21 Finest Issues To Do in Koh Samui, Thailand

Must Read


When you’re searching for a spot that has massive metropolis facilities, beautiful Buddhist temples, and a chilled-out island vibe, then look no additional than Koh Samui.

Thailand’s 2nd largest island (#1 is Phuket) has lots to supply vacationers. Whether or not you’re into nature, tradition, journey, partying, or simply some good old school R&R, you’ll discover issues to do in Koh Samui to fit your vibe.  

things to do in koh samui thailand scooter

Days may be spent lounging on the seashore, doing a wide range of water sports activities, mountain climbing to viewpoints, or visiting a really Huge Buddha. Evenings in Koh Samui are all about sunsets, tropical cocktails, contemporary seafood, and sure, a bit of untamed nightlife.

That is additionally an awesome island for digital nomads and we spent a month chillin’ out right here. Learn on for a more in-depth have a look at my record of the highest issues to do in Koh Samui — one of many greatest locations to go to in Thailand

1. Seaside Bumming

Whereas there are many enjoyable and thrilling issues to do in Koh Samui, let’s face it — you most likely got here right here for a soothing seashore trip. Fortunately you’ve obtained a number of decisions for solar and sand when visiting this widespread Thai island.

Situated close to the airport on the northeast aspect of the island, Chaweng is the principle seashore in Koh Samui.

Whereas it’s positively essentially the most developed and most crowded of the seashores right here, it’s nonetheless stunningly stunning. Go forward and lease a lounger and umbrella, order a fruity cocktail, and revel in your self!

The second largest seashore in Koh Samui is Lamai. It’s not as busy as Chaweng, however you’ve nonetheless obtained numerous choices for locations to sit back, eat, and drink. Lamai is a good place to go for a swim, as the ocean is evident and calm right here. 

Whereas these are essentially the most well-known and largest seashores, there are lots of others to select from in Koh Samui.

Different beautiful seashores you must spend a while on embody Lipa Noi, Bang Por, and Huge Buddha seashore. Talking of a Huge Buddha, that brings us to the following merchandise on our record.

best beaches in koh samui

2. Go to the Huge Buddha

One of the vital well-known Koh Samui points of interest is the Huge Buddha. It’s positioned on the Wat Phra Yai temple, which is definitely on a a lot smaller island simply off the northeast coast of Samui.

Because of its location close to the airport, it’s one of many first issues many individuals see when touring to Koh Samui by aircraft. 

The spotlight of Wat Phra Yai is the 12-meter seated golden Buddha. This specific posture depicts a time in Buddha’s quest for enlightenment when he needed to keep away from all of the temptations that have been being compelled upon him.

With the event of tourism and the thriving celebration scene that adopted it right here, it’s fascinating to see Buddha remaining steadfast and pure on this peaceable pose whereas backpackers guzzle down buckets of booze round him.

Whereas the temple is open all day, you must attempt to get there within the morning to see it at its busiest. With monks chanting and locals making choices, it’s a captivating cultural expertise. You’ll find the Koh Samui Huge Buddha on the map right here.

Be aware: When visiting this and another Buddhist temple in Thailand, it’s vital to comply with the correct etiquette. It’s scorching and humid on the Thai islands, however that you must cowl up when visiting spiritual websites like this. Don’t be that farang who reveals up right here sporting a Full Moon Occasion tank-top and booty shorts. 

big buddha koh samui thailand

3. Watersports Galore

Since it’s a tropical island, it ought to come as no shock that watersports are among the many hottest issues to do in Koh Samui. Right here you may participate in scuba diving, snorkeling, jet-skiing, kayaking, crusing, kiteboarding, and extra. 

On this half-day journey, you’ll discover the shoreline by jet-ski, together with stops on the Huge Buddha (see above), and Fisherman’s Village, adopted by a sundown dinner on the seashore. Try that journey right here.

Whereas close by Koh Tao will be the diving Mecca of Thailand, Koh Samui can be a superb place to discover underneath the ocean.

The water is heat and clear right here, with visibility between 3 and 30 meters. These circumstances can help you be taught proper off the shore relatively than in a swimming pool, making Koh Samui an awesome place to lastly get scuba-certified.

Even in case you’re not into the concept of scuba diving, you may nonetheless get pleasure from recognizing the plentiful marine life by snorkeling. It’s simple to seek out gear for lease on the seashore, or you may join a ship tour to go to just a few totally different spots. Many excursions take a mixture of divers and snorkelers, which is nice in case you’re in a break up group.

That’s not all there may be to do within the water right here, although. You can even lease kayaks or SUPs for a pleasant leisurely paddle, or jet-skis in case you want a bit extra velocity. Crusing excursions are additionally fairly widespread right here, particularly to see the sundown. 

4. Observe Yoga

When you really feel the necessity to do some solar salutations or bust out your greatest downward-facing canine in your trip, you’ll be completely happy to listen to that yoga is kind of widespread right here on Koh Samui.

I’m normally extra of a “Namaste in mattress” sort of man, however even I’ll rise up for some dawn yoga on a Thai island!

When you’re questioning what to do in Koh Samui on a wet day, or in case you simply really feel like practising, many resorts on the island provide yoga lessons and there are additionally loads of devoted yoga studios right here.

Your choices right here vary from informal drop-in lessons to intense yoga retreats. Whether or not you’re a complete beginner or an professional, there’s a yoga class for you in Koh Samui.

One of the vital widespread spots to do yoga in Koh Samui is Shahda — a boutique resort. Click on right here for costs and particulars and to e-book your spot.

☞ See Additionally: Issues To Do in Pai: 21 Issues You Don’t Wish to Miss

practicing yoga is one of the best things to do in koh samui

5. Day Journey to Ang Thong Marine Park

One of the vital enjoyable issues to do in Koh Samui is to affix a day journey out to the beautiful Ang Thong Marine Park. This archipelago consists of 42 pristine islands with towering limestone mountains and postcard-worthy seashores.

Most excursions to Ang Thong embody a go to to the Emerald Lagoon, chilling out on the seashore, and a little bit of snorkeling/kayaking. You’ll doubtless spot some wildlife on land and within the sea on this journey, together with dusky langurs and hawksbill turtles. 

Ang Thong is only a brief boat experience away from Koh Samui, and nearly each tour operator on the island can get you arrange on a visit there. These enjoyable journeys embody lunch, resort switch, meals, snorkelling tools and extra. Try this highly-rated day tour for particulars, or this superb sundown cruise!

If a day journey simply isn’t sufficient for you, there’s primary lodging out there at Koh Wua Ta Lap the place the park headquarters are positioned.

You possibly can select between easy bungalows or simply lease a tent to camp on the seashore. There’s additionally a primary restaurant right here the place you may have your meals. For all the information on staying at Ang Thong, try the park’s web site

day trip to Ao Thong Marine Park is one of the best things to do in koh samui

6. Take a Hike

When you can pull your self out of your seashore lounger, there are some nice alternatives for mountain climbing in Koh Samui. Whereas the shoreline has been developed for tourism, a lot of the island stays untouched jungle. 

There are numerous choices for hikes on Koh Samui, from comparatively simple and brief trails resulting in dashing waterfalls to steep and strenuous hikes as much as some incredible viewpoints. After a tricky, sweaty hike, you’ll have earned that ice-cold Chang beer and that tasty bowl of Pad Thai!

Try the hike to Nathon Mountain Ridge Path or the Maenam Viewpoint.

Since Koh Samui may be fairly scorching and humid, one of the best time to hike is both early within the morning or late within the afternoon. Everytime you go, remember to convey loads of water together with some sunscreen and bug spray.

When you’d relatively go together with a bunch than by yourself, remember to try the numerous choices provided by Mountain climbing on Samui. These excursions are run by a long-time Samui expat from the Netherlands who has tons of expertise mountain climbing.

☞ See Additionally: Issues To Do in Chiang Mai – A Checklist of 17 Highlights

A Little Quick On Time?

If you wish to see most of the “must-sees” in Koh Samui, however don’t have lots of time, or don’t wish to spend greater than a half-day doing so, try this widespread, extremely rated tour:

must see attractions in koh samui tour

7. Take a Thai Cooking Class

I don’t find out about you, however I’m completely in love with Thai meals. I’m not joking once I say I may eat Thai meals every single day and by no means get bored. It’s simply that good! 

When you’re as loopy about Thai delicacies as I’m, why not learn to make it your self? Taking a Thai cooking class is actually one of many tastiest issues you are able to do in Koh Samui. 

koh samui cooking class best activities in koh samui

In most cooking lessons, you’ll first go to an area market to buy contemporary substances. Again within the kitchen, it’s time to cook dinner up Thai classics like papaya salad, inexperienced curry, or tom yam. After all, one of the best a part of the category is having fun with the fruits of your labor with a scrumptious meal on the finish.

The very best place to take a cooking class in Koh Samui is with Island Organics. Throughout the highly-rated class, Chef Lat teaches you find out how to make 4 tasty Thai dishes, plus genuine curry pastes, and a dessert. What makes the category additional particular is that most of the substances are grown of their onsite backyard. Click on right here to be taught extra.

8. See Some Attention-grabbing Rocks

Maybe some of the fascinating issues to do in Koh Samui is taking a look at rocks. Sounds boring, doesn’t it? Nicely, my pals, these are not any unusual rocks…

Hin Ta (Grandpa Rock) and Hin Yai (Grandma Rock) have been naturally carved through the years to resemble female and male genitalia. As with many issues in Southeast Asia, there’s a incredible legend behind the rocks.

Because the story goes, an previous couple was touring by sea to go to their son for his wedding ceremony. Sadly, their boat flipped over in a nasty storm and the couple was unable to swim. They tragically drowned that day, however they reworked into these rocks to show to their son and his new household that they’d tried to make it for what would have been a joyous event, and maybe as a little bit of a sensible joke.

grandfather and grandmother rocks in koh samui

Whether or not you imagine the city legend or not it’s value a go to to the rocks, if solely to snap some foolish images and giggle. The view from the rocks is superb as nicely. You will get instructions to the naughty-bits-shaped rocks on the map right here. Or, take today journey of Koh Samui, which takes within the rocks as nicely.

☞ See Additionally: Issues To Do in Chiang Rai – 21 Prime Issues You Don’t Wish to Miss

9. Get a Therapeutic massage

Strolling down the streets of Koh Samui – or any Thai island, for that matter – you’re certain to listen to calls of “Hey! Maasssaaagggee?” It appears as if everybody on this island needs to offer you a therapeutic massage. I say take them up on it. You’re on trip in spite of everything!

In relation to getting a therapeutic massage right here, you’ve gotten loads of choices. There are wandering masseuses on the seashore who will fortunately provide you with a therapeutic massage from the consolation of your solar lounger. Don’t count on a life-changing therapeutic massage from them, however for only a few bucks why not?

When you want one thing slightly nicer, spas are a dime a dozen in Koh Samui. These vary from quite simple to extremely fancy. All of it is dependent upon your price range and what you’re searching for. For an in depth have a look at a few of Koh Samui’s greatest spas, head right here.

10. Swim in Waterfalls

Whereas swimming within the sea is at all times enjoyable, that’s not the one approach to cool off on a scorching day in Koh Samui. The island is residence to a number of waterfalls the place you may take a refreshing dip in stunning environment.

The preferred waterfalls to go to are the Na Muang falls — two cascading waterfalls set within the lush jungle of central Koh Samui. Na Muang 1 is well accessible by automotive and thus could be a bit crowded. When you’re up for slightly problem, it’s a few 20-30 minute hike uphill to succeed in Na Muang 2. 

It’s free to go to the waterfalls, however you’ll must pay a small price to park your motorcycle right here. There are some small meals stalls right here in addition to distributors promoting drinks in case you forgot to convey snacks or water. You’ll find Na Muang 1 on the map and get instructions right here

na muang 1 waterfall in koh samui

11. Go On An ATV Tour

For the adrenaline junkies on the market, an ATV tour is certainly one of many high issues to do in Koh Samui. On a typical ATV tour, you’ll experience by the jungle to take a look at some superb viewpoints and waterfalls. 

There are a number of totally different choices for ATV excursions in Koh Samui. Some are as brief as one hour, whereas others final half a day. One tour operator that’s extremely beneficial is X-Quad Samui.

Earlier than you go driving an ATV into the jungle of a Thai island, ensure you have some first rate worldwide journey insurance coverage. Not all insurance policies cowl excessive actions similar to this, so test yours fastidiously! 

☞ When you’re into motorcycle journeys, try this information to driving the Mae Hong Son Loop!

12. Hit The Evening Markets (among the finest issues to do in Koh Samui!)

Evening markets in Thailand are one in every of my favourite issues on the earth. It simply by no means will get previous sampling low cost and engaging Thai meals whereas perusing the colourful handicrafts on provide. 

When you’re questioning what to do in Koh Samui within the evenings, there are a number of totally different evening markets in Koh Samui which can be value testing. Totally different cities host an evening market on totally different days of the week. There’s Mae Nam on Thursdays, Bophut on Fridays, and Lamai on Sundays. 

The evening markets normally get going round 5PM and keep open till 11. You’ll want to add a minimum of one in every of these superior evening markets to your record of issues to do in Koh Samui. 

night markets top attractions in koh samui

13. Discover Nathon City

When you arrive in Koh Samui by way of the ferry from Surat Thani, your level of entry might be Nathon City. That is the business and administrative heart of the island and a spot that many locals name residence. 

Most vacationers skip over Koh Samui’s most important city totally, but it surely’s positively value it to spend a while visiting Nathon. On a brief journey right here, you may try the colourful Chinese language shophouses, eat some scrumptious native meals at a discount value, and stick round for a picture-perfect sundown. 

Nathon City is positioned on the northwest coast of Koh Samui. You’ll find it on the map and get instructions right here.

14. Verify Out the Secret Buddha Backyard

Tucked away within the heart of the island is a Secret Buddha Backyard surrounded by lush jungle. It’s a gorgeous and peaceable place to discover, and may positively make it in your record of issues to do in Koh Samui.

It was began by a fruit farmer named Nim Tongsuk again in 1976 when he started inserting Buddhist statues round his household’s property. He continued so as to add to his Secret Buddha Backyard up till his loss of life on the age of 91. 

visit the secret buddha garden best things to do in koh samui

The Secret Buddha Backyard is open every single day from 9-5. It prices 80 baht (about $2.50) to go to. It’s fairly robust to succeed in by yourself except you’ve gotten 4WD and are an skilled driver. If not, you must contemplate signing up for a day tour that features a cease on the backyard. You’ll find it on the map right here.

☞ In search of a shocking island with pristine seashores, however fewer vacationers? Don’t miss all the unbelievable issues to do in Koh Lipe.

15. Go to the Fishermen’s Village

When you develop bored with the touristy scene in locations like Chaweng and Lamai, take half a day to go to the fishing village of Bophut. It’s a pleasant place to spend just a few hours strolling round, doing a little bit of buying, and grabbing a chunk to eat. This enjoyable jet-ski journey takes in Fishermen’s Village, together with sundown dinner on the seashore.

Right here you’ll discover unique picket houses constructed within the nineteenth century by Chinese language immigrants. Whereas most of the fishermen have moved on to different elements of the island, they nonetheless convey their day by day catch to the eating places right here. You’ll discover a few of the greatest seafood in Koh Samui within the eating places of Fishermen’s Village. 

Whereas it’s enjoyable to go to any day of the week, you might wish to come on Friday to take a look at the evening market right here. The Fishermen’s Village is positioned close to Bophut Seaside. You will get instructions on the map right here

16. Go {Golfing}

When you get pleasure from a pleasant spherical of golf in your trip, then you definitely’ll be completely happy to listen to that Koh Samui has a number of programs to select from. From mini-golf to a full 18-hole course with spectacular views, hitting the hyperlinks is likely one of the greatest issues to do in Koh Samui.

The Santiburi Samui Nation Membership is the one skilled commonplace golf course on the island. This beautiful course is ready amongst a preserved coconut palm plantation excessive up within the hills.

Because of its location, you’ll get pleasure from distinctive views all through all the spherical. It’s not an inexpensive spherical (about $160 with golf cart and caddy), but it surely is perhaps some of the scenic rounds you ever play! You’ll find the course on the map right here

When you’re like me and might’t swing a golf membership to save lots of your life, you would possibly wish to simply play old school spherical of mini-golf. There are mini-golf programs in each Chaweng and Lamai which can be enjoyable for the entire household. 

☞ Desire mountains to seashores? You then’ll wish to try beautiful Khao Lak.

17. See a Mummified Monk

This is perhaps essentially the most uncommon merchandise on our record of issues to do in Koh Samui. On the Wat Khunaram temple, you’ve gotten the possibility to see a mummified monk. 

Luang Pho Daeng was a Buddhist monk who died whereas in a meditative seated place again in 1973. It was determined that his physique can be preserved on this peaceable state, and it has been on show in a glass case ever since. 

This will likely appear a bit surprising and morbid to most Westerners, however Thai Buddhists are far more accepting of loss of life. The physique of Luong Pordaeng serves as a visible reminder of Buddha’s teachings to all who go to and is extremely revered. 

Wat Khunaram is a few 10-minute drive from Lamai Seaside. It’s open every single day and is most lively within the early morning or late afternoon. You’ll find it on the map right here

Wat Khunaram temple

18. Attempt The Digital Nomad Life

Koh Samui is just not solely a preferred vacationer and honeymoon spot, but it surely’s additionally an up-and-coming digital nomad vacation spot. Whereas the digital nomad neighborhood will not be as massive right here as it’s in close by Koh Phangan or Chiang Mai within the north, that is nonetheless an awesome place to work remotely. 

Excessive-speed web is now available on the island, particularly within the widespread areas of Chaweng and Lamai. Additionally, there’s lastly a co-working area at Mantra (test it on the map right here). It has quick WiFi, comfortable sofas, video video games, and even a pool desk. Now that’s a cool workplace!

Dariece and Nick (founders of Goats on the Highway) spent a tremendous month dwelling and dealing from Koh Samui. Learn all about it of their large information to being a digital nomad in Koh Samui.

☞ When you’re interested in what digital nomad life is like on the opposite aspect of the world, examine our expertise touring as digital nomads in South America

living in koh samui as a digital nomad cost of living in thailand

19. Take a Sundown Cruise

What might be higher than having fun with the sundown from a tropical seashore in Thailand? Having fun with it on a yacht, in fact! Taking a sundown cruise positively earns its spot on this record of issues to do in Koh Samui.

Most tour operators on the island might be completely happy to set you up with a sundown cruise. Top-of-the-line choices is with the Crimson Baron, a standard picket junk-style yacht. 

Their sundown cruise features a welcome cocktail, limitless mushy drinks/tea/espresso, and a buffet dinner. There’s additionally a bar working on deck if that one drink simply isn’t sufficient . Click on right here to be taught extra. 

visit the secret buddha garden best things to do in koh samui

20. Attempt the Thai Expertise Dinner

This simply is perhaps the best feast on the market. The Thai Expertise is taking dinner events to a complete new degree with their enjoyable and interactive spin on issues.

To be clear, this isn’t a cooking class. I’ve already included these on this record of issues to do in Koh Samui up above. Whereas you’ll be taught all in regards to the numerous dishes and even learn to make slightly one thing your self, you’ll be consuming meals ready by their extremely expert cooks.

For his or her full expertise, you get a cocktail class (and the completed product!), 15 totally different dishes, and limitless booze. Now that’s what I name a cocktail party! They supply round-trip transportation, so go forward and drink up. These excursions final three hours and value 2,490 baht ($78) per particular person. 

This feast is likely one of the most distinctive issues to do in Thailand. Don’t miss it!

21. See a Cabaret Present

One of many quintessential issues to do in Koh Samui is to see a ladyboy cabaret present. These reveals function singing, dancing, comedy, and a few fairly elaborate costumes. 

There are just a few totally different choices for ladyboy cabaret reveals on the island. One which comes extremely beneficial is Paris Follies, which options all kinds of dance kinds in addition to many superior superstar impersonators. 

Reveals go on each evening at 8, 9:30, and 11. The sooner present is a little more family-friendly, whereas issues warmth up slightly bit for the later efficiency. It’s free to attend, however they make their cash off of the bar as drinks are positively on the expensive aspect. 

Now You Know What To Do in Koh Samui

As you may see, there’s lots taking place right here in Koh Samui. Whereas this island will most likely suck you in, you would possibly wish to contemplate tacking on a visit to the close by islands of Koh Tao for diving and Koh Phangan for epic events and adventures. 

When you’re planning on exploring extra of the nation (and try to be), remember to try this information to backpacking Thailand. Whenever you inevitably contemplate quitting your job, promoting all of your worldly possessions, and transferring right here, we’ve additionally obtained you lined with particulars on the price of dwelling in Thailand

Some photos on this article are courtesy of Shutterstock.com.

Like This Article? Pin it!

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Latest News

12 Greatest Locations to Dwell in Tennessee (By Dwelling High quality!)

3 This publish might have affiliate hyperlinks, the place I obtain a fee if you buy via them. Here...

More Articles Like This