Still hunting for beaches that you don’t have to share with fellow travelers, like the one in Koh Lung Ga Jiew?
The ticket touts promise you the moon, showing you leaflets of picture-postcard islands. But now that Thailand has reopened to vaccinated travelers, the beaches will be crowded again, sooner or later.
Koh Lung Ga Jiew, however, is one of those still little-known islands that Thailand has to offer. Here’s how to get there and what the island is like.
A Piece of Paradise off the Coast of Chumphon
To get to Koh Lung Ga Jiew, you can hire a fisherman. The receptionists of Magic House, a hotel within walking distance of Chumphon’s pier, will be able to help break the language barrier.
Koh Lung Ga Jiew lies just eight kilometers off Chumphon’s coast in the Gulf of Thailand, some 380 kilometers north of Phuket.
Wading through the water with your flip flops in hand, you can jump into the longtail boat. Once the captain has fired up the engine, he’ll steer his boat across Chumphon’s seascape dotted with little specks of land reminiscent of the Similan Islands, an archipelago in Thailand’s Andaman Sea.
This Is What Koh Lung Ga Jiew Is Like
Koh Lung Ga Jiew, an islet with three white beaches surrounded by turquoise waters, is devoid of people even in the peak season. Leaves of coconut trees sway in the wind as you arrive, and a handful of dilapidated, abandoned bamboo shacks will catch your eye. One of which is snuggled into a rock, peeping down the cliff.
The boat’s owner will drop the anchor and show you photos of colorful fishes swimming through white, aquatic plants. You’ll be eager to jump into the translucent water before the guy has even pointed to the rock in front of the island, offering you snorkeling gear.
Taking the plunge, you’ll be rewarded with the sight of Staghorn corals that look like brown sets of deer antlers, and massive brown, arched stones that seem to have been formed by the sea’s surf. And schools of bright yellow fish will encircle you, checking if you’ve brought food. A shoal of silvery trumpet fish might greet you as you head for the beach.
Stepping on the pebbles as you get out of the water, listening to the waves washing ashore, you can’t help staring at the soft white sands.
You might meet some locals lingering on the island, lounging in hammocks, smoking. You can join them and have a chat or soak up the setting, taking in the fresh, salty breeze. You can sit down, sink your toes into the warm, powdery grains, and listen to the waves rolling gently up the sand, lapping your feet.