Khao Sok National Park and Cheo Lan Lake - excursion, how to get, prices

I tried in one post to make informationsqueeze through Khao Sok National Park and Cheo Lan Lake, which is located on its territory. Many of the posts I have read on the Internet caused me only confusion, because they do not contain the necessary details. Perhaps, if you go on an organized tour with Phuket / Samui, you do not need to know all these nuances, but if you go on your own, then they are very necessary. At least, while I was preparing for the trip, I did not immediately find the answers to my questions.

The content of the article

Important!

If you go on an excursion from Phuket, Samui,or Kao Laka, then the information in this post, you probably will not be useful. I duplicate my recommendation here in the post - there is a good and proven Alfa-Travel agency where you can buy a tour and go to Khao Sok without any problems. For the money will come out just as if you went on your own, if not cheaper, because you will save on transportation costs and overnight. Write to them, see the description on the site, pick up from the hotel and take where you order.

+66622100091 (Whatsapp, Viber, Line, Telegram)

Tour to Khao Sok>

For independent travelers. The easiest option is to visit the Khao Sok National Park: arrive at the hotel in Khao Sok in the Visitor Center area, settle in for several days, climb the jungle for 2 days, take a tour of the lake (one day, you can spend the night in a water house Leaving things at the hotel), return to the hotel, spend the night and move further along its route the next day.

Independent travelers, as well as those who are going to buy a tour on the spot in the national park, it will be useful to read my post.

  • First of all, it should be understood that there are conditionallyTwo points on the map, where they go to this national park: the jungle and the lake. These places are not near, but about 70 km from each other! Therefore, if you read someone’s review, take this moment into account, but they often don’t mention it, and it seems that you need to come to one point where all interesting things will be focused right away. Therefore, if you want to get around, as much as possible, and visit both there and there, then you need to mortgage for at least several days.
  • You should also keep in mind that whenyou will come just to the lake, in proud loneliness (not a group), it’s not a fact that you will like the price for a small trip on the lake or a boat delivery to the water house. And in general, it’s not a fact on the pier that it will be possible to buy a tour of the lake right away, including boating, lunch, swimming in the lake, visiting a cave, etc., rather it will be an individual excursion as agreed.
  • If you come to the pier yourself, the price isthe boat will depend on your ability to bargain. Usually boatmen are delivered to the raft-houses and back for 2,000-3,000 baht (for the whole boat). You can also arrange for the same boatman to ride you from the rafthouse across the lake in the morning or evening, take them to the cave. Usually the boatmen themselves know all the places of interest to tourists and carry along them. In the case of a visit to the cave, the boatman will also play the role of a guide.
  • During organized tours with Phuket, you will be transported to a couple of temples with monkeys on the way.

Khao Sok National Park

Jungle tour

Entrance to the national park 300 baht, not included in the tour price.

Main jungle hiking trailsNational Park (National Park Khao Sok) begins near the Visitor Center (Visitor Center) near the entrance to the national park. The main attraction here is the tropical forest of the park, its rivers and waterfalls, flora and fauna. There are several routes through the tropical rainforest. Trails through the forest pass through the hills, along the river beds and streams, past waterfalls, of which there are only eight in the park. Khao Sok waterfalls are not very spectacular, but you can swim and refresh in them. All of them are located a few kilometers from the visit center.

In addition to the waterfalls in Khao Sok, you can also watch numerous caves. But we must remember that when it rains they flood.

Directly from the visit center begin twotrails: large and small. Big has a length of about 7 kilometers and runs along the river Sok. It has pointers and diagrams, it is wide and well equipped. It will take almost a whole day to complete the full route along the big path. Especially if you turn to all the waterfalls. Small trail more neglected. During and after the rain it is better not to walk in the jungle - the trails are flooded with water, they become very slippery. On the trail leeches that can jump can also climb. So it is better to dress in anything closing the legs.

Another popular route in the park is a walk torafflesiam. These are huge flowers with a diameter of about 1 meter, which are often depicted on the tourist booklets of the park, this is one of the symbols of Khao Sok and one of its main attractions. Rafflesia is a rather rare flower, therefore, rather than searching for it yourself, it’s better to go with a local guide, then the chance to find one of the main wonders of the park will be much higher.

Map of the National Park Khao Sok - you can get an idea where the rafflesia

Map of the National Park Khao Sok - you can get an idea where the rafflesia

From the visitor center, trekking to the lake Cheo Lan is also possible, directly through the jungle closer to it than on the road. But this option is possible only with a guide.

In addition to morning and afternoon tracks in the parknight safaris are held. This is either a walking tour with a guide, or a boat ride on the lake or rafting on the River Sok on a raft or kayak. Also, almost all the tourist offices in the village at the entrance offer tours by canoe, rafting, tubing, riding on elephants. Excursions in the tourist village of Khao Sok are sold at almost every hotel. The price is about the same everywhere.

In general, information on Khao Soku online is prettylot. If you are interested in all the details, you can read more informative thread on the forum Vinsky, there is a lot of useful detailed information in the report and in the comments: The long way to rafflesia - Kao Sok, Cheo Lan.

Hotels in Khao Sok

Between the entrance to the national park whereVisitor Center, and Highway 401 are located most of the hotels, including on the highway itself in the direction of the lake. And when they talk about hotels in Khao Sok and in general about a national park, they usually mean this place. Not Lake Cheo Lan, but this particular area. I stayed at Khaosok Treehouse Resort - a cool hotel with bungalows in the trees, right in the jungle, here my detailed review of it.

In the vicinity of the lake on the way to the pier and damthere are also hotels, but there are only a few of them there, and as I understand, they are not very popular. Usually, if they spend the night on land, they spend the night near the center's visit, from here they go on excursions through the jungle (for example, to the rafflesia flower), here they ride elephants, and go to the lake for a 1-2-day tour bought at the hotel. You can spend the night in the houses on the water (raft-houses). Some kind of immersion into a nature reserve, where the Internet does not catch, electricity is given on a schedule, and only silence, stars and wild beasts are around. Next to some rafthouses pass tracks along the national park, including rafflesia.

Hotels on land (what about the center visit, what aboutlakes) can be easily booked through RoomGuru - highly recommend this resource when planning your own vacation. In terms of its functionality, it is on a par with the best in this segment, and more advantageous offers are often found here. For ease of familiarization with the service, here's a green button with a direct link to the metasearch.

Hotels in Khao Sok>

But with the rafthouse more difficult. The houses on the lake Cheo Lan are divided into belonging to the park administration and private. Now there are about 20 floating hotels. You can reserve a bungalow at the national park through the official website of national parks of Thailand or on-site at the office of the national park. The rest of the bungalows are reserved through Thai travel agencies.

Prices per day in floating bungalows start from500 baht per person (the cheapest ones are bungalows owned by the administration of the national park), for private bungalows the price starts from 1000 baht per person per night. The most expensive bungalows - up to 5,000 baht per person. The price also includes three meals. In the simplest of bungalows, there are neither comforts nor actual furniture, only mattresses on the floor. In more expensive houses, conditions are closer to civilization. Although the bungalow is floating, it is still not in the middle of the lake, rather near the shore. All those who spent the night in a hut on the lake among the jungle say that it was one of the most vivid impressions of the trip and taking a two-day tour with an overnight stay is definitely worth it.

Map of hotels on Lake Cheo Lan

Map of hotels on Lake Cheo Lan

Houses on the water (rafthouse), toilet on land

Houses on the water (rafthouse), toilet on land

Inside the house on the water, maybe both better and worse

Inside the house on the water, maybe both better and worse

Point on the map where the entrance to the park

Most hotels are located on the way from Highway 401 to this point.

Nat Park Khao Sok

Nat Park Khao Sok
One of the largest and most famousNational Parks of Thailand, located 160 km from Phuket, on the isthmus that separates the Andaman Sea and the Gulf of Thailand. The territory of Khao Sok National Park is well established, there are roads, guesthouses, cafes and trails marked for walking. The most famous object of the park is Lake Cheo Lan, 70 km from this point. Read more about nat. a park.

One of the largest and most famousNational Parks of Thailand, located 160 km from Phuket, on the isthmus that separates the Andaman Sea and the Gulf of Thailand. The territory of Khao Sok National Park is well established, there are roads, guesthouses, cafes and trails marked for walking. The most famous object of the park is Lake Cheo Lan, 70 km from this point. Read more about nat. a park.

Excursion to the lake Cheo Lan

Entrance to the national park 300 baht, not included in the tour price.

The easiest and cheapest option to visit the lake- buy a group tour in one of the hotels in Khao Sok. As I wrote above, usually the tours are bought in hotels near the center visit. In my opinion, this option gives much more freedom than buying a tour directly to Phuket / Samui and is akin to an independent journey. Because you can decide for yourself how long it takes to walk through the jungle, how long it takes to go to the lake, how many nights to spend the night in a hotel, how to get to Khao Sok and how. When traveling on Cheo Lan with a tour from Khao Sok, things can be left in a minibus that takes you from the hotel to the lake. This also applies to baggage, if after the tour you are going to go by bus further.

I did in a similar way: I arrived at the hotel in the evening, bought a tour of the lake for tomorrow, and then after the lake I moved on about my business. Since I was in my car, I agreed that I was going from the hotel to the pier after the transfer minibus, and then at the end of the lake tour, the minibus left without me back to the hotel, and I was going in the direction of Suratkhani on my route.

  • A one-day tour to Cheo Lan Lake costs 1,500 baht andincludes transfer from the hotel to the pier (start at 8:30 from the hotel), boat trip on the lake, lunch in the rafathouse, jungle trekking and visiting the cave (all together 3 hours), return boat ride and transfer to the hotel ( usually by 18:00 return). The scheme is worked out, the cost is adequate and there are almost always free places. This option is ideal for singles and couples, as it allows you to save on the whole event. If you take a boat on the dock yourself, then just a couple of hours trip around the lake will cost 1000-2000 baht per boat. Here, read how I went to excursion to Cheo Lanjust for one day.
  • A two-day tour to the lake Cheo Lan costs 2500 baht andincludes a night on the lake in a simple bungalow right on the water. After settling in rafthouses perhaps the so-called night safari - a boat trip on the lake and dinner in a floating hotel. The second day (a little before dawn) begins with a morning lake safari from a floating hotel, then the tourists are returned to the hotel for breakfast, then the trek to the cave, lunch at the rafthouse. You can also swim in the floating houses and rent a small kayak. There may also be something else in the program, a visit to a viewpoint, a waterfall. There is a kind of two-day tour with an overnight stay in tents for 2000 baht.
  • Alternatively, you can book a tour from the pathosRafthaus 500 Rai Khao Sok Floating (not through the booking system, but on the website). It will cost, for example, 9900 baht for a two-day tour. I didn’t consider this option for myself, so I’m not going to tell you the details, but there is all the info on their website. A one-day tour for them, too, costs 1,500 baht, since the most expensive with them is the overnight stay itself. But the one-day tour, judging by the description, without a cave.
  • There is an option to see only the lake - to comeon the dock and arrange with the boatman regarding the private boat for a couple of hours. Then you just roll back and forth and all. It will take 2-3 hours. The cost is somewhere 1000-2000 baht, depends on the duration of the trip, the desire to attend something other than the lake, the ability to bargain. The option is good when you are a company of several people and you can share the cost at all, or if you are interested in express inspection without a tour.
  • Near the pier in the building to the right of the road thereInformation desk, where you can book accommodation on the water and buy a tour. But! All the catalogs that they have are in Thai, and they themselves do not speak English either.

On the one-day, two-day tours I have listedprices are fixed, so in terms of prices it does not matter at which hotel you will take a tour. Except maybe the hotel 500 Rai. At the same time, the excursion program, service and comfort in the houses on the water will depend on which company you are lucky with. But in general, everything is about the same. A year ago, the forums recommended to go through Smiley Bungalows (in common "Smilies") because of the best price / quality ratio. They have a bungalow complex near the center visit and their raft-house on the lake where they carry. Judging by the description of the tour, in addition to the lake, show a waterfall and a cave. But now there are already enough negative reviews, they say, the two-day tour turned into a party with alcohol, and indeed the conveyor.

Warning at the hotel about the cost of tours to Cheo Lan

Warning at the hotel about the cost of tours to Cheo Lan

Here is such a directory in Thai in Information near the pier

Here is such a directory in Thai in Information near the pier

Prices for delivery from the pier to the raft-houses on Lake Cheo Lan

Prices for delivery from the pier to the raft-houses on Lake Cheo Lan

And I did not know who went through :) Bought at the hotel Khaosok Treehouse Resort and my tour included: lake, cave, lunch at the raft-house. Start at 8:30 from the hotel, return back at 18 o'clock. By the way, you can live in one hotel, and buy a tour in another. Or even book a tour from Smileys by mail (they make reservations via the Internet, but not too much in advance), and then just drive up to the bungalow at the right time or directly to the pier.

Near the pier is one of the attractions of the lake - Hydroelectric Ratchaprapa Dam and the dam is 800 meters long and almost 100 meters high, where you can walk. Also on the hills near there are observation platforms, a park, a cafe. Highly recommend this place, admission is free.

Point on the map with berth

Lake Cheo Lan

Lake Cheo Lan
The most famous site of Khao National ParkJuice - Lake Cheo Lan. At this point there is a pier, from where excursion boats start. On the lake you can stay overnight in the raft-houses (floating houses).
Read more.

The most famous site of Khao National ParkJuice - Lake Cheo Lan. At this point there is a pier, from where excursion boats start. On the lake you can stay overnight in the raft-houses (floating houses). More details.

How to get to Khao Sok from Phuket / Samui

By car

In my opinion, the easiest way to travel around Thailand is by car. I have a separate post about car rental. This is especially true if you have severalman, then the cost can be divided into all. For example, if you go from Phuket, then you can meet in general in 1 day, arriving at the lake in the morning and leaving there in the evening. You can make a multi-day trip, walking through the jungle, spending the night on the lake and stopping on the way to the resort town of Khao Lak.

The road to Khao Sok is good all over. Serpentine is when the mountains begin, but I would not say that it is serious and annoying, especially the distance is small. From Phuket to the national park 130 km and 2 hours drive. You need to go first on route 4 and then on 401. There is an option to “cut off” on 4240 and 4090, but it should get longer just because of the large serpentine. From Phuket to the lake 140 km and also go about 2 hours. First 4311, then 415 and 401, and a piece without number from 401 to the pier. See for yourself which point you go first, to the park or to the lake. And on Phuket itself you can lay 30-50 minutes away, depending on where you are going from.

In order not to get lost, use the usual Google Maps, it correctly builds the route. We must go as he suggests. All roads are signed there, look, it’s not difficult to understand.

You need to book through the economybookings. He will show suggestions from large proven distributors. And the price will be lower than book directly.

Discounted car rental>

By bus

Getting to Khao Sok by bus is quite easy.both with Phuket and Khao Laka, and with Samui. Along the Andaman Sea, the road goes from Krabi via Phang Nga, Phuket, Khao Lak and to Takua Pa turns off at Surat Thani. From Phuket, you can take a bus to Takua Pa, and from there either by bus or by minibus to Surat Thani. All these routes pass through Khao Sok. You can also from Phuket immediately take the bus to Suratthani. After the town of Takua Pa, you must ask the driver to stop at the turn to Khao Sok. The bus in any case will only take you to the turn to Khao Sok (1 km to the village, but if you have a hotel reservation, then you will most likely be met at the highway, drive there only 5 minutes, just remember to inform in advance about your time arrival). Getting from Phuket to Khao Sok, from threshold to threshold, takes an average of 5 to 7 hours.

To go to Khao Sok from Phuket, you must firstcome to Phuket Town, to Terminal 1 or Terminal 2 bus station. From Terminal 1 there are buses to Khao Sok without kondeya. A newer bus station is Terminal 2. From there, more comfortable large buses run, about 6 flights a day. The first bus leaves at 7:30 in the morning. Phuket-Khao Sok bus schedule: 7:30, 8:20, 11:00, 12:20, 13:30, it takes 5-6 hours, costs 180 baht. Minibuses leave the station from 7:00 to 16:00 almost every hour, fare is 200 baht. In Phuket to Khao Sok travel agencies tickets sell from 600 baht.

How to get to Khao Sok from Samui: from Don Sak pier to the national park - 185 kilometers, you first need to get to Surat Thani, and then transfer to the bus to Phuket via Takua Pa. Before reaching Takua Pa, first turn right to the Rachaprapa dam (Lake Cheo Lan) and after 50 kilometers to Khao Sok.

In the morning, there is also a bus from Khao Lak to Khao Sok. Its bus stop is next to the guest house. Monkey Dive Hostel Khaolak.

Back from Khao Sok buses going toSuratthani, depart from 7 am to 14 pm, every hour. 1-2 hours on the way, the fare is 80 baht. You can also leave Khao Sok for Phuket and Krabi via Khao Lak from 8:30 to 16:30. The bus leaving Khao Sok at 8:30 arrives in Phuket at 12:00.

If you are traveling on your own by bus and get off at the turn of the dam, you need to go 15 kilometers to it. Usually there you can easily catch a ride or take a taxi.

Taxi

Everywhere you can take a taxi (transfer), if notdesires to rent a car. The cost is appropriate. For example, from Khao Sok to the pier a taxi will cost 1200-1500 baht. Below is another photo of you with the prices that hung at the pier, you can ask the price.

Taxi (transfer) from Khao Sok and Lake Cheo Lan

Taxi (transfer) from Khao Sok and Lake Cheo Lan

P.S. If I remember, I will add something else. And I will be glad to your comments with information from personal experience. The topic is quite voluminous, so it is impossible to take into account everything immediately.

Life hacking 1 - how to buy a good insurance

Choosing insurance is now unrealistically difficult, so to help all travelers, I compile a rating. To do this, I constantly monitor forums, study insurance contracts and use insurance by myself.

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Life hacking 2 - how to find a hotel 20% cheaper

First, choose a hotel on Booking. They have a good offer base, but the prices are NOT the best! The same hotel can often be found 20% cheaper in other systems through the RoomGuru service.

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