Than Mayom Waterfall over on the Koh Chang east coast makes for a pleasant diversion when out and about exploring that side of the island.
If heading from White Sand Beach and the rest of the west coast beaches, simply follow the road past the ferries and keep going. Along the way, you’ll pass through the main administrative town of Dan Mai, complete with Koh Chang’s public hospital and its main police station. Than Mayom Waterfall sits just a few kilometres further down from there.
In the past few months, the authorities have been busy repairing much of the old east coast attractions. The mangrove walkway at Salak Khok now boasts an observation tower, its counterpart at Salak Phet has been re-built from scratch and just recently, Than Mayom too has been re-fashioned. Its new access and parking area is clearly signed just before the bridge and from here, the park rangers have re-cut the paths hugging the river, added another walkway across it and generally tidied things up along the way to the falls. There is a grab rope that spans the rocks and water, vital for the rainy season when the rocks are dangerously slippery, but also very useful during the main tourist season’s drier months. That said, the walk is hardly taxing and certainly no problem for the oldies or small kids.
Than Mayom has four tiers but you will only be seeing the first and second, with the other two inaccessible from this approach. Throw in a couple of plunge pools for swimming, plenty of rocks for climbing and you can easily pass an hour, usually with only a few other people for company. At weekends, however, it can get busy with Thai holidaymakers who are drawn by the Than Mayom’s royal connection, as various kings, Rama V, VI and VII, have all paid a visit over the years.
The route does not go in circle so you will be coming and going the same way. However, as you turn back back to the parking area, you can veer off the trail and grab a bite to eat in the little restaurant, which is located at the end of the old access track. Continue up that track to the main road, just a 100 metres or so and you can walk across to the rangers’ buildings. There is a pretty beach, east coast style with its rough red sand, a very long disused pier, from which you can get great views back to the mountain, another rather cute simple restaurant out over the sea and even a couple of bungalows, Baan Ing Luk, rooms from 400bt a night. It’s a short stroll only back to the parking lot from here.
The waterfall falls under the remit of the National Park authority, so costs 200bt to visit, 100bt for kids. If you visit Than Mayom and the main waterfall, Klong Plu in Klong Prao on the west coast, on the same day, the same ticket covers both.