Pattaya is a fantastic place to live and visit, but sometimes you just feel like getting away from the bright lights and taking things that little bit easier. Now that lockdown has finished, we have the opportunity to get out more and explore what is pretty much on our doorstep. There are islands that you can visit for the day or overnight as well as those where you would probably go for a few days R&R. Whatever you are looking for, here is our quick guide.

1. Koh Larn

Koh Larn is this large island which is clearly visible from almost everywhere in Pattaya and is the perfect place to spend a day or perhaps an overnight stay. The beaches and sea are far cleaner than in Pattaya, so it is excellent for beach lovers. There are guesthouses and hotels on the island which are very reasonably priced.

2. Koh Sak

Koh Sak is another option for sun worshippers as it has two glorious beaches on the U-shaped island. It is becoming slightly more commercialised although it only has a few restaurants available at present. Formerly, a private island, history lovers can see Neil Armstrong’s footprints preserved in concrete after he visited the island shortly after returning from the moon.

3. Koh Rin

Koh Rin is popular with divers and is renowned for is its turquoise waters, unspoiled reefs, and idyllic beaches. The island owned by the Royal Thai Navy so has no permanent facilities but vendors come daily so you can get limited food and drinks. The island is a standard feature on the island hopper trips which run from Ocean Marina Yacht Club in Na Jomtien. If you want to get there under your own steam, you could charter a speedboat.

4. Koh Klet Kaew (Monkey Island)

Koh Klet Kaew is often referred to as Koh Ling or Monkey Island as the island is home to a large population of crab-eating macaques. It is a feature on many trips, and as such, the monkeys are used to mixing with humans and expect to be given fruit as soon as they hear boats coming! Apart from the monkeys, the island has little to offer but is still a popular stop-off point.

5. Koh Si Chang

Koh Si Chang is located just off the coast at Sriracha and is the closest island to Bangkok making is popular with Bangkokonians looking getaway for the weekend. It certainly retains an authentic charm and this one of the most appealing things about the island. There are some superb restaurants on Koh Si Chang with ferries running throughout the day from Sriracha to the island.

6. Koh Samet

Koh Samet is located in Rayong province to the south of Pattaya but is still only a little over an hour away. This is a picturesque island that can be reached by ferry or speedboat from Ban Phe Pier with most people staying overnight or for a couple of days. The accommodation ranges from basic to luxury, so there is something to suit all budgets.

7. Koh Chang

Finally, no list would be complete without a mention of Koh Chang. The island is in Trat province which is just over four hours out of Pattaya but is a popular destination for expats. It is a large island which has something for everyone including a bustling nightlife in White Sands. Naturally, there is an extensive selection of hotels available.