Getting to Koh Lipe

How to go to Koh Lipe

Getting to Koh Lipe island is relatively simple as there are a few ways into this island paradise on the Andaman Sea.

Koh Lipe or Ko Leepae (Paper Island) is one of the last few remaining exotic islands of Southwest Thailand, which used to be a hippy stop located in the Tarutao National Marine Park.

How To Go To Koh Lipe?

The most common way here is from Pakbara town next to La-Ngu Town in the Satun district of Southern Thailand or via Telaga Harbor or Awana Porto Malai in Langkawi Island, Malaysia.

Due to some recent issues with the ferry operators and the local Langkawi authorities, there have been changes in the ferry services to Koh Lipe from here. A public ferry from Kuah Jetty to Koh Lipe has started.

Also, note that every season (year), the ferry timetables change, so it is best to double and triple-check if you are on a very tight schedule. The Ferry service from Langkawi starts on Oct 20th too.

Ferry from Langkawi to Koh Lipe Update - August 2014
  • The Langkawi Speedboat ferry transfers operate from Oct 20th - May 31st
  • General Ferries are only from Kuah Town Jetty
  • Tigerline will start their ferry service from Kuah to Koh Lipe and back from Nov 8th 2014
  • Tigerline Website
  • The speedboat service to Lipe from Telaga Harbour starts on Oct 20th
  • The immigration counter on Ko Lipe is closed until Oct 20th (Off-Season)
Ferry from Pak Barra to Koh Lipe
  • Take the 09.00am ferry service from Kuah Jetty to Tammalang Pier in Satun, which will arrive at 09.15am (Thai time)
  • Then take a 1-hour taxi ride to Pak Bara Pier
  • One way ferry ticket is Baht 650
  • Then catch the speedboat transfer at 11.30am to Lipe, which arrives at 13.00pm.
  • There is another speedboat at 15.00pm (From Nov 1st)
Ferry from Langkawi to Koh Lipe Fees - August 2014
  • Koh Lipe Thailand 1200 THB one way/person + 500 THB booking fee
  • Telaga Harbour Terminal 128 MYR + 6 MYR booking fee. If you book online, you get a RM10 discount. 
  • In total, this is about 1300 THB one way /per person.
Petronas Quay at Telaga Harbor
Telaga Harbor's Petronas Quay.

For my trip to Koh Lipe in January 2010, I flew into Langkawi Island from Kuala Lumpur on AirAsia and then took a ferry from Telaga Harbor to Ko Lipe.

This is the only passage from Malaysia to Ko Lipe. However, you need to know that your ferry ticket can be booked online from the Telaga Harbor website in advance to avoid being sold out, as it is a popular route these days.

Marina at Telaga Harbour
Telaga Harbor Marina.

Telaga Harbor Marina is located on the western part of Langkawi Island and is only about 15 minutes by taxi from the Langkawi Airport or about 30 minutes from Kuah Town.

So plan your journey timings carefully here. Several shops and amenities are available, like a KFC fast food joint and a convenient mini shop just at the Petronas Petrol Station just next to the ferry office.

Telaga Harbour Currency Exchange
Foreign Money Exchange at Telaga Harbor.

More importantly, a foreign currency exchange is available at one of the local banks there, too. However, I recommend changing your Thai Baht before coming here as the rates are not that good.

Look for money changers in towns or other cities. Your last alternative would be to change your Thai Baht with a friendly local guy that sits around the waiting ferry area with a laptop.

Ferry Office in Langkawi
Koh Lipe ferry office in Telaga Harbor.

Upon arrival, you head straight up to the Marina office, where you must fill out the immigration form and verify or buy your Koh Lipe tickets. (Online ticket buyers, bring a copy with you!)

You also submit your passport to them, as they will hand it to the boat captain for safekeeping in a dry bag. This is entirely normal, so no worries here.

After you have completed everything, head downstairs and socialize while waiting. You would probably be the 9.5 out of 10 foreigners waiting, as only a few locals visit Lipe.

Koh Lipe High-speed ferry
High-speed ferry to Koh Lipe.

Koh Lipe Speedboat Ferry
Koh Lipe Ferry - What it looks like inside.

Once the Lipe Ferry arrives, they will quickly clean up and unload everything before you are invited to board the ferry.

Looking at the pictures above, these high-powered ferries only take about 45 minutes from Langkawi to Koh Lipe.

Each ferry can seat about 20 people comfortably. Bags are given to the deckhands to be stored in front while life jackets are ready on the seats.

If you are the type that gets seasick quickly, please be well prepared, as these ferries are really fast.

Beach Jetty Koh Lipe
Arrival and departures at Koh Lipe Island.

Koh Lipe Ferry Jetty
Arriving at Koh Lipe in the water.

On arrival at Koh Lipe, you should know that there is no pier or jetty for you. The boats will reverse and stop where you have to get into the water and wade to the beach before heading to the immigration office.

The boatmen will unload your bags on the beach, and you will collect your own baggage. So avoid high heels (Asians!), socks and long pants. Best to go beach-style on this trip.

Immigration Office Koh Lipe
Koh Lipe Immigration Office or Hut

Immigration Office at Koh Lipe

The ferries will stop right in front of the little immigration hut. It is so tiny that only one officer is in charge, so be prepared to wait if a few boats arrive simultaneously.

The captain will send all the passports in his dry bag to the immigration office to check them individually and process them.

His assistants will call out your name to collect your passport when it is done. Note - Because foreigners have unique names, it may be hard for them to pronounce, so all ears there, as in hanging around closely till you get your name called.

Sometimes they will just call a name and show the passport picture around. 

Immigration Counter Koh Lipe
The immigration officer.

The passport office is located along Pattaya Beach, right next to the Bundhaya Resort. This is the main beach of Koh Lipe, while there is the Sunrise Beach, Sunset Beach and Mountain Resort.

Depending on where you stay, you can take the longtail taxis from just outside the passport office. I stayed at Mountain Resort, a private beach on the northmost part of Koh Lipe.

So I went down to the beach and asked the local Chow Ley (sea gipsies) longtail boatmen how much to my resort. It generally costs about 50 Baht per person for taxi services.

Koh Lipe Ferry Schedule
Ferry check-in times.

If you are backpacking and planning to travel to other islands or parts of Thailand and Malaysia, check your boat timings and bookings here, as there is an office for this.

On the main shopping street of Lipe, several travel services are also provided. Ferry, train, and bus tickets were all sold there. Watch out for my next posting about Koh Lipe in general.

There is an ATM and a 7-11 on the Walking Street of Ko Lipe. 

You should not follow the timetable below as it is the old one, I have done the new one above and due to the current changes, there may be different timings for 2014/2015. 

For the below, there needs to be some clarity as a few readers have tried contacting several ferry operators but were told they do not operate to Ko Lipe. I suggest you go through the Telaga Harbor Ferry Service or Kuah Jetty.

Ferry from Awana Porto Malai Resort in Langkawi to Koh Lipe;
Ticket price for Awana-Koh Lipe: RM129 per person one way
Return ticket Awana-Koh Lipe-Awana RM250 per pax.
Times: 10.30am, 12.00noon and 2.30pm
Contact Mr Adam of Andaman Vacation
Telephone. +6012 463 6899

Tigerline Ferry timings to Koh Lipe and Langkawi
Departing Langkawi: 09.00 (Telaga), 09.00 (Awana Hotel jetty), 12.00 (Telaga)
Departing Lipe: 10.00 (To Telaga), 16.00 (To Telaga), 16.00 (To Awana Hotel jetty) 

Ferry from Kuah Town in Langkawi to Koh Lipe;
Alternatively, you can go to the Kuah Pier at Langkawi town and book your ticket from the ferry counter to Tammalang. From Tammalang at Tarutao Island, you can hop on a direct ferry to Ko Adang or Ko Lipe. You need to pay about 350 baht one way.
Tigerline Website

Koh Lipe Packages via Travel Agents;
Apparently, there are several travel agents in Pantai Cenang (Cenang Beach) in Langkawi that offer 3D/2N packages to Ko Lipe. You can also check with them as they provide an all-inclusive ferry transfer and lodging package. 

Some of the travel agencies in Hat Yai or Pak Bara also offer packages, so you can check with the respective agents there if you are coming from Bangkok or via Hat Yai.

Getting to Koh Lipe from Thailand;

From Bangkok to Hat Yai to Pak Barra - There are daily trains from Hua Lamphong train station in Bangkok from around 5pm to 8pm.

The journey to Hat Yai town is 15 hours. From Hat Yai, take the minibus from Thalat Kasit Station (near the airport), and the trip to Pak Barra is about 2 hours (150 Baht).

Various travel agents sell package tickets in town (Minibus plus ferry), but you have to buy them from these agents. You can also book a private van/car direct to Pak Barra, which costs a little more.

When you reach Pak Barra town, it can get messy with everyone trying to sell you ferry tickets.

The best option is to buy your ticket from the relevant ferry company counters. There are restaurants and shops to pass the time while waiting for your next ferry.

Make sure you stock up on necessities, as prices are almost double on Ko Lipe. The last shop before the jetty in Pak Bara sells some decent Water Proof Bags. We got Size No5 for about Baht 300 while Size No10 at Baht 350.

Pak Barra serves as the main gateway to Koh Lipe from the land. 

From Phuket and the surrounding islands, which include Krabi - You need to get to Koh Lanta, where many ferries are heading to Koh Lipe.

Check with the people there on the timings. Some ferries make various stops at many smaller islands before Koh Lipe.

Also, be careful of the low season from May to November, as several services stop during this period.

Telaga Harbor Langkawi Map

View Telaga Harbor Marina on a larger map

Ferry to Koh Lipe from Telaga Harbor Langkawi

Update August 2014 - Please follow the updates at the beginning of this post
  • Departing Telaga Harbour Langkawi twice a day - 0930hrs & 1430hrs
  • Returning from Koh Lipe twice a day - 1130hrs & 1700hr
  • Ticket bookings and availability online or at Telaga Terminal, Telaga Harbour Marina, Langkawi.
  • One-Way Ferry Ticket to Koh Lipe - RM 128 (US$42)
  • Return Ferry Ticket to Koh Lipe/Langkawi - RM 248 (US$82) 


You can also read my other article on Koh Lipe, Thailand. If you have been wondering where this beautiful island is, it is just north of Langkawi Islands, and it is the southernmost island of Phuket in Thailand.

I have been here twice and tried visiting this place from Langkawi and Pak Bara Town in Thailand. This guide gives you good information about Getting to Koh Lipe, Thailand.

Malaysia Asia

Blogging since 2007, but writing online since 1997. I belong to the 1st generation of worldwide bloggers, which is of course old-school. Since 2008, I created Malaysia Asia and this travel, flood, gadget and lifestyle blog has won numerous physical awards from tourism boards around Malaysia. (Not those online awards). After 12 years of blogging, I have semi-retired and now blog about things I like, do product reviews and enjoy life. My work has been featured in Lonely Planet, CNN Travel, Yahoo Travel, Wall Street Journal, and many other international publications. Find out more about me and thank you.


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