Relaxed and off season, wonderful place to chill out for a while
27.05.2019 - 08.06.2019 32 °C
After a hectic but amazing few weeks, we got to Koh Samui to settle in for two full weeks, good time for Phil to do his work, and great for me to continue planning our journey for the next few months, while enjoying the sights and beaches that the island has to offer...
We rented a great apartment for two weeks, well located at the bottom of Chaweng Beach (the most popular area for restaurants and bars), and very close to Chaweng Noi beach. When we got to the flat, we were surprised that we could actually see the sea from our bedroom and balcony - we weren't expecting that. It was an excellent place to be based for a while. Phil found it very comfortable to work from. If you are thinking of visiting for a short stay, we suggest staying in a resort but for longer stays (and more affordable budgets) this flat in the "Bleu Condominum Chaweng" was a great spot with a very nice pool.
The main beaches in Samui are on the east (Chaweng, Chaweng Noi and Lamai). Omar's favourite was Chaweng Noi because it is small, not very crowded, secluded and clean - and also was very close to our place. Lamai was also gorgeous, with nice restaurants and bars on the beach, and much more chilled than Chaweng. Chaweng as the main tourist spot in the island does not have the most beautiful beach but certainly has the life, restaurants and bars that probably you would like to hang out at. Food was great, we had three favourite restaurants that we strongly recommend, Phensiri Thai (our local top restaurant), Dara Serene (excellent setting on the beach, where you can eat right at the water's edge, also with great food, at the top of Chaweng Beach), and Khaw Glong (a great cheap eat on the main Chaweng strip). We are obsessed with the dessert Mango with Sticky Rice and seek it out wherever we can. If you have not tried it, you definitely should.
Koh Samui is quite popular for big parties and "lads" getting wasted. We were a bit afraid that it was the only thing to do, but we were pleasantly surprised with what the island has to offer. By being in the quieter part of Chaweng, the vibe and streets were much calmer, but there still are bars, restaurants and access to beaches, so it was actually good in our opinion. We particularly liked chill-out bars on the beach with relaxing music and great happy hours. If you are more into big parties, probably bars such as Ark Bar or Combo would be more suitable, as they are more crowded, usually have pool parties, loud music and fire shows.
During our stay, we explored the north (area of temples), east and south of the island, and we also went scuba diving to Koh Tao. The diving was really great, we had a Russian dive master that was quite fun and she took us to great spots. We were only three people, so it felt like a private tour - this is another advantage of travelling off-season. One of the highlights of this trip was stopping at Koh Nang Yuan, which is basically two big rocks on the sea linked by a strip of sand. It's definitely worth visiting.
Omar also went on a day trip to two small islands on the south of Samui (Koh Taen) to do some snorkelling and spend some time on a beach on an uninhibited island (Koh Mat Sum). If you are not into diving and would like to try snorkelling it was a good spot for a quick day trip from Samui, but we would definitely recommend going to Koh Tao and Koh Nang Yuan instead if you have the chance.
Our time in Koh Samui has now come to an end, but now we are looking forward to spending a week in Bangkok. We visited Bangkok in our first international trip together, so it will be great to be back after four years... Bangkok here we come again!
Omar and Phil