Discover Koh Phangan

Gulf of Thailand island paradise

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    Koh Phangan, Thailand sits within the Gulf of Thailand nearby Koh Samui and has a global reputation for being the go-to destination for Full Moon Parties for the past 30 years. More than a backpacker destination, Koh Phangan accommodation is vast, ranging from low-cost hostels around the party neighbourhoods to mid-range bungalows, budget hotels, higher-end hotels and beachfront resorts. During the rainy season when there are fewer travellers to Ko Phangan, you could get lower deals or discounts.

    Koh Phangan has several beautiful beaches with soft white sands and azure blue or emerald warm waters. Haad Rin beach is the location of the full moon parties. But during the day, the beach has a range of things happening such as beach football, beach volleyball, and bikini contests, as well as water sports including jet skiing and sea kayaking. Baan Tai beach is a slightly quieter version of Haad Rin but still has a very lively bar and beach club scene. For those looking for a more laid-back stay, try Chalok Lam Beach, Mae Haad, Thong Sala, Haad Yao and Haad Salad. Thong Nai Pan Beach is low-key and has waterfalls nearby, lush vegetation and lots of wildlife. Srithanu beach has calm waters and caters to high-end resorts. Many accommodations offer activities like yoga classes or a cooking class on Thai food for a few days at no extra cost.

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    THG Recommended Hotels in Koh Phangan

    THE COAST RESORT – KOH PHANGAN
    The COAST Adults Only Resort and Spa - Koh Phangan is situated on the tranquil Sunset Beach and only 15 minutes walk from Haad Rin town, the centre of the island’s nightlife.
    Buri Rasa Koh Phangan
    Relaxed beachfront luxury at Buri Rasa Koh Phangan. This friendly eco-resort situated on the beach of Thong Nai Pan Noi, has 65 lavish rooms with pool or ocean views with private entrances, full amenities and even a turndown service.
    Panviman Resort Koh Phangan
    Set overlooking the exceptional crescent-shaped bay of Thong Nai Pan Beach, Panviman Resort Koh Phangan offers superior rooms and deluxe cottages for couples and families looking for a tranquil tropical escape away from rowdy crowds.
    Premium
    Anantara Rasananda Koh Phangan Villas
    Welcome to paradise on Earth! Located on Thong Nai Pan Noi Beach on Koh Phangan
    Santhiya Koh Phangan Resort & Spa
    Set across 18 acres of lush tropical foliage & cliffs overlooking the Gulf, Santhiya Koh Phangan Resort & Spa is an eco- hideaway on Thong Nai Pan beach
    Summer Luxury Beach Resort & Spa
    Situated on Bantai Beach overlooking the Gulf of Thailand, the Summer Luxury Resort & Spa is a cosmopolitan resort offering the finest services
    Kupu Kupu Phangan Beach Villas & Spa by L’Occitane
    Kupu Kupu Phangan Beach Villas & Spa by L’Occitane is a chic spa resort orchestrated to make your holiday experience on Phangan island unforgettable.
    CHANTARAMAS
    Chantaramas Resort & Spa situated in Baan Tai, Koh Phangan, a peaceful hideaway but still close enough to the action of vibrant nightlife.

    Discover more hotels in Koh Phangan

    Additional things to do in Koh Phangan

    Full Moon Party

    Koh Phangan has played host to the original and infamous Thailand full moon party for over 20 years. These raucous festivities attract up to 30,000 partygoers each month flooding Haad Rin beach with booze, recreational substances, loud music, bodies and litter.

    Khao Ra Mountain

    Khao Ra Mountain in Ko Phangan can be hiked in about three hours with amazing views for the lookout. It’s the highest point on the island and 627 metres in height. It can make for a serene yoga retreat venue as well as a wonderful place to meet the rising sun in the early morning. There are excellent viewpoints all around the island for fun things you’d like to do – check out Haad Yao, Haad Rin, between Haad Mae Haad and Chaloklum Bay. You can check with your accommodation on the popular route to take.

    Sramonora Waterfall

    Sramonora hosts the legendary waterfall all-night parties just before and after the famous parties at Haad Rin. At night these falls glisten under the moonlight creating a truly breathtaking atmosphere. There are two rock pools, one large and one smaller.

    Yang Na Tree

     Also known colloquially as the resin tree, is a tropical forest tree, this statuesque native tree is the tallest on the island, reaching close to 50 metres in height. It is located close to Wat Pho temple in Baan Tai, and definitely worth visiting to admire nature’s majestic gift.

    Thong Sala Night Market

    Welcome to the ultimate foodies’ paradise especially if you love Thai food. Thong Sala Night Market is one of the traditional Thai night markets serving a delicious array of local fresh delicacies, Thai food and global dishes ready for your indulgence. It is our go-to spot most evenings for dinner, with every kind of food menu you can think of.

    Diving at Sail Rock

    The rock is about an hour’s boat ride from Koh Phangan and is quite a deep dive with some strong currents but with excellent visibility. Common sightings include colourful corals, vibrant schools of fish, manta rays, barracuda and the rarer visit of whale sharks

    Summary continued

    The island itself is full of lush green vegetation that can be explored on foot where you will discover waterfalls and wildlife. Khao Ra Mountain can be hiked in about three hours with amazing views for the lookout. It’s the highest point on the island and 627 metres in height. There are excellent viewpoints all around the island – check out Haad Yao, Haad Rin, between Haad Maehaad and Chaloklum Bay.

    There are plenty of good snorkelling and diving opportunities with PADI scuba diving courses available. You can try sea kayaking or take a day trip sailing to Ang Thong National Park.


    Frequently Asked Questions

    Is Koh Phangan expensive?

    Ko Phangan island is more expensive than the Thailand mainland and its neighbour Koh Samui. This is especially apparent around the high season, the time of the parties when prices can increase significantly. Koh Phangan accommodations are vast with something to match every budget.

    How do you get to Koh Phangan?

    From Bangkok, get a flight to Koh Samui and then take a speed boat or ferry to Koh Phangan. The entire trip will take about 3-5 hours. Another option is by train or bus to Surat Thani city then boat or ferry to the island.
    From Koh Samui, it’s about a 40-minute ferry ride to Koh Phangan.
    From Phuket, you can catch a flight to Koh Samui, which only takes 55 minutes then onward to a ferry from there. There is no airport on Koh Phangan, so the closest airport is Koh Samui. A cheaper option is to catch a bus to Surat Thani port then take a ferry to the island from there. The whole trip should take around 8 hours including transfers.

    Is Koh Phangan safe?

    Koh Phangan is considered to be safe overall. However, it is best to operate with caution after the times of the full moon parties when drunk driving is common and motorcycle accidents are frequent. Regular visitors recommend renting transport and just follow the standard travel procedures for safety and secure travel insurance before going on your trip to Ko Phangan Thailand.

    How many days do you need in Koh Phangan?

    This depends on what you plan on doing. Most hotels require a minimum three-night stay around the times of the full moon parties. However, there’s more to this island than just partying. There are some good snorkelling and diving spots, boating around the island on one of the long tail boats, hiking Khao Ra mountain for a date with the morning sun, or to one of the islands’ seven waterfalls, sea kayaking, and gorgeous beaches to unwind on. Or you can take a cooking class in the activities offered by some accommodations.

    Where is the best neighbourhood to stay in Koh Phangan?

    Depends on what you are looking for. If you are wanting backpackers and party central then stay around Haad Rin beach (where the full moon parties happen) or Baan Tai beach, which is a slightly quieter version of Haad Rin but still has a very lively bar and beach club scene. Both areas have a full range of accommodation options from hostels and bungalows to hotels.
    For those looking for a more laid-back stay, try Chalok Lam Beach, Mae Haad, Thong Sala, Haad Yao and Haad Salad. Chalok Lam is a 3-kilometre strip of golden sand with a stunning mountainous backdrop and is best for chilling out. Mae Haad Beach is quieter with higher-end accommodation. Haad Yao is a lovely white sand beach with excellent snorkelling at its coral reef, but no after-dark scene. Thong Sala is where the boats coming to the island disembark. It offers a good range of hotels and resorts.
    For a mix of exploration and relaxation, Thong Nai Pan Beach is low-key but has waterfalls nearby, lush vegetation and lots of wildlife. It is full of bungalows and resorts that are on the pricier side than in the party areas of Koh Phangan. Srithanu beach has calm waters and caters to high-end resorts.

    Is Koh Phangan worth visiting?

    Yes! There is more to this little paradise than just full moon parties. Koh Phangan beaches are sensational with powder-soft sands and azure coloured warm waters. The island itself is full of lush green vegetation that can be explored on foot where you will discover waterfalls and wildlife. Khao Ra Mountain can be hiked in about three hours with amazing views for the lookout. There are plenty of good snorkelling and diving opportunities with padi scuba diving courses available.

    Full moon party Koh Phangan- is this all there is to do?

    This Gulf of Thailand island paradise has much more to offer than just parties. Koh Phangan has several beautiful beaches with white soft sands and azure blue or emerald warm waters. The island itself is full of lush green vegetation that can be explored on foot where you will discover waterfalls and wildlife. Khao Ra Mountain can be hiked in about three hours with amazing views for the lookout. There are plenty of good snorkelling and diving opportunities with padi scuba diving courses available. You can try sea kayaking or take a day trip sailing to Ang Thong National Park.

    What’s the weather like on Koh Phangan?

    Koh Phangan weather is warm all year round with both and wet and a dry season. The best time to visit is during the dry season from November to April. However, be aware that most of the waterfalls dry up during this season. April to June is the hottest time with temperatures verging on sweltering.

    When is Koh Phangan full moon party?

    Full moon parties take place on the Full Moon date of every month on Haad Rin Nok Beach. The entry fee costs 100 Baht.

    When is Koh Phangan half moon party?

    Half-moon parties occur every two weeks, either side of the Full Moon party. These are in a different location to the main Moon parties. Instead, they take place in a forest near Ban Tai village.

    How big is Koh Phangan?

    The island is approximately 125 km².

    How to reach Koh Phangan?

    From Bangkok: The fastest way is to catch a flight to Koh Samui and then take a speed boat or ferry to Koh Phangan. This entire trip will take about 3-5 hours. Another option is by train or bus to Surat Thani city then take a boat or ferry to the island.
    From Koh Samui: Its about a 40-minute ferry ride from Koh Samui to Koh Phangan.
    From Phuket: You can catch a flight to Koh Samui, which only takes 55 minutes and then take a ferry from there. There is no airport on Koh Phangan, so the closest airport is Koh Samui. Or catch a bus to Surat Thani port then take a ferry to the island from there. The whole trip should take around 8 hours including transfers.

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