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Recommended tours of Koh Samui city, what to see and how to arrange Koh Samui tours

Koh Samui tours

Samui has many gorgeous beaches, one for each day of your visit
Samui has many gorgeous beaches, one for each day of your visit

A host of companies offer tours on Samui that allow visitors to explore the nature, culture and rural way of life. There are also several options for visiting other islands on day trips by boat to enjoy their natural attractions. Koh Samui tours are sometimes the best way to see the island in hassle free manner to match your relaxing beach stay.

A popular introduction to Koh Samui is one-day island tours, which is also ideal for those with limited time. These Samui tours carry passengers in converted LandRover jeeps, take around five hours and include the main highlights and attractions such as: Big Buddha temple, Grandmother and Grandfather Rocks, Namuang waterfalls and Nathon town. It’s also possible to hire a red songtheaw or pick up taxi for this trip, but the drivers prefer not to venture off the beaten track.

An elephant ride is one of the most entertaining ways to see the natural beauty of the island. The biggest operator is Island Safari, located North of Chaweng, while the Living Thailand tour also includes a demonstration of elephants and monkeys at work, as well as a ride on the back of an ox-cart through a traditional village of coconut palms.

The Big Buddha is a famous landmark that makes a rather large statement for Buddhism
The Big Buddha is a famous landmark that makes a rather large statement for Buddhism

For the combination of spectacular scenery above and below the water, a trip to Koh Nang Yuan combines time on pristine beaches with swimming and snorkelling on the areas coral reefs. This privately run island is just a few minutes boat ride from Koh Tao, another of the most scenic places for diving and snorkelling in the Gulf of Thailand, Some Samui tours combine the two locations for the maximum marine experience. Aow Leuk or Leam Tien beaches on Koh Tao offer particularly finer snorkelling possibilities, but they can get quite crowded during busy seasons.

One of the most rewarding Samui tours is to the Ang Thong National Marine Park, which is also reachable on a day tour either by speedboat or a slower ferry. Most tours include snorkelling, hiking to an inland ‘Emerald lake’ and lunch on a deserted beach. If the sea is calm, it’s also possible to kayak around what are some of the most unspoilt islands in the Thai Gulf.

There are plenty of tour agents operating around the island, in hotel lobbies, along the main roads near the popular beaches and sometimes even on the beaches themselves. Generally they all book for the same limited number of tour companies and prices seldom vary. The decision involved is which tour suits you best. A transfer will pick you up and take you to the assembly point, which usually wastes up-to an hour, but on the whole these are a great day out. The cheaper tours can sometimes use suspect transport means, with poorly maintained boats and rather vague organisation but the overall experience is rewarding all the same.

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This page last updated: 14 November 2006
This site last updated: 17 June 2005

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