Not always high on the list of places to go or things to do for travelers, the country’s national parks never fail to impress and we receive rave reviews from visitors who adore their time in Thailand’s great outdoors. And one of the most impressive is Khao Sok National Park, a highlight in the South of Thailand.
Khao Sok National Park history
Khao Sok National Park is lots of people’s favorite parks in Thailand. Claiming to be the world’s oldest evergreen rainforest, the park has had a checkered history.
Were it not for a group of university students, the park may have ceased to exist.
In 1975 the group began a seven-year-long stance against the authorities to resist major logging and mining operations – a move that caused the Thai government to realize the value of the area and eventually declare Khao Sok as Thailand’s 22nd National Park.
Even many Thai people don’t know about the park’s fascinating history and how close we came to losing such a wonderful piece of our heritage.
It’s not possible to imagine Thailand without parks like Khao Sok. They provide a deep connection to how my country used to be, a window to the past.
Best time of year to visit Khao Sok National Park
Between December and April is the best tie to visit Khao Sok National Park. If you visit in December, just after the rainy season, the park is lush and green.
Visit from January to March and it will be dry – great for trekking, and slightly cooler, which means more comfortable travels all round. Dry, cool weather is great for night safaris, for visiting the caves, and for kayaking on the park’s beautiful Cheow Lan Lake.
During the rainy season, the waterfalls will be at their fullest, but certain parts of the park might be inaccessible and trekking might be difficult.
Depending on what you want to do there, you can visit at any time of year!
What is there to do in Khao Sok?
The fourth-biggest park in Thailand, Kha Sok is home to countless species of wild animals.
The most famous Thai animals in the park are elephants and macaque monkeys, but you’ll also see deer and hear (and maybe see) gibbons and wild boars. Look up and you might see cute dusky langurs or binturongs.
The more timid creatures of the park, which are rarely spotted, include Malayan sun bears, clouded leopards, civet cats and Asian leopard cats.
Are there tigers in Khao Sok, you ask? The answer is yes!
While it’s unlikely to see tigers, they reportedly live deep in the more hidden parts of the forest.
Guided tours can take travelers on safari to try to spot some of the more common animals in their natural habitat, while the park also offers the chance to encounter rescued elephants at a local camp.
What’s the best way to see Khao Sok National Park?
To make sure you don’t miss any of the highlights, there’s no better way to see Khao Sok than with a guided tour of Khao Sok’s lakes, islands and wildlife areas.
Kayak over the emerald waters of Cheow Lan Lake on a morning paddle, drifting between its towering karsts, go on a wildlife safari to see what animals you can spy, and spend your nights falling asleep to the gentle lilt of your overwater bungalow.
Or if you’re traveling Thailand with family, enjoy an unforgettable 13-day tour that ends on a high note with a visit to Khao Sok. After visiting Thailand’s capital city, Bangkok, and its former capital, the UNESCO-listed Ayutthaya, explore Kanchanaburi and the Burma Railway, visit Hmong hill tribes, then head to the jungles of Kha Sok.
Swim in the lake, feed and bathe rescued elephants, trek a stunning nature trail through ancient forests, and stay overnight in a jungle eco-lodge.
If you’re planning a Thailand vacation, our many Thailand Travel Specialists would be delighted to help you plan an exceptional excursion, so feel free to contact them for their expert advice. Or, take a look at our Thailand islands hopping tour, which includes two days in the stunning parkland.