Where to stay on Samui

By Kirsty Turner

Haad Rin Beach is home to the full moon party

Located in the south of Thailand in Surat Thani Province, Koh Pha Ngan is famed for its full moon parties, natural beauty and easygoing atmosphere. Most visitors tend to spend their days here soaking up the sun on the beach and practicing water sports before hitting the bars in the evening and dancing until dawn at wild parties.

People from all walks of life travel to Koh Pha Ngan and there is a wide range of accommodation available to suit all budgets, ranging from basic wooden huts with shared facilities to luxurious five-star hotels. Budget guesthouses tend to come with fans in the rooms and either shared or private bathrooms with cold water, while those who have plenty of cash to splash will be treated to creature comforts such as air-conditioned rooms with en suite bathrooms, satellite television and refrigerators.

After choosing the type of accommodation you want to stay in, it is important to take the time to think about the area of Koh Pha Ngan that you want to stay in. While many visitors like to stay close to the bars, shops and restaurants of Haad Rin, those who are looking for a little peace and quite will also find plenty of accommodation near tranquil beaches and bays in other areas of the island.

Haad Rin

This is the place to be for those who want to stay close to the main bars and the action of the full moon party. Located on the southern tip of Koh Pha Ngan, Haad Rin is blessed with a picturesque stretch of golden sand, which is lined with a large number of bars and restaurants.

Accommodation options come in all shapes and sizes here, from cheap and cheerful guesthouse rooms with shared facilities to luxurious suites in leading resorts. However, many of the places in Haad Rin are aimed at backpackers and offer recreation rooms where guests can get together and watch films, read books and play pool. More on full moon parties.

Ban Kai

Located on the west coast of Koh Pha Ngan, just 10 minutes from Haad Rin, Ban Kai is the perfect location for those who want to escape from the hustle and bustle of Haad Rin but still stay close to the action. The area features a picturesque beach lined with accommodation options ranging from cheap huts with shared facilities to modern resorts and visitors can reach Haad Rin by following a path through the jungle.

Haad Yao Beach - set in a sweeping bay

Chalok Lam

Featuring three kilometres of golden sand, this picturesque area can be found on the island’s northern tip. This secluded bay is framed with mountains and is a perfect tropical paradise for those who value peace and quiet. Accommodation here ranges from moderately priced beachside bungalows to luxurious resorts, and most of the rooms here offer stunning views of the ocean.

Haad Salad

One of the most popular beach areas on the east coast of Koh Pha Ngan, accommodation in Haad Salad ranges from mid to top end and this is a great place to stay for those who prefer intense natural beauty to beach bars and busy restaurants.

Thonglang Bay 

Ideal for honeymooning couples and those who are looking for a little privacy, Tonglong Bay can be found on the northwestern side of Koh Pha Ngan. While there are no shops here, a couple of self contained resorts offer guests everything they need to be comfortable, including luxurious bungalows and suites that come complete with kitchens, bathrooms, Jacuzzis and stunning bay views.

Haad Yao

Often acclaimed as one of the most picturesque areas of Koh Pha Ngan, Haad Yao can be found on the island’s east coast. While most of the accommodation here leans towards luxurious resorts and bungalows, visitors looking for cheap and cheerful accommodation will also be able to find a number of budget bungalows here.

Ban Tai

The setting for Koh Pha Ngan’s half moon parties, Ban Tai can be found on the island’s west coast and is blessed with a large and beautiful sandy beach. Most of the accommodation here is extremely luxurious and this is a popular place to stay among those who enjoy the finer things in life.

Haad Chao Phao

Those who really want to get away from it all and have plenty of money to spend will enjoy staying in the luxurious accommodation that can be found along this picturesque stretch of sand. Accommodation at Haad Chao Phao is limited to just a couple of extremely luxurious resorts, which offer stunning views of the area from their spacious balconies as well as spas, gourmet restaurants, swimming pools and a wide range of other amenities.

Generally speaking, accommodation costs go up by as much as a third during the peak tourist seasons, although there are still plenty of budget places to be found for those on a shoestring budget. Prices also rocket days before the full moon party is held, making it a good idea to check in around a week in advance. More on Koh Pha Ngan bungalows.

Accommodation: If you are looking for somewhere to stay on Koh Pha Ngan which won't cripple you financially then we recommend Hostelbookers. They have thorough listings for backpackers and budget travellers in every part of the island.

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