With the summer holidays on the horizon, there’s no better time to book a Koh Samui villa.
Here at Sassy Mama we think it’s always a good time to take a trip to Thailand! In addition to bustling Bangkok and reliable Phuket, there’s Koh Samui, which runs the gamut from sleepy white sand beaches, to lush jungles, ultra-luxe villa escapes and everything in between. So with some help from our friends at TheLuxeNomad, we’ve put together a Samui primer to ensure you can have a super fun, fuss-free family holiday.
Getting There And Travelling Around
You can fly non-stop to Koh Samui on Bangkok Airways in just 3 hours and 20 minutes – perfect if you have little ones in tow. In terms of transport, many Koh Samui villas come with a car and/or driver (fancy!), but if not there are still plenty of ways to get around the island. It’s only about 15 kilometres at its widest point and measures about 25km top to bottom, and there’s the ever-popular songthaew to get around – which is basically a converted pickup truck with a roof and bench seating in the back (probably not the most toddler-friendly option!). In addition, independent travellers can hire their own motorbikes. Taxis and ride-sharing services (including Grab) are also readily available.
Where To Stay (Neighbourhood Guide)
For a relatively small island, Samui offers a wide range of experiences to suit every taste. Everyone from nature lovers looking for a Swiss Family Robinson vibe to luxury aficionados craving a hilltop retreat will find their ideal spot on Samui. The main areas are:
A laid-back former fishing village now filled with a mix of villas and resorts, lots of restaurants, and a sandy shore. Very popular with beach bums!
Popular for its 7km stretch of pure white sand beach, Chaweng just might be the prettiest spot on Samui. It might also be the most crowded (and has the islands most bustling nightlife, too).
Featuring private hideaways and secluded luxury resorts overlooking a series of bays with white sandy beaches and rock formations. This area is popular with families and just five minutes from Samui’s famous Big Buddha Temple.
At low tide, the beach on this sleepy southwestern corner of Samui isn’t swimmable, but the views of coconut palms and huge boulders are still pretty postcard-perfect. And you can definitely still score some in-villa spa treatments!
Low-key and charming, Lamai offers easy access to a beautiful beach and an authentic Muslim fishing village, where you’re bound to find some of the island’s best fresh seafood!
Translating to “river,” Mae Nam is peaceful with a mix of beaches and mountain views. There are tranquil forests and calm, swimmable waters (which admittedly aren’t quite as crystalline as other spots on the island). It does have a rainforest zip line, though!
Do you love your sunsets? Set up shop at this area on the island’s western coast, which features plenty of pristine beaches and is convenient to Na Mueang Waterfall.
Sassy Mama tip: Want the full lowdown on each area of Samui? Check out this roundup.
Things To Do With Kids
Aside from the obvious choices, (hit the beach or swim in your villa’s amazing pool), there are plenty of ways to explore Samui’s natural beauty and fascinating culture. You could charter a yacht and go island-hopping for the day (try to spot some pink dolphins along the way!), or zip line through the trees to explore the rainforest and waterfalls (this is for kids 7 and up, though younger kids can ride tandem with a parent or guardian).
Samui also offers plenty of land-based adventures. Go-karting and football golf are always a hit along with the ever-popular Samui Water Park at Mae Nam Beach. On the culture front, there’s the Big Buddha, Wat Plai Laem, Chaweng Boxing Stadium, the Bophut Fishermen’s Village, and the Chaweng Night Market, just to name a few!
Koh Samui is filled with everything from rustic beach shacks to luxury resorts. However, for our money (and when you’re travelling with kids) it’s a no-brainer to opt for one of the island’s fab villas. The Luxe Nomad manages a huge variety of villas across Koh Samui. Blending traditional and modern architectural styles, Baan Jakawan is a luxury, seven-bedroom pool villa in Chaweng Beach that’s perfect for families or a big group of friends. All seven bedrooms feature an ensuite (including a bathtub!), and it’s all anchored by its incredible Thai-inspired, open plan living and dining areas, which look out over the water and the villa’s own infinity pool. Oh, and by the way, it has its own swim-up bar along with a full outdoor kitchen and grill.
It really doesn’t get much more fuss-free than this. Baan Jakawan is an easy 10 minutes from the airport, five minutes from bustling Chaweng, and includes the services of a chef, housekeeper, villa manager and concierge (as well as daily continental breakfast).
Sounds pretty awesome, right? Check out TheLuxeNomad for its full range of Koh Samui villas and have a lovely holiday!