Koh Samui – A Top Holiday Destination
Koh Samui is a mesmerising tropical Island basking in the beautiful waters of the Gulf of Thailand and is part of the southern Thai province of Surat Thani. Rich in natural resources, such as coconut and rubber it is also a thriving tourist estination with picture postcard, white sandy beaches, crystal clear waters and flourishing coral reefs.
Koh Samui boasts an international airport providing daily flights to Bangkok and many other major destinations in South East Asia, such as Hong Kong and Singapore. The airport receives a seemingly limitless stream of holiday makers, all eager to enjoy the tropical weather, breathtaking scenery, delicious seafood and the fantastic range of activities the island has to offer.
When to Visit Koh Samui
Because of its geographical location, Koh Samui experiences slightly different weather patterns than the rest of Thailand. The weather in Koh Samui is typically warm and dry for most of the year, with the long hot spell only punctuated by a short rainy season, usually between late September and November. Rain showers can be heavy, but are irregular and don’t usually last too long. It can be an ideal time to visit, as the beach and tourist areas are significantly quieter.
December to February is considered high season, as the temperatures are slightly cooler, with a gentle breeze taking the edge off the heat. As it is the optimum time to visit, holiday villas in Koh Samui are extremely in demand, so early booking is essential!
Koh Samui Villa Rentals
With tourism accounting for a large part of the Koh Samui economy, holiday accommodation is plentiful. There has been phenomenal growth in construction in Ko Samui, with everything available from cheap guest houses to luxury hotels, and from apartments to holiday villas.
Koh Samui holiday villas come in all shapes and sizes and are an ideal accommodation choice if you want to escape the big hotels and experience authentic life on the Island. Samui Villa rentals are also an extremely affordable way to have a fantastic holiday, particularly if you are travelling in a large group.
Villa’s in Koh Samui are usually of traditional or contemporary Thai architecture and construction. The great thing about both is that they are designed with the tropical climate in mind, keeping you cool and comfortable, even in the hottest months.
Just like the numerous hotels and resorts in Koh Samui, villa rentals are available to suit most budgets. For the ultimate five star treatment, rent a serviced villa. These come with all the usual services that you would expect from a fancy hotel, so the extra privacy and seclusion doesn’t come at the expense of luxury and indulgence!
At the other end of the scale, you can opt for a simple Samui bungalow, which will come equipped with all the essentials, but is unlikely to have a private pool, for example. If you are planning to spend more time on the beach enjoying the beautiful Koh Samui weather, than in your accommodation, then this type of property will prove adequate.
Location is another factor in choosing your Koh Samui holiday accommodation. A beachfront villa in Koh Samui or a villa with panoramic sea views will obviously cost more than those with a short walk to the shore, or located in less picturesque settings.
To help you decide where to pick your next Ko Samui holiday villa, we’ve provided a quick guide to some of the main tourist and visitor areas below.
Where to Stay in Koh Samui
From its modest beginnings as a backpacker destination in the 1970’s, Koh Samui has rapidly overtaken Phuket to become the second largest resort business in Thailand, after Bangkok.
For those seeking a peaceful holiday, try Choeng Mon or Mae Nam located in the northern part of the Island. These areas present beautiful beaches, without the crowds of the larger resorts. Laem Yai is a particularly secluded beach resort in the North West of the island, offering privacy and a genuine opportunity to get away from it all.
Also in the North is Bang Rak, a long stretch of white sandy beach and home to the islands number one tourist attraction, the Big Buddha. The Big Buddha is an awe inspiring temple, featuring an impressive golden statue over 12 meters tall. Although located conveniently near the airport and other major tourist areas, don’t expect Bang Rak to provide the peace and tranquility found in Choeng Mon or Mae Nam.
The South Coast is home to some quieter beach areas too – try Ban Hua Thanon, Na Khai, Laem Set, Bang Kao and Thong Krut.
If you are looking for lively nightlife, then vibrant Chaweng with its 7 km long beach and a high concentration of bars and restaurants would be the ideal spot. Lamai is the destination of choice for backpackers, where accommodation tends to be at the lower end of the scale and there is a huge range of tourist amenities.
If your idea of holiday heaven is a combination of quiet beaches coupled with the option of a nightlife that is less in your face, then Bophut with its charming fishing village in the North, will meet you in the middle.
Koh Samui is surrounded by 60 tantalising islands all worthy of further exploration. We have highlighted some of the most popular below.
Koh Pha Ngan
Lying some 20 km North of Koh Samui, this island is neither as built up nor as crowded, with the result that accommodation is less abundant. The east side of the island does suddenly swell with revelers during the Full Moon Party, so avoid this area at that time, unless you enjoy lively beach entertainment that continues well into the small hours!
Koh Tao, or Turtle Island as it is sometimes known, is 3 hours by boat from Koh Pha Ngan and extremely popular with divers and snorkelers.
Koh Nang Yuan
64km North of Koh Samui, are three totally unspoilt islands with albeit limited accommodation. Free from cars, motorbikes and pollution in general, it has become a divers paradise.
Ang Thong National Marine Park
This beautiful collection of 42 Islands are located 27km North West of Koh Samui and form a National Marine Park. Home to tropical rainforests, deserted beaches and dramatic limestone cliffs, these islands offer a chance to glimpse a large variety of wildlife, including Asian long-tailed monkeys (langur), otters, sea eagles, tortoises, sea turtles, lizards and pythons. Nature lovers can rent a bungalow or even take advantage of the camping facilities for an unforgettable, but no doubt less comfortable, experience!