If either of you have been to Thailand before then you will already know exactly why Koh Samui is the pitch perfect place to spend a honeymoon. If it is the first time for both of you then prepare to be blown away by the experience. Where else would you possibly want to be to guarantee a honeymoon full of endless delightful surprises? Where around every corner you will find a new bar, spar, shop, temple, statue or market. Here we offer the benefit of our experience on how to get the most out of your post-wedding experience on the island of coconuts and monkeys, in the land of smiles.
This island of a little over a couple of hundred square kilometers sits in the Gulf of Thailand to the east of the peninsular. A short boat ride from the coast and just before you get to Koh Pangnan, an even smaller island much loved by party people who descend in numbers for the full moon party.
Samui has impressive hills of dense rainforest fringed by beautiful sandy beaches. Over the last couple of decades it has experienced a leap in the quality and range of experiences on offer. That has included an upgraded airport which now gives the choice of arriving from several long haul hubs like Dubai and Singapore. Once here you will be overwhelmed by the diversity and depth of the choice on offer in terms of where to stay, where to eat and how to spend your time. Here we offer the benefit of our experience to share some of the great options available on this jewel of a destination. We know that every bride and groom will have their own idea of what makes for the perfect honeymoon. So this list is a smorgasbord, a small but carefully curated selection of just some of the parts you can piece together to create your own perfect honeymoon.
Where to Stay
Lie back and imagine your perfect hotel. Pretty much whatever you can imagine is available here. If your honeymoon demands lavish luxury there are a host of 5 star hotels who compete vigorously to out-do each other on service. If you prefer your accommodation a little funkier you will also find some great boutique hotels. They offer a different, individualistic, proposition that does not sacrifice on quality in any way. If your preference is for a more intimate honeymoon then Samui has a staggering choice of villas. From the relatively humble to an opulent and fully-staffed James Bond villain level of luxury, and all points between.
Where To Eat
You can pretty much throw down a picnic anywhere on the island and enjoy the surroundings enough for it to qualify as romantic. But it has so much more to offer and if food is your thing you need never eat in the same place twice. There is a Michelin rated restaurant at the Conrad hotel, and a contender for one at Chez Francois in the Fisherman’s Village, but here are four excellent restaurants, one from each side of the island just to get you started.
Supattra Thai Dining
Up at the north east tip of the island is a locally famous eatery run by Thomas as a tight ship. Where the warmth of the welcome is matched by the ultra-professionalism of his team. They will enthusiastically share details of the dishes and food comes quickly. Amazing food. If it’s on the menu go for the blue crab, if not go for anything and you won’t be disappointed. This restaurant is regularly rated the best on the island.
Pla Pla at the Four Seasons
Over on the north-west tip of the island you will find the Four Seasons hotel, the restaurant there is Mediterranean… there is actually a small cluster of excellent Italians in this area. But we had to choose one and we plumped for Pla Pla. This is seriously good food in a magical setting overlooking the sea. After dinner you can retire to one of several excellent bars on offer at the hotel. Or not.
Hemingways On The Beach
Now we head to the south coast of the island, for a great little restaurant that is a throwback to simpler times. Only a few years old it is developing a terrific reputation on the back of the work of chef, Jaa, and Tim who runs the place. Open on one side for a killer view of the sea across to Tean Island. These waters are busy in the day with people on all manner of craft and apparatus flinging themselves around. But forget the free entertainment, it’s the food that will make the biggest impression. If you like sea bass have it here.
You will find Bigjohns at Lipa Noi Beach on the west facing coast of the island. Perfect for sunsets the layout is ideal for romantics, tables set discretely apart in a relaxed atmosphere. The whole thing is under a roof and set outdoors seating around 100 diners. Excellent food from an extensive menu, served with wine from a good list or cocktails if that is your flavor.
What To Do
Again, it would be possible to arrive on the island without a single plan in place. You could very easily wander out of your hotel or villa each morning and find something new and amazing to do with that day. Once again we offer a curated list of activities that speak to the range and quality of the experiences on offer here.
There are a number of airborne activities on offer for those who just enjoy looking down, or those that prefer the ground hurtling towards or past them. Take a helicopter ride around the island to get a feel for the whole archipelago and spot some of the famous locations. Or strap on a parachute to go parasailing, these and the helicopter offer the chance to spot some of the wildlife in the sea around Koh Samui.
You name it and it is available here. From super-fast speedboats to stand-up kayaks, scuba to snorkeling, jet-skis to hover-jets. If you are a water lover then you are in for a whale of a time. Literally if you like with no less than 22 species of whale and dolphin. There are turtles and sharks along with rays and a mind boggling variety of small brightly colored fish, enough for a novice snorkeler to get a huge reward for even the shortest dive.
If you scuba then a trip to the world recognized dive site of sail rock must be on your agenda. Just a few hours in a boat, it’s a day trip that usually contains two dives. If you don’t scuba already then a trip to Sail Rock could be a self-awarded prize for successfully completing a PADI course during your stay. Fast and furious or sedate and
To think that there is only a little more than a couple of hundred square kilometers to the island you can only be surprised at how much is packed in here. Endless tours to temples are available, picks are Big Buddha at the north end of the island then head along to Wat Plai Laem. Big Buddha is huge golden statue of a seated Buddha. For us though, Wat Plai Laem is Koh Samui’s modest reply to the Taj Mahal. A stunning statue in a truly tranquil space, hard to imagine a space more suited to a romantic walk on your honeymoon.
Take on learning a new craft, or get on a cooking course, they have them for all levels. Go zip-lining through the jungle, or adventure through the jungle to reach waterfalls that are worth any effort to reach. Take sunset meals on a boat. Join the locals at one of their night time walking markets, Plan it to death before you leave home or make it up as you go along, it’s entirely up to you. But come to Koh Samui for your honeymoon and you are guaranteed a lifetime of happy memories. Not least of which will be the Thai people, their warmth is famous and underpinned by a lovely pride in their country that translates into wanting visitors to love it as much as they do.