Ko Lipe (Thai: เกาะหลีเป๊ะ) is a small island in the Adang-Rawi Archipelago of the Andaman Sea, in Satun Province of southwest Thailand, close to the Malaysian border. The Thai name is transliterated in many different ways into English. The most common names are "Koh Lipe", "Koh Lipeh", "Ko Lipey", and "Ko Lipe". Ko Lipe is on the border of the Tarutao National Marine Park and is directly south of the larger islands Ko Adang and Ko Rawi, and about 50 km from the island of Ko Tarutao. It was originally settled by a group of sea gypsies (chao leh in Thai), originally from Malaysia, known as the Urak Lawoi’ people.
In high season (November to May) there are several locations from which you can take a ferry or speedboat to Ko Lipe, including: Pak Bara, Langkawi, Phi Phi, Ko Lanta, and Trang. In low season (May to October) the only way to get to Ko Lipe is by speedboat from Pak Bara.
From Langkawi, Malaysia there are two speedboats per day (from November until May). These boats dock at the south end of Pattaya Beach. Other ferries are met by longtail boats offering transfers to anywhere on Ko Lipe.
Ko Lipe has three main beaches: Sunset Beach, Sunrise Beach, and Pattaya Beach. Accommodation from grass huts to air-conditioned bungalows can be found on these beaches. It is possible to walk around the entire island in little over an hour.
There are many sites for scuba diving and snorkeling around Ko Lipe and its neighbouring islands. On Ko Lipe there are many dive shops and resorts that rent out snorkel gear or arrange boat trips. The calm, clear water makes Ko Lipe ideal for snorkeling, with 25% of the world's tropical fish species found in the area. There are large varieties of fish around the coral just a few meters deep straight off all of the beaches.
Ko Lipe is outside of Tarutao National Park jurisdiction, and as such is exempt from the laws and legislation that protect the rest of the national park. The island is rapidly growing to meet the demands of increase in tourism, and is facing quite a few issues with rubbish and animal conservation. There are projects currently in place to keep Ko Lipe clean.