Koh Samet is the closest thing resembling the island paradises you'll find further south (such as Koh Samui or Phuket) without having to travel far from Bangkok. While its old hippie days and sleepy... Read More
Koh Samet is the closest thing resembling the island paradises you'll find further south (such as Koh Samui or Phuket) without having to travel far from Bangkok. While its old hippie days and sleepy island days are long gone, the island still boasts nice white sand beaches, and the water here is far cleaner than in places like Hua Hin or Pattaya. You do have to pay a ridiculous "national park" fee of 400 baht, despite the island being full of 7-11s, endless development, and nothing suggesting national park status (other than in name), but if you come during the week, you'll find some of the beaches pretty quiet, especially the further south down the island you go. Sai Kaew beach gets packed with Thai partiers on weekends, and you'll have to share the surf with jet skis and banana boats, but south of Ao Wong Deuan, things get pretty tranquil.
Koh Samet, Rayong
- Beaches: "Don't be mislead by the touts at the Ban Phe boat pier telling you that you have to buy a return ticket in advance. They are the same price from the other side."
- Best for Beaches Because: For Bangkok's fastest real island escape, Koh Samet is the one.