Koh Samui is the third-largest island of Thailand with 250 square kilometres and 40.000 residents. Located in the Gulf of Siam, about one hour by plane (700 km), south of Bangkok.
In comparison to the mainland and Phuket, Samui is less crowded and has more nature to offer.
The legendary “Coconut Palm Island” enchants its visitors with forested hills, bizarre rock formations and water falls, millions of coconut palms, lonely bays and none the less with its pulsating villages Lamai and Chaweng with their restaurants, bars, discos and shops.
All tourists to Thailand will remember it for its incredibly white beaches that are unique in their variety. Here you will find every mix from shallow sloped powdery white sand beaches to grainy sand beaches with steep slopes and rocky corral beaches.
Chaweng is the longest beach and biggest town on Samui. There are dozens of hotels and bungalows along its fine white-sand beach. You can find anything from 5-star luxury Hotels to the handful of budget bungalows that remain from Samui’s days as a backpackers haven.
There are a lot of restaurants, shops, small market stalls and the pulsating nightlife with some discos and clubs catering for every whish of the tourist.
Lamai is Samui’s second largest beach and some believe also its most beautiful. The water is excellent for swimming. The southern end of the bay boasts elegant granite boulders and the beach itself seems endless. Nightlife in Lamai tends to be slightly seedier than in Chaweng. There are also some excellent restaurants and bars scattered along the strip. Accommodations options range from high class resorts to basic bungalows.
LiveCam Lamai Beach
Bophut stands out as the only village on Samui with authentic island charm. It consists of a single street lined with traditional Chinese shophouses, many of which have been converted into restaurants, shops and guesthouses. This is a great spot for a romantic beachside dinner and both the cuisine and the architecture lend a distinctly Mediterranean feel to the village.
Accommodation along Maenam’s long sedate beach ranges from cheap bungalows to top-end resorts. The beach itself is a huge horseshoe of soft sand with spectacular views over to the neighbouring island of Koh Phangan. The number of good restaurants and businesses along its main road is steadily increasing.
The island in the Gulf of Siam is still living up to its image of a tropical paradise even though it is getting more and more popular as a travel destination. The most important sources of income after tourism and fishing are the plantations of exotic fruits like durian, coconuts, bananas, pineapples and Lychees.
A mountain range is running through the south of the island that creates a weather barrier between east and west.
Best travel season is throughout the whole year.
- Mostly the weather is fair with temperatures between 28 – 38 C. April and May are the hottest months like in the rest of Thailand as well. The sun should be avoided as much as possible.
- In October, November and June is the rainy season. It is cooling down and there are quite often, usually in the evenings, short but intense rain showers.
- December until February as well as July until September is high season for travelling. It is still hot but the humidity is down.
The tidal changes are quite strong on Koh Samui especially around full moon. Swimming in the sea during low tide is impossible or difficult at a lot of the beaches in the south, north and west of the island due to large corral riffs in front of the beaches.