Rainy season in the Koh Chang Islands has now started. Storms have begin to roll in nightly, frequently spilling over into the mornings and the afternoons, bringing leaden skies and very little sunshine to cut through the gloom. It’s not cold of course but just rather grey and un-ininspiring, typical late May in fact and typical of the rainy season onset. Needless to say as I write this, we are bathed in glorious sunshine but there is the telltale roll of thunder in the background which suggests trouble afoot.
So how does the rainy season affect your holiday transport during the coming months up until the end of October? Happily, not very much but timetables are subject to change, there will be cancellations so we’ve rounded it all up here to give you a guide.
Rainy Season – Transfers, Buses and Minbuses
Private transfers, public buses and share minibuses all run as normal. There might be the odd missing service or minibuses may be used instead of buses (less passengers) but otherwise it is the same all year.
Rainy Season – Flying into Trat Airport
Flights into Trat Airport from Suvarnabhumi remain at the standard three arrivals and departures per day, but do note the slight variations in the timings. Do also check timetables carefully for your connections if travelling onto Koh Kood and Koh Mak.
Morning arrivals, PG301, will make boats to Koh Kood and Koh Mak, the lunchtime flight, PG305, Koh Mak only. Coming back the other way, morning boats off Koh Mak are very tight indeed for the morning flight, PG302, but in lots of time for the lunchtime flight (PG306).
Boats off Koh Kood are cutting it fine for that same PG306 flight, see below for more explanation.
Rainy Season – Koh Chang Ferries
Koh Chang ferries run as scheduled, every 45 minutes to an hour each way. There is the occasional cancellation due to bad weather, but safe to assume, no problems here and evening fights into Trat will have a boat to take you across to the island.
Rainy Season – Koh Kood Boats
Koh Kood boats leave from Laem Sok at 12.00pm (Boonsiri Catamaran) and 12.30pm (Koh Kood Princess, Koh Kood Express), all coming back at 10.00am. The speedboat, Siri White does not run except as a private charter, a steal at prices starting from 13,000bt.
Catching the lunchtime flight back to Bangkok, PG306, is tight, with the boats docking, if on time, at 11.15am to 11.30am and private transfer (the only way) at 45 minutes from the pier to the airport. Not impossible but maybe think of returning to Bangkok by private car, minibus or Boonsiri boat/bus combo instead.
If coming out from Cambodia to Koh Kood, you may just make the 12.30pm boat with a very early start, say 05.00am from Siem Reap. Over-nighting in Trat maybe a less stressful option. The boat companies run their free daily shuttle, pick-up at your guesthouse around 10.30am, from Trat to Laem Sok as normal.
Rainy Season – Koh Mak Boats
For Koh Mak, adjusted timetables are here but bear in mind, adverse conditions, big waves basically, may cause the the suspension of the service. The Boonsiri does not operate its Koh Mak shuttle from mid May to mid October.
If coming out from Cambodia to Koh Mak, you should make an early start, say 06.00am to 07.00am, but you will make the afternoon boats with time to spare.
Rainy Season – Between The Koh Chang Islands
The inter-island boats, (Bang Bao Boats, Kai Bae Huts Speedboat) stop until late October, so bear this mind if thinking about visiting more than one spot. You have to return to the mainland, travel to the respective pier and then take the boat out from there. Our advice here would be stick to Koh Chang and one other of Koh Kood or Koh Mak, not both.
For Koh Chang to Koh Kood, this means a private transfer or there is a cheaper share minibus option with a change of vehicle near Trat.
For Koh Chang to Koh Mak, you can use the Trat bound songthaew taxi.
For Koh Kood to Koh Mak, you’ll need a private transfer between the piers.
Rainy Season – Koh Wai
If thinking about travelling to Koh Wai, the island as good as shuts down from May to October.