Klong Nakha Wildlife Sanctuary, which takes its name from the area’s largest river and adjoins the larger Klong Saen protected area in Suratthani Province further to the east is located in the southeast of Ranong Province. It is situated within the hills of the Phuket mountain range. The wildlife reserve was established in 1972, originally covering an area of 480 km². This wildlife reserve houses a breathtaking waterfall known as Namtok Phan Met amid a stretch of verdant forest. And although the sanctuary can be visited between the hours of 8am and 5pm, unlike National Parks, wildlife reserves are not open for tourism. An overnight stay within the area for educational purposes will require a letter of permission to be presented to the official.
The nearby Nakha village boasts stunning mountainous scenery, and is home to the highly endangered Water Lily, known locally as the “Yah Chong.” This fresh-water plant has unusually long leaves and delicate white flowers that bloom from October to December. Unfortunately, the water lily faces serious threats from river dredging and collection for resale as aquarium plants.
To help save the Water Lily, locals formed a conservation group to protect its habitat, and now offer rafting excursions to raise public awareness of this beautiful plant. Profits are used by the club to pay for school trips. The club also sponsors a nursery that is used by the youth group for replanting the water lilies.