Hat Chao Mai is a marine national park with the nickname “Chao Mai.” It is divided into 2 distinct areas: the body of water which takes up 137.22 square kilometers of the ocean, and the coastal area which includes the rainforest, mangrove forest, beach forest, and limestone forest.
The whole park covers a total number of 7 islands – Ko Muk, Ko Kradan, Ko Waen, Ko Chueak, Ko Pling, Ko Chao Mai, and Ko Meng – each offers different styles of adventure you can take on. For example, Ko Muk is known for its Emerald Cave where you can enter from a small cave mouth when the tide is down. The thrill you will get is from passing through an 80-meter winding path in a complete darkness. At some points, the guide will tell you to lay flat down onto the person behind you to avoid hitting the rock. It is quite scary but there is always light at the end of the tunnel. The route will finally lead you to the pool of emerald green water where you can see through to the sandy bottom. Nonetheless, if you are not up for that type of challenge, Ko Kradan is another option to check out. This is a base for diversified soft corals and sea fans. Ko Chueak and Ko Waen are smaller islands close by where you can do both shallow and deep diving with many types of fish.
If you do not wish to take a boat to these islands, you can choose to enjoy the beaches at Hat Pak Meng, Hat Chang Lang, Hat San, Hat Yao, Hat Yong Ling, or Hat Chao Mai – all accessible by car. Moreover, the limestone character of this area has created dazzling caves with spectacular stalagmites and stalactites inside. The most famous cave is Chao Mai Cave where you can reach by a short boat ride along the Chao Mai creek in 15 minutes.
Hat Cho Mai National Park is a well-reserved area making it a wonderful home for numerous marine lives. Dugongs, an endangered species, are also often spotted by tourists.
Take Highway No. 4046-4162 (Trang-Sikao-Pak Meng) from Trang for 40 kilometers. Turn left and proceed on the road paralleling the beach for another 4 kilometers until you reach the destination.
Traveling Between Islands
Boat services are available at Pak Meng pier. Prices depend on the destination: Ko Kradan, Ko Muk, Ko Waen, or Ko Chueak.