Beautiful islands

KOH MAK

information

THE ISLAND

Ko Mak (often also written Ko Maak), the betel nut island, is the third largest island of the province of Trat after Ko Chang and Ko Kood. The island, resembles a shamrock in shape, lies about 350 kilometres southeast of Bangkok and 35 kilometres from the mainland. It’s size is about 16 square kilometres and a radius of about 27 kilometres and it is not part of the Mu Ko Chang National Park. Besides, Ko Mak is the biggest private island in Thailand.

Ko Mak has 27 km coastline, many long sand beaches, a few hills and it is about 16 km² in area.

Koh Mak is perfect for relaxing and soaking up the suns on one of the many beautiful, deserted, white sand beaches and swimming in the stunning clear blue water. Because the island is small and flat its perfect for exploring and getting close to nature on one of the jungle walks or for the more adventurous there is a 3 hour cycle track through plantations, jungle tracks, villages and along the coastline. Being on the edge of the Koh Rang natural park there are many beautiful places to snorkel and scuba dive. The best corals can be seen at Koh Kra and Koh Tong Lang.
There are many deep sites at Koh Rang for scuba divers to explore, trips can be arranged at one of the islands dive shops.
Facts

Tourism

Ko Mak is perfect for relaxing. Because you can bicycle through coconut plantations along the coastline. There are about 25 resorts on Ko Mak. Activities include sea kayaking, snorkeling, swimming and motorbiking, also at low season. Both Ko Kham and Ko Phi can be easily reached with sea kayak from the resorts on north west coast of Ko Mak. Both little islands have nice places to snorkel, depending on the direction of wind.

Beaches

Ko Mak is in contrast with Ko Chang a flat island, only at the southwest there are a few hills. The beaches of Ko Mak are, like everywhere in the region around Ko Chang, flat and withdraw at low tide. A few of them are stony or muddy and therefore not suitable for swimming. But most of them, especially the 2 wonderful big main beaches „Suan Yai Beach” in the west and „Khao Beach” in the south of Ko Mak are sandy and excellent for bathing and swimming. At these two beaches you also find most of the bungalow resorts.

Infrastucture

Meanwhile there are a lot of roads and paths that branch over the whole island so almost all beaches and villages are easy approachable. Only at the north coast of Ko Mak, where you hardly find accommodations, there is a jungle path that runs parallel to the coast and that is quite difficult passable. The important routes on the island are of tarmac or concrete but some of the other ones are still dirt tracks. But Ko Mak is easily passable with rented scooters for those who have a little bit of experience in riding motorbikes. And because of Ko Mak is not too big you can explore it easily on foot.

In the meantime there are a few „exotic” vehicles on Ko Mak. They are mainly taken to bring tourists to the bungalow resorts or drive them around the island and are very popular with Farangs (western tourists).

Ko Mak
 is not connected to the power supply at the mainland but there is a big generator that supplies the whole island 24 hours a day with electricity. Also mobile phone connection is available at most of the places on Ko Mak.
Ko Mak was the first island in Thailand to have wireless Internet, but it was stopped again at the beginning of 2006. Currently there are internet cafes located at Ko Mak Pier (west coast) and at Aow Nid Pier (east coast).

Also a central dump was built in the interior of the island so there is less waste on Ko Mak as years ago. Beside a little post office at Ko Mak Pier at the west coast, there is a police box located at the road to Aow Nid. There you also find a clinic, the island school, a new built kindergarten and a beautiful temple.
In the interior of Ko Mak there are more shops, gas stations and restaurants. You can also find pool tables, mainly used by locals, at the roundabout at the main road that connects the west coast with the south coast.

Population

Most of the island inhabitants, at the moment around 700 people, are fishermen or make their income from the profit of the coconut and rubber plantations that can be found all over Ko Mak. But because of the increase in tourism since the 80’s, more and more of the locals earn their money from the bungalow-resorts and restaurants on Ko Mak.

Travelling-Time for Ko Mak

The best time for a visit on Ko Mak is between the beginning of November and the end of February. At this time it is relatively cool, dry and mostly sunny.
It gets hotter and hotter until the end of May, but a visit during these months is still pleasant. Even during the monsoon Ko Mak is worth a journey because it usually doesn’t rain every day all day long (see also „Travelling-Time and Weather on Ko Chang„).

History of Ko Mak

Ko Mak
 is the biggest island in Thailand that is privately owned. It is reported that Ko Mak was populated first by Chao Sua Seng, who ran a coconut plantation at the end of the 19th century, during the term of King Chula-Longkorn (Rama V). Later Ko Mak was bought for 300 Chang (the former currency in Thailand, 1 Chang = 80 Baht) by Khun Mae Mulee, the wife of Luang Prompakdee (Plian Taveteekul). Their descendants, who belong to the „Taveteekul Clan”, still own the biggest part of Ko Mak.

Activities on Ko Mak

Besides relaxing and reading at the beach you can swim and snorkel at one of the beautiful beaches. There are also 2 diving schools located on Ko Mak to discover the beautiful dive grounds around this wonderful island, At some of the bungalow resorts kayaks and surfboards can be rented as well as scooters and mountain-bikes to explore the island on your own. The small villages, the tempel at Aow Nid and the view points on Ko Mak are worth a visit. There is a surfing school, boats can be hired and boat tours to the nearby islands can be booked. Also apparently archery is possible on Ko Mak and of course traditional Thai massages can be enjoyed.

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