Are you planning an island getaway for your next holiday? Do you dream of white sandy beaches, crystal waters, and a vast array of activities to keep you entertained?
Look no further than our list of the “Best 5 Tours on Samui” – from snorkelling excursions to ATV expeditions to unique dining experiences, there is something here to suit all tastes…
SNORKELING TOUR KOH TAO
Over 365 species of coral reef fish have been recorded in the waters in and around the Southern Thai islands, in particular Koh Tao, which means that visitors can expect to swim amongst an abundance of exciting marine life while enjoying any snorkeling adventure. One of the most beautiful tours from Samui involves a 1 hour 30 min boat ride to Koh Tao, one of Thailand’s prime snorkeling destinations. Beneath the surface of this island’s inviting and clear turquoise waters, you will discover schools of colorful butterflyfish and parrotfish, as well as spiny sea urchins amongst teeming coral reefs.
If you’re lucky, you just might find yourself swimming alongside hawksbill turtles and juvenile Black Tip reef sharks. Throughout the day, you can hop around popular snorkeling spots via private speed boat, and take in the mesmerizing natural scenery proffered by the different islands. Koh Tao (translated as “Turtle Island”) is famous for its crystal clear tropical waters, promising a picture-perfect backdrop that will not disappoint.
The tours depart at 8am and return at 15:30pm with a journey time of 1hr 30mins (each way). Hundred Degrees East has a fun and friendly team that offers personalized service on fully equipped luxury boats, which supply guests with fresh water showers, lunch – unlimited soft drinks and a refreshing fruit platter included.
Though it may come as a surprise to most people, there is a lot more to Koh Samui than the sweeping beaches most tourists come for. Inland, a world of quiet palm tree jungles, quaint villages, and distant waterfalls within fairytale-like forests await. And the best way to discover these off-grid gems while incorporating some invigorating adventure? By quad, of course!
Quad biking is featured in many of the most popular and adventurous tours on Samui – while being easy and safe to drive, as well as capable of effortlessly traversing any terrain, these vehicles will get you straight to the heart of the island where you just might find off-road trails and secret spots so far untouched by other tourists. XQuad provides customised tours that can take you through lush green jungle foliage and up rocky, mountainous roads that culminate in unparalleled views across Lamai Bay.
The famous local landmark of the white Buddha can also be spotted from certain points. An ideal escape from the crowded beach towns of Chaweng and Lamai, quading along the rugged dirt tracks and plethora of hillside trails nestled within Samui’s unspoiled centre will provide visitors with an entirely new perspective on one of Thailand’s most popular islands.
The experienced team at XQuad can tailor the ATV adventure to perfectly suit you and any friends or family; their wide range of quadbikes cater to all tastes, experience levels, and ages (12 years and up).
Some bikes are specifically made for beginners, such as the Yamaha 125CC Breeze, so no need to worry if this is your first time on a quad – XQuad is more than able to accommodate. Private tours are also available for the ultimate couple or family experience; some of the bikes, such as Suzuki King Quad, are specially made to fit two people.
SCUBA DIVING CENTER
Discovery Dive is a premier PADI 5-star IDC centre that offers a full range of PADI dive courses and tours on Samui with flexible scheduling to best suit you. For those divers already certified, multiple trips a day are offered to all the top sites around the islands. Discovery is also one of the only dive schools on the island that operates their own speedboats.
They also offer fantastic photography services and rentals using top-of-the-line underwater photography equipment; each of the daily dive trips that the company runs involves a two-tank fast speedboat excursion. Dives are available for all levels of experience and you will be guided by expert hands.
Early morning starts will take you to the best world-class dive sites off the coast of Samui and neighbouring Koh Tao, such as Hin Bai (Sail Rock), complete with its granite pinnacle, pink anemones, and famous “chimney” swim, or Chumphon Pinnacle, which is largely considered Thailand’s premier, and most challenging, dive site.
Other amazing dive sites to be visited include the stunning rock formations and hard coral in Mango Bay, the diverse marine life at the Twin Peaks site, and the giant granite boulders of Hin Kaow (White Rock). More opportunities for unique dive experiences incorporate the impressive swim-throughs located in Hin Kieow (Green Rock), and the chance to swim with turtles in their popular hideout haven of Shark Island. Each site abounds with beautiful and colourful marine life waiting to be observed and enjoyed; the diversity is truly outstanding.
SUP PADDLE BOARD
Stand Up Paddling – commonly referred to as “SUP” – is a fun and easy watersport that does wonders for your fitness and overall core strength, and Koh Samui, with its warm, calming waters, is the perfect place to learn how to do it. There are a multitude of beautiful beaches to discover once you’ve mastered the technique; some of the best spots to explore on the island include Choeng Mon Beach, Bangrak Beach (near the Big Buddha temple), and Bophut Beach.
Introductory lessons last for 90 minutes, with the option to choose a private or group session. These are available on a number of beaches, and transport can also be provided to take you and your SUP board to your preferred launching point, which can be anywhere on the island.
There are a variety of SUP tours on Samui to be enjoyed, such as an invigorating sunrise outing – exploring the coastline in the early morning, watching the sun rise over the Gulf of Thailand, and making it back in time for a well-deserved hearty breakfast. Serene sunset tours are also available – a perfect way to unwind beneath glowing red skies whilst bobbing on relaxing ocean waves.
Other tours offer the option to hop on a traditional longtail boat to explore some of the smaller (and sometimes uninhabited) island shores known as Koh Si Koh Ha – a cluster of five small islands 5km offshore from Taling Ngam Beach (which sits in the south western corner of Samui). Strips of long sandy beaches fringed with palm trees, sleepy fishing villages, and bamboo huts protruding on stilts out of the ocean await.
DINING A DIFFERENT WAY
Welcome to The Thai Experience – an innovative invention unique to Koh Samui; if you are a foodie, or someone who simply loves indulging in a first rate cultural experience, this dining extravaganza is an ideal addition to any island vacation. Providing guests with an unforgettable evening of authentic Thai cuisine enjoyed in the company of fellow travelers and friends, it is an opportunity you won’t want to miss.
Aiming to guarantee a completely stress-free environment, The Thai Experience not only promises enticing food and an artfully decorated room to savour it in, but it also arranges transport for every guest, to and from the dining destination. A leading pioneer in this fresh new concept, The Thai Experience plays host to a welcoming dinner party, serving up a three-course meal composed of 15 dishes each – the greatest introduction to Thai cuisine found on the island. Intent on spoiling every guest, the highly talented staff and chefs are known to cater to every need, in order to ensure a memorable, singular experience.
So much more than just merely visiting a restaurant, the communal dining table – shared with up to 20 guests – offers the perfect opportunity for meeting new people and exchanging stories with other travellers, while enjoying good-natured company and conversation. In addition, delicious fruit cocktails, local beers, and/or virgin drink options are offered in abundance to compliment every dish – thoroughly solidifying The Thai Experience’s claim as one of Koh Samui’s most popular, and coveted, activities.
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BOUTIQUE YACHTING TOURS
An island that boasts of a surplus of adventures – the fun doesn’t stop at this list of five tours on Samui! Visitors can also golf on Samui (there’s football, frisbee, and regular golf courses), as well as explore different snorkelling locations, and for the foodies with a taste for luxury – some of Samui’s high-end restaurants will make them feel right at home.