Thailand’s second largest island, incredibly beautiful Koh Samui, lies just off the mainland in the Gulf of Thailand. As a holiday destination, Koh Samui caters for everyone from the backpacker to the well-heeled tourist looking for luxury. Holiday accommodation in Koh Samui presents many options and whether staying in a beach hut, one of the island’s excellent hotels or a private villa, you will be able to enjoy a relaxing holiday or join in any one of the fun-filled activities available.
Koh Samui boasts a number of glorious sandy beaches, each with its own special features. The largest and best known of the beaches is Chaweng Beach. The most developed of the beaches and with the greatest variety of holiday accommodation.
Chaweng backs onto the Green Mango Strip, a 3 kilometre tourist Mecca filled with holiday properties, as well as shops, restaurants and bars which form the hub of nightlife in the area. The second major beach is Lami, a smaller, more laid back beach that boasts the finest sand on the island. For that final dip or to add the finishing touches to your tan before flying out, Big Buddha Beach, located near the airport and named for the status at its southern end, is perfectly placed. It also has a number of low to medium priced bungalows for holiday rental.
With such beautiful beaches, it is tempting just to lie in the sun but the sea has much to offer. There are several world-renowned dive sights around the island including, Angthong National Marine Park and Sail Rock. The colourful corals are home to an impressive array of marine life and even wale sharks pass by from time to time. If you are not a diver, there are several PADI-affiliated dive schools ready to teach you how.
Still with the sea, deep-sea fishing is another popular activity and charters cater for beginners and experts alike. Landlubbers might prefer a round of golf at the Santiburi Samui Country Club’s championship course. And when you’ve finished a hard day at sea or on the golf course, what better way to wind down than a relaxing massage at one of the world-class spas or simply wind down with a cocktail on the balcony of your holiday apartment drinking in the magnificent sunset?
Koh Samui abounds with small towns and villages that simply ooze Thai culture. Lodging outside of the main drag gives a different flavour to a Koh Samui holiday. There are fascinating little shops around every corner and restaurants to tempt or your taste buds (but, be careful to have a cold drink handy – some Thai food can be very hot!)
The best time to visit Koh Samui is from December to February when it is comparatively dry and average high daytime temperatures 30?C. From March till June average temperatures are well into the thirties before starting to cool down again around September. The wettest months are October and November but because of its tropical climate short, sharp showers are common in Koh Samui throughout the year.
Most international travellers must fly into Bangkok first and then take a domestic flight for the eighty minute trip to Koh Samui. It is also possible to fly in from Chiang Mai, Krabi, Pattya and Phuket.
International flights originating in Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur or Singapore can fly direct to Koh Samui and from the airport it’s reasonably short hop to wherever your holiday accommodation is on the island.