Ko Chang is 315 kilometres away from Bangkok in the province of Trat. There are several ways of getting there: by air, air-conditioned bus, taxi, hire car or motorcyle.
Bangkok Airways flies from Bangkok, Phuket and Ko Samui to a new airport at Trat. There are flights out of Bangkok day which takes about 45 minutes. For reservations, call the Bangkok office on +66 (0) 2265 5555 and Trat +66 (0) 3952 5299-300. For more information and bookings, see Bangkok Air.
By air-conditioned bus
First/second-class and VIP air-con buses leave from the Eastern Bus Terminal at Ekkamai, on Sukhumvit Road, which is conveniently serviced by the BTS Skytrain. The return fare to Trat — the stopping off point for Ko Chang — ranges from 147 baht for second-class coaches to 420 baht for the VIP coach. From the Trat bus terminal, take a cab or minibus to the ferry at Laem Ngop, which should cost you around 200 baht.
Getting out of Bangkok is always going to be troublesome unless you leave very late at night or early in the morning. But one of the most painless ways to travel is order a taxi that will take you all the way to the ferry port at Ko Chang. If you’re a good negotiator, you can pay as little as 2,500 baht one way.
By private car or motorbike
By hiring a private car or motorbike, you make the decisions as to how and when to travel. However, do make sure you bring an International Driving Permit with you or any hassles you encounter are entirely of your own making. Simply, the best way out of Bangkok is to take Highway 3 on the Bangna-Trat road until you reach the Chonburi bypass. Continue along this road, or take the elevated tollway, then take the exit for Klaeng on Highway 344. When you reach Klaeng, get back on to Highway 3 again (Highway 3 goes via Pattaya and Rayong, which you don’t want). Continue on through Khlung and, from here, about half-way to Trat, turn off on to Highway 3156, the Laem Ngop-Saen Tung road, which will take you along the coast to the ferry ports.
Ferry services and times
Ferries leave from one of three piers every 30 minutes from 7am to 7pm. Probably the most popular is the Centrepoint Pier. A motorcycle or car are free while foot passengers are charged. Once on the other side, sawngthaews are available during the day.