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Koh Samui

4.1 / 5 29 votes

Country rank: 11 out of 46 Places To Visit In Thailand

Sub-Region: Surat Thani Province


Ideal duration: 2-3 days

Best time: December to May (Read More)

Nearest Airport: Surat Thani (Check Flights)


"Samui Island"

Koh Samui Tourism

Koh Samui is an island in the Champhon Archipelago or group of islands near South Thailand. Coconut and rubber are the main exports of the island and tourist trade is the main source of revenue.

50 years back even getting to the centre of the island involved arduous treks in the middle of a thick jungle. Head to south Samui if you want lesser crowd. Places like Chewang and Lamai although famous for their night life may tend to get overcrowded at peak seasons. Adventure activities are fast becoming popular in Koh Samui but overall the island is still most popular for its resorts and relaxed beaches. Be sure to try the salted eggs when in town. Also popular is the tropical fruit Rambutan which tourists cannot stop talking about even when they get back to their home countries.

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Apart from Chaweng and Lamai, Nathon is fast emerging as shopping central in Koh Samui. Imitation products can be found galore in such places. Local vendors may haggle and you will have to drive a hard bargain to get a good price. Head to Nathon if you want cheap items and Chewang if you want more swanky shops.

Major cards are accepted in almost all restaurants, bars and hotels. Carry a sufficient amount of the Thai Baht with you as local market vendors may not accept other currencies.

The exchange rate is better at the mainland than at the islands. We recommend you get your currency exchanged at Bangkok or another major city before coming to Koh Samui.

2000 - 3000 THB for the party lover and beer guzzler would be enough but if you prefer more of a laidback holiday with jsut walks on the beach, swims in the ocean and food from roadside vendors then 1500 THB would be enough too.

Buddhism is the main religion in Koh Samui

Long dresses may be impractical due to the hot and sticky humid air. The general dress code of Koh Samui is casual as it is an island town.Follow general Thai customs of greeting and learn a few Thai phrases for common expressions like please and thank you. You should be good to go. Tipping is not expected in Thailand but it is okay to show your appreciation for extremely good service.

Thai is the local language in Koh Samui. English may be spoken by local vendors but do not expect so. Resorts and more upscale places ensure they hrie english speaking staff so language should not be a barrier there. Carry a dictionary with you always in case you get into a sticky spot somewhere.

Even though there were hardly any tourists in the island even 50 years back, Koh Samui has always been in the world' s eye. Popular from the time when Chinese merchatns visited for trade and named it Pulo Cornam on the map, Koh Samui has fast become a haven for tourists from around the world. The origin of the name Samui is a mystery still while the word Koh in Thai means island.

Don't just stick to Chaweng when it comes to nightlife. Also explore areas like Lamai, Bophut and Maenam. Popular bars in Chaweng are the Ark bar, the Soi Green Mango and the Soi Reggae. If in Lamai, check out the Lamai Central Plaza and Swing Bar. The Emerald Irish Pub is quite popular among tourists in Bophut Beach. Rest assured that you will find something which suits your taste in Koh Samui. Small, hole-in-the-wall kind of setups are also available with live music and cushion-laden mattresses where backpackers can feel more at ease.

Food options will include fresh seafood and mostly non vegetarian meals. Since Thais consider vegetarian food to be anything which doesn't have "visible" pieces of meat hidden items like fish sauce and pork stock might spring up on you out of nowhere. Food is generally served with sticky rice. Try the mango and sticky rice dish when here if you want a taste of heaven.

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Hotels in Koh Samui

Top Hotels in Koh Samui

  • Luxury Mango Villa

    THB 3,393 /night onwards

  • Villa Belle

    THB 22,606 /night onwards

  • Serene Penthouse - Exclusive Luxury Penthouse

    THB 5,900 /night onwards

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How to Reach Koh Samui

Koh Samui is an island so the only way to reach is by boat or flight. (Read More)

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