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When visiting Hin Lad Waterfall you may just miss out on a great adventure in to the Samui jungle.
Most visitors pull up at this attraction, see a nice little waterfall at the base, with catfish swimming about and locals enjoying a cooling off in the mountain fresh water. This is enough for many tourists whose holiday is about taking it easy, but for those of you who like a bit of an adventure and exercise in their holiday, Hin Lad should be locked in to your Trip Planner.
The entrance path to the waterfall is on your right, past some small drinks stalls and house. When we say path, it is concrete steps for all but 20 metres, beyond it's dirt with such obstacles as tree roots and boulders.
As you get deeper into the jungle the path becomes less apparent and has the odd split where you might wonder which path to take. When both paths are equally less travelled it can be 50/50 as to which one is correct. The best idea is to keep listening to the sound of cascading water and follow the sound forward. If you do veer off the wrong way you'll soon know and be able to track back easily.
Trekking through the jungle here is a great experience, fantastic thick green vegetation canopies your trail while the smells and sounds of nature engulf the senses. It's a good half an hour trek up to the falls, so make sure you pack plenty of drinking water. The canopy might give cover from the sun, but there is no breeze and it gets pretty humid.
Those expecting Niagra Falls when they arrive will be disappointed, but you will find a natural fall cascading into a rock pool where you can cool off.
Once at the top, we decided not to take the jungle path back down again, but to try and make our way back by following the water. This happened to be one of our better ideas while venturing around Samui. It was great fun trying to find our way across the waters path and over boulders the size of a two story house, these monstrous stones that were moved by nature down the side of this mountain thousands of years ago.
Along the way there are little rock pools where you can cool off again, have a seat in the shade and take in the beautiful surrounds.
Drenched in sweat and ready for a cool drink by the pool, we finally made the base of the falls after a physical hour trekking down the falls. Definitely recommended for those that would like to see a bit more and enjoy a challenge.
Hin Lad can be found at the end of the 4172 road. Coming out of Nathon on the ring road, take the left at the first set of lights.