Koh Samui
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Top attractions in Koh Samui

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Top 10 things to do in Koh Samui

Once home to small fishing communities, in recent years the stunning island of Koh Samui has become a favorite for tourists visiting Thailand, accommodating wealthy and budget-conscious travellers alike. Here are 10 of its best attractions.

Chaweng Beach

Chaweng Beach

Historically considered Koh Samui's best beach, it's no surprise Chaweng has become its most popular too. As well as gorgeous scenery, there are plenty of beachside cocktail bars!

Baan Chaweng (Chaweng Town)
Photo: Hajime NAKANO @flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Baan Chaweng (Chaweng Town)

Chaweng isn't all about the beach - it hosts the best of Koh Samui's restaurants and nightlife too. If you came here to let loose among other revellers, then this is the place to be.

Lamai Beach

Lamai Beach

If Chaweng's a little busy for your tastes, head to laid-back Lamai instead. Though quieter, there's no shortage of amenities and, for the time being at least, they're cheaper too!

Big Buddha

Big Buddha

Koh Samui's most famous landmark is the centerpiece to Wat Phra Yai. The temple is rich with shrines and ornate sculptures, with a neighboring market peddling snacks and souvenirs.

Wat Plai Laem

Wat Plai Laem

Big Buddha is rivalled by this colorful temple's 18-armed sculpture of the goddess Guanyin. And if you're charmed by life's simple pleasures, its lake teems with fish to feed.

Hin Ta & Hin Yai

Hin Ta & Hin Yai

The "Grandpa and Grandma Rocks" are geological formations that happen to look like male and female genitalia. Makes you wonder what exactly Grandpa and Grandma have been rocking.

Ang Thong National Marine Park

Ang Thong National Marine Park

Whether you feel like exploring or relaxing, take the boat over to this picturesque archipelago for pristine beaches, jungles, waterfalls, limestone mountains, and hidden coves.

Koh Phangan

Koh Phangan

This nearby island is known for its offshore sand bars and famous Full Moon Party: an all-nighter beloved by young backpackers that takes place – you guessed it – every full moon!

Diving/Snorkeling

Diving/Snorkeling

With its clear seas, pristine reefs, and great selection of diving tour operators, Koh Samui is the perfect place to begin your underwater adventure!

Mae Nam Beach

Mae Nam Beach

Mae Nam offers views of Koh Phangan and meandering pathways providing an escape from other tourists. Other scenic beaches worth checking out include Bophut and Taling Ngam.

Planning Your Koh Samui Visit

What's the weather like?

Koh Sumai's weather is generally hot and humid (especially from March to May), with rainy season between September and mid-December. This isn't necessarily a bad time to go, as the rains come and go in short bursts, bringing welcome relief from the heat, as well as quieter beaches and heavy discounts on hotels and all inclusive holiday packages! For good weather November is definitely a month to avoid, however, as the island is hit by monsoons that go through five-year cycles of intensity.

How to get there?

The easiest way to reach Koh Samui is by flying into Samui International Airport, particularly if traveling there following a trip to Bangkok. It's also one of the most charming airports you could ever hope to visit! There are also several boats leaving from Surat Thani. They take about two or three hours (depending on the boat) and leave from Tha Thong, Ban Don, and Donsak piers.

Travelling to and from Koh Tao or Krabi

There is an express boat that runs to Koh Tao from Koh Samui in just 45 minutes, as well as cheaper, slower boat services. From Krabi, the quickest way is to fly, but there are also ferry and bus services, taking approximately four and 11 hours respectively.

Good to know

  • Language
    Thai
  • Currency
    THB
  • Time Zone
    GMT +7
  • Country Code
    +66
  • Best time to visit
    If you visit between December and February, you'll bypass the rainy season. March to September is the warmest time of the year in Koh Samui.

Things to Do in Koh Samui

Top Attractions in Koh Samui

Cities in Thailand

Other Sightseeing Options in Koh Samui

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