Koh Phangan is an under valued destination for 5 star travelers. It is not an island where you should spend only two or three nights or just visit during a day trip. It simply is not possible to see and experience the atmosphere and everything else this charming island has to offer during such limited time. It's splendid beaches, most of which are tranquil and serene, and it's placid ocean is naturally its biggest assets.
But there is much more than just beaches which awaits and Koh Phangan offers things to do for old and young and here are a few things to consider when you are ready to get off your beach chair and spend a hard day having fun.
Beaches and Massage
Beside kicking back on these silky ribbons of sand, both natural and man made adventures await. And when the day is done and time to return to your place of stay, all 5 star hotels in Koh Phangan provide that one service which is integral to a Thailand holiday namely, pampering treatments in world class spas. Yet at the same time you do not have to wait until evening. On beaches like Haad Yao and many others you can simply lay down for an hour's pampering under a gondola right on the beach. An talking about beaches, the island has many of them and our advice is to visit each one. Many can of course be visited during a day's touring on a scooter, but you can also consider chartering a long tail boat just for you and visit some extraordinary places to like famous Bottle Beach and many others which is easiest reached by boat.
As mentioned, the ocean around the island's shores are placid which makes it ideal and safe for snorkeling. Don't miss snorkeling at Koh Mah island which is attached to Koh Phangan by a sandbar. And if snorkeling is your thing, make sure you book a full day trip to Koh Tao and Nang Yan islands located right next to each other. The boat will stop at Nang Yuan island, a tiny spec of land where you can enjoy lunch after snorkeling in a protected cove revealing colorful coral. The afternoon is spent snorkeling in Koh Tao's Mango Bay.
To make a snorkeling trip a more private affair so you can do things at your own time and leisure, organize a traditional long tail boat to take you on a snorkeling trip around Koh Phangan's own shores. You can also arrange scuba dive trips on the island and also obtain your scuba dive ticket, tough Koh Tao is the premier scuba dive destination in the Gulf of Thailand.
Angthong Marine Park
From Koh Phangan you can and definitely should arrange a day trip to Ang Thong Marine Park to make your snorkeling and sightseeing experiences even more memorable. The park consist of more than 40 islets clustered closely together. With the exception of one which is home to a tiny fishing community, all these islands are uninhabited, mainly because they are too small tot sustain permanent residents. Cruising among them makes for great photo opportunities and the underwater scenery is divine showcasing colorful coral and tropical fish at depths of less than 4 meters. This trip will also take you to an island with a lagoon right in the middle of it and another island which allow you time to relax on a surreal beach or to take a kayak to explore the nearby rock formations.
Hiking and Waterfalls
If you like hiking you can take a foot path from Choloklum Bay on the north shore of the island to spectacular Bottle beach which is an approximate 2 hour walk. But if you want to rather explore the jungle on 4 legs you can arrange for elephant trekking at Somporn Park, visit waterfalls and feed the elephants. There are also a number of Temples and Wats (temple compounds) to visit including Wat Paa Sang Tham which is a very old Chinese style temple. Visiting waterfalls is a great way to spend a hot afternoon and Koh Phangan has at least 7 of them.
Of course shopping never stays behind and the island offers an unlimited number of markets, shops, clothing stalls and curio shops, especially in Haadrin and Tong Sala Village. Navigating the quaint narrow streets of Haadrin Village in the early evening is simply delightful and you will find an assortment of art shops, curios, clothing stalls and the coolest restaurants settings serving fresh seafood off the ice. Tong Sala village is certainly also worth a visit in the evening to sample some local delicacies.
Watersport and Beach Activities
Koh Phangan offers a host of exciting water sport activities including kayaking, kite boarding, wake boarding, jet skiing and wind surfing. Besides this you can participate in beach volleyball, test your skills at a shooting range, go on a 4x4 trip, navigate an ATV track, play mini golf, go fishing, enroll for Thai cooking classes or Yoga lessons.