Koh Samui

Welcome to Samui; one of the coolest tropical holiday destinations on the world map. Samui is a cosmopolitan melting pot, attracting budget travellers that sometimes stay for a month or two in simple beachside bungalows as well as the mega rich, dropping by for a weekend at a luxury resort or beach villa. Koh Samui is unique among Thailand's islands in maintaining a broad appeal to everyone. This helps to foster the distinctive relaxed atmosphere that sets it apart. Samui has a wide range of accommodation, great nightlife, action sports, and beautiful scenery. Experience first-class spas, holistic activities, ladyboy

Weather 

Koh Samui weather comes in three distinct seasons: dry, hot and rainy. Thailand is situated between the Tropic of Cancer and the Equator (slightly closer to the latter), making its climate warm and humid all year round. The humidity level is generally between 70 and 85 per cent, and the temperatures averages at around 28°C.

Located in the Gulf of Thailand, Koh Samui offers all that vacationers from cooler temperate countries could dream of regarding weather conditions. They are generally good year round, and the one thing you will rarely feel is cold. The optimum weather conditions can be enjoyed between December and August.

Getting arround

Getting around Koh Samui is not at all difficult thanks to a modest but adequate range of transport options. Being a mere 25 kilometres long and 21 kilometres across, most journeys around Thailand’s third largest island will be pretty short, but there is a choice available to suit any distance and any budget.

Most of the transport options which are common in Thailand’s top tourist destinations have also found their way to Koh Samui, though there are one or two notable exceptions. The island has no tuk tuks, for example, and no proper formalised bus service. However, the public transport will be able to get you to most of the key destinations and vehicle rental is available for those hard-to-reach places.

Songthaews (Pick-Up Taxis) in Koh Samui
The nearest thing Koh Samui has to a bus systems is the songthaew. Its name meaning ‘two benches’, they are generally little more than a pick-up truck with a roof covering two benches fitted in the back. During the day, they follow set routes and the truck will generally have its destination painted on the front in English. There are no official bus stops, so you can flag one down anywhere.

Using a Songthaew does require that you have a reasonably good idea of where you are going. The road network of Koh Samui is far from complicated, so this will not require much effort. The problem is that, with set routes and no route maps available, you have to just keep riding until it is as close as possible to where you want to go. When you want to get off, ring the bell (you’ll find doorbell-like buttons on the ceiling in the passenger compartment) or bang on the roof to get the driver’s attention.

Songthaews are the cheapest method of getting around Koh Samui, costing as little as 20 baht per person and generally no more than 60 baht. The usual practise is to just jump aboard without talking to the driver and pay 20 baht per person when you jump off – no discussion or haggling. In the evenings, some songthaews operate as private taxis. This means they will take you directly to your destination, but they will also charge you considerably more for doing so. You will need to discuss exactly how much with the driver before setting off.

Welcome to Samui; one of the coolest tropical holiday destinations on the world map. Samui is a cosmopolitan melting pot, attracting budget travellers that sometimes stay for a month or two in simple beachside bungalows as well as the mega rich, dropping by for a weekend at a luxury resort or beach villa. Koh Samui is unique among Thailand's islands in maintaining a broad appeal to everyone. This helps to foster the distinctive relaxed atmosphere that sets it apart. Samui has a wide range of accommodation, great nightlife, action sports, and beautiful scenery. Experience first-class spas, holistic activities, ladyboy

Weather 

Koh Samui weather comes in three distinct seasons: dry, hot and rainy. Thailand is situated between the Tropic of Cancer and the Equator (slightly closer to the latter), making its climate warm and humid all year round. The humidity level is generally between 70 and 85 per cent, and the temperatures averages at around 28°C.

Located in the Gulf of Thailand, Koh Samui offers all that vacationers from cooler temperate countries could dream of regarding weather conditions. They are generally good year round, and the one thing you will rarely feel is cold. The optimum weather conditions can be enjoyed between December and August.

Getting arround

Getting around Koh Samui is not at all difficult thanks to a modest but adequate range of transport options. Being a mere 25 kilometres long and 21 kilometres across, most journeys around Thailand’s third largest island will be pretty short, but there is a choice available to suit any distance and any budget.

Most of the transport options which are common in Thailand’s top tourist destinations have also found their way to Koh Samui, though there are one or two notable exceptions. The island has no tuk tuks, for example, and no proper formalised bus service. However, the public transport will be able to get you to most of the key destinations and vehicle rental is available for those hard-to-reach places.

Songthaews (Pick-Up Taxis) in Koh Samui
The nearest thing Koh Samui has to a bus systems is the songthaew. Its name meaning ‘two benches’, they are generally little more than a pick-up truck with a roof covering two benches fitted in the back. During the day, they follow set routes and the truck will generally have its destination painted on the front in English. There are no official bus stops, so you can flag one down anywhere.

Using a Songthaew does require that you have a reasonably good idea of where you are going. The road network of Koh Samui is far from complicated, so this will not require much effort. The problem is that, with set routes and no route maps available, you have to just keep riding until it is as close as possible to where you want to go. When you want to get off, ring the bell (you’ll find doorbell-like buttons on the ceiling in the passenger compartment) or bang on the roof to get the driver’s attention.

Songthaews are the cheapest method of getting around Koh Samui, costing as little as 20 baht per person and generally no more than 60 baht. The usual practise is to just jump aboard without talking to the driver and pay 20 baht per person when you jump off – no discussion or haggling. In the evenings, some songthaews operate as private taxis. This means they will take you directly to your destination, but they will also charge you considerably more for doing so. You will need to discuss exactly how much with the driver before setting off.

Taxis in Koh Samui
While the taxis of Bangkok come in a huge range of vivid colours – each denoting a different taxi company or collective - the taxis of Koh Samui are uniformly yellow and maroon. This, obviously, means that there is only one company operating on the island, which unfortunately does make this one of the more expensive methods of getting around. While most of the vehicles do have a meter, very few ever use it, with drivers instead negotiating a fixed price for the journey – often quite a high price relative to the distance. With no other taxi company to use, there isn’t much of a choice. In fairness to them, taxis are certainly the most comfortable of the public transport options, with vehicles almost all well maintained and air-conditioned. They will also take you directly to your destination instead of following fixed and indistinct routes.

Considerably cheaper (and less comfortable) than four wheels, motorbike taxis in Koh Samui can be found by looking for the riders in brightly-coloured vests. Being small and manoeuvrable, motorbike taxis can zip through traffic and narrow back streets, making them much quicker for short journeys around towns. As with other forms of taxi, you will need to agree a price in advance, but you won’t need to bargain as hard to get a fair one.

Motorbike Rental
Renting a motorbike is certainly the most economical way to get around Samui. Rental rate per day ranges around 200-300 baht, while gasoline costs about 30 baht per litre. An international driving permit is necessary to legally drive a motorbike in Thailand. Please note that if you don’t carry a motorcycle driver’s license, police may let you go, but your insurance might not cover you in case of accidents. Driving a moped to explore the island is a real pleasure but you need to be really, really careful. Due to extremely poor education on traffic rules and safety, Thailand ranks among the highest in the world when it comes to road fatalities. With that in mind, be very vigilant when driving your motorbike around Samui.

Car Rental in Koh Samui
Renting a car in Koh Samui is among the safest, most comfortable and most convenient means of getting around available, though it does come at a cost. You have a choice of places to hire from, ranging from well-known international brands like Avis, Hertz, Budget Car Rentals and National Car Hire all the way down to local independent firms and private individuals.

You can rent a car from as little as 800 baht per day, but such a great deal will often mean getting a less-than-ideal vehicle, usually without insurance. Given that Koh Samui has one of the highest rates of traffic accidents in Thailand, this could prove considerably more expensive in the long run. Safer options, such as hiring from a well-established local or international company, can cost around 2,000 baht per day.

If you plan to explore the island a lot, and particularly if you intend to visit the hilly interior, a 4 x 4 is strongly recommended. Those of Koh Samui’s roads which aren’t just sandy tracks are often in a state of considerable disrepair and the roads leading inland can be particularly steep. As with riding a motorbike, a valid Thai or international driver’s license is required to drive in Koh Samui and, while the smaller outfits might not check that you have one, the reputable global organisations certainly will.

Bicycle Rental in Koh Samui
If you’re feeling particularly energetic and eco-friendly, there are some shops available for renting bicycles. A good mountain bike will generally cost you about 80 baht per day, making this one of the cheapest methods of getting around Koh Samui. However, given the state of the roads and the island’s hilly topography, it is also the slowest and most exhausting method.

KOH SAMUI AREA GUIDES
The paradisiacal island of Samui is located in the Gulf of Thailand and covers a total area of 247sqkm. It features beautiful coral, clear water, golden and whitesand beaches and lots of coconuts. Over the past decades, Samui has becoming a remarkable unique destination and is never short of interesting things to do and see. Let our Area Guides help you navigate through Thailand’s third-largest island to discover its wonders.

CHAWENG BEACH
Chaweng is not only the biggest but the most exciting and developed town on the island. Located on the east coast, its sandy beach is popular for all kinds of fun activities including banana boat riding and parasailing. Visitors can find just about everything here within easy enough walking distance so expect to see the usual business setups in the neighborhood such as dive shops, souvenir shops, internet cafés and tour companies.

LAMAI BEACH
In the past, Lamai was a favourite location for backpackers with its beautiful beach, cosy and easy-going ambience and many budget and cheap accommodations scattered here and there, but that’s not the case anymore. As the second-largest beach on the island, Lamai is still quieter than Chaweng but lately there have been more sophisticated businesses opening up including luxury resorts and trendy cafés and restaurants.

BOPHUT
On northern coast of Samui lies Bophut, made up of two places: Bophut Beach, which stretches several kilometres between Big Buddha and Maenam beaches and the wellpreserved Fisherman's Village situated in the middle section of the beach. The undeniable charm of this picturesque village features old wooden Chinese shop-houses and fishing boats coming and going day after day

MAENAM BEACH
Visitors who desire a long powdery beach fringed by swaying palms should look no further than Maenam Beach. Located north of Chaweng and Bophut, Maenam is considered a haven for all, whether you are on a budget or have some cash to spend. Here you can check in to a very simple style room with fan or a luxury five-star pool villa or something in between, the choices are there!

EAST & SOUTH COASTS
Travelers who would like to learn more about the island away from the usual touristy spots should explore Samui’s east and south coasts as the majority of these areas still maintain their exotic charm and a smalltown atmosphere. You will also find interesting small beaches or in some cases the rocky bays looking out to beautiful islets nearby.

KOH PHANGAN & KOH TAO
It’s true that you can’t separate the worldfamous full moon party from Koh Phangan’s image but that’s not all that the island has to offer. Located north of Samui, Phangan has what it takes to become an incredible holiday destination with lovely beaches, tropical surrounding along with modern comforts. For those who are looking for more, a trip to Koh Tao (or Turtle Island) will suit you just fine.

What to See in Koh Samui
Koh Samui attractions extend beyond the beautiful beaches the island is known for, though they are definitely attractive in their own right. If you want a break from all of that lounging in the sand, though, there are a host of unusual things to see, which make the most of the island’s unique culture and charms.

The attractions in Koh Samui lean more towards the low-key, natural end of the scale, which best suit’s the island’s general ambiance. Why would you bother to visit a high-tech theme park when the whole island is your playground? Instead, you can enjoy some truly remarkable sites of historic, cultural and religious significance as well as sights of breathtaking natural beauty. For a little more quirkiness, check out the monkey show or the snake farm.


All Activities in Koh Samui


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