When is the best time to visit the waterfalls in Khao Lak?
Khao Lak is home to a couple of beautiful local waterfalls. They have water running all year but in the summer months they are at their finest.
Chong Fa Waterfall is the one closest to town. It’s about 7 kilometers from Thanon Phet Kasem, the main highway that connects Phuket with Ranong. The road winds through the hills to the park entrance. The area is part of the national park system so there is a fee to visit. There are five levels to the falls with a mild hike through the shaded jungle canopy to get to the most popular one. The trail steepens and can be a little slippery when wet when proceeding to the upper falls. There is a back road that takes you to the top but it is hard to navigate and not recommended. The first three levels have places to get wet and depending on the time of year and water flow you can have a waterfall shower. The swimming areas have small cleaner fish swimming in them and they like to come and clean your feet. It can get humid while hiking to and from the falls so keeping hydrated is a must.
Located in Pak Weep after a winding road through rubber tree plantations is Sai Rung Waterfall. There are two levels to this water feature although the upper fall can be inaccessible due to the erosion of the hillside during the monsoon. Unlike Chong Fa, this waterfall you can almost drive up to. There is a parking area that charges 20 Baht for a car/motorbike. It’s just a few steps over a narrow footbridge and a short path to get to the swimming area. At about 15 feet, this is the most impressive fall in the Khao Lak area. There is also a small cafe near the parking area and during the winter months they will put tables and chairs in the stream for you to enjoy a cold beverage or snack.
The best time to visit the waterfalls in Khao Lak is on a weekday morning when the temperatures are cooler. On weekends the waterfalls can be quite busy with locals. At Chong Fa Waterfall young kids jump from the main waterfall into the swimming hole and families picnic on the flat rocks and shaded areas. Evenings at Sai Rung Waterfall you might witness a beautiful wedding taking place in a clearing in front of the waterfall.
Because of the close proximity between Chongfah and Sai Rung waterfalls, they are located 17 km from each other, you can easily visit both waterfalls in a few hours.