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6 of Thailand’s Best Island Escapes and Where to Stay

Posted by Riya Sander on 10/04/2017
Koh Tao, Thailand

Thailand has quickly become one of the most visited destinations on the planet. An affordable oasis of islands, mountains, and palm trees, it has everything you could ever want for a relaxing and exciting holiday. Before you start planning your big getaway, you should know what islands to visit in Thailand. Here are the top 6 best islands to enjoy your escape.


Koh Mak

This is a very quiet island without the big nightclubs or party life. Go here if you are looking to relax and enjoy the nature. When you want to be active, you can go kayaking, biking, and head over to the smaller islands for some snorkeling. There aren’t many tourists here, so expect all of the beaches to be sparse and tranquil. They do have a couple restaurants and bars, but most of the dining and nightlife happens on the resorts.


Koh Mak Resort is the recommended accommodation to stay at. They have a pool, good food, an excellent bar, and fire dances on the weekends. There is a private beach you can walk to that is shaded with palms. Be sure to bring cash with you since banking facilities on the island are limited.

Koh Mak, ThailandPhoto Credit:  iLoveKohMak


Koh Chang

Also known as “Elephant Island,” Koh Chang is the place to go if you’ve been dying to cross “ride an elephant” off your bucket list. The island is full of them. It’s a very active place and full of new restaurants and hotels. The island is large enough that you can still find more secluded areas. There is a lot to explore on the island: mountains, waterfalls, rainforest, and lively coral reefs.


The Emerald Cove Koh Chang is one of the island’s most popular resort style hotels. It has a large pool area with lots of sunbeds to sprawl out on. If you get sick of the pool, you can make your way over to the private beach nearby.

 Koh Chang, ThailandPhoto Credit:  flickr 


Phi Phi Islands

These are the best islands to escape to if you’re looking for some good snorkeling and diving sessions. The marine life around the islands is simply incredible. It’s also a very lively place to visit. The area is full of great restaurants, fun bars and clubs, and even some tattoo parlors. You can relax on the beach during the day and party at night.


Consider the rooms at the Zeavola Resort for a truly magical experience. They have villa style rooms that are very spacious and open up onto a private beach. It’s more secluded than some of the other hotels on the islands. A good place for a romantic getaway.

Phi Phi Islands, ThailandPhoto Credit:  Diego Delso via Wikimedia


Koh Yao Noi Island

If your ideal holiday consists of quietly napping on the beach and sipping drinks out of coconuts, Koh Yao Noi island is the perfect match for you. This island is the sister island of Koh Yao Yai, 25 minutes away travelling from Phuket. It is one of the best quiet islands in Thailand. The large island is mostly untouched by humans still, with only a few newer resorts and stores. Kayaking and snorkeling along the shore are popular ways to spend your time on the island.


The best place to stay on Koh Yao Noi island is Coastal Escape resort. It’s located right on the beach and offers a special quietude with absolutely no roads or electric cables nearby. The rooms are big and most of them open up onto the beach. Be sure to bring cash with you because there are no banking facilities on the island.

Koh Yao Noi, ThailandPhoto Credit:  Coastal Escape



Koh Samui

There’s something for everyone on Koh Samui. In one day you can see a temple with a giant golden Buddha, hike to a waterfall, see a Thai boxing match, and relax on the beaches. It’s a fairly large island with lots of different white sand beaches to swim at (both private and packed with people). It’s a good island if you’re looking for a real adventure.


Stay at the Poppies Samui for a relaxing (and romantic) holiday. It’s a charming hotel with a restaurant, beautiful cottages and butterfly gardens. You can enjoy your breakfast outside while looking at the sea. They also provide a lot of little personal touches like a fruit basket, daily newspaper, and a Thai language card to help you master some new words.

Koh Samui, ThailandPhoto Credit:  flickr


Koh Tao

Swim with sea turtles at Koh Tao. They reside all along the shores. It is a serene paradise and one of the most beautiful islands in Thailand. The beaches are full of palm trees and surrounded by steep hills. A lot of beach lounging happens on this island with ample amounts of snorkeling. Aow Leuk Bay is the best place to do diving and snorkeling along the shore. It is a bit small, so can sometimes get overcrowded.


Monkey Flower Villas is the place to stay on this island. It’s a quiet hotel that sits on one of the mountains. Some of the best beach views are from this spot—it may even be from your bedroom window! They have villas you can reserve with an infinity pool as well. Although it’s a little pricey for Thailand, it’s worth every cent.

Koh Tao, ThailandPhoto Credit:  Monkey Flower Villa 


About author: Riya is an inspired writer. She is now based in Thailand. She is delighted to work with many aspiring small business owners. Riya loves cooking, crafting and yes! Sipping a good coffee. Check out her twitter, @sanderriya.