort where I was staying!

Thanks so much for this great post! So informative. I’ve been trying to figure out for the Nam Talu Cave tour if it’s possible for someone who doesn’t’ swim to go part of the way. How far along on the route is the area where someone would need to swim? And would it be ok if they stayed back while other people went ahead? Or do you think they could get across with a life vest? Thanks so much for any insights!

Thanks Monica! I wouldn’t risk going on it if you or someone in your party can’t swim. Water levels may vary a bit throughout the year but there was a little bit of swimming when I went, and I just worry that you wouldn’t enjoy it if you were worrying about it! I’m not totally sure if there’s an option to wear a life vest instead. A few of our group were claustraphobic or couldn’t swim, so stayed in the jungle area outside the cave. Personally, I’d skip the excursion in favour of some kayaking or something else, as it’s a longish activity to be waiting around for people, esp in a mozzie filled jungle!

Love your post and thank you, we want to do the same trip but we are staying in ao nang, and we’re looking to book the trip from here. As far as you are aware is it the same 2 day 1 night tour but we will just get the bus from (and back) to our ao nang hotel ? Kind regards Debra

Hi Debra, Thanks for your message! I actually started in Ao Nang, but it’s quite a long way to get to the nearest village to Khao Sok where the tours start from. After quite a bit of research we discovered the best option was to get a minibus to Khlong Sok, then start the 2 day / 1 night tour from there the next day. Ao Nang is pretty far so I don’t think it’d be easy to do in a shorter timeframe. Hope that helps – it’s worth the effort!

Thanks for the informative post! Just wondering a few things. What time did your tour end at on the second day? I’m just wondering if you stayed another night, or did you leave the same day for Surat Thani? We’re hoping to head to Ko Samui the same day, or is that too much travel do you think? Also, did you just book the tour with the hotel when you arrived?

Thanks a million, Maríosa

Hi Mariosa – hope I’m not too late replying. Our tour ended after lunchtime on the 2nd day. We got dropped in a nearby town to catch a bus, but most people headed back to the village where we started the tour from. I think it’s a lot to think about and plan, but it’s definitely possible to do back to back journeys. Just check all the times in advance as best you can. We booked the tour with the hotel before we arrived (via email) and then paid when we checked in. Hope that helps! Genuinely one of my fave places in the world so don’t miss it!

Hi, are there any ways I can book like this trip not with the Resort you were in? I’m just a backpacker. Thanks❤️

It’s best to go on a tour as the transport part can be tricky otherwise. You can try to arrange directly with one of the accommodations on the lake. They can then organise transport to pick you up.

Hello there, I know it’s 2023 but I was wondering if you could answer a question. If I wanted to stay three nights in Khlong Sok village and Khao Sok national park (one stop on my backpacking journey), should I book three nights at the hotel, and then book a 2D/1N tour OR should I book one night at a hotel, book the tour (which is one night) and then book another night back in Khlong Sok village. Basically what I’m trying to say is, is the your included in your ‘three night’ stay at the hotel, or are they separate I guess? – I’m very sorry if this is too confusing to understand, I’m just trying to budget as best as possible.

Also, whenever I seem to try and find hotels/places to stay around Khlong Sok village on google, all that comes up is Khoa Sok National Park accommodations in the lake. Is there a way around this, or do I need to just be more specific with my searches.

Thank you so much,

Hi Nye, Thanks for your message. I’m not sure I totally understand but when we visited we booked a hotel in Khlong Sok, then went on the 2D/1N tour as a separate arrangement. It wasn’t one of the nights included in the tour. If you’re struggling to find accommodation I’d recommend using Booking.com and dragging around the map to find Khlong Sok. Sometimes places don’t come up on their own, but you should be able to find it. I hope that helps! Chloe

I completely understand your question and wondering if you did end up booking 3nights or 1 night then tour then 1 night again? I’m in the process of planning my own trip.

Also thankyou for this post Chloe, very informative.

Cheers, Emily

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Travel Oasis

13 Epic Things To Do In Khao Sok National Park + Essential Travel Guide

khao sok travel agency

With ancient jungle dating back hundreds of millions of years, towering limestone karst cliffs and an abundance of wildlife, Khao Sok National Park is one destination in Thailand that you don’t want to miss. 

In this Khao Sok National Park travel guide, we’ll cover getting there, where to stay, what to do in Khao Sok and all of the other information you need to ensure you make the most out of your time in this magical little piece of paradise. 

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Table of Contents

Khao Sok National Park

Khao Sok National Park is Thailand’s largest protected park and covers 738 sq km. The park consists of thick native rainforest, waterfalls, majestic limestone cliffs and an island-studded lake.

Khao Sok is also incredibly biodiverse, home to an abundance of wildlife, including bears, tapirs, gibbons, marbled cats, and wild elephants and there are even rumours of a tiger.

While we can’t substantiate the tiger claims, we did see wild elephants and gibbons here (which was insane). Despite being relatively on the beaten path, this is still a wonderful destination, whether you opt for hanging out at Khao Sok Lake or go for something more active, like some Khao Sok hiking.

Heading to Bangkok? Check out our article on Bangkok’s Top 5 Coolest Neighbourhoods

When to Visit Khao Sok National Park

The best time to visit Khao Sok National Park is during the December – April dry season. During the June – October wet season, the Khao Sok hiking trails become very slippery and saturated with leeches.

If you’re willing to brave the rain and the leeches, the benefits include spectacular waterfalls and partaking in some adventurous things to do in Khao Sok such as tubing and kayaking. 

Where Is Khao Sok National Park? 

Khao Sok National Park is located in the southern province of Surat Thani. The park sits in between some of the most popular tourist destinations in the country such as Koh Samui and Phuket.

Read about a Thailand Vipassana Meditation Retreat in Surat Thani

Our Khao Sok guide pointing  to a large tree

Khao Sok Overview

There are 2 areas to Khao Sok:

  • Khao Sok National Park, including the rainforest, hiking trails and small village; and
  • Cheow Lan Lake (aka Khao Sok Lake), is a huge aquamarine-coloured reservoir surrounded by majestic limestone mountains.

The small tourist village is located not far from the main entrance of the national park and this is most likely where you’ll initially stay and get yourself organised. 

The village itself is a typical tourist village. There are a few small shops, lots of restaurants, guesthouses and travel agencies. It’s a good place to base yourself, but in itself doesn’t offer a lot of excitement. 

Cheow Lan Lake, the famous Khao Sok Lake studded with towering mountains and set up with floating bungalows, is 65 km away from the village. 

Read next: Chiang Dao: Northern Thailand’s Hidden Gem

How to Get To Khao Sok National Park

Being so close to some of Thailand’s most famous destinations, it’s easy to get to Khao Sok National Park. 

If you’re in Bangkok and need to get down south, the nearest airport is Surat Thani . For the cheapest flights, have a look on Skyscanner .

You can also take an overnight train from Bangkok to Surat Thani. Check fares here . 

Coming from Surat Thani, you can take public transportation to Khao Sok or arrange a minivan through a travel agency. 

To take public transportation, take any public bus going towards Takua Pa and explain that you would like to be dropped off for Khao Sok. It will cost between 120 – 250 THB. You will be dropped off on the highway, about 2 km from the national park. From there, you will have to either walk to your guesthouse, arrange transport, or grab a tuk-tuk for 50 – 100 THB. 

Alternatively, many travel agencies in Surat Thani have direct minivans to Khao Sok. It should take about 3 – 4 hours and cost around 400 THB. Most minivans will drop you off directly at your guesthouse if you let them know where you are staying. 

Coming from the Andaman Coast, take a Surat Thani-bound bus and explain that you would like to be dropped off at Khao Sok. You’ll also be dropped off on the highway. 

From Phuket, Krabi or any of the bigger destinations, you will be able to organise a direct ride via a travel agent easily. You can also very easily organise a tour of the main Khao Sok activities from these locations as well.

If you are coming from anywhere else, have a look at 12Go Asia . 

Khao Sok National Park Entrance Fees

Khao Sok is one of the most expensive national parks to visit in Thailand. Entrance fees are calculated on a per-day basis. For foreigners, it’s 300 THB a day. 

Boat floating long Cheow Lan Lake

Where to Stay in Khao Sok

There’s no shortage of places to stay in Khao Sok, ranging from basic hotels in the village to luxury resorts out of town. It’s also worth noting that camping is possible inside the national park itself.

Khao Sok Silver Cliff Resort 

Monkey Mansion Jungalows

We stayed here and couldn’t have been happier. Bastian, the owner, is so friendly and helpful. We feel like we made a genuine friend. The bungalows are immaculate and spacious. The food is delicious too! 

Khao Sok Jasmine Garden Resort

Overlooking the outdoor pool and the pleasant hills, each bungalow comes with air conditioning, wooden furniture, and a spacious terrace. 

What to Do in Khao Sok National Park

Hiking Through Khao Sok National Park with our Khao Sok Guide

Wondering what to do in Khao Sok National Park? Well, from Khao Sok hiking to tubing, to even searching for one of the world’s rarest flowers, there are plenty of things to do in Khao Sok National Park to keep you occupied for days.

Read: 12 Awesome Things To Do In Lampang + Ultimate Travel Guide

Khao Sok Hiking

Heading out on a Khao Sok hike is one of the most popular things to do in Khao Sok. There are a number of waterfall hikes you can do in Khao Sok National Park. Popular spots include the Ton Kloi Waterfall, Than Sawan Waterfall and Sip Et Chan Waterfall. 

However, if you like to hike independently, do know that you are technically only allowed to hike a short distance (around 3 km) into the park without a guide. Anything beyond this and you are meant to hire a guide (easily booked through the park headquarters or any guesthouse in town). 

That said, there are tons of maps online for various routes in the park (your best bet is AllTrails and maps.me ). If you’re independent and don’t mind getting a bit lost from time to time (the jungle does get pretty thick), you should be able to navigate these Khao Sok hikes on your own.

We went a bit further than we were supposed to, and we also saw many other people doing the same. It does not appear this 3 km rule is policed very strictly. 

Read next: Best of Thailand Off the Beaten Path

We hiked to the Ton Kloi waterfall. This waterfall exceeded our not-very-high expectations. There is a nice sunny spot with nice big flat rocks to lounge on and it’s a good place to take a dip. 

If you would like to do a guided Khao Sok hike, there are many, many options. These will be offered at every guesthouse in the vicinity, but here are some of the more popular ones. 

Khao Sok Hiking: Full-day guided Khao Sok Hike

There are multiple full-day guided Khao Sok hikes you can do that will take you deep into the Khao Sok jungle. You can expect to see multiple waterfalls and explore caves and river crossings. 

These cost between 1300 – 1900 THB per person, depending on group size and lunch is normally included. 

Khao Sok Hiking: Khao Sok Night Hike

Like all tropical forests, the real action in the Khao Sok jungle begins after dark. This is when the insects and small animals come out to feed, followed by the larger predators that hunt them.

The Khao Sok night hikes begin around 7.00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. and last for 2 – 2.5 hours. Bats, owls, sleeping monkeys, leaf insects, and stick insects are commonly seen, and if you’re lucky, snakes, frogs and tarantulas.

These treks cost 600 THB – 800 THB per person, depending on group size. 

Note: if you purchase a ticket to the national park after 16:30, you will be allowed to use the same ticket for the following day, so remember not to throw it away after the tour.

Khao Sok Hiking: Rafflesia trek

Flower in Khao Sok National Park

If you’re lucky enough to be in Khao Sok National Park for the Rafflesia’s blooming season, we highly recommend this Khao Sok hike.

The Rafflesia is the world’s largest, and one of the rarest, flowers. It only grows in a few select places on Earth and Khao Sok is the only place in Thailand where it grows. The blooming season is very limited and the flower only blooms once per year between December and March. There is no way to know exactly when the flower will bloom. Seek local advice to see if it is in bloom. 

Because the flower is only found on high mountain ridges, finding the flower requires a guide and a pretty intense jungle trek. We had to climb high up and deep into the jungle to find it. 

It was extraordinary. It felt very special to get to see something so rare in this world. Honestly, it’s one of the best things to do in Khao Sok because it’s so rare and special.

The flower itself is a parasite and must attract flies for pollination rather than bees. So, it smells like garbage. Trust me, I gave it a whiff, it does. 

Read: Chiang Mai Road Trip for more hiking opportunities in Northern Thailand

There are two primary locations for Khao Sok hikes to the Rafflesia.

The closest trailhead begins above the main village. It is part of the larger loop to the Tan Sawan Khao Sok waterfall . This Khao Sok hike requires a full day and covers nearly 7km.

The second trail begins at the Bang Man ranger station . This trail isn’t as long and only requires a half-day. However, the ranger station is 20 minutes from Khao Sok town and requires transport to reach.

Khao Sok Hiking: Tours

If you like your activities organised in advance, there are a million and one Khao Sok hiking tours that you can organise. From a full-day hiking and canoeing tour , to going deep into the jungle , to bamboo rafting , there’s a tour for you!

River Tubing

During the rainy season when the Sok River is higher, you can rent inner tubes and float down the river. This is a fun thing to do in Khao Sok if you find yourself there in the rainy season.

Duration: 1 – 1.5 hours

Cost: 400 – 500 THB per person

Canoeing is another great thing to do in Khao Sok and a great way to explore the river, relax and enjoy the scenery of Khao Sok National Park.

Keep your eyes peeled as monkeys, snakes, frogs and several bird species are regularly seen, making this trip a favourite for wildlife enthusiasts.

This tour can be booked on the day, starting from 8 am until the last possible tour at around 4:30 pm.

Cost: 800 THB per person

Bamboo rafting

What to do in Khao Sok when you’re feeling lazy? Float down the river on a traditional bamboo raft . You’ll have a guide who will spot wildlife for you. 

Duration: 2 hours

Cheow Lan Lake

Boat Trip Through Cheow Lan Lake

There’s no doubt about it: Cheow Lan Lake, is very, very nice and usually what people come to Khao Sok National Park to see. Towering limestone cliffs rise from turquoise water surrounded by jungle. It’s nothing short of stunning.

The lake was actually human-made and was formed when the government created the Ratchaprabha Dam. Villages were flooded (don’t worry, they were evacuated first) and now lie at the bottom of the lake. You can see evidence of what was lost by all the random trees that appear to be sprouting out in the middle of the lake.

The lake is what most people think of when they imagine Khao Sok, and usually their priority for visiting the park and, consequently, one of the biggest things to do in Khao Sok. 

Getting to Khao Sok Lake

There are three ways to get to Khao Sok’s Cheow Lan Lake: a day tour, an overnight tour or independently.

1. Day tour 

It’s possible to visit Khao Sok Lake as one long day tour. On this tour, you’ll take a minivan to the lake and then take a longtail boat ride to the floating bungalows. Once there, you can swim, relax or take a kayak out. 

After lunch, you’ll do some sort of jungle hike, either to a cave or waterfall. Then you’ll get another longtail boat ride back to the pier, where you’ll head back to the village. 

The whole day is 9 – 10 hours and costs 1500 THB per person and includes your transport to the lake and back, lunch and your longtail boat ride. 

This can be arranged through any travel agency or guesthouse in town. If you’re based elsewhere (i.e., Krabi), never fret – you can organise a tour from there .

2. Overnight tour

This is by far the most popular option, giving you more time to spend at the Khao Sok floating bungalows and to search for wildlife via boat. By staying overnight, you can do an early morning safari, when the chances of seeing wildlife are greater. 

You also get more freedom to choose which Khao Sok hike you want to do. You can either hike to the cave or to the viewpoint. 

This tour costs 2500 THB per person. 

It includes 4 meals (1 breakfast, 2 lunches, and 1 dinner), a Khao Sok Lake bungalow, transportation to and from the lake, morning and night boat safaris, and a 3-hour hike and cave trek.

This tour is widely available in Khao Sok and can be arranged through any travel agency or guesthouse in town. You shouldn’t need to book it too far in advance.

If you’re not staying in Khao Sok village but still want to visit Khao Sok Lake, you can organise a tour in advance .

If you want to stay longer at the lake, you can negotiate it directly when you book your tour. Tell them that you want to stay longer at the Khao Sok floating bungalow. You’ll be charged approximately 900 THB per day extra, which will include an extra night at the floating bungalows and 3 meals worth of food for one person. To get back, you will also have to hitch a boat ride out with other tours that are also leaving that day and they should charge you about 500 THB extra for the ride back to Khao Sok Village.

3. Independently 

Theoretically, you can visit Khao Sok Lake independently, but it’s a lot of logistics to organise and actually comes out to be more expensive. 

First, you’ll have to rent wheels in town to get to the lake. This will cost around 300 THB per day. The drive to the dam is easy and will take between 1 – 1.5 hours. 

Once at Khao Sok Lake, you need to hire a longtail boat driver. This should cost anywhere from 1500 THB – 2500 THB for the entire boat. 

Then, you still have to rent a bungalow. You’ll have to rent from the government-run bungalows, which are not that great and surprisingly expensive. These need to be booked in advance. 

If you want to explore the caves, hike to the Khao Sok viewpoint, or look for wildlife around the lake, there will be extra costs for those activities. 

And on top of that, you’ll have to pay for your food at a restaurant. 

It’s important to note that there are always more options as well. You can always choose longer tours on the lake, more luxurious options, or private options. Again, there are multiple places in town organising these. 

Interested in more wild locations in southern Thailand? Check out our Guide to Koh Tarutao

Our Khao Sok Lake recommendation

Our recommendation for Khao Sok Lake, and what we did, was the 2-day/1 night tour. 

If you’ve spent any time on this blog at all, you’ll know that we normally avoid tours at all costs and always choose to do our activities independently. But in this case, it just didn’t make sense nor was it practical. We would have spent more money, had substandard accommodation and probably an overall inferior experience. 

Overall, we had a good experience on our tour. We booked our tour through our guesthouse and we had full control over the activities we wanted to do – i.e., we got to choose what Khao Sok hike we wanted to do and which Khao Sok bungalow we wanted to stay at. 

We had time to enjoy the lake both at the bungalow (swimming) and take multiple cruises along the lake. It was on one of these cruises that we had the great fortune to see both gibbons and wild elephants, which was really magical. 

For additional information and bookings click here .

Pro tip: if your international card gets blocked when booking things on foreign websites, try using a Wise card . It’s what we do and it’s never let us down!

Mountains meeting the water in Khao Sok National Park - Khao Sok Guide

Activities At Cheow Lan Lake 

The main things you’ll do at the lake are swim, go on a wildlife safari and take a hike. 

There are two main Khao Sok hikes you can choose from at Khao Sok Lake. 

1. Khao Talu Cave Hike: Located a one-hour boat ride from the entrance to the lake, this is the most popular option for both day and overnight tours. You’ll trek through the jungle to the mouth of this cave. Then you can go inside the cave for a while. Note that the leeches in the jungle are pretty aggressive so be prepared. You will also be spending a lot of time walking through water, so waterproof shoes are handy. 

2. Kri Sorn Viewpoint Hike : This hike goes to the top of a vertical limestone mountain where you will be able to have a panoramic view of the beautiful glistering blue water of Cheow Lan lake and its surroundings. Plan for 4 hours to complete the hike. This option is less popular than the Khao Talu Cave hike. We have not done this hike, but it sounds incredible (if the weather is in your favour). 

Wildlife safari at Cheow Lan Lake

Due to the sheer number of wildlife living in the park, most trips around Khao Sok usually involve a wildlife safari. Many animals come to the water to drink, so cruising the shore at prime times (dusk and dawn) give good opportunities for wildlife viewing. 

We were fortunate enough to see both gibbons and wild elephants. 

Elephants in Swimming in Khao Sok Lake (Cheow Lan Lake), Khao Sok National Park.

Important things to note

There is no wifi or mobile reception at the lake. The Khao Sok floating bungalows are basic but comfortable.

Cheow Lan Lake is increasing in popularity. The result is more floating bungalows, more people, and more noise, particularly during weekends and Thai holidays.  Guests will find less peace and privacy than one might expect from a wilderness area.

Take home point: go to have fun, but don’t expect serenity. 

Considering travel insurance for your trip to Thailand? Shop for plans at SafetyWing

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12 Comments

It’s amazing that you saw elephants and gibbons! That would be unforgettable!

It was so unforgettable!

how wonderful, I would love to visit and stay on the lake…and it looks beautiful

We definitely recommend a stay on the lake! It’s a wonderful experience.

This is a super interesting article. It sounds like a fabulous place to visit and I would like to go there when I visit Thailand. Thank you for the great information.

Thanks for reading! It is a fabulous destination and we highly recommend a visit.

It looks like an amazing experience!

We really loved it. Would recommend to anyone visiting the south of Thailand.

What an adventure. Saving this!!

Cheow Lan Lake looks too beautiful.

Great article, exactly what I was loojing for.

Thanks Melissa, we’re so glad that you found it useful. Enjoy your time there!

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Travelling by car to Khao Sok (National Park)

Image: ThailandMagazine.com

HOW TO TRAVEL TO KHAO SOK?

The Romans once said “there are several roads that lead to Khao Sok” and these people were absolutely right! 😉 The village of Khao Sok, Khao Sok National Park and the Cheow Lan Lake (what it’s all about) are a few hours drive from the cities of Phuket, Krabi and Surat Thani. In this article we explain how to travel to Khao Sok.

Don’t miss the beautiful Khao Sok National Park when you go on holiday to Thailand!

YOU CAN ALSO BOOK A TOUR THROUGH THAILAND MAGAZINE You can also book a tour through us on the lake of Khao Sok (Cheow Lan Lake). There are many options available, overnight or just during the day but also in group or private. You can send us an email or contact us via Facebook or Instagram .

Use the table of contents to quickly find what you are looking for!

Khao Sok village

  • Cheow Lan Lake

Travel from Bangkok to Khao Sok by plane

Travel from bangkok to khao sok by train, travel from bangkok to khao sok by bus, travel from chiang mai to khao sok, travel from kanchanaburi to khao sok, travel from ayutthaya to khao sok, travel from phuket to khao sok, travel from khao lak to khao sok, travel from krabi to khao sok, travel from surat thani to khao sok (best option), travel from koh phangan to khao sok via surat thani, travel from koh samui to khao sok via surat thani, travel from koh tao to khao sok via surat thani, from khao sok bus stop to the center or accommodation in the village.

Khao Sok is a small village on the edge of Khao Sok National Park. This large national park consists of beautiful jungle and the area is over 160 million years old. Besides the jungle, the area also consists of the Cheow Lan Lake, a huge man made water reservoir. Cheow Lan Lake is about an hour’s drive from the village of Khao Sok. That’s why many people spend the night in this small but nice village.

Many people first stay one or two nights in Khao Sok and then go to the Cheow Lan Lake for a day trip or multi-day tour. After the lake visit you can (in some cases) travel right on to your next destination, but you also can choose to sleep one more night in Khao Sok and travel on the next day. There are also a lot of nice tours in and around the park. Khao Sok has quite a few hotels, hostels and even some luxury resorts and good restaurants.

SUPPORT US We put a lot of time, money and passion in this site… We would love it if you would support us! You can easily do this by using our links on the site to book your hotel and / or domestic trips. It costs you nothing extra but we get a small percentage of our partners like Booking.com , Agoda and 12GoAsia . Even if you decide to book another place to sleep than we mention, if you first click on our link you will already help us. You can also first click on the links in this box to book something (not only in Thailand but anywhere else in the world).  Thank you in advance!

Khao Sok Village

Khao Sok village | Image: ThailandMagazine.com

When a lot of people say Khao Sok they often they mean the Cheow Lan Lake which is an hour’s drive away. Cheow Lan Lake is an immense blue-green man-made reservoir. Thanks to the Ratchaprapha dam tens of thousands of people have electricity in the meadow area. Think about it when you turn on the light switch in your hotel room in Khao Sok… Around Cheow Lan Lake, giant limestone rock formations tower into the sky, covered in an oasis of lush green jungle. An unique world where numerous life flourishes, grows and lives. With a lot of luck you will see wild elephants and with a lot of bad luck a tiger! There are also many species of monkeys that you can see and hear here regularly, as well as the many special birds that spend the day here whistling in the air.

TIP! Stay at least one night in a floating cottage on the Cheow Lan Lake. There are different types of cottages from very basic to luxury.  Read all about the beautiful lake in our extensive article.

The pier of Cheow Lan Lake in the Khao Sok National Pak

Cheow Lan Lake | Image: ThailandMagazine.com

The fastest way to travel from Bangkok to Khao Sok is by plane. From both Don Mueang Airport (DMK) and Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK) there are several daily flights to the nearest cities Surat Thani, Krabi and Phuket. From all three cities it’s about a 1.5 hour flight. The cheapest plane ticket we ever found costs € 35,- per person including 15 kg luggage. This was from Bangkok to Surat Thani with Air Asia. Usually the prices to Krabi and Phuket do not differ much. How to travel from the different airports to Khao Sok can be read further on in the article.

If you want to know what a plane ticket costs, check the tool below which allows you to view and compare your flight tickets through Skyscanner.

If you prefer not to travel by plane or there is no good plane ticket available anymore, then you can considering traveling by (night) train from Bangkok to Surat Thani . This will take about 12 hours and the train ticket will cost you around € 25,- per person.

Despite the fact that the train journey from Bangkok to Surat Thani is quite a long ride, we really enjoyed it! Traveling by night train is quite an adventure in itself and you will have to do this at least once when you travel in Thailand! An additional advantage of travelling by night train is that you save one night in a hotel! You can spend that amount of money in Khao Sok or on Cheow Lan Lake! Once arrived in Surat Thani there are several possibilities to travel on to Khao Sok, these are described here .

Prices and departure times of trains from Bangkok to Surat Thani

We always book our train ticket in advance via 12GoAsia. This company has never disappointed us and we have regularly used their services in Thailand. By the way, they have a very good customer service! For example the time we wanted to rebook tickets or they helped us find a sold out train ticket. Using the form below you can see which trains depart from Bangkok to Surat Thani for example. Fill in the departure point and check what time the trains leave, how long the journey takes and what the ticket price costs. Super handy!

The second class of the night train to Surat Thani

Travel with the sleeper (night) train in Thailand | Image: ThailandMagazine.com

The cheapest and miraculously faster-than by-train-way is travelling by bus from Bangkok to Khao Sok. This takes between 10 and 11 hours (depending on the traffic on the road) and you can buy a bus ticket from € 16,- per person. You will then depart from the southern bus terminal Sai Tai Mai in Bangkok. Keep in mind that you still need to be able to get here.

If you first make a trip through the north of Thailand, for example in the region of Chiang Mai, you can also fly directly from Chiang Mai to Surat Thani, Krabi or Phuket. We recommend a flight to Surat Thani but maybe you first want to explore the surroundings of Krabi or Phuket. Of course that is also possible. Further on in this article you will read how to travel from these destinations to Khao Sok in the easiest way.

Inside the airport of Chiang Mai

Chiang Mai Airport | Image: ThailandMagazine.com

If you first want to explore the surroundings of Kanchanaburi, such as the bridge over the River Kwai and/or the Erawan Falls and then want to travel on to Khao Sok, it is wise to travel to Bangkok first. And after that you can travel from Bangkok to Khao Sok. See below what your best option is via 12GoAsia.

What applies to Kanchanaburi also applies to Ayutthaya. First you travel to Bangkok and then from Bangkok to Surat Thani, Phuket or Krabi.

YUMMY! At the airports of Bangkok and Phuket you will find The Coffee Club, one of our favorite coffee shops in Thailand!

The Coffee Club at DMK Airport Bangkok

The Coffee Club at DMK Airport (Bangkok) | Image: ThailandMagazine.com

If you choose to travel from Phuket to Khao Sok, you’ll be between two and four hours on your way. This of course depends on the type of transport, the hustle and bustle on the road and how many stops you have to make. Below we will explain you what transport options are available.

By bus from Phuket Town to Khao Sok

From the bus station in the city of Phuket there is a public bus to Khao Sok for 160 baht (around € 5.50) per person. Tickets can be bought at the station itself. Keep in mind that you are about 4 hours away. The bus, with its final destination Surat Thani, also stops in the places Khao Lak and Takua Pa. From 7 AM till 3 PM there is a bus every hour from Phuket to Khao Sok.

By bus from Phuket Airport to Khao Sok

From Phuket airport to Khao Sok you are 4 to 5 hours on the road, the price in total is 210 baht (around € 6,-). Unfortunately the busses don’t leave at the airport itself but at the police station about 10 km from the airport. From the airport you take the bus to Phuket Town, but you have to get off earlier. Tell the bus driver you want to get off at the bus stop to Khao Sok (near the highway police station). The cost to travel from Phuket Airport to this stop is 50 baht (around € 1,50). Then you change to the local bus that goes to Khao Sok for a price of 160 baht (around € 5.50). However, keep in mind that this bus also makes a number of other stops.

With a shared minivan or taxi from Phuket to Khao Sok

Also from your location in Phuket Town you can arrange your own transport, but it’s a lot easier to book in advance via 12GoAsia. For a taxi or minivan you pay an average of € 100,- in total. A minivan fits eight people and a taxi fits four, provided you don’t carry too much luggage of course. The cheapest way is to make sure your minivan or taxi is as full as possible, so you share the cost of the ride to Khao Sok. Add yourself to our public Facebook group Phuket in Thailand where you can make a call to travel together and share the costs. The ride will take about 3 hours depending on the traffic. Via the widget below you can see what your costs are and what possibilities there are with regard to minivan or taxi.

Rent a car in Phuket and drive to Khao Sok yourself

Of course you can also choose to rent a car yourself and drive from Phuket to Khao Sok. There are two possible routes you can take, the fast route that takes about three hours to get to Khao San and the scenic route that takes half an hour longer. There are numerous car rental companies at the airport and in Phuket Town. You can rent a car somewhere else on the island as well, there are many rental locations at the island of Phuket. You can get more information about the possibilities and prices via the tool below.

Phuket International Airport

Phuket Airport | Image: [email protected] (Flickr)

The public bus that leaves from Phuket Town also passes Khao Lak, from here it is another two hours drive. For a journey by bus from Khao Lak to Khao Sok you will lose 120 baht. Of course you can also choose, especially if you are with a group, to book your own minivan or taxi. Assume 50 euro for a two hour ride for a taxi and a minivan that can take nine people will be a tenner more expensive. More info via our 12GoAsia link .

It’s also possible to travel from Krabi to Khao Sok. We do advise you to make sure you are in Ao Nang or Krabi Town before you travel to Khao Sok. For example, stay a few nights in the beautiful Railay and/or the lively Ao Nang before you leave for Khao Sok. If you want to travel directly from Krabi airport to Khao Sok, you will need to travel to the bus station in Krabi Town first. A taxi costs no more than 400 baht and you’ll be at the bus station in fifteen minutes.

Travel with a shared minivan from Krabi Town to Khao Sok 

From Krabi Town from on 10:30 AM shared minivans leave for Khao Sok. The travel time here will also be between four and five hours with a higher chance of arriving in Khao Sok earlier than via Ao Nang. The price for this ride will be the same as from Ao Nang, namely about € 10,- per person.

Travel with a shared minivan from Ao Nang to Khao Sok

From Ao Nang you can travel to Khao Sok from 10:00 AM. The travel time is between four and five hours, you pay approximately € 10,- per person. More information can be found via the 12GoAsia widget below.

Travel to Khao Sok by taxi from Krabi Town, Ao Nang or Krabi Airport

The costs for a private taxi to Khao Sok are on average € 90, -. Of course this depends on the place of departure and whether you want to rent a car or minivan. You are on average 3 hours on the road. If you want to save costs you can make a call to the public Krabi Facebook group , to travel together.

Rent a car in Krabi and drive to Khao Sok yourself

At the airport of Krabi, in Krabi Town and Ao Nang you can easily rent a car with which you can drive to Khao Sok yourself. It’s a great adventure but don’t forget to drive on the left… Depending on your departure point and how fast you drive you will arrive in Khao Sok in about three hours. The route from Krabi Town can be found here . Via that link you can also fill in another departure point. Looking for a rental car? With the widget below you can see what the possibilities and prices are if you want to rent a car yourself.

Krabi Airport

Surat Thani is a frequently used place to travel from to Khao Sok. You can make a stop there by plane if you come from Chiang Mai or Bangkok, for example. But also the ferry from Koh Samui and Koh Phangan stops here. And finally you can also travel from the train station to Khao Sok if you came by (night) train.

Travelling from Surat Thani Airport to Khao Sok

Personally we think flying from Bangkok to Surat Thani is the easiest, fastest and also the best option. The flight takes about an hour and a half. From the airport of Surat Thani (URT) you can be in Khao Sok with a shared minivan from Phantip in two or two and a half hours. A ticket costs € 11,- and can be ordered via the tool below. If you order a ticket via 12GoAsia, please report to the Phantip desk in the arrival hall, from that moment everything will be arranged for you.

PLEASE NOTE! From Surat Thani airport we won advise you to take the public bus to Khao Sok. This will take you unnecessarily long and will only save you a few euros in the end. Time is also money so just take the shared minivan as described below if your budget allows it.

By sleeper (night) train to Surat Thani and to Khao Sok with shared minivan

If you arrive in Surat Thani by (night) train you can choose to travel to Khao Sok with a shared minivan from the train station. The last minivan leaves at 4:30 PM but keep in mind that it can be full. Then it’s not a bad idea to book a shared minivan. The journey from Surat Thani train station to Khao Sok takes 2,5 hours and costs € 6,-. You can book using the form below.

Travel by bus from Surat Thani to Khao Sok

The public bus that leaves Phuket has its final destination Surat Thani, this means that it also travels the same way back and passes Khao Sok. The public bus leaves from the train station and the bus station in Surat Thani. From the train station a bus departs between 7 AM and 3 PM every hour, a quarter of an hour later it arrives at the Surat Thani bus station, where you can also get on. A bus ticket costs 120 baht per person and the public bus takes about three hours to Khao Sok.

Mini van from Surat Thani Airport to Khao Sok Village

With a shared minivan from Surat Thani to Khao Sok | Image: ThailandMagazine.com

Rent a car in Surat Thani and drive to Khao Sok yourself.

With regard to rent a car in Surat Thani, the same applies as for Krabi and Phuket. Also here you can easily rent a car at various locations and drive to Khao Sok yourself. The trip will not take more than 3 hours but take it easy and enjoy the beautiful surroundings.  View the route from the airport of Surat Thani to Khao Sok here . You can easily change the departure point via our link in Google Maps. Have a good trip!

From the (party) island of Koh Phangan the easiest way to travel is via Surat Thani to Khao Sok. It’s not fast because the journey takes 7 to 8 hours. First you take the ferry to Surat Thani which takes at least 4 hours to travel and then you have to go from Surat Thani to Khao Sok. Via the tool below of 12GoAsia you can easily book the entire trip in once that brings you from Koh Phangan all the way to Khao Sok. The total price per person varies between 15 and 25 euro (depending on which ferry you choose). Via the link you can also find more information about the exact departure times and costs.

The ferry from Koh Phangan to Surat Thani first stops at Koh Samui. The travel time is a bit shorter (1 to 2 hours) compared to the trip from Koh Phangan but otherwise the same. You can buy your tickets at the pier or a local travel agency. If you would like to book your trip in advance you can use the widget below, first check the prices and travel times can also be done using the form below.

Ferry from Surat Thani to Koh Samui

Ferry to Surat Thani | Image: Fabio Achilli (Flickr)

If you want to travel from Koh Tao to Khao Sok you take the same ferry to Surat Thani as Koh Phangan and Koh Samui. On these two islands a stop will be made first to drop off passengers or let them on board. After that you can continue to Khao Sok as explained above.  The price varies between € 25,- and € 40,- . The travel time is between 7 and 10 hours. The travel time depends on the ferry company you choose. Our advice, leave as early as possible so you do not arrive too late in Khao Sok.

Unfortunately the regular busses and even regularly the shared minivans don’t drop you off in the center of Khao Sok but at the edge of the village. You’ll have to take a taxi from a local. For 100 baht per person you will be dropped off at your hotel, resort or hostel in Khao Sok village. Of course you can also check if someone from your accommodation can come and pick you up, sometimes this is a service from the hotel.

TIP! Do you have any questions about the trip to Khao Sok or about Khao Sok and Cheow Lan Lake or do you want to know more about the park or lake? Join our special Khao Sok in Thailand Facebook group . Here you can ask questions about Khao Sok and surroundings and share information with each other. You may also be able to save costs by arranging transportation together.

The bus station in the village of Khao Sok

Bus stop at the edge of Khao Sok village | Image: ThailandMagazine.com

Hotels and other fun things to do in and around Khao Sok can be found in the info box below!

Food & Beverages

If you want to read more about these locations check out our article about the (according to us) best hotels in Khao Sok.

  • Khao Sok Secret Hostel
  • Khao Sok Palm View Resort
  • Khao Sok Mornig Mist Resort TIP!
  • Khao Sok Cabana Resort
  • Baan Khao Sok Resort
  • Our Jungle House TIP!
  • Our Jungle Camp – Eco Resort
  • Khao Sok Nature Resort
  • Montania Lifestyle Hotel TIP!
  • Tanoshi Glamping

If you want to read more about these locations check out our article about the (according to us) best restaurants in Khao Sok.

  • Pawn’s Restaurant Our personal favorite! Try the Massaman curry here and you’ll see why!
  • The 99 km Coffee House Khao Sok Maybe the best coffee from Khao Sok! Wake up with the phenomenal view this coffee shop has to offer!
  • Bamboo Bistro Khao Sok Bamboo Bistro is run by a very friendly man who speaks very good English, let’s put it this way, his English is as good as his dishes – very good!
  • Chao Italian Ristorante and Thai Food For pizza you have to be at Chao’s! This restaurant is also known by locals for having the best pizza! Ciao bella ciao!
  • Wind Song Bar & Restaurant Top place for a snack and a drink like the delicious cocktails they serve here. That sounds like music to our ears!
  • The Misty Restaurant This restaurant belongs to the Khao Sok Morning Mist Resort. Looking for good food in a restaurant with an amazing view of the limestone cliffs of Khao Sok go along Misty!

More information about Khao Sok and the beautiful surroundings:

  • The best tours in Khao Sok
  • Khao Sok weather
  • Our Jungle House
  • Khao Sok Morning Mist Resort

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