When heading to Phuket most people may think about taking a luxury yacht to nearby islands, sunbathing on the white-sand beaches and enjoying activities like surfing and jet-skiing. However, did you know that there’s another side of tourism which is community-based tourism? It consists of actually staying with local people, living and working like a local and enjoying a real natural touch that you won’t find in ‘ordinary’ tours.

You can do this on a quiet and idyllic island that takes less than 15 minutes to get to from Phuket Island, and it’s called Koh Lon.

Koh Lon is about 1.5km from either the Chalong Pier or Panwa Bali.

The main way in is by longtail boats and if you have a booking at one of the resorts, they will typically arrange for you to be picked up (although you probably shouldn’t count on them being on time).

A return trip on a longtail ferry should cost 500 baht and takes about 10 minutes. If that’s too long for you, laid-back Koh Lon is probably not the place for you. However, you may be able to charter a speed boat. If you have made no arrangements, your best chance is to be at Ao Chalong in the early morning.

Koh Lon is an island located in the Rawai sub-district off the southeast coast of Phuket with a total area of 3,000 rai and with 30 families living there.

In the past, most families worked in fishing or in agriculture, but nowadays some conduct community-based tourism that’s open for outsiders in order for them to visit and learn just how the locals live.

The simple way of life-based in fisherman lifestyle in which life relates to the ocean is the unique point of this community.

Besides, Muslim and Buddhist culture is very well blended and people live together peacefully.

The well-known products of this region are the beautiful patterns of batik.

All of these cultures are the identity of the community enterprise at Rawai Sub-district, Koh Lon that is perfectly integrated to build up the strong community.