Koh Tan, Koh Samui Overview

Koh Tan Island is located approximately five kilometres south of Koh Samui in the Gulf of Thailand. Also referred to as the Coral Island, the island of Koh Tan has a wide variety of colourful, hard and soft corals and is a popular destination for snorkelling, kayaking and scuba diving.

The island is a vast spread of 7.5 square kilometres white sandy beaches offering a serene ambience and tonnes of natural beauty above and below the water. Koh Tan Island is a calm and silent place without motorbikes or cars or proper roads. There is also a small fishing village which has a short trek, mangrove forest and a good population of monitor lizards.

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Things to Do at Koh Tan

Renowned for its underwater species including reef sharks, barracudas, pufferfish, triggerfish, stingrays, groupers and big fishes, Koh Tan houses these familiar sights at the Shark Point.

Scuba diving
It is a common sport because of the underwater richness of the island and some famous dive sites for scuba diving are Ocean Utopia, Lighthouse Bay, Japanese Gardens, a wreck of HTS Sattakut and Chumphon Pinnacles.

Snorkelling at Koh Tan
Koh Nangyuan, Shark Bay and Tanote Bay are famous sites which offer incredible snorkelling experiences.

This facility is also available at the island where the kayaks can be rented from the local operators for a coastline tour.

Hiking and Walking 
The island offers hiking and walking opportunities with awe-inspiring views from the highest peak, Two Views in the centre of Tanote and Sairee. The visitors can also try rock climbing, courses for which are also available. 

Hiking at Koh Tan
It can be tried by hiring a long tail boat or by joining a local tour operator. Fishing at night is also possible at the island. 

Other Activities
Mountain biking, wakeboarding, cliff jumping, abseiling, sailing, mini golf, Muay Thai camps are other available options at the island.

Places to Visit in and Around Koh Tan

The Koh Tan Island comprises of several bays.
Haad Tien 
It is also referred to as Rocky Bay has a rich range of black-tip reef sharks and has the most transparent water of all the bays.

John-Suwan Viewpoint Right
It is located at the southern tip of Koh Tan and disposes of a fantastic view of Chalok Baan Khao Bay and Haad Tien. It was found out by two friends who were searching for a place to build a house and can be accessed with an entrance fee of THB 50. 

Jor Por Ror
The island’s main town, it is located at the southern end of Mae Haad Beach and is a must-visit as it houses several guesthouses, bars and shops.

Mango Viewpoint 
It is another important point which can be reached either by walking or by a motorbike and can be accessed with an entrance fee of THB 100.

Food at Koh Tan

Koh Tan Food
Sairee Beach showcases the nightlife on the island with its many bars and nightclubs where fire shows and house music can be witnessed. FIZZ Beach Lounge, Lotus Bar and Vibe and The Castle are some notable bars. Thai seafood and international cuisines including Indian curries and Italian and French food, can also be found.

Interesting Facts About Koh Tan

  • Koh Tan Island is the only inhabited island which is a part of the archipelago and is surrounded by two neighbouring islands Koh Phangan and Koh Samui.
  • Also called the Turtle Island for being home to the sea turtles and resembling the shape of the turtle, it is only twenty minutes away from the mainland by a long tail boat which makes the crossing daily and stops at unique coral spots.
  • For experiencing the local flavour, the visitors can dine at the local restaurants and visit the local temple which is the perfect destination for nature lovers looking forward to underwater activities at a peaceful secluded place.


  • The visitors can also visit the nearby island Koh Mudsum.
  • Dogs are not allowed at the Koh Tan Island; it is believed that any dog that steps on the island will go mad and eventually die.
  • Full day snorkel tours are also available from different points around Koh Samui.
  • Tourists are adviced not to give their passports while renting motorbikes and scooters. This act can be taken advantage of with inflated prices at the time of return or in case of damages.

How To Reach Koh Tan

The visitors can reach the Koh Tan Island by air, ferries or by rail.

Ferry companies Lomprayah, Seatran, and Songserm serve Koh Tan from Surat Thani, Chumphon, Koh Samui and Koh Pha-ngan. Koh Tan has no airport but catamarans and ferries services are available from Chumphon Airport, Koh Samui Airport and Surat Thani Airport. Rail services are available till Chumphon after which a ferry can be taken to reach Koh Tan Island. You can also hire a taxi for going from one place to the other on the island.

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