The historical record is sparse, but a Chinese Liang Dynasty record (c. 500 AD) refers to the kingdom of "Lang-ya-xiu" (Chinese: 狼牙脩) as being founded in the 1st century AD. As described in the Chinese chronicles, Langkasuka was thirty days' journey from east to west, and twenty from north to south, 24,000 li in distance from Guangzhou. Its capital was said to be surrounded by walls to form a city with double gates, towers and pavilions. The Buddhist monk Yi Jing mentioned encountering three Chinese monks who lived in Lang-chia-su.
The kingdom's designation in Chinese records changed over time: it was known as "Lang-ya-se-chia" during the Song dynasty(960-1279); "Long-ya-si-jiao" during the Yuan Dynasty (1279-1368); and "Lang-se-chia" during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), as evidenced by the Mao Kun map of Admiral Zheng He.
The name "Langkasuka" was also mentioned in Malay and Javanese chronicles. Tamil sources name "Ilangasoka" as one ofRajendra Chola's conquests in his expedition against the Srivijaya empire. It was described as a kingdom that that was "undaunted in fierce battles".
In 515 AD King Bhagadatta first established relations with China, with further embassies sent in 523, 531 and 568. In the 12th century Langkasuka was a tributary to the Srivijaya empire, and around the 15th century it was replaced by the Pattani Kingdom.
In 1963, Stewart Wavell led a Cambridge Expedition to locate Langkasuka and Tambralinga. The details of this expedition can be read in The Naga King's Daughter, published by Antara Books.