Where to stay in Koh Chang for first time: 6 Safe areas

Koh Chang is one of my favourite islands in Thailand. In today’s article, I will help you to find the safest places to stay in Koh Chang for first-time visitors.

I will share with you what I believe are the best and safest areas to stay in Koh Chang for first-timers and tourists, along with a helpful map and areas to avoid. I’ll also share where I stayed in Koh Chang and recommend some of the best hotels in Koh Chang for all budgets.

Koh Chang is a tropical island located in the Gulf of Thailand, near the border with Cambodia. It is the second-largest island in Thailand and is known for its stunning beaches, lush rainforests, and vibrant marine life.

Koh Chang is part of the Mu Ko Chang National Park and is situated in the Trat Province of eastern Thailand, about 310 km east of Bangkok.

The island is surrounded by numerous beautiful beaches, including the White Sand Beach, Lonely Beach, Kai Bae Beach, and Klong Prao Beach. 

It is a haven for nature lovers and adventure seekers. You can enjoy both water and land-based activities such as snorkelling, scuba diving, jungle trekking, elephant trekking, and kayaking. You can explore vibrant coral reefs and encounter a variety of marine species.

Koh Chang is home to several waterfalls, including Klong Plu Waterfall, which is the most famous and easily accessible. These waterfalls are nestled within the lush tropical jungle, offering a refreshing escape for those seeking a break from the beach.

While not as vibrant as some other Thai islands, Koh Chang does offer a variety of nightlife options. White Sand Beach has a selection of bars and restaurants where you can enjoy live music and cocktails.

Visitors typically take a bus from Bangkok to the ferry terminal in Trat and then a ferry to the island. There is also a small Trat airport on the mainland with flights from Bangkok. From Trat airport, you can find the way to the ferry terminal to catch the ferry to Koh Chang.

Koh Chang caters to various budgets with accommodations ranging from budget-friendly hostels and guesthouses to upscale resorts and boutique hotels.

Is Koh Chang safe to visit?

Koh Chang, like most islands and cities in Thailand, is generally safe for tourists. However, as you travel to any foreign country, you should always practise common sense and keep your valuables secure.

It is also recommended to respect local laws/ customs, drink lots of water to keep you hydrated, wear a helmet when driving, and don’t drink and drive. 

Where to stay in Koh Chang for the first time?

The best and safest areas to stay in Koh Chang for first-timers and tourists are White Sand Beach, Klong Prao Beach, Kai Bae Beach, Lonely Beach, Klong Kloi Beach, and Pearl Beach. These areas offer a variety of accommodations and amenities for all budgets and preferences.

White Sand Beach is the most developed and popular area on Koh Chang, offering a wide range of accommodations, restaurants, and shops. It is a short distance from the island’s ferry terminal. It has a vibrant nightlife scene and is suitable for families, couples, and solo travellers.

Klong Prao Beach and Kai Bae Beach, south of White Sand Beach, are less crowded but still have a good selection of resorts and restaurants. Lonely Beach is popular among budget travelers as it has a variety of budget accommodations, bars, and restaurants.

For a more secluded and peaceful environment, you can consider booking your accommodation in the area of Klong Kloi Beach and Pearl Beach.

During my trip to Koh Chang, I stayed for 5 nights at the KC Grande Resort & Spa. It is conveniently located on Baan Haad Sai Khao, White Sand Beach, only 10 mins drive from the pier. Also close to many restaurants, bars, massage shops. The breakfast was fantastic with a lot of options.

Below is a map of the popular areas in Koh Chang for first-time travellers. You can scroll down to view the live map.

Map of the safe areas to stay in Koh Chang first time
Map of the safe areas to stay in Koh Chang first time

Let’s get into the details of the recommended areas to stay in Koh Chang, especially for first-time visitors. I’ll provide you with some suggestions for the best places to stay in each area, catering to every budget. 

All hotels in Koh Chang have been carefully selected by me, with guest review scores of at least 8.0 or higher at the time I chose them. If you don’t like my suggestions (perhaps they don’t suit your budget or preferences), you can click the “MORE HOTEL DEALS” button where you can choose your own hotel.

6 Safest areas to stay in Koh Chang for first-timers and tourists

1. White Sand Beach

White Sand Beach is one of the most popular areas to stay in Koh Chang for first-time visitors. It is the closest tourist town to the island’s main pier. This area offers a variety of accommodations ranging from budget guesthouses to upscale resorts.  

It is abundant with restaurants, cafes, and street food stalls. You can enjoy a diverse range of cuisine, from local Thai dishes to international fare. It also has a lively scene with beach bars, pubs, and clubs.

There are also numerous shops and boutiques where you can buy souvenirs, clothing, and beach essentials.

The beach itself offers various water activities, such as jet skiing, kayaking, and snorkelling. You can easily find rental shops for equipment.

Best places to stay in White Sand Beach:

  • Luxury ($$$): KC Grande Resort & Spa, famous 5-star beachfront hotel on the island, conveniently located on Baan Haad Sai Khao, easy to reach White Sand Beach. You can find many lively bars and restaurants outside the hotel or along the beach where you can enjoy drinks/meals white watching the sunsets.
  • Budget ($): Banpu Koh Chang Resort, great 3-star accommodation that has a private beachfront on White Sand Beach. The hotel has massage services, organised snorkelling trips, airport transfer and laundry services. It is 15 mins drive from the pier, where you can catch a ferry to Ao Thammachat Pier on the mainland (45 mins away). From there it is 45 mins from Trat Airport.
  • Budget ($): 15 Palms Beach Resort, 3-star hotel located on Baan Haad Sai Khao, featuring an on-site restaurant and comfortable family rooms. It is close to the main road, 7-11, massages, restaurants, and gym places.

2. Klong Prao Beach

Klong Prao Beach is one of the beautiful beaches on Koh Chang, situated on the west coast of the island, just south of the more popular White Sand Beach. Klong Prao is one of the island’s longest beaches.

Klong Prao Beach is close to the jungle-covered interior of Koh Chang, making it convenient for activities such as hiking and exploring waterfalls including the Klong Plu waterfall.

Best places to stay in Klong Prao Beach:

  • Mid-range ($$): Klong Prao Resort, popular 4-star beachfront beautiful hotel with a private beach along the white sandy beach on Elephant Island. It has an outdoor pool, spacious rooms, excellent buffet breakfast, free parking, and paid airport shuttle services. 
  • Mid-range ($$): Koh Chang Paradise Resort & Spa, 4-star seafront accommodation, located along Klong Prao Beach, on the island’s west coast. It has shuttle services to Trat airport on the mainland. The island’s main pier is a short drive away.
  • Budget ($): Pajamas Koh Chang, great 3-star hotel, located only 2 mins walk from the beach, featuring both dorm rooms and family rooms. It has exceptional Breakfast, BBQ facilities, a bar and a tour desk.

3. Kai Bae Beach

Kai Bae Beach is another popular area to book your accommodation in Koh Chang and is a great base for a quieter atmosphere compared to White Sand. It is located between Klong Prao and Lonely Beach.

You can find the main road in the middle of this small village, filled with restaurants, shops, and everything you need for your holiday. Short walk from the main road is the beach.

You can check out Kai Bae viewpoint for beautiful views of the sea, or take  day trips to the nearby islands of Koh Wai, Koh Kood, and Koh Mak.

Best places to stay in Koh Chang in Kai Bae:

  • Luxury ($$$): SYLVAN Koh Chang, great 5-star beautiful  hotel located along the beach in a nice quiet area, 10 mins kayak ride from Koh Man Nai. It has 24-hour front desk, free shuttle service and free parking for guests who drive.
  • Budget ($): Mam Kaibae Hotel, 3-star beachfront hotel located just a few steps from Kai Bae Beach. It has a private beach area, Free parking, and an outdoor swimming pool. It is set in a quiet area a short distance from the Main Street, shops, and restaurants.  
  • Budget ($): Kaibae Beach Resort, great 3-star accommodation set in a great location close to Kai Bae Beach, within walking distance from restaurants and massage places. Great safe location for families with kids.

4. Lonely Beach

Lonely Beach is the backpacker hub of Koh Chang, located just south of Kai Bae Beach. Similar to other areas, you find all tourist amenities on the main road and on the walking street. It is more lively at night.

Best places to stay in Koh Chang in Lonely Beach:

  • Budget ($): Oasis Koh Chang, great 3-star accommodation located in a beautiful area surrounded by nature, birds, and butterflies. It is only 5 mins scooter drive from Lonely Beach, and is within walking distance from restaurants, scooter rental shops, tour agents. You can enjoy sunset views and meals at the restaurant and a tree house above it.
  • Budget ($): Beach Jungle, good value for money accommodation centrally located on the Main Street of Lonely Beach, short drive from Fisherman Village. 
  • Budget ($): Paradise Cottage, 2-star accommodation, 10 mins walk from Lonely Beach, short drive from Klong Plu Waterfalls and Ao Sapparot Pier. It has luggage storage and laundry service.

5. Klong Kloi (Bangbao) 

Klong Kloi is the final beach area located at the west coast of the island. It is popular with day trippers, but you can also find some of the budget-friendly accommodations if you plan to stay here.

Best places to stay in Koh Chang in Klong Kloi:

  • Budget ($): Indie Beach Bungalows, a great accommodation located along the private beach in Had Sai Noi,providing cosy bungalows with a seafront bar and restaurant. Within walking distance from the Bang Bao’s fisherman’s village and Khong Koi Beach. 
  • Budget ($): Bangbaobeach Resort, 2-star beachfront resort with private beach area, set in a quiet area but close to the beach and attractions.
  • Budget ($): The Tropical Beach Resort, a nice and remote resort, great base for a quiet relaxing beach holiday. 

6. Pearl Beach (Haad Kai Mook)

Pearl Beach is a quiet rocky beach area located between the White Sand Beach and Klong Prao Beach. Good base for a quiet atmosphere while being close to two more popular beaches.

Best places to stay in Koh Chang in Pearl Beach:


In conclusion, White Sand Beach, Klong Prao Beach, Kai Bae Beach, Lonely Beach, Klong Kloi Beach, and Pearl Beach are the best places to stay in Koh Chang for first-timers and tourists. These are general safe areas but as in any tourist area, it is alway recommended to stay alert wherever you go.

You can continue reading about other destinations in Thailand in these articles:

There you have it, my recommendations for the most popular and safest neighborhoods that you can stay during your first trip to Koh Chang. I hope you enjoyed my article and find it both informative and helpful.

If you have any questions or would like to share your thoughts, please don’t hesitate to leave a comment below. Your feedback is invaluable and helps me continue to create more quality content.

About Author: Ocean Cameron

I'm Ocean, founder and main editor of travelhotelexpert.com. I’m a passionate traveler who specializes in uncovering the best hotels and locations in every city, especially for first-timers, all without the need for a car.

Disclosure: This page contains affiliate links. This means that, at absolutely no additional cost to you, I'll earn a small commission if you click through and purchase something I've recommended. I only recommend products that I use myself or firmly believe in. Thank you!

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