What to Do in Khao Lak when it Rains

Boat Trip in Khao Lak

Written by Sam Goodey

Director of Discovery Travel Ltd. Former Similan Island resident. Exploring the natural wonders of Thailand since 2007

The weather in Khao Lak plays a big part in what you get up to during your holiday. Between November and April you can be almost guaranteed to be treated to warm sun, clear skies and calm seas. But for the rest of the year the Khao Lak weather can be a bit unpredictable. Take yesterday for example, yesterday was a typical day in June. Hammering rain first thing in the morning followed by scorching sun and then an almighty thunderstorm that made the lights flicker in the evening. Sometimes it all comes at once and is gone within the hour, sometimes the weather lasts for a week!

So what can you do in Khao Lak when it rains?

Well some people will tell you that Khao Lak is an outdoors kind of place and you are better off looking to move somewhere on the east coast or in the north where the weather is a bit more stable. But that is not necessarily true. You can still enjoy your holiday in Khao Lak even through the biggest storms!

Why not relax with a traditional Thai massage while listening to the sound of the rain pattering on the window? There are several massage parlors lining almost every road in Khao Lak and they are open all year, rain or shine. Even if you don’t fancy heading out into town while it’s raining, almost every hotel in Khao Lak has an in-house spa that offers a full range of massage and health services.

If laying around is not for you, there are plenty of other activities in Khao Lak that are great fun even when it is raining! Trips to the waterfalls, bamboo rafting down the rivers, kayaking in the mangroves. These activities run all year round and even if it is raining, who cares? You are going to get wet anyway! The additional water just adds to the fun. A word of advice though, try to keep a shirt or a towel dry in a bag or in the car. It is still warm in Khao Lak even when it rains, but if the wind picks up and you are wet it can feel cold.

Another option for those who don’t enjoy laying around or getting wet, is to rent a car with a driver and head down to Phuket for the day. The drive from Khao Lak to Phuket takes just over an hour and a half. Once in Phuket you will be spoilt for choice. There are museums, zoos, shopping centers and even cinemas. Not forgetting of course the popular nightlife areas! In most cases your driver will be able to recommend the best places to go. Just let him know what kind of things you enjoy and let him show you around. If you are heading to Phuket for a day out I would always recommend booking a car with a driver and not trying to drive yourself. Phuket is a maze of busy streets that make Google maps and other sat navs dizzy. Even on the best of days, driving in Phuket is a tiring experience, and in the rain it is definitely not for the faint hearted. Best leave that job to the professionals.

But the most important thing to remember when it rains in Khao Lak is that the weather here can be incredibly localised. Just because it is raining outside your hotel room there is no guarantee that it is raining in the hotel car park. It is a common enough experience in Khao Lak to see it pouring with rain on one side of the road and bone dry on the other. So if you are planning a day out, go for it. What’s the worst that can happen? You might get 5 minutes down the road and discover that the sun has come out and you are missing your sunglasses. Or you might find that the rain is even harder than before and you are treated to a spectacular lightning show. Either way it keeps life exciting. The key to visiting Khao Lak in the monsoon season is to plan for rain, hope for sun.

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