Gay Koh Lipe: the ultimate travel guide for the LGBTQ traveler

Stefan Arestis

During our island hopping adventures in Thailand, we stayed over a week on Koh Lipe, which we found to be quite a popular gay destination. We investigated to try and find out if Koh Lipe really is as gay as it appeared to us.

Koh Lipe is a small island in Southwest Thailand in the Andaman Sea, close to the Malaysian border and part of the group of Tarutao National Marine Park islands. It is not national park land itself, so it has been developed, a lot, for tourism.

Map of the Tarutao National Marine Park islands
Map of the Tarutao National Marine Park islands: we visited Koh Lipe, Adang and Tarutao

Gay friendly accommodation on Koh Lipe

We stayed over a week in a bamboo hut at the excellent Gipsy Resort, owned by couple Robert and Krom, on Sunrise Beach.

Rob and Krom, owners of Gipsy Resort
Rob and Krom, the really cute owners of Gipsy Resort

We made friends with the many gay couples who were also staying at the Gipsy Resort and enjoyed many Margharitas and Singapore Sling cocktails together.

We also met a few gay couples staying at the very romantic Serendipity Beach Resort also located on Sunrise Beach, which is the most beautiful beach on the island and also great for snorkelling.

Stefan's Valentines Day message
Stefan's Valentines Day message at Koh Lipe

Which is the best beach for gays

There are three main beaches on this tiny island: Pattaya Beach in the south where the majority of the long tail boats are based, the really ugly and dirty Sunset Beach in the west and the beautiful paradise like Sunrise Beach on the east side:

Koh Lipe map
Map of Koh Lipe

Sunrise beach was not only a popular gay hangout but the best beach on what has become an overdeveloped island.

We also found an excellent chill out lounge there, part of the Salisa Resort, which played really nice music in the afternoon and early evening.

A romantic moment on the beautiful Sunrise Beach
Sharing a Valentines Day moment on Sunrise Beach in Koh Lipe

Gay hangouts on Koh Lipe

The Walking Street on Koh Lipe is the beating heart of the island with many restaurants and bars.

Maya Bar and Mellow Mango were particularly popular hangouts for gays where you can buy delicious cocktail buckets for 400 bahts (around £8 / $12).


Misterb&b is the Airbnb equivalent for the LGBTQ community. Unlike on Airbnb, you know your host is gay, avoiding any nasty surprises when you check in. It is also a great way to meet gay locals and discover the underground gay scene. Click below to get 10 € (or $10) off your first booking.

Our favourite restaurants on Koh Lipe

We spent Valentines Day on Koh Lipe and had our special meal at the Idyllic Concept Resort located on Sunrise Beach. It wasn't the cheapest but our tables faced the sea and had a nice romantic setting. Their cocktails were the best we had on the island.

Stefan Happy in Lipe on the Walking Street
Stefan is Happy in Lipe, posing on the Walking Street

Our favourite restaurants in Koh Lipe

Our overall favourite restaurant was the Italian La Luna, located just off the Walking Street, which is also a bakery and makes delicious inexpensive pizzas for around 300 bahts (£6 / $9).

Our favourite culinary highlight to round off any evening in Koh Lipe was mango sticky rice from one of the many food stalls on Walking Street. The one at Mam Papaya was our favourite because they were very generous with their coconut milk:

Enjoying sticky rice mango
Enjoying sticky rice mango on the Walking Street

For more Thai island inspiration, read about our adventures in Koh Tarutao, Koh Tao and Koh Adang, which is just a stone's throw away from Koh Lipe. Also, watch our video Thailand travel video right here:


Happy travels are safe travels

We recommend you always take out travel insurance before your next vacation. What happens if you suffer from illness, injury, theft or a cancellation? With travel insurance, you can have peace of mind and not worry. We love World Nomads travel insurance and have been using it for years. Their comprehensive coverage is second to none and their online claims process is very user friendly.

Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means that if you book your accommodation, an activity or your insurance, we’ll earn a small commission. There is never an extra cost to you for using these links and it helps us keep the site going.

Stefan Arestis

Stefan is the co-founder, editor and author the gay travel blog As a travel nerd, he has explored more than 80 countries across 5 continents. What he loves the most about travelling is discovering the local gay scene, making new friends and learning new cultures. His advice about LGBTQ travel has been featured in Gay Times, Gaycities, Pink News, Gay Star News, Attitude and Towleroad. He has also written about gay travel for other non-gay specific publications including Lonely Planet, The New York Times, The Guardian and The Huffington Post. Stefan is also a qualified lawyer, having practised as a commercial property litigator in London for over 10 years. He left his lawyer days behind to work full time on Nomadic Boys with his husband Sebastien. Find out more about Nomadic Boys.

10 thoughts on “Gay Koh Lipe: the ultimate travel guide for the LGBTQ traveler”

  1. Thanks for your fantastic review. I stayed at the Pattaya Beach Hotel in 2016. Accommodations were good I have more ideas about another trip to Thailand. Have a nice time in France 🇫🇷
    Bob Kajdan

  2. Good work lads, very helpful post, we’ll be there in a few days so will definitely be checking out your recommendations! Dom

  3. It might be a little bit inconvenient to visit from China, since there are no direct flights to there. But I’m interested in details to run a gay resort by a beach.

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