Chaweng Beach, Koh Samui's most famous stretch of sea and sand, is a firm favourite with visitors - and it's not hard to see why. With something for everyone, this vibrant resort attracts visitors from all walks of life and all over the globe. Affluent professionals, honeymooning couples and families with children flock to Chaweng for its signature blend of relaxation and excitement.Even at first glance, Chaweng Beach's six km of sparkling white sands and clear turquoise waters make for a picture perfect backdrop. As tropical beaches go, you can't do much better than one with lush green palm trees for shade and a gently shelving shoreline that makes for safe swimming and bathing.However, Cha...Read More
Our definitive survival guide to the Full Moon Party gives you the lowdown on how to have the night of your life and stay safe at the legendary Ko Phangan beach bash.
What to take to the Full Moon Party
Cash. There's a small (100 baht) entrance fee if you're arriving by boat, and if you're getting a taxi back to your hotel you'll need to set the fare aside too.
Then there's spending money for the party itself. On the beach, buckets - the Full Moon Party's infamous cocktail of spirits, mixer and sometimes energy drinks - will set you back a couple of hundred baht each. (All that fluid has to go somewhere, so don't forget 10-20 baht per trip to the bathroom!)
Next up: what to leave behind. Our def...Read More
On TripAdvisor, Koh Samui's hotels and attractions are ranked and reviewed by tens of thousands of travellers each year. Whether you're looking for the lowdown on luxury accommodation or planning an off-the-beaten track itinerary for you and your backpack, the site promises to give you the scoop from a whole community of online reviewers who have been there and done that. It's a brilliant concept, but can you really trust what you're reading?
With any review site, there's potential for gaming the system. Those with a stake in the tourism trade are wiseing up to the impact that social media can have on their business, and there's always the possibility that some of those glowing five star writ...Read More
Say 'Koh Samui restaurants' and one word springs immediately to mind: variety. From informal buffets to fine dining and everything in between, this idyllic island is also a foodie's paradise. Here are some of our insider tips for travellers seeking a culinary experience to remember.
1. Venture Out
If you're staying in one of the larger resorts, chances are you'll have a choice of restaurants within your hotel's grounds. Some of these are exquisite - and well worth a visit or two - but don't be tempted to eat there every night of your stay in Koh Samui. Restaurants in the local town will often be considerably cheaper, and will give you the chance to sample a wider range of the local cuisine. Yo...Read More
Koh Samui airport is many travellers' first glimpse of their holiday island paradise, and we can honestly say that it lives up to expectations. Also known as Samui International Airport, its architects clearly appreciated that for most people arriving in a new destination, first impressions really do count. Designed to blend with its surroundings, the few buildings make use of locally-sourced natural materials. Wooden interiors are elegant and welcoming, and worlds apart from the functional but unattractive concrete constructions you'll encounter in many other locations. Here you'll find low level buildings, lush local foliage and even open air passenger terminals, making for a relaxed stop ...Read More
Loy Krathong is probably the one time in the year when Thailand looks even more beautiful by night than it does during the day. If you're looking for a true cultural experience you'll remember forever, you'll be sure to find it in this traditional festival of hope, colour and light.
This annual celebration gets its name from the intricate little decorations or ornaments that are traditionally lit and floated on the rivers across Thailand on this night. A krathong is a lotus shaped construction traditionally made from a slice of banana truck and elaborately folded banana leaves, adorned with brightly coloured flowers, which the locals fill with tiny offerings such as candles, incense and coins...Read More
The Samui Triathlon 2013 featured more than 200 competitors from 22 countries choosing to take on the gruelling 4km swim, 123km cycling and 30km run.
The Koh Samui Triathlon is always a big draw for sun-toughened athletes. The trend continued in 2013 as Samui continues to develop its reputation as a top sporting destination in addition to a holiday hotspot. This year the Samui Triathlon loomed larger and drew more participants from all over the world than ever before.
The Samui sports scene has been particularly strong in attracting cycling, kitesurfing, scuba diving enthusiasts, as well as the massively popular Muay Thai boxing due to it being one of the core disciplines in MMA (Mixed Martia...Read More
The Koh Samui Regatta 2013 once again showed how this annual event has become one of Samui’s most exciting occasions. As the concluding event of the Asian Yachting Grand Prix Championship - a series of 5-star racing events held throughout Asia - it was a festive happening on the island. Organized by Regattas Asia, the competition has become known as the “Tropical Island Regatta,” thanks to the lovely surroundings Koh Samui offers both offshore and on.
As the party-laden seasonal wrap-up of south east Asia’s regional major sailing events, Koh Samui Regatta 2013 brought many colourful smaller sail boats and quite a few massive yachts of various designs to the seas off of Samui’s beaches. It is ...Read More
The island of Koh Samui, Thailand’s Jewel as it is sometimes referred to, features endless tropical beauty surrounded by many peaceful shores and calm Gulf of Thailand waters. Once a sleepy fishing island and later a haven for backpacking youngsters, the small island has become a favourite resort destination, as it is large on activities on sea and land.
Now home to a diverse expatriate population as well as many native Thai people, Koh Samui has over 63,000 residents, but draws over 1.5 million tourists annually. The number of actual residents varies a bit by season: during the short rainy times, there are a few less residents. But, most of the year sees a constant flow of visitors to the is...Read More
Muay Thai is Thailand's national sport and taken extremely seriously. Widely considered to be the world's most dangerous martial art, Muay Thai kickboxing is a superb showcase of speed, strength and technical ability. The Thai boxers you see in the ring put on a real fights for you to see just how brutal and beautiful this sport is.
Muay Thai is a combat sport from Thailand that uses stand-up striking along with various clinching techniques. It is similar to other Indochinese kickboxing systems, namely Pradal Serey from Cambodia, Tomoi from Malaysia, Lethwei from Myanmar and Muay Lao from Laos. Descended from Muay Boran, Muay Thai is Thailand's national sport.
The word "muay" derives from the ...Read More
The romance of Koh Samui weddings is very real and quite amazing. For many reasons, this wondrous tropical island draws ever more couples, to begin their lives together or to renew their vows. Getting married on a lovely paradise isle will be more than memorable, it'll be transcendent.
As more people are discovering, most Koh Samui is a great place to get married. Weddings are tailored entirely to your own personal tastes but with base packages guiding you to what is possible and what will be remembered for a lifetime. Since each couple is totally unique, a marriage should be made special for each guest of the affair - and most importantly, for the bride and groom. That’s why many couples h...Read More
There are 2 Namuang waterfalls in Koh Samui. Muang in Thai means purple and is named so because of the purple rocks that form the falls.
Namuang Waterfall 1 is a beautiful 18m high waterfall and easily accessible by a short walk into the jungle from the parking area nearby, making it a great place to stop off for a quick photo. There is a lovely pool formed at the foot of the waterfall where you will find tourists and locals alike jumping off rocks and taking a dip to cool off. As with any tourist attraction in Ko Samui, the pathway to the attraction is lined with stall sellers selling a range of arts and crafts and traditional Thai food.
Namuang Waterfall 2 is much more impressive gushing fro...Read More
Koh Samui’s Mummified Monk at Wat Khunaram is an unusual sight yet it offers a unique insight into Buddhist and Thai culture.
The monk Luong Pordaeng died in 1973 in a seated meditative position, and ever since his body has been on display in an upright glass case at the temple. Remarkably, even more than 30 years on the monk’s body shows little sign of decay. For some visitors, having a dead man in full view might be a shocking sight, but for Thais it is something to reflect upon and revere.
Far from being frightened by death, most Buddhist Thais are highly accepting of the end of life as the natural order of things and they view death as an opportunity to be reborn into a better place, one s...Read More
The Thai BBQ near Bophut temple is a local gem in Koh Samui, frequented by Thai's & expats alike but rarely sees tourists. Thai BBQ in Thai is pronounced as moo-gra-tha or moo-ka-ta, which means pork skillet and offers an authentic Thai dining experience on a budget.
Essentially moo ka ta is a combination of a hotpot and BBQ. Basically, its a dome shaped pan with a rim around the edge over hot coal, which is placed in the middle of a table (usually for up to 4 people) that you share to cook the food you want. The idea is the middle is used for cooking meat and the rim for vegetables, noodle and soup (and anything else you want to boil, e.g. egg or shrimp). For those who have had Korean BBQ, i...Read More
The Secret Garden, otherwise known as the Magic Garden or Secret Buddha Garden can be found in the hills of Koh Samui and was built by a local Samui fruit farmer, Nim Thongsuk, starting it in 1976 when he was 77 years old.
The Secret Garden is a beautiful landscaped garden featuring flowers and trees native to Koh Samui and Thailand and many Buddha statues with different meanings arranged in scenarios representing different ideals, which your tour guide will explain to you. Winding through the garden is is a little stream and a series of miniature waterfalls.
The only way to get there is through the jungle, rivers and mountains by 4x4. The roads leading through the hills is impressive but sti...Read More