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Photo of Ko Samui

About Ko Samui

Thailand’s islands and beaches are the stuff of many daydreams, and Ko Samui is one of the best known and loved beach-island-escape destinations.  This island has become synonymous with enjoying oneself.  The food is fantastic, there’s a huge choice of spas and wellness centres offering to pamper you to bits, there are great bars and every kind of beach idyl you might be dreaming of.  Many of the best places to stay on Ko Samui offer all the things in the one place, but if you don’t quite have the budget for one of the more spectacular resort retreats there are still plenty of near perfect options.  

What Not to Miss

  • Most people are here for at least some beach-time.  Ko Samui is quite a big island, with a coastline offering a beach for everyone, whether you’re looking for a party or a place to yourself. The busiest beaches are Chaweng and Lamai, and the quietest are probably those on the island’s northern coast.  The water isn’t as clear as off Phuket, but the coconut palms are perfect and development is very limited now, so you’ll be really unlucky your view is spoiled by building works.  
  • Ko Samui is within the Chumphon Archipelago, a group of 80, mostly uninhabited islands, of the Arg Thong National Marine Park.  Which is probably one of the world’s premier snorkelling destinations, and a fantastic place for divers and sea kayakers as well.  
  • If your time in the water has whetted your appetite for adventure the rainforest-skirted granite massive in the island’s centre is a fantastic place to explore.
  • If you’re looking for a gentle activity you might want to visit the butterfly garden or Samui aquarium, with its amazing collection of tropical fish, colourful coral and graceful sea turtles?  
  • Or the mummified monk on display in What Khunaram, one of the island’s most popular temples?  He was a very referred former abbot who was also a meditation master, and he’s presented sitting upright in a glass casket surrounded by flowers and incense…
  • Or the snake farm?  
  • Or the 15metre Buddha statue at Bang Rak?  
  • Or the Secret Buddha Garden, which was built by a 76 year old fruit farmer and offers some of the island’s best views?
  • There’s also an elephant camp.
  • You might also want to visit some of the other islands of the archipelago.
  • And you’ll definitely want to devote a fair amount of time to sampling the island’s cuisine in all its forms.  

The Best Places to Stay on Ko Samui 

For Resort Perfection

  • The Banyan Tree Ko Samui is a collection of stand-alone villas, separated by pockets of jungle, but all with sea views and access to a private beach.  This is the kind of resort where nothing is too much fuss, and the added extras are impressive: we’re talking access to a complimentary private catamaran or a deep sea fishing trip.  
  • The Four Seasons Ko Samui is an almost impossibly romantic collection of villas - complete with plunge pools, breathtaking views and a luxuriant amount of space.  There are 70 rooms and villas in all, with impressive facilities to go with them: a private beach with a beachside infinity pool, a wellness spa and a choice of places to eat and drink.  

For The Beach

  • The Vana Belle Resort sits just back from a stunning stretch of pristine beach, and its 80 rooms and suites offer views and peace.  But, if you want it to be, this resort can be more just a place to relax, it encourages guests to learn more about the local culture, and, as well as offering fitness classes, the resort also offer cultural activities.  

For an Apartment or Private Villa

If you’d prefer to stay in an apartment or private villa we recommend you visit our online partner, booking.com.

Travel Information

  • Samui Airport is technically an international airport, but unless you’re travelling from Singapore, Hing Kong or China you’ll probably be arriving via Bangkok.  From the airport it might be most convenient for you to travel to your hotel by ferry - which is certainly charming and a great way to start your visit to the island.  
  • If you’re thinking about hiring a car we recommend checking what our online partners, Rentalcars have to offer.  
  • This might surprise you but Ko Saumi’s weather conditions are a little different to the rest of Thailand’s.  Here the rainy season comes late, with the monsoon rains falling between about October and December (rather than between April and September).  The post monsoon season is probably the most pleasant time to visit, from between January and March.  The maximum daytime temperatures don’t change much throughout the year, ranging between about 30°C and 33°C.

Still not sure which is the best place to stay on Ko Samui for you?  

  • Contact one of our friendly Gurus for advice. 

Best Hotels in Ko Samui

  • Banyan Tree Koh Samui 88 rooms from $771

    Koh Samui, Ko Samui

    Luxurious standalone villas, panoramic sea views and a private beach – the Banyan Tree’s sprawling grounds and prime location on Koh Samui provide an ideal blend of pampering and privacy.

    Sailing  -  Take an afternoon sail on one of the hotel's complimentary catamarans.
    Fishing  -  Deep sea fishing trips can be organised by the hotel.
    Romantic  -  Good for couples.
    Views  -  Great views from hotel
    Check prices
  • Vana Belle Resort 80 rooms from $436

    Koh Samui, Ko Samui

    Vana Belle Resort, which sits along a stunning stretch of beachfront, encourages guests to learn more about local culture without compromising on any comforts. Sign up for a cultural activity, join a fitness class, or simply sit by the beach and watch the waves roll in.

    Honeymoons  -  Private and romantic this is the ideal post-wedding escape.
    Beach Life  -  Unwind on the pristine sands of Chaweng Noi Beach.
    Sights nearby  -  Marvel at the imposing 12 meter tall golden statue, Big Buddha.
    Great walks  -  Take a jungle stroll to the beautiful Hin Lad Waterfall.
    Check prices
  • Four Seasons, Koh Samui 70 rooms from $960

    Ban Bang Po, Ko Samui

    The impossibly romantic Four Seasons Koh Samui offers exquisite private villas complete with plunge pools, breathtaking views and luxuriant amounts of space. Facilities are equally impressive, with a beachside infinity pool, private beach, wellness spa and a number of drinking and dining options.

    Beach Life  -  Gorgeous beach front villas situated on a perfect white sandy beach.
    Romantic Break  -  Spoil a loved one with a 5* stay
    Fishing  -  The hotel provides equipment and a boat for fishing excursions.
    Diving  -  Discover the vibrant coral gardens and expansive marine life.
    Check prices