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Best Things To Do in Koh Lipe

I visited Koh Lipe in 2015 when I first wrote this guide to the best things to do in Koh Lipe. It has come to my attention since then that Koh Lipe is not what it once was and that much of the land was stolen from the original inhabitants as far back as two decades ago. I no longer support travelers visiting Koh Lipe.

I highly recommend visiting one of the quieter and less developed Thai islands instead, where locals own many of the accommodations, travel agencies, and restaurants. Koh Mook, Koh Mak, Koh Libong, and Koh Kood are all great options.

Turns out I was about 15-20 years too late to see a Thailand untouched by tourism. With a lot of beaches being overcrowded, dirty, and developed to within an inch of their lives, I didn’t know if I would be able to find the beach paradise I was searching for.

Luckily beach paradises do still exist in Thailand and I found mine on a small island in the South Andaman Sea: Koh Lipe.

The islands are one of the things that Thailand is famous for, and I sure picked an incredible one to start me off.

Koh Lipe heart

I first heard about Koh Lipe by reading about it on a travel blog and once I saw the gorgeous photos of calm turquoise waters and incredible white sand beaches, I knew that I was definitely going to be adding it to my Thailand itinerary.

My friend Kerry and I spent five days there and apart from a day trip snorkeling and island hopping, we really didn’t do a whole lot. It was perfection. 

But there are a few things to do in Koh Lipe that you shouldn’t miss during your time there. Here are my favorite things to do in Koh Lipe.

The Best Things To Do in Koh Lipe

Explore the Island

Koh Lipe is a tiny L-shaped island that is only 3.5 km by 2.5km in size making it very walkable. The island is made up of three beaches: Sunset Beach, Sunrise Beach, and Pattaya Beach with Walking Street, a blue paved road lined with restaurants, tour operators, and bars, linking Sunrise and Pattaya beaches.

Another dirt road led the short distance to Sunset Beach. I enjoyed checking out the shops and restaurants along Walking Street and just generally wandering around and exploring the sandy pathways and beaches of the island.

Exploring Walking Street is one of the best things to do on Koh Lipe Koh Lipe sunset

Get Banana Pancakes From the Thai Lady Pancake Shop

Every morning we would walk along Walking Street, stopping for coconut and banana pancakes at the Thai Lady Pancake Shop. There is a large and diverse selection of pancakes to choose from and the pancakes here are some of the best I have ever had. My favorite concoction is coconut and banana but go wild!

Swim and Relax at the Different Beaches

One of the very best things to do in Koh Lipe is to hit the stunning beaches.

Pattaya Beach was my favorite for swimming as the water was so clear and calm and there was a large, wide crescent of sandy beach to find a spot to lay down our towels.

There was also a small resort with a pool right by the beach where the staff didn’t mind if we swam so we would usually go between the sea and the beach for a couple of hours.

A visit to Pattaya beach is one of the top things to do on Koh LipePattaya beach Koh Lipe

In the afternoons we would head back to Sunrise Beach, stopping for lunch along the way.

Sunrise Beach is quieter than Pattaya with slightly choppy water and soft, powdery sand. I loved reading in the beach huts or just watching the ocean as storm clouds darkened the afternoon sky. Long tail boats with brightly colored ribbons lined the shoreline.

Moody skies over Koh Lipe

Watch the Sunset at Sunset Beach

Funnily enough, Sunset Beach was best for sunsets. Who knew?! We only made it there once but swimming in the warm waters of the protected beach and sipping mojitos at the small popup beach bar was an excellent way to celebrate another perfect day in paradise.

Watching the sunset at Sunset beach is one of the fun things to do on Koh Lipe

Enjoy Live Music at Pooh Bar

In the evenings we would usually head to Walking Street to see live music and have a couple of drinks at Pooh Bar. The band is pretty good and it was a fun way to spend a relaxed evening.

Get a Thai Massage

There are numerous places you can get a traditional Thai massage on Koh Lipe but my favorite place to get a massage is on the beach. I had a couple of massages outside Lipe Power Resort and they were fabulous.

Getting a Thai massage on the beach is one of the best things to do Koh Lipe

Go on a Snorkeling and Island-Hopping Tour

Don’t miss doing one of the snorkeling tours – it is one of the must-do things to do in Koh Lipe.

I did a half-day snorkeling and island-hopping tour to a couple of nearby islands and I was really impressed. The coral was vibrant and colorful and I saw a lot of different types of tropical fish. The best bit though was swimming with phosphorescent plankton when it got dark. Such an amazing experience!

Nemos on a Koh Lipe snorkeling tour


Our days at Koh Lipe weren’t incredibly exciting but not all travel needs to be. Sometimes having a form of routine for even five days is a welcome change from the constant moving around that is the norm of life on the road.

Just giving into relaxation was so good for me, although hard to do for a girl who finds it near impossible to sit still for more than a couple of hours at a time. I felt like there were enough things to do in Koh Lipe to stop me from feeling bored but not so much that I didn’t have time to just relax. It was the perfect balance.

Exploring the beaches is one of the fun things to do Koh Lipe

Koh Lipe was exactly what I needed at a time when I needed to slow down. Sometimes you just need to stop for a while, and I couldn’t imagine a more perfect place to do it than Koh Lipe.

How To Get to Koh Lipe

The most common way to reach Koh Lipe is by flying to Hat Yai from Bangkok or other points in Thailand, then booking a bus and ferry combo to get you from Hat Yai to Koh Lipe.

You can also reach Koh Lipe from Koh Lanta by ferry, and you can travel from Krabi to Koh Lipe by bus and ferry.

If you liked this post, why not check out some more of my Thailand posts:


Fun Things To Do in Koh Lipe Thailand The Best Things To Do in Koh Lipe

12 Comments on Things To Do in Koh Lipe

  1. I stayed at the Resort on Sunrise Beach.
    So much quieter.
    If you like the more full on sort of so called relaxing, the Sunset Beach is for you.
    More party, lights, restaurants on Sunset.

  2. You had me at “pop-up beach bar.” Haha, I’ve always wanted to visit Koh Lipe. I headed to Koh Lanta last time I was on the Andaman side and I felt like everybody else on my boat was going there and I was missing out! Super jealous of your time eating Thai curries too…

  3. Somehow I’ve never been to Koh Lipe, but I’ve always heard such great things. It’s definitely on my list for next time I’m in Thailand. Your pictures are incredible!!!

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