Koh Samui (Ko Samui) is the third largest island in Thailand, surrounded by small islets with a lot of beautiful scenery waiting for you to explore. Known as the Oriental Pearl of Phuket, with an area of 229 square kilometers and all amenities suitable for relaxation, this place possesses a beach with the jade-green water, white shimmering sand, and fascinating coral reefs. Let’s explore the beautiful island through Koh Samui travel blog (Koh Samui blog) and guide — The fullest guide for a budget trip (Koh Samui budget trip) to Koh Samui island, Thailand from Koh Samui travel tips for saving budget transportation, accommodation, food and drink; Koh Samui things to do, the experiences you should not miss, best and top places to visit in Koh Samui.
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Koh Samui blog — When is the best time to visit Koh Samui?
Koh Samui has two distinct seasons: rainy season and dry season (sunny season). The average temperature is about 30 degrees around the year, the weather is quite hot. The summer in Thailand starts in March and lasts until September, the weather is very hot, at this time, the beaches of Koh Samui are very crowded. You should also avoid the October, November, because these months are often raining, unfit for swimming in Koh Samui. From December to early March next year is the best time to visit Koh Samui. Because during this time, the weather pleasant, not too hot.
Koh Samui trip cost: Is Koh Samui expensive? Some Koh Samui travel costs you should know
Transport cost on how to get to Koh Samui
The most advantageous way to come to Koh Samui is to fly from Bangkok, Phuket, Pattaya or Singapore. Just in Bangkok, there are more than twenty daily flights to this island. The cost for air travel to Koh Samui from Vietnam ranges from 7 to 8 million (from Noi Bai), or 5 to 7 million (from Saigon). You can also choose to fly from Bangkok to Koh Samui for a price range of 3 – 4 million.
In addition to taking a flight, you can choose to travel by train to Surat Thani and then take a bus to the pier and take a ship to Koh Samui. This is a great way for travelers who want to combine their trip to Bangkok with Koh Samui and the southern provinces. The total cost for moving by all these transports is less than 1 million dong, much cheaper than the price for a flight ticket to Koh Samui but usually takes about 15 hours.
Koh Samui travel blog: How to get around Koh Samui
Unlike other places, Koh Samui doesn’t have many public means of transports. You can choose songthaew or taxi to get to the destinations in the main island. Songthaews are usually very cheap, about 20 baht/ ticket/ person. Besides these vehicles, there is also another way, that is self-driving a rental car, the price per rental car can range from 800 to 1500 baht. However, the traffic in Koh Samui is quite complex so if you are not confident in your driving, you should not try.
The only way to get to other islands and some beaches that don’t have any connecting road is by boat. Longtail boats, motorboats, canoes, cruise ships, and yachts, which are always available at the pier to take you to explore the islands in the area. However, you should ask the price or find the price list before boarding the boat.
According to Koh Samui travel experience mentioned in this article, you won’t need to spend too much money to stay in this place. The main areas that tourists often choose to stay when being in Koh Samui are Chaweng Beach (with a large beach and best infrastructure in the island), smaller beaches such as Big Buddha, Maenam, Lamai, and Bophut fishing village,…
In particular, the most expensive places to stay in Koh Samui are the 3-star resorts in Chaweng area for about 3 million per night. The other places have pretty reasonable rates with the price for the cheap room is 200-300 thousand per night and for the average room is 500 – 700 thousand per night.
The good news is that despite being an island, the food and drinks in Koh Samui are not lacking at all. You can choose the Thai traditional dishes such as Pad Thai, Som Tam,… along with the great diversity of European dishes followed foreign travelers and adopted in this land.
Along with that, the seafood is also the pride and the brightest spot in the cuisine of Koh Samui. Based on our Koh Samui travel experience, you will lose only about 300-500 baht for a full meal at mid-range restaurants.
Koh Samui travel blog: Some tips on saving money on a Koh Samui budget trip.
Book the ticket before you depart for Koh Samui
If you go to the beaches of Koh Samui you will find a myriad of entertainment services. However, according to many Koh Samui’s travel experiences, this also means that it’ll be very difficult for you to choose among a huge amount of providers here, not to mention about the price and the reliability.
Therefore, the best solution is to consult and buy the tickets for the entertainment services that you want to enjoy while you’re in Vietnam.
Picking the activities that you want beforehand will also help you plan and arrange the time in a more sensible way (especially if you want to combine both Koh Samui tour and Bangkok tour). Besides, booking tickets online will also help you save more money, as online fares are usually much cheaper than most of other ways.
Choose the street food
The tasty food sold everywhere is the thing you should try. You can’t only taste the traditional Thai cuisine, select from a wide range of food, but also pay a quite cheaper price for a meal full of street food than eating in the restaurants or in the coastal bar.
The eats such as sticky rice, grilled skewers and grilled seafood sold on the sidewalks in Koh Samui will cost you only about 200-300 baht/ person/ meal.
Prepare drinking water and snacks beforehand
When you come to Koh Samui you will have the opportunity to experience the tours to the islets in the vicinity. In most cases, these kinds of tours will also include drinking water and a lunch.
However, if you can’t find a tour like this or you prefer to experience the trip all by yourself without any arrangement of the travel agency then remember to bring along the drinking water and snacks. You can buy a large bottle of water and use it throughout the journey. This way will help you avoid buying any expensive drinks during your trip.
Koh Samui blog — Where to stay in Koh Samui?
Koh Samui has a wide range of hotels, and resorts from budget to luxurious, each of them is bearing bold Thai style in a very private style, but in general it is comfortable and relaxing for visitors. Depending on your budget, interests and needs, you can choose the right hotel for you. Here are the resorts, hotels, guesthouses in Koh Samui good quality, reasonable price, you can refer.
Saver Guesthouse: 30/4 Moo 3 Chaweng Beach, Bouphut, Koh Samui
Price per night: $9.40 – $15.81 depending on your room needs. The rooms are designed to be comfortable, with fan, wifi, air conditioner, cable TV …
Sunset Resort Samui: 33/4 Moo 4, Bangrak, Bophut Koh Samui
Price per night: $10.68 – $21.36, depending on facilities of room. Visitors can also use the facilities of the hotel such as wifi, hot and cold shower, or other entertainment services.
Fairyland Resort Koh Samui: 73 Moo 6, Mae Nam, Koh Samui
Price per night: $13.67 – $14.95. With its tranquil interior design for 19 rooms, the hotel’s convenient services will provide guests with relaxing moments after swimming in Koh Samui beaches.
Al’s Resort: 200 Moo.2 Chaweng Beach, Bohphut Koh Samui, Suratthani, Thailand 84320, Chaweng, Koh Samui
A quality resort with easy access to popular tourist attractions in Samui such as the Samui Wine Restaurant, Central Samui Shopping Center, Samui Night Plaza, is 0.5 km away from central Samui. At the price of $40 you get quality service, the rooms here are full of facilities, courteous staff, enthusiastic.
Samui Verticolor: 19/16 moo 3 Bophut, Chaweng, Koh Samui
This hotel is the perfect choice for your journey and family because the hotel is located in one of the best places for exploring Koh Samui, from here you can visit theSamui Institute of Thai Culinary Arts, Petch Bancha Stadium, Thai Boxing Stadium. The price of the hotel is suitable for only $27 per night, with full amenities, beautiful furniture, spacious rooms, airy, clean …
Palm Coco Mantra Resort: 143/11 Moo.4 Maret, Lamai, Koh Samui, Thailand
Resort is situated in the well location of Koh Samui, is a great place to explore the beautiful island, with reasonable prices from $30. The hotel has a Republic diving club, Live & Let diving center which makes this hotel attractive, charming, with full facilities and perfect services.
Below we recommend more best budget, mid-range and upscale hotels with good ratings and reviews you can refer to.
- Casa De Mar (Agoda, Booking)
- Vana Belle (Agoda, Booking)
- Silavadee Pool Spa Resort (Agoda, Booking)
- Samui Paradise Chaweng Beach Resort & Spa (Agoda, Booking)
- Sandalwood Luxury Villas (Agoda, Booking)
- Prana Resort Nandana (Agoda, Booking)
- SALA Samui Chaweng Beach Resort (Agoda, Booking)
- OZO Chaweng Samui (Agoda, Booking)
Koh Samui travel blog: Best places to visit and top things to do in Koh Samui: Some experiences you can’t be missed while traveling to Koh Samui
Big Buddha Statue
Big Buddha or Big Buddha statue located on the grounds of Wat Phra Yai, with the height of 12m and bright yellow, you can easily recognize this statue from afar. This is also one of the sites not to be missed when making a Koh Samui travel.
In spite of having lately been known in the recent years by the location adjacent to the Big Buddha statue area, this beach is one of the most pristine beaches in Koh Samui, with the white sand and the clear, blue waters.
Therefore, one of the experiences that visitors should try when coming here is taking a walk or a sunbath on the fine, white sand of Big Buddha beach after many hours of visiting Wat Phra Yai.
This temple is less prominent compared to the Wat Phra Yai temple. However, there’s a unique attraction that makes visitors coming to Koh Samui often choose to drop by this temple, that is the mummy of a Zen master, which is placed in a meditation posture, local people believe that those who come here will be granted health and good things in life.
As the largest beach and one of the first destinations put into the tourist exploitation in Koh Samui, Chaweng Beach is home to the majority of services and amenities for tourists, from the motels to the bars and restaurants. The beach is also the venue for all night entertainment activities of this island.
And our Koh Samui travel advice is that you should choose this destination as a place to stay so that you can feel the whole atmosphere of a coastal region and have a chance to enjoy the eventful nightlife here. However, if you do not choose this place to stay, you can still come here at night to participate in a lot of recreational activities.
Angthong National Marine Park
Angthong National Marine Park is one of the largest nature reserves and national parks in Thailand. Taking part in the trip to this park, and you will be able to admire the beautiful natural scenery of more than 40 islets in the middle of the sea, the imposing limestone cliffs and the wonderful landscape of mountains and forests.
You will also have the opportunity to go trekking and climb to the observatory of this national park to admire the beautiful scenery of the whole park from above.
In addition, the best way to visit Angthong National Marine Park is by kayak. This way will not only help you slowly contemplate the landscape of Angthong but also make you feel the cool and clear water below your kayak.
Or if you have the courage, you should also join the scuba diving here to explore the mysterious and colorful world beneath the clear blue water of Angthong.
Lamai Beach is famous for tourists because it’s a miniature version of Chaweng Beach. If you love the excitement but feel that Chaweng beach is too noisy and crowded, Lamai is the destination that you should come.
There is also a system of bars and entertainment services on the beach that are suitable for guests from all over the world.