Koh Samui

Ko Samui

Ko Samui, Thailand’s second-largest island, lies in the Gulf of Thailand off the east coast of the Kra Isthmus. It's known for its palm-fringed beaches, coconut groves, and dense, mountainous rainforest, plus luxury resorts and posh spas. The landmark 12m-tall golden Big Buddha statue at Wat Phra Yai Temple is located on a tiny island connected to Ko Samui by a causeway.

Top attractions in Ko Samui

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Best 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 6 of its best attractions.

Tours in Koh Samui

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!

Tours in Koh Samui

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!

Tours in Koh Samui

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.

Tours in Koh Samui

Wat Plai Laem
Big Buddha is rivaled 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.

Tours in Koh Samui

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.

Tours in Koh Samui

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!

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




Thai baht (฿)

Country Code


Time Zone

UTC (+07:00)

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.

What people are saying about Koh Samui

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐Well organized and very flexible as I booked at short notice
For my daughter and I, this was the highlight of our stay in Koh Samui and we have enjoyed our visit to the island immensely. This was my daughter’s first encounter with elephants.

She is 7 years old but could easily participate like any other adult. The team was very forthcoming and pedagogical. Explained every upcoming step in detail but made sure to add enough comedy to keep us on our toes. The elephants were calm and inviting, I believe like they knew they were interacting with a minor. These elephants are lucky to have come to Elephant Jungle Sanctuary Koh Samui. We will definitely return. Thank you for this wonderful experience, EJSKS team!

Koh Samui: Half-Day Ethical Elephant Jungle Sanctuary Visit reviewed by Sabina

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐Great tour, amazing guides, well worth it!
I highly recommend this tour. The tour guide was fantastic, really cared about our safety and showing us some really cool sea life!

I recommend the kayaking through the caves! Was an incredible experience. Always food and drinks available as well. Rough seas coming home but the guide cared and made us feel safe always. My only complaint was the driver that picked us up from our hotel. He was late getting us to the dock so he drove a bit crazy! But otherwise was a great tour!

Ang Thong Marine Park: Full-Day Kayaking & Snorkeling Tour reviewed by Sean

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐Fantastic day out and afternoon off-roading jeep style
Great fun. Lots of jeeps so you have a big crowd when you arrive at the various attractions. Loved the waterfall and slides. Only the brave do the fast ones.

Lunch was a bit different for us at the top of the mountain jungle and heavens opened and it rained hard for an hour and a half so ruined the views. You must ride on top of the jeep cabins and later in the afternoon when they going down the mountains as a thrilling ride. Met some nice people and was great fun for my wife and I. Only thing I would say is jeeps are very smelly so if you don’t like the smell of diesel of are asthmatic be aware.

Samui: 7-Hour 4WD Wild Jungle Safari Tour Including Lunch reviewed by Neil

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐Wild and super fun ride through the jungle of Koh Samui!
We had a super fun and wild day in a 4×4 Jeep through the jungle. We were four Jeep’s in total, with an average of 8 persons per Jeep.

Lots of fun with the zip line, well-spent money. Would absolutely recommend this tour! All praise to our driver, X, who took kept us safe throughout the trip.

Samui: 7-Hour 4WD Wild Jungle Safari Tour Including Lunch reviewed by Andrea

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