Day Trips from Koh Samui You Need to Check Out
Even when you’re on holiday in paradise you sometimes want a change of scenery, so check out our rundown of the best day trips from Koh Samui. Day trips from the island are a great way to see a bit more of southern Thailand, and still be back for a sunset beer in the evening.
Ang Thong National Marine Park
A visit to Ang Thong is a visit to some of the most beautiful islands in the world. Golden sand beaches stretch out along the lush forested shorelines and the water is warm and clear. The downside? The islands are quite well-known, so you’ll have to look elsewhere for a hidden tourist destination. The upside? They’re a pleasure to explore and your photos will probably end up looking like holiday brochure shots!
Choose between a slow longtail or a faster speed boat for your tour, and customize it with snorkeling, kayaking, hiking to the lagoon on Mae Kho island and sunbathing time. A tour will set you back anywhere between 1500 baht ($47) and 3000 baht ($94) depending on your choices.
It might feel a bit counter-intuitive to take a day trip from Koh Samui to a different holiday island altogether, but hear us out. Koh Tao is a world class dive destination and if you’ve ever fancied a trip beneath the waves then this is the place to do it! Many dive schools offer taster sessions which include a theory lesson about equipment and safety as well as an open water dive on one of the many sites dotted off the coast.
A day tour from Koh Samui including a dive on Sail Rock, one of the best-known dive sites in the world, costs from $185. It’s not cheap but it is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and is highly recommended.
Koh Nang Yuan
Our final pick is the beautiful Koh Nang Yuan. Not as well-known as its larger neighbors, this lovely island is only a 20 minute longtail ride from Koh Samui. Accommodation is limited here as there’s only one resort and it can get booked up a long way in advance but that’s not a problem when you’re visiting for the day.
Grabbing a day tour from Koh Samui should only cost about $50 if you bargain with the local tour operators. Most tours include the boat transfers, a good lunch on the beach, snorkeling gear and plenty of time to kick back and relax.
Sticking with the island theme, Koh Phangan is in easy reach of Koh Samui and offers a different pace of life depending on which time of the month you visit. For three weeks a month you’re going to find laidback calm here, with the peaceful yoga studios and vegan cafes of Sri Thanu mixing with the beautiful beaches of Haad Salad and Haad Thong Nai Pan Yai. Every fourth week however, it all kicks off!
Time your day trip right and you could get in on Thailand’s most famous drinking event! The monthly Full Moon Party is a full-on experience with buckets, shots, body paint and a hangover to end them all. Grab a speedboat for the 20-minute crossing, spend the day (and night!) at the party then flag down another boat to get you home. Not recommended on a rough day’s sea crossing for obvious reasons…
How to Book Day Trips from Koh Samui
The best advice we can give you when you’re looking for a great day trip is to shop around for prices, and don’t be afraid to haggle. If you see a price advertised outside a tour agency then walk in and ask if it’s the final price, or whether there’s room to negotiate. The likelihood is that you’ll be able to score yourself a bit of a discount, meaning more money to enjoy yourself in the bar afterwards. You’re welcome!