CITY INFO
KOH SAMUI, THAILAND

Area Code 077 $1=40B May 5, 2004

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High : Dec-Apr, Aug

Low : May-Jun, Oct-Nov

Monsoons : Nov-Jan

May to December it should be rainy season but except the monsoon season, it does not rain so much so it is possible to enjoy this island.

Ko Samui, is an island off the SE coast of Thailand, famed for its glorious beaches. During the 80' and early 90's Ko Samui was a favorite budget travelers destination, however massive development has transformed it into a resort targeted at European and Japanese tourists on package holidays. Backpackers are increasingly bypassing Ko Samui, heading to the cheaper 'backpacker' island of Ko Panghan ,and the less developed island of Ko Tao.

Main town: Nathon: The island's main town and transport center. Apart from arriving or leaving, people only come to Nathon to take care of official business, collect/send mail from the main post office,shopping, immigration, etc,.
Beaches: Chaweng, Lamai, are the main beaches and resort areas, BoPhut and Mae Nam are quieter but also have reasonable facilities. Recently as development continues, the beautiful and quiet beaches getting vanishing. Do not expect beautiful beaches anymore.

Access:
From BKK by air:
There are many flights everyday. the most convenient way to come to Koh Samui, however due to the cost, many budget travelers take a night bus/train.
From BKK by train + boat: There are a few night trains from BKK to Surat Thani and take a bus to Donsok port to take a ferry to Koh Samui. Many travel agents and BKK train station sell joint tickets but it is easy to pay separately and if you buy separately, the cost is the same.
From BKK by tourist bus: The most common way to travel for budget travelers. Many bus companies organize the trip with their own buses and boats. You can buy the tickets on Khaosan road. The costs the cheapest.
From south of Thailand or Malaysia: Travel by bus or train to Suratthani then buy a joint ticket(bus to Donsok and a ferry) at a travel agent.

Arriving:
Usually your boat arrives at Nathon port. Songthaws are waiting at the port and you have take one to go to a beach town you choose. Foreigners are expected to pay much more than locals,
50-100B.
If you do not want to pay the high amount, walk to the main road and try to get one which is running on with locals. But still you are asked to pay more.

For local beach info see below
Lamai Beach
| Bophut Beach | Maenam Beach

i Tourist Office TAT: Nathon Rd. Nathon. 200m N(As you are landing, N is left.) from the pier, past the Post Office T420504 8:30-16:30, tatsamuiptat.or.th,
Helpful. Info on accommodation, transport. Free map and free magazine "What's on Samui",with lots of info for accommodation, restaurants, shops, etc. If you travel to Koh Tao, get "Koh Tao Info" booklet, excellent.
$ Banks/Exchange: Many banks, exchange booths & ATM are in NaThon, Lamai,and Chaweng.
P Police: 3 blocks S from Pier. T421098.
P Tourist Police: T1699
I Immigration Office 1km S from Nathon, Thaweeratphakdee Rd T077-421069 M-F 8:30-15:30
H Samui International Hospital:
90/2 Moo 2. Bophut. The address is in Boput but it is N end of Chaweng Beach. T077-422272, 24hr hospital.
M Post Office GPO: Nathon Rd. 150 m N from pier
M-F 8:30-16:30, Sa,Su9:00-12:00. Poste Restante.

Transport
A Air/Samui Airport: at Airport Between Bangruk & Chaweng beaches. 2km from Chaweng Beach. Off Highway at KM30, KM31, KM33. Flights to Bangkok, Phuket, Singapore
PG Bangkok Airways: 54/4 M3, T077-42-2234, www.bangkokair.com
F1 Nathon Ferry piers : Nathon Center. Boat to Suratthani, Koh Panghan and Koh Tao.
F2 Bo Phut piers : E from Bo Phut village. 4km from Chaweng Beach. Boat to Haat Rin, Koh Panghan
ta Phantip Tour: 077-421221 Tourist Bus
To Suratthani(3hrs)/Phang Nga(5hrs)/Phuket(7.5hrs) dep7:30, To Hat Yai 7:30 11:30 7.5hrs, Krabi 7:30 11:30 3hrs

Local Transport
Songthaews: red pickups. Main transport around the island. Local fares are 20B-30B but tourists are expected to pay more. Fares listed below are for turists, very hard to bargain. NaThon to: Mae Nam 30B, BoPhut 50B, Chaweng 50B, Lamai 50B, Big Buddha 50B, Chaweng to Lamai 50B, Chaweng to Bo Phut 50B, Chaweng/Bophut to Big Buddha pier 20B,
Motor bike taxi: You can travel with almost same fare as Songthaew.
Meter taxis: now available in Koh Samui but no requirement to use the meters. So you have to insist to use the meter. Even the driver agrees, he often ignore your request and ask you to pay the amount he wants.If you do not agree, do not pay the amount and go to a police and negotiate at police station.
Rentals: motorbike: 150B/day Available in tourist areas.
! Warning: Tourists are involved in many road accidents on Ko Samui. Be careful.
Travel Agencies
Many agencies in Nathon and at the beaches book transport through to most destinations.

Shopping & Other
m Market: NaThon main road S from pier.
m Nathon Bookshop: 64 Mu 3 9:00-18:00 good selection
la Laundry: available with, 40B+/kg
Supermarkets can be found in most of the tourist area but the prices are much more expensive than ones in mainland. 7 Eleven can be the cheapest shop.
s 7 Eleven: Chaweng N from McDonald
s Speed Queen Supermarket: Chaweng opp from Central Samui 7-23:00
s Savers Mart: Chaweng, S from McDonald 9-22:00

Entertainment/Activities
Chaweng and Lamai have the liveliest night scenes with lots of bars, discos and shows. Several restaurants show videos.
Diving / Scuba Diving There are several diving schools based at the main beaches. Ko Tao offers better diving than Ko Samui, many of the schools organize diving trips to Ko Tao.
Go Kart Racing Bo Phut Rd 9-21:00
Thai Boxing Chaweng Stadium

@ Internet @
Internet cafes can be found in most of the tourist area. Most of the travel agents and GHs offer this service. The costs are usually 2-3B/min. But it is possible to find 1B/min services in Chaweng, 1.5B/min in Lamai. 2B/min in Bo Phut.
@1 Go Internet Cafe: CHAWENG 46/5 Moo 3, Main Rd. look for the sign for "Classic Gems on the main street T230535 going@samar.t.co.th 1B/min
@2 Asia Travel: CHAWENG#38/43 Moo 1B/min open till late
@3 GM Tour: CHAWENGN from McDonald 1B/min
@4 Amazing Thai Tour: CHAWENG1B/min

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