Frequently Asked Questions

Please scroll down the page for the answer to your questions.

Pooh tries to help his customers even before they visit the island. This is why we have answered some of the most frequently asked questions about Ko Lipe and the surrounding Tarutao National Park.

If we have missed one of the questions that you need to know then please contact Pooh, but it is great if you can look to see if the question is shown below first :
1. Are there any diving schools / shops on the islands ?
2. Is it safe to travel to Lipe / Southern Thailand?
3. What about the bungalows on Koh Lipe?
4. How do I get to Koh Lipe?
5. Can you rent a tent or camp on the island with your own tent?
6. Are there any restaurants or bars on the island?
7. Are there any shops? What do they sell?
8. Is there a medical clinic? What happens if there is a medical emergency?
9. Can you change money? Traveller’s cheques? Credit card? ATM machines?
10. When is the best time to come to Ko Lipe? High and Low seasons?
11. Internet on Ko Lipe? Phones and mobile telephones?
12. Is there electricity on the island? How many hours a day?
13. Why do you have to pay for the long tail boat from the ferry to Ko Lipe?
14. Are there any motorbikes or cars on Ko Lipe?

1. Are there any diving schools / shops on the islands?

There are 6 diving schools / shops on the island offering everything from fun dives to advanced PADI courses.
Lotus Dive is Pooh's diveshop, located next to Pooh's Bar.

New equipment : Scubapro , Seac-sub and 15 l. Faber tanks One day, two dives, Lunch, coffee, water & after dive snack (with 20 min of free Internet included)

Website: www.lotusdive.com
Email: info@lotusdive.com
Tel: +66 (0)74 750345
Fax: +66 (0)74 750344
Mobile: +66 (0) 89 4668826

2. Is it safe to travel to Southern Thailand? How about Trang / Hat Yai / Saturn / Pakbara / Tarutao / Ko Lipe?

There has been no terrorism or any other security problems in these areas. Any problems are completely restricted to the three provinces affected on the EAST COAST.

3. Price for a bungalow? Do any have air-conditioning? Do any have hot water? Are they made of bamboo or concrete? Do they have electricity? Do they have mosquito nets? Do they have electric sockets for charging digital cameras etc?

There are between 400 and 450 bungalows at the moment. They cost between 100 and 3,000 Baht. There are many rooms 500 Baht or less. The most expensive bungalows have air-conditioning and almost all have a ceiling or floor fan. Some bungalows offer hot water. About 70% are made of bamboo and about 30% are some combination of concrete with or without bamboo. Almost all bungalows have electric lighting, though often only from 7 pm to 7 am. The majority have electric sockets, but not all. All have good mosquito nets.

4. How can you get to Ko Lipe? From Pakbara? From Hat Yai? From Bangkok? From Southern Thailand (Phuket, Krabi, ...)?

The easiest way is to travel to Trang, from where you can take a minibus to Pak Barra right across the Bus Station. It's about 1 hour and 30 minutes to Pak Barra.

From Bangkok and the North:

From Bangkok, you can take a night train or a budget flight to Hat Yai. Mini-busses to Pakbara leave across from the train station and take a little bit less than 2 hours. Price for the mini-bus costs 100 baht. Public busses with air con to Pakbara costs 70 baht. There are air con and non air con busses from the Hat Yai bus terminal.
> Check the Ferry Timetable

5. Can you rent a tent or camp on the island with your own tent?

Yes, you can rent tents on the island for 100 to 200 Baht a night. You can arrange to camp at many of the resorts on the island. Price depends on what each individual resort wants to charge. You can pay as little as 20 Baht. Resorts may even let you stay for free. These rates change all the time. During peak times like the King's birthday (5 Dec), Christmas and the Western and Chinese New Year's, the only accommodation may be in a tent for 200 Baht or more a night.

6. Are there any restaurants or bars on the island?

There are more than 15 restaurants and just as many bars on the island. Many close during the off-season, and reopen during the high season. Some have been around for many years, while others have just opened.

7. Are there any shops? What do they sell?

There are 5 shops at the moment which sell all the daily necessities such as bottled water, beer, razors, plasters, mosquito repellant, washing powder, etc. In other words, all the same stuff that a small 7-11 would sell on the mainland, though often at a higher price. This reflects the fact that everything needs to be transported by boat from the mainland.

8. Is there a medical clinic? What happens if there is a medical emergency?

There is a medical clinic in the fishing village that has a qualified nurse and occasionally a doctor that visits the island. In a medical emergency you would be taken by speedboat to the mainland (which takes about 60 - 90 minutes depending on how acute the emergency is and the weather conditions).

9. Can you change money? Can you change traveller’s cheques? Can you use a credit card? Are there any ATM machines?

You can change all major currencies at Pooh's restaurant and Bar at the current rate on the mainland plus a few percent handling fee. Additionally, Pooh's can now take payment by credit card and will also give out cash advances on credit cards for a fee. Pooh can now change traveller cheques from all major currencies. There are no ATM machines on the island, but they are available in Satun and at La-ngu near Pakbara. The most common reason people leave Ko Lipe is that they forgot to bring enough money with them. It is not expensive here, it is just that many people would like to spend weeks here but don't have enough money. Don't forget to bring enough money.

10. When is the best time to come to Ko Lipe? High and Low seasons? When are the busiest times when it is very difficult to get accommodation on the island

The best time to come to Koh Lipe is in December when the weather is cool and you have the lowest chance of rain. This leaves crystal clear waters for diving and snorkeling or just lazing on the beach. Later on in the season, the weather becomes much warmer (as in all of Thailand), but the water is also better for diving or snorkeling during these ideal months of March and April. During this time, there are not many tourists and prices are lower. The busy times of the season, as the rest of Thailand, are the King's birthday (5th December), Christmas, Western and the Chinese New Years. During these times, it can be very difficult to get accommodation as a large influx of visitors arrive a few days before and after these holidays.

11. Can you access the Internet on Ko Lipe? Can you make a national or international call? Can you use a mobile telephone?

Pooh's Restaurant and Bar offers broadband Internet as well as both a national and an international telephone service so you will be able to keep in contact with friends and family elsewhere. New: Since 2006, we have access to the Thai mobile telephone company DTAC and AIS, which enables you to use worldwide mobile phone service.

12. Is there electricity on the island? How many hours a day?

The only central electricity service (provided by solar panels) is used to recharge emergency backup batteries for the resorts and people on Koh Lipe. The village and all the resorts have their own generators which may or may not work well, depending on many factors. Generally, there is power available at night, while some places have 24-hour electricity. At Pooh's, we have 2 generators and a battery backup which allows us to offer power, telephone, Internet, etc. throughout the day.

13. Why do you have to pay for the long tail boat from the ferry to Ko Lipe?

The long tail boat you use to travel from the ferry boats to the mainland are run by local fishermen. They are not part of the ferry company and receive no money from them. So if you don't pay them they earn NOTHING and will have to stop being their friendly, trusting selves and will have to demand payment in advance when you board the boat. 30 - 50 Baht is not much to pay for what can be a 15 minute trip around the island. If you don't want to pay then you can always swim. Watch out for the sharks! Telling people on the island you were clever enough to avoid paying is not likely to make you very popular.

14. Are there any motorbikes or cars on Ko Lipe?

There are no cars, but most locals do use motorbikes to transport themselves and other stuff around the island. Heavy items are moved by long tail boat.