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How to get to Khao Sok Park from Koh Tao?

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Southern Thailand

Joanna Horanin

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Last updated at 20/05/2024, 16:15

Hi, I'm Joanna, the author of The Blond Travels. In the worlds of Thailand and Portugal, I feel like a fish in water - and it's no coincidence! I've been exploring Thailand for over a decade, and I've settled in Portugal for 6 years now. My mission is to support Dreamers - just like you - in discovering these fascinating countries and helping those in love with them find their own place on Earth, preferably for good! Let's uncover these unique corners of the world together.

After a few days on Koh Tao, it was time to see a region I had long dreamed of visiting – Khao Sok. This national park is famous for its sand cliffs sticking out of the water and is a beautiful place to visit in Thailand. It’s a long drive from Kho Tao to Khao Sok, but you can do it in one day. Here’s how I did it.

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    The logistics

    During high season, it is easy to get from one place to another in Thailand. Sometimes the journey needs to be spread out a bit.

    When I was on Kho Tao I didn’t know if I could get to Khao Sok easily at all. Walking down the street I saw that some tourist offices had a notice displayed that there was such a connection.

    I checked it on a map and on some travel blogs. It turned out that yes, I could go to Khao Sok from Kho Tao.

    The next day I went to one of the offices and bought a ticket. Unfortunately, the lady working in the office didn’t quite explain to me exactly how I could get to Khao Sok. All she said was that I would have to make two changes on the way. I trusted her and figured that it would be what it would be. I was sure I would get there somehow. It is Thailand after all, right?

    A side note: You can book your ticket online through 12GoAsia.

    From Koh Tao to the land

    The first transport was the ferry from Kho Tao. I went to the harbour indicated on the ticket first thing in the morning, an hour before departure.

    The harbour on the island was small, built of planks. The ferry, on the other hand, was large, with a toilet and a food kiosk. The whole cruise went without any major problems and lasted about an hour.

    Bus from Surat Thani

    A small problem arose when we got off the ferry. We picked up our luggage. On the ticket we had the name of the station we were supposed to go to for our next transfer.

    The drivers of the shuttle buses looked at my slip of paper and scratched their heads. Nobody knew what the bus stop was. So I ran from bus to bus, asking again and again if they would take me to Surat Thani.

    Eventually, someone decided to take me and again, I thought I would get there somehow.

    After about 2 hours, on a dishevelled bus, I got to the city centre.

    Mini Van to Khao Sok

    The bus stopped not at the station, but in the centre of Surat Thani, on the street. Total chaos reigned there. It was full of drivers and tourists hovering around, not knowing where to go.

    When I heard one of the drivers shouting – Khao Sok! – I breathed a sigh of relief. I motioned to him and stood aside, waiting for him to collect the rest of the travellers.

    The driver spoke no English, and in my own broken Thai I explained to him that my hotel was a long way from Khao Sok and if he could drop me off on the road. The man nodded in agreement.

    We drove for quite a long time. Pyś kept an eye on the map so we could let the driver know to stop. We tried from the back of the van to let him know we wanted to get off. He totally ignored us and took us right up to the entrance of the national park.

    A taxi to the hotel

    Our hotel – Khao Sok River Home Resort – was 17km from the van stop. We added another 700 BHT to get there. Fortunately, that was the end of the whole adventure.

    The drive from Kho Tao to Khao Sok is long and takes all day. You leave the island in the morning and arrive in the evening. Alternatively, you can drive to Surat Thani, stay there for the night and catch a van for a leisurely second day. The journey is then even longer, but at least you will have less stress.

    Are you going to Khao Sok? Do you have any questions? Leave them in the comments.