CHEOW LAN LAKE // Khao Sok NP
A short 15 minute drive through the beautiful jungle of Khao Sok in the back of a pick up truck.. We arrived to the town of Khlong Sok - literally walking distance from the national park of Khao Sok.
If you read my post before this you’ll know I stayed at Anurak lodge where they were able to provide me with a shuttle into to town. Most hotels anywhere can help you set this up though so just ask!
Cierra and I were starving at this point because it was probably noon. It left us with two hours until we would check into our next hotel. We figured we’d just walk the small town and smell out what’s best - that’s when we arrived to Bamboo Bistro Bar. Such a welcoming little restaurant! I believe it’s family owned so the vibe is so cozy and the food is even better. Cierra and I shared a pizza and YUM! I would definitely recommend them. Even better? It was legit only a two minute walk from
Khao Sok Riverfront Resort: Our beautiful home for the next two nights. We waited to get checked in which took about 10 minutes so we sat as they brought us out their homemade juice and snacks - again with cold towels! I swear every hotel we went to was so welcoming when we got there and always made us feel so treated. The cold towels are the best touch yet!
So as we waited to get checked in and be brought to our room we got to talking with the very sweet manager. Talking about possible canoe trips, lake tours, day/night hikes in the jungle and more! Cierra and I had so many options we didn’t even know what to do with our next two days. So while we got settled into our gorgeous room we thought on it.
Our room was again another bungalow with A/C which is always GREAT. We had an outdoor deck with a bench which became my favorite spot at night time, a guide book to the hotel and national park, their restaurant menu and a really cozy bed. We decided to explore the area a bit before fully deciding on what to do. Walking down to the river that’s literally in our backyard, the hammock area, choosing through all the different huts on which one is the most relaxing. Khao Sok Riverfront is honestly just such a relaxing place from the moment you walk up and hear the river running with all the birds and bugs.
After getting familiar with home we decided we wanted to do another canoe trip but just to relax though. Not take a whole lot of photos and just be in our swimsuits since it was mid day now. We just couldn’t say goodbye to the canyons of Khao Sok yet - so we wanted one more time there.
Within 20 minutes we were on a private shuttle headed to the river. Driving through the big jungle also on the hunt for ELEPHANTS, knowing we’d be swimming in a river in the middle of Thailand. It just hit me how much I love the simple life here. How everywhere has things planned for you - whether it be excursions, meals, your transportation or solutions for problems. Everything just flows so easily here.. I’ll never fully be able to describe that either. Thai culture is just so simply happy and flowing, the pace of things moves fast yet so slow at the same time.
It wasn’t long before we were climbing back into the river trying to figure out how all the views around us were real.
After a much needed relaxing afternoon Cierra and I got driven back to Khao Sok Riverfront. We unpacked our life out of our backpacks as we decided on what to do with the night.. Rent bikes and ride the streets, get a massage and our nails done, just grab dinner and catch up on work or go out and drink. So we decided to go to the nearby “Rasta Bar” - It was actually on top of Bamboo Bistro where we had pizza earlier. We saw a few others up there as it seemed to be the only open bar so we said “What the heck” and walked up. It’s on a rooftop basically so you can see down into the town, all the tables are paired with cozy cushions and there’s a really sweet staff! We stayed up there until 11PM or so since we met a couple that was backpacking as well so we talked with them. I also believe there’s a fire show every night! Or at least there was our night - a super laid back bar to get a drink or two and then walk back to your hotel.
Like I said before the town is so small that you can walk all off it within 5 or 10 minutes. But somehow there’s so much to do! Within no joke a minute walk we were back at our hotel already. Knowing we had a long and special day tomorrow so we knocked out super quick.
7AM our alarms went off and somehow we both jumped out of bed. We were so ready for this day because it meant exploring and hiking.
First we started our day at Rafflesia Cafe that’s apart of our hotel Khao Sok Riverfront. Cierra and I both got French toast with fresh fruit, orange juice and coffee - it was absolutely delicious! After we were shortly done we were already on our way to
Cheow Lan Lake: One of the most beautiful places I had always seen of Thailand but didn’t know the name to. Khao Sok is famous for this lake and all the tours provided. So thats exactly what we were doing. Most hotels or hostels you stay with in Khao Sok will be able to set this up for you if not, there’s plenty of booths within town.
The day starts off at 8AM and is until 6:30PM so it’s a whole day packed of adventure. First we started with a shuttle ride through the jungle that is about 2 hours. With stops for coffee and a quick store break to gather up on snacks and also a headlamp for the cave hike! I’m so happy we bought ours because a couple other girls in our group didn’t have them and they definitely were struggling. After passing through a couple other small towns we arrived to a pier where we then hopped on a long tail boat for seriously like an hour! But it was so gorgeous - this is where we met our tour guide as she took us to a couple photo stops along the way.
Once we got to our final destination in Cheow Lan Lake which was a small little town with floating bungalows.. I was completely speechless. THIS, this right here was what I had been wondering was real or not my whole time scrolling through photos. It was seriously the most magical place I had stepped foot upon. We arrived just in time for lunch where we were served a buffet basically! Sweet n Sour Chicken with fresh pineapple, Fish, Chow Mein and Fried rice, Curry and soups. Everything you could think of.
It was so delicious, within minutes of finishing no joke our tour guide was telling us to start getting our dry bags together. We were going cave dwelling! Luckily Cierra had one so she was able to bring her phone and a couple other things. I didn’t take anything besides my GoPro so the photos aren’t the greatest.. But all I have to say is, it was absolutely a one of a kind experience. Coming from the states I’ve never hiked in the literal JUNGLE where there is snakes, monkeys, colorful birds and endless butterflies. And then the cave itself was about 6 or 7 feet full of beautiful water that we had to swim through - leading to small waterfalls. That are way bigger not in the dry season.
Seriously a must do on this tour! Don’t opt to just kayak around the lake because you’ll have plenty of time to do that once you get back from the hike.
We were lucky enough to see like three families of monkeys as we kayaked through what looked like blue Gatorade. It was the most gorgeous place I had ever truly been. The whole day itself was such a dream. After hiking we swam, kayaked, ate more fresh fruit and took photos knowing it would be a long and sad journey back to the hotel. This had easily moved up to my favorite day so far in Thailand..
Cruising through places that made me feel so small, in the best way possible.
The whole day I felt like I was in the scene of Horton Hears a Who when they show how small Whoville is.
Like that was me this time in Thailand especially Khao Sok - I just felt so insignificantly small.
I never knew the right way to even describe that “feeling small” feeling. Until I was here.
It was that feeling of realizing there’s so much more to be worried about in the world than little self created problems.
That there’s so much to see in the world - from every country to town or from every canyon to mountain.
That when you choose to look up a lot more you start to feel all the overthinking float away.
I just really felt myself getting lost here and feeling small.
Like I didn’t matter in that moment of time, because the only thing that mattered was what was right in front of me and the time I had with it.
I just was so appreciative of life this day and kept holding on to every little moment - I didn’t want to let it go.
It was such an adventure packed day that I couldn’t put together myself so I’m so happy we had a tour guide and Khao Sok Riverfront to help put this together for us!
About a total of 3 or 4 hours of transportation we arrived back to our hotel where we were dropped off and ready for dinner. Luckily our cafe at the hotel was still open where we got some delicious food! I had garlic chicken and fried rice and was full as could be. We sat out at our deck and just listened to the world around us - how quiet it was but how loud nature was in the most beautiful way possible. We relaxed for a half an hour or so out here knowing our journey the next day would be one of the longest yet. Also talking about what we think it would hold in store for us.. And on that note we decided to go to bed.
Our alarms went off at about 8AM so we could grab some breakfast and coffee before we had one of our longest travel days. It also happened to be the first day of Songkran which is Thailand’s New Year.. I’ll be talking about it in my next post so make sure to keep an eye out for that! But we wanted to see what it was all about so we decided to get breakfast somewhere in town - not far from our hotel. We walked the streets and tried not to get paint and water thrown on us.
It was a mission success when we made it to Thai Herb - a very yummy and cozy restaurant! I had one of the best coffees here in Thailand along with a huge American Breakfast. We were the only people in the cafe so we just watched all the Songkran fesitivities happen and tried to plan our escape route for after we were done eating. Our hotel was only a 2 minute walk so after we paid for our breakfast we just made a run for it. I felt like a little kid again running through the streets with water guns, inflatable pools, face painting and more. Since we had a half an hour before our shuttle was going to leave to the airport of Surat Thani, we decided to get our faces painted. I felt so included in their holiday - I wanted to cry because I knew it would be a moment that was everlasting.
After running through the streets Cierra and I just looked at each other and knew it was going to be a wild next few days in Pai, our next destination. Only because Pai is a bit bigger than Khao Sok and we knew Songkran was about to be wild.. And oh man, it was.
Make sure to check it out in my next blog post!
As always though you guys
Thank you for being Lost in a Dream with me
With lots of love,
Again thank you so much Khao Sok Riverfront Resort for everything! From the wonderfully planned tour of Cheow Lan Lake all the way to making us feel so at home.. I hope to be back.