Our first visit to this incredibly beautiful and mysterious land took place on 2013th – which eventually ended up to be a 45-day long trip. While we had great time on the main land, Thailand islands just blew us away.
The Thailand islands could be described as meeting points of natural beauty and inner peace.
Even in the middle of the high season (usually during the winter) it’s easy to lose the crowds as each island has its own “secret spots” and unique charm – as long as you are willing and curious enough to explore it.
The majority of Thailand islands are easily reachable via ferry boats that depart from towns such as Surat Thani from which you can reach Ko Pha Ngan, Ko Samui, Ko Tao etc.
A little town of Ao Nang is great if you want to go Phuket, Ko Phi Phi, Ko Lanta, Ko Yao Yai etc.
It almost goes without saying that the best Thailand beaches are located on some of these islands.
We had an opportunity to visit several Thailand islands that include:
Phuket, Koh Phi Phi, Koh Phi Phi Lee, Koh Phangan, Koh Tao, Hong and Bamboo island.
By far the most famous and biggest Thailand island, Phuket offers a huge variety of beaches, activities and a really wild night life (especially in Patong).
If you have a strong desire to visit Russia but at the same time hate the cold Russian weather, have no worries, you will find out that 90% of Russian population resides on this beautiful island 😀
Besides mesmerizing sand beaches there are many “wild” and beautiful parks…even though you will never have a moment of peace as you stroll through the same…And the “no peace” credit proudly goes to Phuket’s little hairy and naughty inhabitants.
They may seem all cute and cuddly but never, and we mean NEVER, feed them !
If you do, they usually go ballistic and when you see the size of their teeth you will definitely think twice before you offer them that snack.
Since Phuket is the biggest Thailand island quite worth exploring, it’s really a good idea to rent a scooter (they go as low as 4€ per day!!) especially if you rent them for few days in a row.
Just be sure to make photos of the scooter before you take them from the shop, otherwise you might end up paying for the damage made by somebody else.
But really, there ain’t nothing like a smooth warm breeze as you ride one of these from beach to beach during long tropical days.
The incredible view is just one of many things to enjoy in one of our favorite Thailand islands, the magical Koh Phangan. It is an incredibly relaxed and calm place of immense natural beauty. Nevertheless, it hosts some of the wildest parties in the region, including the famous Full Moon Party (located on Haad Rin beach) which takes place one every full moon during the year as well as on the New Year’s Eve.
There is also the “Half Moon Party” but it’s not nearly as vibrant and “wild” as it’s big brother “Full Moon”.
The island offers an impressive variety of accommodation, from low budget to exclusive high class, sometimes located next to each other.
Beautiful and easily reachable sand beaches surround most of the island and are a pure joy to explore.
For those interested in active vacation- windsurfing, kitesurfing, scuba diving, hiking and free climbing are all common activities on this island.
If you are looking for variety of things to do in Thailand, Koh Phangan offers just about anything to fit your needs. J
In addition to the whole relaxed, almost hippie-like vibe, many people from all over the world tend to come and live here, usually during the winter months, thus making this Thailand island into a rather interesting cultural mixture of different knowledge and experience, especially after a Chang or two !
The Phi Phi islands
The Phi Phi islands are one of Thailand’s most famous and for a very good reason.
This is where some of the most beautiful Thailand beaches are located.
As you ride from one island to another it feels as if you are doing so on another planet.
The islands look like somebody have dropped them form the sky or, quite possibly, the heaven.
They are easily reachable from Ao Nang in Krabi area and are a must if you are anywhere nearby.
For example, Maya bay, which is located on Ko Phi Phi Le, is a synonym for tropical paradise.
This is where the famous movie “the Beach” was made thus making this bay into an insane tourist attraction. Even though the nature is mesmerizing, if you’re expecting a calm and heavenly moment of natural solitude – sorry, it’s not gonna happen. 75% of the actual beach is reserved for tour boats while 25% is for your enjoyment (which isn’t a lot considering the number of tourists). Most of these boats are long tail boats that have big loud engines which kinda break the whole “isolated/peaceful” thing everyone’s hoping for.
Nevertheless, it’s an astonishing place definitely worth being on your “Thailand islands” potential list, especially on a cloudy day when there is a possibility for “low tourist” situation.
The Hong island
Perfectly hidden, unbelievably beautiful, crystal clear sea, powder like sand… you name it, Hong island has it all. A true representative of Thailand islands at their best.
Quite possibly one of the most beautiful and mesmerizing tropical spots that we ever have had an opportunity to visit.
The Hong island can be easily reached via speed bOtoats departing from Ao Nang, which is a small town in Krabi area but rather important strategic point regarding this area and the exploration of the same.
This small Thailand pearl is located just a few minute boat ride up north from Ko Phi Phi.
Even though it’s quite small and close to it’s bigger and much more famous neighbor, many locals will tell you to stop by and check out this little gem on your way to Ko Phi Phi. Once you get there you understand why.
Among all Thailand islands that we’ve had an opportunity to visit, Bamboo island quite possible had the clearest sea. You could spend hours and hours just watching the mesmerizing turquoise and just be grateful that you have an opportunity to be in such an amazing spot on this beautiful planet. Even though we were on our way to Ko Phi Phi, we realized that we wouldn’t mind, not even one bit, if we stayed and spent the whole day here instead.
Ko Tao, the paradise for scuba divers. A favorite to many for it’s fantastic and incredibly diverse dive sites, this little island just a few miles north of Ko Pha Ngan is indeed a true gem of Thailand islands.
Countless forms of sea life, coral reefs, turtles, wreck, caves, whale sharks (if you’re lucky), just name it…you’ll find it all here. 🙂
When we first came to Koh Tao it was primarily for scuba diving. Planing to stay only for few days, we ended up staying for almost two weeks J
The thing that shocked us the most was the water temperature. We were there in May and the water temperature was about 32 degrees Celsius!! But what blew us away was the fact that even though were descending deeper and deeper, the water just stayed almost as warm as on the surface…
This allowed us to stay in water and enjoy the mesmerizing turquoise as much as we wanted…
Ko Tao was a true revelation for our scuba diving experience.
Many dive schools and shops can be found in almost every part of the island and most of them are quite flexible and willing to give discounts for different diving packages. Having in mind that scuba diving isn’t a budget activity, Ko Tao is definitely a place to do it for a very reasonable price. This becomes quite clear when you compare these prices with the ones from other international diving spots.
For those potentially interested in scuba diving, most diving centers are located near Sairee Beach and they offer a variety of packages and international courses at very reasonable and negotiable prices.
Beautiful sand beaches surround most of the island and are quite easily reachable. The atmosphere in Ko Tao is so laid back that you can even relax at a private beach owned by some local resort while not being a guest at the same. Looking back, we’ve probably spent more time swimming and scuba diving than we did walking 😂
Cheap scooters for rent ( as low as 3,5€ per day! ) can be found all across the island and are a great way to explore the island. Just make sure to take a photo or make a video of the vehicle before you rent it because, by not being careful, you can end up paying for the damage made by somebody else.
Besides phenomenal scuba diving, Ko Thao also represents one of the most relaxed and calm Thailand islands. Many cute and cozy beach bars are to be found on almost every beach, and as you enjoy a wonderful fresh fruit shake as the sun goes down one perception of time slowly start’s to change. You just enjoy the moment and are happy to be just where you are.
You see, that’s the thing about Thailand islands and this truly wonderful kingdom in general. You don’t actually have to follow the tourist guidelines to get somewhere interesting… No, because you’re constantly surrounded by pure beauty and interesting moments at every single step…and that’s why we love Thailand so much !