"A Great little island....Chill out for a bit." Top 5 Page for this destination Ko Phangan by LakeFever

Ko Phangan Travel Guide: 395 reviews and 822 photos

Its a long haul but just get there.

The office map of Haadrin on the beach boasts 712 residents.....certainly during the travel season this number swells immensely and places to stay become more scarce....more times than not though, a bungalow can be found somewhere on the island. There are beaches on every stretch of all the coastlines and you can choose to stay on either the sunrise side (east) or the sunset side (on the west).....there is a huge amount of diversity on the island ranging from the all night full moon party to the deserted island chill in a hammock scene.....over the years travel here has increased and peak times can be more challenging in finding the ideal places to stay. Transportation is decent - as the island is fairly small - and taxis are available for 100baht to any direction from the ports. Some of the roads are sketchy so water taxis - or long boats - are a consideration as well. Ive visited Koh Phan on two different occasions - both over Christmas and New Years - and have absolutely loved every minute. You do though, have to be wanting and willing to meet people...put up with a little more noise and people (in some cases)..and have an open mind about the backpacker cliches that are popping up more and more.....you know...like sitting in a restaurant watching the movie The Beach.....95% percent of the place is fantastic! Its why I travel to Thailand. Chock Di!

Haadrin Beach

This is an interesting contrast since I am standing with the ocean and shore behind me, where there is a row of bars and bungalows - beach long - in front of me. This is the beach where the full moon party takes place. Most evenings there is a decent party and vibes going. We enjoy visiting here but only for an evening or two....maybe a couple times while on the island. Taking in a good party night is fun but so too is finding that perfect beach to relax and then relax some more....Haad Rin is a bits nutty but it does have its place in any itinerary to the island. This place seems to bring out the most interesting backpackers Ive seen....a real collection from all around the world. Check out some of the other pics on here of Haad Rin...see if its something for you.

South Koh Phangan

This is a good picture but a sad picture since it was taken from the back of the ferry leaving (Jan 2006)....the clouds reflect the weird weather we had when there....different than previously....although everyday had great sun, it would also rain at some point most days. The first time I visited it was sunny and hot each day with only a couple storms in the evening.
Travel to the island is pretty easy with various boats departing and returning to different locations from Koh Samui and the main land - Surrattanni. You can arrive at the Haad Rin or the Tong Sala ports all the way from BKK in a route that includes - train, bus, boat - 12hrs 1000baht. Alternatively you can fly from BKK to Koh Samui ($60-$75) and then 300 baht ferry.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Good social scene, a huge mix of people from all over, easy to get around the island, most ammenities are within a short drive, a great place to chill cause thats what everyone is doing, youll fall in love with the place and want to stay!
  • Cons:Can be too crowded during peak times, sometimes difficult to sort transportation on and off the island, some bungalo resorts are really budget minded...harder to find more moderate places, youll fall in love with the place and want to stay..
  • In a nutshell:Everyday I try and figure out a way to move there!!!
  • Last visit to Ko Phangan: Feb 2008
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (38)

Comments (5)

  • Jim_Eliason's Profile Photo
    Oct 14, 2013 at 10:11 PM

    Nice page

  • sezabell's Profile Photo
    May 7, 2009 at 2:51 PM

    oh the good old lilos. we got one of these for my 9 year old boy at the time, while on samui. he would play on it during the day and sleep on it during the night. best buy of our 3 month trip

  • drlotusblossom's Profile Photo
    Nov 8, 2006 at 8:58 AM

    Totally agree re Haad Rin - looks cool as f*ck when its dark during FMP but otherwise? overpriced, cramped bungalows. Stay elsewhere and come in for the party (if you must!)

  • austarman's Profile Photo
    Aug 1, 2006 at 6:25 PM

    It seems you were in Ko Phangan the same time I was! I loved it, but got rained on a few times as well. ;-)

  • planxty's Profile Photo
    Jul 23, 2006 at 11:36 AM

    That food is making me hungry just looking at it! fergy.

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