Koh Samui is Thailand’s third largest island and is located on the central east coast, in the Gulf of Thailand. This is where I started my very own Thailand experience in February 1990.
Before tourism started on the island in the early nineties, the local people lived from fishing and coconut plantation. Since then, the price for land on Samui has risen dramatically and the once empty island is now full of hotels and other buildings.
Shopping in Koh Samui
In recent years, numerous major Super Markets and Malls ala Tesco Lotus Big C and Central Festival have settled on Koh Samui, which is good for us foreigners but not so for the local businessmen.
Koh Samui Airport
The Island also has it’s own International Airport which belongs entirely to Bangkok Airways who therefore controls the landing rights for other airlines on the island. By now, only Thai Airways has two daily flights to and from Bangkok. All other flights are done by Bangkok Airways.
… by Ferry
Other than planes you can enter or leave Koh Samui only by Ship and Ferry boats which makes it a little difficult and time consuming when you have to do a visa run to Malaysia by bus.
Although Koh Samui is actually is a nice and beautiful island, the road traffic around the island is a nightmare and very dangerous indeed. There is hardly a day goes by without someone loses his life on the roads of Koh Samui.
So be very careful. Especially if you’re riding a motorbike on Koh Samui.
Accomodation for long term rental is available across the main road, away from the sea. Forget about the beach front, which is entirely reserved for hotels and usually too expensive for long term rental.