The Best Things to Do in Koh Jum, Thailand

Aktualisiert am: 22/03/2024

Looking for a laid-back island in Thailand with long beaches and chill village life? Koh Jum (or Ko Jum, sometimes also called Ko Pu) is located south of the provincial capital Krabi and could be the perfect island for you! In this post, I’ll show you what to do on Koh Jum!

Quick tip: Where to stay on Koh Jum?
You will mainly find small bungalow resorts on Koh Jum. Perfect for individual travelers and if you want to fully enjoy the island life with the great nature!
Fnd the best places to stay on Koh Jum*

Main street in Koh Jum village
Relaxed island life: There are almost no cars on Koh Jum.

Koh Jum: The island in Thailand for backpackers?

Welcome to my travel blog!

Hey, I’m Tatiana, a German-Brazilian living in Berlin & the author behind The Happy Jetlagger. I’ve been writing about my travels since 2014. In addition to my job as a flight attendant, this blog is my passion project!

Originally, it was classic backpackers who found their way to Koh Jum. Tourism was not particularly developed, amenities such as a developed electricity network did not exist and accommodation was limited to a few simple bungalows. Those days are long gone, even the mainstream has discovered Koh Jum – and yet the simple backpacker charm remained. The former gravel road that forms the main traffic axis across the island is now asphalted, the bungalow resorts somewhat larger and more comfortable, but you can still experience authentic island feeling here. The atmosphere is generally super relaxed, the people extremely warm and friendly.

Bungalows on Koh Jum between palm trees
A bungalow in the green: no problem on Koh Jum.

Beaches on Koh Jum

If you love beaches as much as I do, you’ll get your money’s worth on Koh Jum. After my stay on the neighboring island of Ko Siboya, which I otherwise liked but doesn’t have particularly nice beaches, I was in heaven on Koh Jum. The Golden Pearl Beach, for example, is several kilometers long and partly deserted!

Golden Pearl Beach on Koh Jum
Golden Pearl Beach on Koh Jum
Golden Pearl Beach on Koh Jum

All beaches are located on the west coast of the island and therefore offer the most fantastic sunsets over the sea overlooking Koh Phi Phi.

Woman on Golden Pearl Beach on Koh Jum in Thailand

Island hopping in Thailand
You want to get to know several islands in Thailand? Then I definitely recommend my island hopping guide for the Andaman Sea!

My favorite spots: Restaurants & Cafes on Koh Jum

At first glance, you might think Koh Jum is a charming, yet somewhat sleepy island that has no special hotspots. And yet I discovered one or two highlights that absolutely thrilled me!

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Luboa Café

Formerly located in the village, Luboa Café has since moved a bit further into the middle of the countryside. The entrance is right on the street, but if you go through the big wooden gate, you’ll end up in the middle of a Jungle Paradise! Luboa Café offers the best Coffee and an absolute rarity – every morning freshly baked homemade bread rolls! So if you ever feel like a more western breakfast, this is the place to be. But beware: the rolls are very popular and sell out quickly, coming early is worth it.

If you can’t shake the jungle vibe with all the plants and butterflies buzzing around, you can also stay overnight on the premises (and then secure your rolls each morning) – owner Frank and his wife have tastefully built a small, sugary Tiny House in the garden! Definitely an exceptional accommodation!

Book the Luboa Tiny House* here

 Luboa Café in Koh Jum

Mr. Boy’s Café

Would you like to fish your own dinner? This is no problem at Mr. Boy: from the pier where the location is located, you can catch your octopus and then have it prepared freshly caught at Mr.Boy. I am not so much into squid and I have my problems with fishing.

Entrance Mr Boy Café in Koh Jum Thailand
Absolute highlight: The atmospheric café of Mr. Boy on Koh Jum.

But the extraordinary vibe at Mr. Boy makes up for it all: the café on the wooden pier is a hodgepodge of Art gallery, restaurant, organic garden and hostel! Like everywhere on Koh Jum the Atmosphere absolutely chilled and the view of the calm water and the surrounding karst rocks does the rest.

Mr Boy Café in Koh Jum Thailand
Koh Jum Pier
From Mr. Boy Café you have a great view over the water.
Mr Boy Café in Koh Jum Thailand

Thailand is such a great destination!
Click through my Thailand articles and gather even more inspiration for your next trip!

Koh Jum: Relaxed evenings with panoramic view

If you are looking for excessive raves on the beach, the nightlife on Koh Jum will rather disappoint you. But with the Rock Bar at the end of Golden Pearl Beach, there is another extraordinary location on the island that will give you unforgettable evenings.

View of the beach from the Rock Bar on Koh Jum in Thailand
Hidden stairs through the jungle to the Rock Bar in Koh Jum in Thailand
Quite hidden: The adventurous way to the Rock Bar on Koh Jum.
Rock Bar in Koh Jum Thailand
Creatively designed: The Rock Bar is made of washed up driftwood.

On the one hand you can enjoy the free view of the most impressive sunsets, on the other hand the hidden spot between the rocks is unique. A cosy bar has been built here from driftwood on several levels, where you will feel like you are in a huge, cozy nest. The one or other cocktail in addition – and the vacation feeling is perfect!

Sunset over Koh Phi Phi from Koh Jum
Rock Bar in Koh Jum Thailand at night

Village life pure on Ko Jum

There are a total of three villages on Koh Jum: Ban Ko Pu in the north, Ban Ting Rai in the middle and Ban Koh Jum in the south of the island. Koh Jum has a total of only 1000 inhabitants, the villages are correspondingly small. You won’t find big stores here, even ATMs are not available.

Life is simple, the people all the more warm and you quickly get into conversation, even if there are sometimes language barriers. Once a cab driver on his scooter overtook me, waved wildly and then almost slowed me down – only to show me the huge group of monkeys on the other side of the road, which was gyrating up and down the tree. And which, admittedly, were really cute. As a city kid with all the trimmings, I immediately suspected some kind of scam; but it was actually just pure niceness.

Main street in Ban Koh Jum Thailand

Just like on Ko Siboya, locals wave to you on the street, ask where you’re from or are simply friendly and open to strangers. This also makes tourist life relatively carefree. In any case, I have always felt somehow in good hands.

While you have to worry less about things like pickpocketing in the rest of Thailand, my carelessness on Koh Jum has reached unimagined dimensions: While waiting for the next boat at the pier, I simply left my entire luggage including camera equipment at the roadside at a cookshop of an elderly lady on the day of departure and went to eat three houses away, because she unfortunately had nothing left and recommended me another stand. On Koh Jum everything no problem.

Roadside laundromat on Koh Jum in Thailand

What I would also definitely recommend is to start your day with breakfast at one of these cookshops. Breakfast is not the best in many accommodations. Mostly they try to offer something western. This is often sweetly meant, but personally I can do without tasteless toast and prefer to stick to the local cuisine; and there’s plenty of options on Koh Jum.

Cookshop in Koh Jum Thailand

Right next to my resort, for example, there was a really great street stall with all kinds of delicacies. Communication was a bit hands and feet, but the warmth blew me away again there and I wondered why the booth wasn’t full of tourists. If you also often have reservations about street food, just dare and trust your good sense! There, for example, was worked with the simplest means and yet everything was super clean and neat.

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What else you can do on Ko Jum

Koh Jum is not very big and with a scooter you can easily explore the island in one day. Most roads and paths are mostly asphalted, traffic is relaxed. If you prefer, you can also rent bikes from some roadside stores. Or you can take one of the scooter cabs. These are not really marked, but most of the time it is enough to stand around lost on the side of the road and you will be approached already while passing by.

In the middle of the island there is also a viewpoint on the highest mountain of the island, Mount Pu, 422 meters high. If you don’t want to make the trip alone, you can also join a guided tour with a local guide.

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The best accommodations on Koh Jum

I stayed at the Golden Pearl Beach Resort*, which was okay, but also not very charming. Maybe you are lucky and you can still get one of the few bungalows directly on the beach! Waking up in the morning and dipping your bare foot into the warm fine sand with your first step is unique. However, most of the bungalows are across the street and the scooter traffic makes it not quite as idyllic as it could be.

The OonLee Bungalows* are a bit more comfortable and closer to nature.

Golden Pearl Beach Resort on Koh Jum in Thailand

Arrival to Koh Jum

Koh Jum is not quite on the general tourist radar yet, but getting there is not that complicated. There are several options from Krabi:

You can take a cab or songthaew or bus to the more distant Laem Kruad Pier to catch a boat to Mu Tu Pier on Koh Jum. This boat connection is used more by locals and for transporting goods, is cheap (120 baht) and personally I found the trips with it much more pleasant than on a packed speedboat.

Boat at Laem Kruad Pier to Koh Jum

From the more accessible Chao Fah Pier in the center of Krabi, you can take one of the speedboats that operate in the Andaman Sea during the high season from November to April. A ticket costs about 1500 baht.

Waiting passengers at Koh Jum pier
Koh Jum Pier: Speedboats depart from here to many neighboring islands.

There are also connections to Koh Jum from Koh Lanta, Koh Phi Phi or Phuket.

Tip: On 12go.asia* you can book not only boat tickets, but also complete connections with bus transfers to the nearest pier on the mainland!

When is the best time to travel to Koh Jum?

The best time to visit Koh Jum is from November to April. Outside these months, the weather is sometimes worse, and the boat connections are worse, or are sometimes discontinued due to weather conditions. December and January are the peak season, popular accommodations can be fully booked. Therefore, early booking is worthwhile!

What do I need to consider when traveling to Koh Jum?

Koh Jum is really a sleepy, laid-back island with not much developed infrastructure. However, you can find daily necessities in small stores. If you are looking for a very natural accommodation and the critters like you as much as they like me, it is a good idea to have mosquito repellent with DEET at hand. There are no ATMs on the island, credit cards are not accepted in many accommodations. However, there are some stores that exchange Euros or Dollars; in the village of Ban Koh Jum there are also a few small travel agencies that will easily pay you cash for a fee of about 4% cash and charge your credit card; higher amounts are also possible. In case of need you can get cash on Koh Jum, contrary to the information in many travel guides.

Who is Koh Jum suitable for?

Party people will find Koh Jum rather boring; you will look for clubs and dancing nights in vain. But if you are in the mood for relaxation, lovely people, endless beaches and a laid-back island life, you won’t want to leave! Families with children are also very welcome here.


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