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Updated by Joanna James on Jul 13, 2018
Headline for Things you should know about Ang Thong Marine Park - For Nature and Adventure Enthusiasts
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Joanna James Joanna James
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Things you should know about Ang Thong Marine Park - For Nature and Adventure Enthusiasts

A beautiful seascape that comprises of white sandy beaches, lagoons, cliffs, caves and wildlife that is an ideal island getaway for nature lovers. Here is a list of things you ought to know.

1

The place

'Ang Thong' when translated into English means 'Bowl of Gold'. The Ang Thong National Marine Park is made up of 42 limestone islands that comprise of white sandy beaches surrounded by shallow water, an evergreen forest that is all begging to be explored. It cannot get more tropical than this. It is situated less than 40 km from the coast of Koh Phangan; almost only an hour away from the Anantara Rasananda Koh Phangan Villas in a speedboat. In the 1980s, the park gained its status as protected. The whole view is very postcard-worthy. It is important to note that the park is closed the whole of November and the first 3 weeks of December. Park rangers control access to the park and there is an entrance fee of not more than 500 Baht per person for all non-Thai visitors.

2

Snorkelling at Koh Talap

There is an abundance of underwater life that appeals to enthusiastic snorkelers and divers. The northern islands are an ideal site for snorkelling as the depth of the sea is about 10m. The best seasons to visit here would be during March or April as the visibility is at its optimum.

3

Kayaking at Koh Wua Ta Lap

You could go kayaking to explore the island and its natural coves.

4

The Emerald Lagoon in Ko Mae Ko

As the name suggests, this lagoon is bright green in colour. It is interesting to know that it was initially covered by a limestone roof and over a span of 1000 years, the roof was subjected to erosion by rainwater thus leading it to collapse and exposing the lagoon. This lagoon is meant only for the eyes; no swimming or snorkelling is allowed! The water surface is so smooth and calm that it looks like a sheet of glass; for a better view of the lagoon, climb the stairs. The climb isn't as strenuous and takes about 40 minutes up and down.

5

Wildlife spotting

There about 16 mammals, 14 reptile, and 50 bird species in the island. The dusky leaf monkey, leopard cat, smooth-coated otters can be spotted frequently. You could also spot the white-bellied sea eagle soaring across the island and other birds like the collared kingfisher and oriental pied hornbill, to name a few.

6

Wua Ta Lap viewpoint

This is about, a 500m quite steep trail from the main headquarters in the island which takes about half an hour to climb. There are ropes for support and is for the adventurer in you. There are 3 levels of viewpoints. Once at the top, you are blessed with a remarkable panoramic view of the islands and the marine park.

7

Bua Bok Cave

Only a kilometre of hiking distance away from the headquarters, is a cave that has stalagmite and stalactite formations.

8

Meet sea gipsies in Koh Paluay

Out of all the 42 islands, only 1 island is inhabited by a permanent community of sea gipsies who get by with their living via traditional fishing methods.

9

Accommodation

There are lodgings like bungalows and cottages available in the park itself, right where the headquarters are. One could also choose to camp if they wish or stay at one of the Koh Phangan villas and take a ferry to the park.

10

Tours

One could choose between private boat or luxury yacht tours or group boat tours depending on the budget. A full-day guided tour usually lasts for about 8 hours and most of them include the entrance fee to the parks in their cost.