About Khao Lak - Lam Ru
Located around 80 km north from Central Phuket, Khao Lak Lam Ru National Park covers an area of 125 km² in Kapong, Mueang Phang Nga, Takua Pa and Thai Mueang districts of Phang-Nga Province. While only less than couple of km of the park is along the cost to the Andaman Sea, the park accompasses mainly tropical evergreen montane forests with highest peak at 1,077 meters asl.
The park is popular for couple of small beaches near the park headquarters and Ton Chong Fa Waterfall which is only 12 km from the park headquarters. There are also several trails in the park for longer hiking that required guide assistance.
The park is home to various interesting species like Sunda flying lemur, binturong, Malayan weasel, Sumatran Serow, crested serpent eagle, white-bellied sea eagle, oriental pied hornbill and Wagler's pit viper. On various websites, presence of Malayan tapir is mentioned, it is likely based on historic data, due to poaching no more tapirs found in parks this size.
The Indian Ocean tsunami that hit coastline of Thailand on December 2004 caused 4,000 deaths at Khao Lak area which was the worst effected area in Thailand.
There are regular public minivan routes between Phuket and several destinations north or north/east from Khao Lak that passes the visitor center area of the park near the cost. These minivans can be easily arranged via hotels receptions teams. As long as the hotels are not too far off route from the highway 4, the minivans tends to pickup from the hotel. For shorter trips a private taxi recommended, these too can be arranged from the hotels.
The visitor center area has a smaller designated area for campers, several bungalows, shower/toilet facilities and a nice restaurant with nice sea view. The restaurant meals are very expensive compared to most other national parks in the country with an average price at around 200 Baht.
There are only a limited amount of tents for rental for 2 to 3 people from 225 Baht per night and sleeping set 60 Baht per person. Tents can only be rent on arrival, no guarantee there will be any available. If you have your own tent, 30 Baht will be charged to use the campground.
Few bungalows for 2 people can be booked via DNP website for 800 Baht, but DNP booking system known to be down over longer periods, the system rarely can be used for successful bookings. There are also 4 people bungalows for 1,200 Baht per night and 10 people bungalows for 2,000 Baht per night, these can only be arranged on arrival from the visitor center, if available.
The entrance fees are 200 Baht for adults and 100 Baht for children, can be paid at the visitor center or at various attractions.
The park is open 8 am to 4:30 pm all year round, the restaurant is open 8 am till 6 pm or 7:30 pm depending on how busy.
* Price and opening times mentioned here last updated on April 2018
Attractions of Khao Lak - Lam Ru
Visitor center area has couple of beaches and a kilometer long trail from one beach to the other. At the nearest beach there is a designated camping ground, shower/toilet facilities, few bungalows and a restaurant.
Small Sandy Beach
As the name suggests, it is quite a small beach, accessible directly from Highway 4 or by a kilometer long nature trail from the visitor center. The trail is clear and easy to walk.
Khao Lak Beach
This is where the visitor are allowed to set up tents. While referred to as Khao Lak Beach, the real Khao Lak Beach to the north is not really part of the national park. The bit inside the park is a bit rocky, couple of hundred meters long, between the park area of the visitor center and a rocky coast at the south end of the real continuous Khao Lak Beach. From the rocky part, it takes few hundred meters walk to reach the real Khao Lak Beach. There are shower and toilet facilities at the parking area, the restaurant if only couple of hundred meters away.
Ton Chong Fa Waterfall
Due to it's location, it is the most popular waterfall in the park. It is only 6 km from Highway 4 (Phet Kasem Road), 10 km from Khao Lak Village and 12 km from the national park visitor center.
The falls have 5 tiers of which few are very small, the main fall is a 10 meter high drop. The first kilometer of the walk after the checkpoint is on a narrow dirt road which later continues as a clear forest trail for less than a kilometer. Towards the end of the trail there is another side trail starting deeper into the forest, this side trail needs guide assistance that can be arranged from the main visitor center.
It is possible to swim on some ponds at the falls, the 5th tier has a bigger one.
There are no public transportation options to the falls, also no restaurants or shops nearby. Visitors are recommended to have enough water with them.
Lam Ru Waterfall
A 5 tier waterfall located at south of Kapong, nearly 45 km from the visitor center. It is the largest waterfall in the park with medium size tiers.
There are no public transportation options to get there, no restaurants or shops nearby.
076 485 243 (Visitor Center)