Koh Kradan Beach (Paradise beach)
Thailand is well known for its beautiful beaches and to some extent this has meant that many of the most amazing beaches are now over-crowded and heavily commercialised. However, you don’t have to go to far off the beaten track to still find a pristine gem and the island of Koh Kradan is home to just such a beach.This stunning stretch of powdery white sand remain a relative haven despite being only a few kilometres off the mainland.
Ko Kradan is one of the Trang Islands, a group of around 40 large and small islands which form a major part of the Hat Chao Mai national park. Of all these islands and islets Koh Kradan is perhaps the most beautiful and largely unspoilt. Despite only being a couple of hours south of Phuket and even closer to Koh Phi Phi, Koh Kradan is a world apart, sharing all the natural beauty but without the crowds and noise.
The waters of the Andaman Sea which surround the island are relatively sheltered and shallow, which means they are always warm i.e. ideal for swimming. On top of that they are crystal clear making for some excellent snorkelling in the protected waters. One thing to note though is the water is very shallow here at low tide and you’ll have to paddle quite a way before it’s deep enough to swim properly.
For those feeling particularly energetic there is a popular kayak route around the island which can be completed in less than 3 hours, even at a leisurely pace.
For those looking to just relax and soak up the sun and calm Koh Kradan is perfect. There are numerous hammocks suspended between the palm trees that fringe the beach.
The main beach at Koh Kradan is the aptly named east facing Paradise beach. However there is another, equally appropriately named, beach on the other coast. Easily reachable by a short trail through the forest is Sunset beach where you can enjoy a peaceful view of the sun setting over the Andaman Sea.
Getting to Ko Kradan involves taking one of the ubiquitous long-tailed boats and these are available from several locations on the mainland or many of the other islands. If you are planning on staying on the island there are several small resorts ranging from the upmarket but basic “flash-packer” style accommodation up to luxury beach bungalows.
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