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Koh Phangan

Koh Phangan

Travel guide

Gorgeous Koh Phangan may be the home to the legendary Full Moon parties which attract up to 30,000 people each month. But this island in southeast Thailand offers so much more than one of the best (and craziest) all-night parties in the world. Breeze away from the backpacker mecca of Haad Rin beach and find your zen in a gently swaing hammock, enjoy laid-back hippy vibes in one of the many hostels peppered around, and explore inland jungle. Then, take a short boatride to Koh Tao for amazing beaches and the best snorkeling and diving in Thailand...

Koh Phangan Highlights

  • Full Moon and Half Moon
    Don the flouro warpaint, rally up your new travel pals and head out onto Haad Rin's huge stretch of beach to dance all night. here's a mix of music for everyone playing at each bar and heaps of other fun activities. If you're not on the island for Full Moon, there are also the Half Moon parties, held deep in the jungle.
  • Koh Tao
    Koh Tao - the snorkelling and diving capital for backpackers, is just a short ferry ride away. Here you'll find blindingly colourful marine life and get the opportunity to go snorkelling with turtles and reef sharks. Life on land is pretty great too, with a handful of untouched beaches to choose from. Head to Thong Sala Pier and catch a boat to this unmissable little gem.
  • Bottle Beach
    Head to the north of Koh Phangan via taxi or catch a ferry from the main harbour of Thongsala near Haad Rin to this secluded part of the island. You'll be able to laze away the day under the swinging palms and dip in and out of the beach's cafe for food and drink. Don't forget your snorkel!
  • Jungle Parties
    Koh Phangan may seem super chilled on the nights when the moon isn't full (or half-full), but ask around and you'll soon discover that this island plays host to a different party most nights of the month. They're just buried in the junglous centre of the island, instead of the beach! Think awesome electronic music, cheap drinks, likeminded travelers of all ages and even Thai boxing matches!
  • Total Wipeout
    Based on the gameshow Wipeout, this huge inflatable floating obstacle course is an ideal escape from the beach for you and your travel friends. Those who aren't about such high-energy activities can watch from the sidelines... which probably provides even bigger laughs.
  • Bar Amsterdam
    This two-storey bar will go down in traveler folklore. Sitting on a hill overlooking the ocean, it has a rooftop infinity pool, great music and the best sunset views you could ever dream of.

Beyond Koh Phangan: Islands nearby

Koh Samui
Koh Samui
Samui, the largest of Thailand's three southeastern islands, is the perfect holiday destination. Perfect for laid-back beach bums, foodies, those who want a bit more action, and anyone craving a some luxury, the island is jam-packed with enough things to keep everyone happy. 

Koh Samui isalso the most accessible from mainland Thailand and has a great airport for those flying in. Chaweng Beach has the best hostels, guesthouses, bars and clubs, and further along the coast either side are some unreal spas and night spots. 

Don't miss: Koh Samui's inland waterfalls and temples, and the amazing Ang Thong National Marine Park.

Koh Tao
Koh Tao
This tiny island north of Koh Phangan translates to 'Turtle Island'. Go figure! With the clearest waters and the best diving schools, Tao is the go-to destination for your PADI Open Water certification... or if you just want to go find Nemo for a few hours. Back on land, there's a handful of amazing beaches, complete with cool bars and hostels nestled under swaying palms.

Don't miss: Diving and snorkelling!

Koh Phangan

East Coast Island Hopping & Tours

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East Coast Island Hopping & Tours

Dive Koh Tao and Koh Phangan
Koh Phangan Open Water Package | 6 days
"A whole new woooorld!"...This easy, maxium-fun package includes transport from buzzing Bangkok to Koh Phangan, five nights` accommodation and the internationally recognised PADI Open Water scuba certification (plus classroom work books and dive site transfers). Your dive group will never be larger than four people, meaning plenty of attention from your certified instructor.

 

From $354
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Thai Island Hopping
Thai Island Hopper West | 8 days
Some of the world's best beaches in some of the ultimate places to chill make this Thai Island Hopper trip a must. From busy Phuket, head to paradise on legendary Koh Phi Phi, before Krabi & its amazing scenery. Treat yourself to a relaxing Thai massage, visit ‘The Beach’ and soak up the sun from the white sandy shoreline or sea canoe in the beautiful clear waters. It’s your choice to relax, indulge or party until the sun comes up…

8 days from $1,215

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Bangkok food
Southern Thailand Sojourn | 9 days
Get the ultimate taste of Thailand in just over a week! This tour includes a includes a knowledgeable guide, all transport and accommodation, and some cool extras, like a Bangkok street food tour and a full-day snorkelling trip. You'll get to experience the best of Bangkok, plus Khao Sok National Park, Koh Samui, Koh Tao and party island, Koh Phangan. Dive in!
From $799
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When is the best time to visit Koh Phangan?

Over the Full Moon, of course! Koh Phangan is beautiful any time of year but its rainiest months are from July to October. During these times you may get caught in sporadic downpours but on the flip-side, accommodation is cheaper and the beaches will be filled with less tourists. The hottest, sunniest months on the island are from March, through to May.