At a Glance
- Likely to meet: Couples, some families, travellers.
- The Beach: No sand beach, small pebbles, rocky, rough red sand but good snorkeling.
- Accommodation: Small boutique resorts, bungalow set-ups, villas and guesthouses.
300bt fan rooms to 3,500bt for family bungalows and up to 20,000bt for the 12 person villa.
- Resorts: Baan Ton Rak, Pennys, Privilege, Keereeta, Khai Mook
- Villas: Villa Inspiration, Koh Chang Luxury Pool Villas, The Elegance Pool Villas, Pearl Luxury Pool Villas, Villa Marco, Supphatra House
- Bungalows/Guesthouses: Saffron, TP Huts, Macura, Alisa, Rose Garden, Elephant and Castle
- Camping: Kai Mook Camping
- Restaurants: Nice bistro, chic coffee house, Vegetarian, cheap Thai food court.
- Saffron on the Sea, Le Jao Jom, Everflow
- Nightlife: Limited…to say the least
- Bar: Crazy Mojitos
- Other: Superstores, Post Office, ATMs, cannabis shop.
- Highlights: Snorkeling, Shopping, Peace and quiet.
- Lowlights: Beach, bit characterless.
- Thai Name: Hat Khai Mook (hat is beach, khai mook is pearl).
At an Island Pace – Pearl Beach
Pearl Beach (Hat Kai Mook) is the first area you hit having left the last vestiges of White Sand Beach. It is very easy to pass through it without noticing its presence, yet Pearl Beach does have much to offer in a quiet understated way.
The beach is small rounded pebbles but what it lacks in sand, it makes up for in snorkeling, with some of the best spots along the whole of the west coast, just offshore. The resorts are generally small and there is a friendly, keen to please nature about them, with some great deals on offer.
Overall, with your own transport, it can make a very good base, laid back and away from it all, with no need to venture out, but close enough to White Sand Beach, should something a bit more touristy be desired.
The Northern End – Pearl Beach
Coming out from White Sand Beach, you first pass Le Jao Jom, the chicest and most Insta bistro and coffee house on the island.
Pearl Beach itself is held to start at the bend by the little inland street, leading up to Macura Resort, TP Huts and Alisa, three excellent value budget resorts, clustered together in quiet gardens. Crazy Mojitos is on the hill as you turn in.
Across from from them, the entrance to the backpacker bungalows Ban Na is on the sea side of the road and look out too for the tiny Sanaes Buds, a cafe and cannabis outlet (grown on the land behind). Had Kai Mook Camping, tiny huts or individual plots for the your tent, has a prime location down by the sea on a large area of undeveloped land. The Thai hippie style, PJ Bar sits at one end of the grounds but The Secret Pearl, beloved by the expats, has now closed down. Tesco Lotus superstore is the imposing neighbour.
Across the road and now under new owners from June 23 , Baan Ton Rak, a small boutique hotel of rooms, pool and family villa up, is hidden away behind its retaining wall. Rose Garden Resort, another collection of bungalows and cheap rooms sits next door, with the English run bungalows of Elephant and Castle on the hill above.
Continuing on past the abandoned nightclub, The Studio has rooms as well as cract beer and movies on the corner of the 3 storey roadside block. Another 200 metres brings you to Big C Superstore, which dominates the far end of the village.
The Southern End – Pearl Beach
Back on the ocean side, past Lotus’s, other little streets take you down to the holiday let Villa Inspiration, the now closed Koh Chang Resortel, uniquely boasting an Olympic sized swimming pool and to Koh Chang Privilege, a dependable and nicely spaced out Thai bungalows resort.
Along the front of them, roadside, a small food court provides the dining options with choice from noodle soup to chicken over rice and other cheap stir fried dishes cooked to order.
Soi 1 to Soi 2
You’ll find older boutique resort, Keereeta, on the corner of Kai Mook 1, a narrow speed-bumped street which runs past the motel of Koh Chang Budget Rooms, Supphatra House and the small complex of Villa Marco (Davide, Matteo and Tippawan) before reaching the excellent restaurant and bungalows of Saffron on the Sea.
There is no shortage of other choices along this small stretch of shoreline with Khai Mook Resort, a bigger operation next door, the tiny Paradise Palms and the well reviewed Pennys Resort. At the very end of the track, Iyara Resort have taken back the old Jane Chalet and Ju Ju Bar, with a villa development on the cards at some point in the future.
When the tide is out, you can walk back straight along the rocks and pebbles across the resorts’ fronts to re-emerge at Ban Na.
A second small soi, Kai Mook 2 runs from the back of Khai Mook Resort back up to the main road, passing a compact collection of competing holiday rent villas – Koh Chang Luxury Pool Villas (new in 2023), their neighbour but unconnected Pearl Luxury Pool Villas and behind them, also not connected to the other two, The Elegance Pool Villas. A car wash complete with both a coffee shop, the vegan Everflow cafe and the NT (National Telecom, internet) head office.
The Far End
The soi ends opposite Big C with the Honda motorbike shop and a furniture shop on one side and the former office of the now closed Koh Chang Guide on the other. You still see the now dated booklet and maps scattered about in hotel receptions across the island.
Koh Chang’s main post office is also a few meters along in this stretch of buildings, which include a cheap restaurant and , on the other side, JJ Com, a useful computer and Apple repair shop. Lastly, as you head out of Pearl Beach, you’ll spot a handful of bungalows (the green ones) for long stay rent tiered up the slope at the far end.
UPDATED December 23
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