To help you with those practical requirements of your holiday, we have put together so common Koh Mak FAQs – information on hospitals, police, post, phones, money, internet and shopping.
Is there a hospital on Koh Mak?
Koh Mak has two clinics, one private and one public:-
The private clinic (currently closed due to Covid-19), operated by the Bangkok Hospital Group, is on the strip behind Ao Kao Beach next door to Joe’s Corner Guesthouse – please note its prices are more in line with western private clinic prices. The public clinic is on the road leading down to Ao Nid Pier and this can deal adequately with the usual day to day problems.
More serious cases will involve transfer to Trat on the mainland, where there are two options, the public hospital or the private one again run by the Bangkok Trat Group.
You are strongly advised to take out health insurance before travelling. Although the area has not 100% eradicated malaria, cases are extremely rare and anti-malarials should not be required.
- Koh Mak Clinic (Public) – 039 524 042, 089 093 4629, Emergency 1669
- Bangkok Trat Clinic (Private) – 092 272 8000
- Koh Mak Rescue – 087 905 5886
- Bangkok Trat Hospital (Private) – 039 532 735 or 039 612 000
- Trat Hospital (Public) – 039 511 040/1
Where do I go if I need the Police?
The main police station is located next door to the administrative centre, with the electricity headquarters on the other side – all on the road leading away from Ao Kao Beach towards the crossroads and junction down to Ao Suan Yai, a few hundred metres after the Ao Nid turning.
Is there a bank on Koh Mak? Can I change money?
There are no banks but there is now an ATM (frequently empty) at the door of the administrative centre – see the police station location above. Our advice is bring a good supply of cash with you.
Some of the resorts will accept credit cards, exchange money (dollars/euros/pounds) or indeed allow cash withdrawal against a credit card, at a surcharge of 2% to 5%.
How is the internet coverage on Koh Mak?
Most resorts have internet access with wifi in the common areas and rooms. This comes from the telephone companies’ towers, which dot the landscape, so do not expect especially high speed access.
Mobile coverage is 3G/4G.
Where is the Post Office?
A post office can be found at the Koh Mak Information Point by the pier at Koh Mak Resort on Ao Suan Yai.
Can I buy most things I will need on Koh Mak?
Koh Mak doesn’t have 7-11s or any big superstores (Makro, Big C, Lotus’s).
There are small minimarts in Ao Kao Beach, Ao Nid and at Ao Suan Yai Beach, which stock foodstuffs, toiletries and such like. If you know you need something and are unsure if the island will have it, bring it with you to be safe. There is a pharmacy behind Makathanee Resort.
Even with shopping possibilities a little limited, there is, nonetheless, a good clothes store, The Island Shop, at the southern end of Ao Kao, near Koh Mak Divers. Food Art Hut also has a corner in its cafe dedicated to its locally produced tie dye clothing.
Sandflies and Jellyfish – Koh Mak Information
Unfortunately, Koh Mak does have an ongoing problem with sandflies on most of the beaches. There is no reason for it to ruin your trip but be aware of it, with the best advice to avoid lying directly on the sand, even on a towel.
You should also wear mosquito repellent if walking on the beach early in the day or at dusk, as the flies, preferring cooler temperatures, are more prevalent at those times. Locals advocate the use of coconut oil, but do not assume that this will make you immune after application.
The fly injects histamine, so the bite becomes very itchy and for some people, the reactions can be pretty severe. If at all possible, do not scratch the bite as this causes the spread of the redness. Tiger balm is another local recommendation to help stop the itching, but a tube of anti-histamine cream is a very useful thing to take with you.
Box jellyfish, whose sting can be very dangerous and sometimes fatal, occasionally get blown into shore and vinegar stations are installed on all of the beaches, the curious red poles with a white cross.
Bites are extremely rare but by immediately pouring vinegar on the sting, you buy yourself valuable time to seek medical help.
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