Koh Samui is located in the western half of the Gulf of Thailand, approximately 110 kilometers from the port of Surat Thani which is accessible by bus or plane. Alternatively you can also reach Samui from Chumpon Pier which is accessible by bus from Bangkok, Hua Hin or Krabi. At approximately 230 square kilometers it is the 3rd largest island in Thailand after Phuket and Koh Chang.
You will read many online articles suggesting the island is too busy and crowded, but this is simply not true and rather offer choice to diverse traveler requirements. In Chaweng Beach and to a lessor extent in Lamai you will find a busy cosmopolitan scene and a throbbing nightlife, but the biggest part of the island including places like Maenam Beach in the north as well as all west coast beaches offer a total escape from anything familiar in serene tranquility where Samui retain and intimate tropical charm.
All around the island these sun drenched beaches area dotted with palm trees, the countless bays and hidden coves are romantic and amid it all 5 star hotels in Koh Samui perfectly blends into this amazing natural scenery, capitalizing on captivating panoramas by allowing breathtaking views to ignite your senses.
Looking at a map of Samu Chaweng and Lamai are located on it's eastern shore. If you prefer things to be lively, these are the two best locations and sports luxury 5 star accommodation and countless more budget options. If you want to stay in Chaweng or Lamai but is concerned about too much noise and activity, top hotels like Bhundhari Spa Resort in Chaweng Noi, Centara Grand Beach Resort, Anantara Lawana and Sareeraya Villas will see you outside earshot of any yet are in close proximity to the action. Similarly in Lamai resorts like Banyan Tree and Le Meridien creates ultimate privacy and exclusivity.
To the island's north eastern corner is Choeng Mon which have an almost exclusive air to it. It is within 10 minutes drive from Chaweng and feature a stunning beach and relaxed ambiance. Hotels here include names like Sala Samui offering private pool villas and Six Senses Hideaway, both top 5 star romantic places.
To the north of the island and just west of Choeng Mon is Big Buddha Beach which also feature the main ferry pier for boats from Surat Thani and Koh Phangan. Next to this is Bo Phut beach which are great for couples and families seeking an authentic experience. The western shore of Samui includes Tong Krut, Taling Ngam Bay and Lipa Noi. These are more secluded and hotels and resorts here are perfect to spend a few days in peace and harmony with nature, get pampered with massage and spa treatments .