Cuisine and restaurants of Koh Samui
On Koh Samui, you can find food for every taste and budget – from expensive restaurants with European cuisine to tiny Thai cafes, where prices per serving start at 40 THB. Among the local delicacies, spicy soups with pork and shrimp stand out – the broth based on coconut milk makes their taste unforgettable. For more conservative eaters, the simple Khao Tom Mu rice soup and Khao Pat fried rice, usually mixed with eggs and vegetables, will do the trick. It is worth paying attention to the hallmark of Thai cuisine – sour and spicy Tom Yum soup. On the beach “Bophut” there is a walking tourist area Fisherman Village, where many restaurants are concentrated, the menu of which is fresh seafood: oysters, squids, lobsters, crabs. The cost of a serving is from 300 THB.
Most Thai dishes can seem quite spicy. You should not try to wash down too hot soup or salad with ice water, it is better to ask for a coconut shake, a glass of milk or a lime wedge, which neutralize the effect of capsaicin (the substance “responsible” for the sharpness of chili peppers).
Many tourists are crazy about Thai cuisine and want to try their favorite dishes not only on vacation – there are special cooking courses especially for such gourmets. They are mainly located on the east coast and are quite expensive (from 600 THB per hour).
The popularity of the island among Russian winterers has led to the fact that Russian traditional cuisine has taken its place here. On the beaches of Chaweng, Bophut and Lamai there are establishments where tourists tired of Thai dishes can order borsch, dumplings, pies, cabbage rolls, herring under a fur coat, Mimosa salad and other masterpieces of Soviet culinary. Price range – 50-300 THB. There is also a real Uzbek restaurant, where guests are offered pilaf, manti and kebabs.
Entertainment and attractions
Ha Thon is the main city and port of the island, located on the west coast. Here you can buy the necessary beach accessories, extend your visa, or just watch the life of the port, sitting in one of the cafes. Complete order on the island and with Buddhist sights: the Laem Sor temple with a pagoda, a 12-meter Buddha statue on the mountain, and Wat Hunaram temple even has its own mummified monk. The mummy sits in a glass box, and the faithful bring her flowers and incense.
A favorite tourist attraction is Hin-Ta and Hin-Yai (literally “Grandfather and Grandmother Rocks”), which is at the southern end of Lamai Beach. No, there is no dramatic or at least instructive story associated with them: the cheerful Thais named the rocks this way solely because of their striking resemblance to the genitals. The charming two-level waterfall Namtok on Mueang also attracts: the closest one to the road is about 20 m high. Nearby is a beautiful natural pool where you can swim. Tracks and routes for observing elephants also depart from here.
The Koh Samui Aquarium has a collection of tropical fish, while the Tiger Zoo houses Bengal tigers and leopards. Other popular excursions: to Koh Phangan and “turtle island” Koh Tao (also known as a diving destination), crocodile farm, transvestite show, Butterfly Park, snake farm, Hin Lat waterfall.
5 things to do on Koh Samui
- Meet the sun at least once on the eastern beaches and spend on the western ones.
- Immerse yourself in the vibrant nightlife of Chaweng and Lamai.
- Enjoy the untouched nature of the southern coast.
- Meditate in the peaceful silence of local Buddhist temples.
- Appreciate all the gastronomic nuances of local cuisine.
Mu Ko Angthong Marine Park
35 km west of Koh Samui is the Mu-Ko-Angthong National Marine Park, an archipelago of 42 islands with huge limestone cliffs covered with virgin rainforests that rise from the greenish-blue water. From here you have fantastic views of Koh Wua Talap. Excursions around the park include a visit to the secluded lagoon at Ko Mae Ko, as well as the opportunity to go on sea kayaks around the bizarre limestone formations.
A full-fledged nightlife is concentrated in two main resorts – Chaweng and Lamai. In the Chaweng Beach area on the main street, all the famous shops, restaurants and entertainment venues of the island are located. Among young tourists, the Green Mango disco is popular, older vacationers have chosen the Reggae Pub bar and the island’s main Irish pub, Tropical Murphy. On a particularly hot evening, you should go to the Ice Bar – it is much larger here than in Pattaya.
Lamai is inferior to Chaweng in terms of the number of entertainment venues, but it has its own trump cards: Muay Thai night fights on a small Lamai site have a reputation for being real and uncompromising – in contrast to the performances for tourists at the main Chaweng stadium. Fans of a more peaceful pastime will enjoy the night market and moderately priced bars (from 200 THB per cocktail).
Koh Samui for kids
The island has long and firmly gained a reputation as an ideal place for a quiet family vacation – there is practically no noisy nightlife on the beaches of the northern coast, many hotels are equipped with special pools and playgrounds, and 4-5 star hotels offer animation services.
On the island, you can easily get the usual yogurts, kefir and even cottage cheese – an important point for mothers whose children cannot adapt to the local cuisine. If the child falls ill, the island offers well-equipped clinics where you can get full medical care with travel insurance.
In addition to the warm sea and luxurious beaches, the gentle sun and tropical fruits, Koh Samui also offers a lot of entertainment for children of all ages – from the exotic Paradise Park in the center of the island, where animals live in their natural environment, to the wild rides at the Coco Splash water park (off. site in English.).
According to Bridgat, Koh Samui is hot 12 months a year. The most uncomfortable month for a European is April, when daytime temperatures can easily exceed +40 °C. The coolest months are December and January, but even at this time you should not hope for coolness. It is believed that the rainy season begins in May and lasts until the end of autumn, although the bulk of the annual rainfall falls in September-November. Tropical showers this season can last for several days without a break, and the sea becomes dirty and unsuitable for swimming. Sometimes the rains cause short floods, but they are rarely dangerous – the water quickly goes to the sea.