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gardkarlsen Ko Samui - A travel report by Gard
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Ko Samui,  Thailand - flag Thailand -  Surat Thani
4952 readers

gardkarlsen's travel reports

A week on Koh Samui

  7 votes
Page: 1 2

Ko Samui travelogue picture
In September 1998 I went to Thailand together with my wife. We started in Bangkok, flew down to Phuket, flew to Koh Samui and then we went back to Bangkok.

Favourite spots:
Ko Samui travelogue picture
We loved our little bungalow right on the beach and it was great to get up every morning and take a look at the beautiful beach and ocean.

What's really great:
Ko Samui travelogue picture
The snorkelling at Koh Tao was just amazing and we were pretty stunned when we saw lots of colorful fish even at the beach itself.

Ko Samui travelogue picture
Snorkelling at Koh Tao, Big Buddha, renting a bike and just driving around

Ko Samui travelogue picture
We had a great little bungalow on the beach itself at the Fair House. This is located on Chaweng Noi and it was a bit out of town. But it only took us like 5 minutes to walk until we could grab a taxi

Other recommendations:
Ko Samui travelogue picture
On the 12th we went to Phuket airport to go to Koh Samui. Again I had booked and bought tickets back home in Norway. Bangkok Airways is the only company to fly directly from Phuket to Koh Samui (at least I was told so) and the trip takes about an hour (in a fairly small propel plane). Landing at Koh Samui is great. The little airport here must be the most charming on that I have ever seen. There is both an international “terminal” and a domestic one. But the buildings are not traditional buildings like we know it. It was more like an open solution (no walls, just a roof). The landing strip lies idyllic between coconut palms. Once again I had booked a hotel using the net and asia travels. When I booked a bungalow at the Fair House on Chaweng beach I had to give my VISA number so that they could charge a deposit. At this time I’m not sure if the deposit has been returned to me so how successfully it was remains to be seen. The fair house has both hotel rooms and bungalows and the price varies. The closer to the beach, the more expensive it gets. I booked a bungalow on the beach and that was 2000 baht per night including breakfast. The view from the door in the bungalow was stunning: a coconut tree, the beach and the ocean. The fair house is located on Chaweng noi (Chaweng beach is split in two by some rocks and the fair house is located on the smaller beach). This means that you are a bit “out of town” but it only took us about 5 minutes to walk over to the main road and from there on we could take a taxi (20 baht per person) to anywhere on the beach road). Koh Samui is quite different compared to Phuket. In Phuket (at Patong) all the action took place more or less on the beach but on Koh Samui (on Chaweng) the action is more spread out and the beach road is about 200 meters from the beach.

The first day of our stay we rented a bike and we drove around. We took a look at the big Buddha which is located on a beach in the north east of the island. Driving on the island was a bit challenging. First of all I have to admit that I haven’t driven a bike for years and second the thing was without a clutch. But we managed to get around somehow. We had one minor accident, I drove a bit to fast into a turn and there were sand in the road (the roads are not that great) and we fell of the bike. On our way south again (the islands circular road is about 50 km long) we drove past Lamai beach and ended up in the southern part of this beach. This is the place where you can see Grandfather and Grandmother stones, the stones that looks like the male and female genitals. We went further south west and we decided to walk up to a waterfall. The trail up to the highest waterfall is pretty steep and it takes about 20 minutes to walk up there. If it is worth it? Walk up there and see for yourself :-)

We decided once again that we wanted to go on a snorkeling trip. The island Koh Tao (Turtle Island) is recommended because of the visibility in the water. We had to pay 1300 bath per person and we were picked up at the hotel at 8 am. We were taken to the pier and we got into a speedboat. There were about 18 persons on board this boat and a crew of two. The trip to Koh Tao took about 1,5 hours and it was a pretty bumpy ride, especially coming back from the island. Two Australian girls we talked to said that they had gone on a trip two days before and they had to cancel it after 20 minutes because the waves were too big. The driver wanted to keep going but the passengers convinced him to turn around. Anyway, we got to Koh Tao and we anchored up in a bay that was shielded from the big waves outside. It most more or less a beach area so I was a bit disappointed and thought to myself that it would be kinda boring. But I was wrong, very wrong. When we got into the water it turned out that there were fish everywhere and they came in all sizes (from 2 cm to 25 cm) and in all colors. And when we brought bread into the water they went “wild”. The water was very nice and the visibility was maybe about 5 to 6 meter under water. The depth varied from 0 m and up so it was very family friendly. We stayed at this location for about an hour and then we went back to the main beach to have lunch (included in the price) at a local restaurant. After lunch we went to a new location and we snorkeled again. Again there were lots of things to see in the oceans and the water was clear. Beware of corals by the way if you go snorkeling. Not only will you destroy them by stepping on them, they are also very sharp and will leave you with many cuts. I talk from experience as I’m writing this. There seemed to be a bit of junk in the water on this second location but the snorkeling was great. Then we went to three small islands right outside Koh Tao. The islands are connected by sandbanks and the coral beaches are very nice but again the corals can be quite sharp. As I already sad the trip back to Koh Samui was quite bumpy so I think it is better to do this when it is not monsoon season.

We spent the rest of the time just relaxing on the beach and by looking around in the Chaweng beach area. The road that is parallel to the beach is not all finished. There was a lot of rain on the second day of our stay and the road (which was without asphalt in many places) remained wet during out stay and of course it was very muddy in the places were there were no asphalt. We ate at a number of places. Some of them were quite good and some were just OK. I think that I will first of all remember Koh Samui because of the great snorkeling experience I had there.

The Thais are a very friendly people. My girlfriend was stopped several times because of her braided hair and people asked her if it was real. And people kept looking on her and told me that she was a “sexy woman”.

We flew back to Bangkok from Koh Samui using Bangkok Airways on the 18th

Published on Monday January 6th, 2003

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