Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Guide to....Koh Samui, Thailand

The Thai island of Koh Samui is a real tropical paradise, with beautiful beaches and a stunning interior, quality hotels, excellent food and cold beer - not surprisingly, it's one of our favourite parts of Thailand!

Just off the southern coast of Thailand and around an hours flight from Bangkok is the island of Koh Samui, a relaxed tropical paradise that offers everything from peaceful secluded beaches to late night nightlife, traditional temples to superb shopping, and a host more besides. Koh Samui makes the perfect destination for a beach holiday or can be included in to a multi centre holiday to Thailand or beyond.

Holidays to Koh Samui with Escape Worldwide - the beach at the Centara Villas Samui

Around the Island Tour
Big Buddha at Big Buddha BeachDiscover the beauty of Samui by exploring the island - there's only one main road so it's very easy! Take in Big Buddha Beach and the nearby Wat Plai Laem, beautiful Na Muang Waterfalls, the famous rocks of Hin Ta and Hin Yai, go elephant trekking in the jungle and finish with sunset on Ang Thong beach.

Discover historic Na Thon
Check out the historic Chinese shophouses and watch the boats arrive from the mainland at the Island's unofficial capital, Na Thon - a great place to get a slice of traditional Thai life and to sample excellent Thai food too!

Party in Chaweng
Koh Samui's largest, liveliest resort is a great setting for a fun-filled holiday, with plenty of atmosphere. Keep an eye out for the beach parties at the famous Ark Bar, or do what we do and work your way from one end of the resort to the other, stopping off for a cold Singha beer and satay or spring rolls as you go!

Explore the islands of 'The Beach'
The 40 or so islands that make up the Ang Thong National Marine Park, to the northwest of Samui itself, offers picture postcard scenery of sheer limestone cliffs, hidden lagoons and white sand beaches - no surprise the area was the setting of the book 'The Beach'.

Koh Samui is a short flight from Bangkok, with a myriad of flight options to get you there - the flight to Bangkok from Heathrow is around 11 hours direct, or there are flights from around the UK via a hub destination such as Dubai that take a little longer, but can often be cheaper. As the easiest way to get to Koh Samui is to fly via Bangkok, it's easy to arrange a Bangkok and Beach twin centre holiday, which tends to be great value for money too.

Koh Samui also has connections to other parts of Thailand, with daily direct flights to Chiang Mai for a superbThailand multi centre holiday, as well as other beach resorts such as Phuket and Krabi. Nearby islands such asKoh Phangan are reached by ferry from Koh Samui. 

Flights also connect Koh Samui with other parts of the Far East such as Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur and Singapore, so a 
multi centre holiday to the Far East taking in Koh Samui is easier than you may think.

Here are a few important facts about a visit to Koh Samui, to help you plan your next trip!

UK passport holders don't need a visa to visit Thailand for stays of up to 30 days. Ensure your passport has at least 6 months validity remaining!

There are no mandatory health requirements to visit Thailand, although visitors should be up to date for standard longhaul precautions.

Samui's weather is different to other areas of Thailand, and tends to be driest from January to April, and has its rainy season in October and December - in our summer months when Thailand's West Coast is wet, Samui tends to be much drier.

Thai people are so polite, try to avoid causing offence - don't point the soles of your feet at anyone, don't touch a monk and always be polite about royalty and politics!

The Thai Baht is the unit of currency in Thailand - there are easy to use cashpoints in most locations.

Costs are generally low - on a recent trip Mark spent £200 for an 8 night stay for all his food, drinks and sightseeing (breakfast was included at his hotel, the Centara Villas Samui) - and he eats and drinks a lot!

Go visit Koh Samui…..you won’t regret it!

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