For 2014

2 September

Koh Chang island guide

Phuket & Hua Hin have being getting all the press recently as far as Junta cleanups of undesirable beach restaurants, illegal buildings etc go.  But there has been some low key action taken on Koh Chang which hasn’t been mentioned in any English language news, but has been featured on the Thai news.   The most recent was the army inspecting title deeds relating to the large prawn farm in Salakkok and Tantawan Resort in the south east of the island.  Both owned by the same person, who’s resort in Kai Bae was also investigated in the past for encroaching on National Park land and having an illegally built suspension bridge.   The prawn farm was in the news a decade ago when National Park officials expressed their surprise at title deeds could be issued for what was previously mangrove swamp.  Tantawan Resort is an odd place in that it never seems to have any guests or staff – due to the remote location and only easy access being by 4×4 or boat.  Previously it was a much smaller resort with basic huts over the water.

There’s a video of one of the lengthy news reports on the dodgy title deeds here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qLpfBRW8enQ

I added a page with some Google Earth comparisons of how the island has changed in the past decade, the photo below shows the changes in the south east of Koh Chang.  Click for the larger image.

Here’s an interesting place . . . a mysterious freshwater pool complete with its own with waterfall, hidden away in Klong Son valley.  If you’re thinking of trying to find it, expect snakes too.

After a very wet July, August turned out to be a very good month to be taking a holiday on the island.  There were three weeks or so of excellent weather with some beautiful sunny days interspersed with cooler, cloudier but rain free days.   That’s ended now and we’re back in typical rainy season mode – with overnight and early morning rain followed by grey skies with the sun occasionally peeking through.   But when the sun did shine, it was glorious.  No people.  No traffic.  The ideal day to get out on the scooter and enjoy the island.

As mentioned in the past, I’ve seen some good drone videos taken on Koh Chang ( and elsewhere ) and having an eye in the sky really does open up a whole new world of possibilities, especially for a travel site.  With that in mind, I decided to take the plunge and get my own drone.  For anyone who’s interested, it’s a Phantom 2 Vision +.  A couple of photos and video below.  Unfortunately the weather isn’t great, so no opportunity to add more pics at this stage.  I also need to spend more time learning how to fly it properly and how to make videos.  These will have to wait until October when I’m back from holiday.

More of this in the coming High Season.  I’m off on holiday now for a month, so next update will be some time in mid-October.

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