Koh Mak . . . Thailand’s Family Island

The island of Koh Mak, or Koh Maak, depending on your pronunciation lies a few kilometres south of  the larger, better known island of Koh Chang.  But whilst Koh Chang is developing into a pretty busy island with  all the trappings of  unrestrained development  – beer bars, nightclubs, roadside shophouses  blocking the sea views and sprawling beach areas, Koh Mak remains a world apart.  Whilst it is still possible to find good, quiet beaches on Koh Chang, Koh Mak definitely has the edge if you are looking for a tropical, escape from it, laze away the days type of beach holiday.

The two main beaches lie on the northwest and southwest facing shores of the island.  However, smaller, almost entirely undeveloped beaches easily be found by visitors.  A single lane paved road circles the centre and west of the island and unpaved dirt tracks lead off this taking those who have rented scooters or mountain bikes down overgrown plantation trails that end up on deserted beaches or in fisherman’s hamlets.

In addition to the thirty resorts on Koh Mak and ever increasing number of small restaurants, coffeeshops and internet cafes you’ll also find a temple, a clinic and a school plus local minimarts and a weekly outdoor markets.

How Busy is Koh Mak? The beach below is the second busiest on the island.  I took this photo on beautiful day in the 2010-11 High Season.  ( Click it for the larger image.)

So far the members of the five local families who still own the vast majority of the land on Koh Mak have managed to keep developers at bay and have encouraged smaller bungalow resorts and upmarket boutique resorts.  You’ll also find Koh Mak to be a quiet place – there are no beer bars or loud karaoke places and very little traffic as there are only passenger boats to the island.

The five families are all descendants of  Lung Prompakdee, a Chinese Affairs Officer  during the reign of King Rama V in Koh Kong,  now part of Cambodia.  He bought the island, for the sum of 24,000 Baht, from  Chao Sua Seng who had previously established the first coconut plantations on the island.  Another think that makes Koh Mak’s history unique is that it has been well documented by generations of family members.  There is also a small museum on the island with old photographs dating back to the early 20th century.  Read: The History of Koh Mak Island

Until relatively recently there were only  a handful of resorts on the island and these mainly catered to Thai visitors booking packages that included transport from the mainland and all meals.  So development outside these resorts was limited.

Getting between the island and the mainland is now relatively simple with boat services running even in the rainy season.  Although boat services between Koh Mak, Koh Chang and Koh Kood do stop between June and September.

Koh Mak is not an activity island.  Sure there are some trips and tours you can do but on the whole it is a place to go to do very little except laze and enjoy the local hospitality, clear sea and kilometres of empty beaches.

Now you have a taste of the island and what makes it a special destination, feel free to explore the rest of this site.  We have tried to include as many of Koh Mak’s resorts, restaurants and activities as possible in order to give you  a full picture of Thailand’s Family Island.

Ao Kao White Sand Beach Resort

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Ao Kao Resort, Koh Mak. This long established, family run resort is situated on a beautiful, quiet beach on Koh Mak and has been welcoming guests for over 17 years. Accommodation is in a variety of airconditioned bungalows, ideal for couples and families. A wide range of activities are on offer for guests.  Room rates from ONLY 2,500 Baht/night

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Koh Mak Residence

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Koh Mak Residence provides modern, luxurious accommodation two minutes walk from the beach.  Two, self contained spacious one bedroom apartments complete with living room and kitchenette give guests the feeling of staying in a home away from home on Koh Mak.  Being renovated – new rates soon.

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Coconut Villa

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Coconut Villa, Koh Mak is  a privately owned holiday home which sleeps up to 6 adults in comfort. It it located less than 5 minutes walk from the two main beaches on the island in the grounds of a boutique resort.  Facilities include pool, massage/spa and restaurant.  From 2,450 Baht/night.

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Ao Pong Resort

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Ao Pong Resort on Koh Mak offers comfortable but simple bungalows with great views overlooking Ao Nid Bay towards Koh Kood.  Peace and Quiet away from the busier beach areas.  No sandflies guaranteed!  High Season bungalows from just 450 Baht/night.

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Koh Mak Resort

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Koh Mak Resort. If a great beach is a priority then Koh Mak Resort, the largest resort on the island and located in the centre of the longest and best beach on the island is for you. A variety of bungalows and suites to suit all tastes and price ranges, all with uninterrupted sea views. Room rates from 1,350 Baht/night.

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Thumbnail image for * Thaidaho Vista. A Million Dollar View From 1,000 Baht/night *

* Thaidaho Vista. A Million Dollar View From 1,000 Baht/night *

Thaidaho Vista.  Cosy, comfortable, eco- friendly guesthouse with the best views on the island.  Quiet hilltop location but only 5 minutes walk to both main beaches.  Only five, good value, ensuite rooms set in a tropical garden. Double Room from 1,000 Baht/night

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Big Easy Resort

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Big Easy Resort offers  stylish beachfront bungalows on Koh Mak.  Boutique resort with spacious bungalows set on a beautiful  stretch of beach only a few minutes walk from shops and restaurants. Room rates from 2,450 Baht/night

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Baan Koh Mak

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Baan Koh Mak offers 18 small but comfortable, airconditioned bungalows on a great stretch of beach, close to shops, bars and restaurants. Relax in the excellent  the beachfront restaurant or laze on the white sand beach.  From 1,340 Baht/night.

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