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Koh Tao

Koh Tao has a terrible history of protecting tourists, "to say the least," please research before you think about coming here. Corruption has made the area a very dangerous place to come.

Koh Tao Thailand—A haven of serene beaches. Plan your stay with our comprehensive guide to what's on, transport, accommodation options, and tours. Everything you need to know is here and made easy for you.

Koh Tao

koh-tao-by Poswiecie from Pixabay

Koh Tao, known as "The Turtle Island" (pronounced with a D, not a T), is a small and picturesque island located in the Gulf of Thailand. It is situated east of the Surat Thani coastline, near the islands of Koh Phangan and Koh Samui, and is part of the Surat Thani province of Thailand. The island has a history of being a habitat for sea turtles (hence the name), but they are now rare; some green and hawksbill turtles can still be seen in places like Shark Bay.


Koh Tao has a unique shape that resembles a turtle when viewed from Koh Phangan, adding to its appeal. It is a popular destination for tourists who enjoy its natural beauty on land and underwater. The island's clear, warm waters boast amazing coral reefs and diverse marine life, making it an ideal location for diving, exploring, and relaxing. Over the years, Koh Tao has attracted many people who have fallen in love with its atmosphere and lifestyle. Thanks to its flourishing diving industry, Koh Tao has also become a global centre for dive education.


Koh Tao is a paradise for snorkelling lovers, as it offers many opportunities to explore the marine life and the coral reefs.

Some of the most amazing snorkelling sites are Shark Island and Koh Nang Yuan Island. These are some of the most visited destinations by snorkellers, as they offer a rich and diverse underwater experience. You will also enjoy the beautiful views of the islands and their surroundings on these tours.

Many dive shops in town offer snorkel gear for rent, which you can use to explore the amazing Koh Tao beaches on your own. Some of the best spots for snorkelling are Freedom Beach, Sairee Beach, Sai Daeng Beach, Sai Nuan Beach, Mango Bay, Tanote Bay, Ao Hin Wong Bay, and Aow Leuk Bay. Just walk down to the shore and enjoy the underwater scenery but of course, be careful.

Image by david henrichs

Koh Nang Yuan

Koh Nang Yuan has a large sandbar, which connects three smaller islands. The sandbar is a natural wonder that changes shape and size depending on the tide and the wind. You can walk along the sandbar, enjoy the panoramic views, and snorkel in the coral reefs.

koh-tao-by Poswiecie from Pixabay

Scuba Diving Courses

Koh Tao is a perfect place to start your scuba diving adventure, with amazing dive sites like Chumphon Pinnacle and Sail Rock. The island offers warm water, clear visibility, and gentle currents for beginners. You can choose from many high-quality dive schools that offer low-cost courses with local experts.

If you want to learn scuba diving, Koh Tao has everything you need with a variety of options to suit your budget. Some of the best dive schools are Ban's Diving Resort, a PADI 5-Star Career and Instructor Development Centre, known for its focus on education. Another great option is Black Turtle Dive, which emphasizes conservation and safety with small groups.

Koh Tao can help you become a confident diver with its excellent dive schools, stunning dive sites, and ideal conditions. Both Ban's and Black Turtle Dive will give you a world-class scuba diving experience.

Scuba Lessons

Upgrade your dive diving certificate

If you have already finished your open water scuba course, you can take your diving skills to the next level in Koh Tao. The island has many dive centers that offer advanced courses, where you can learn new techniques and get more certifications. You can choose from different courses, such as advanced open water, rescue diver, or even divemaster.

Advanced open water is a great course for divers who want to go deeper and see more of the underwater world. You can dive up to 30m and get certified in specialities like enriched air (nitrox) and deep diving.

Rescue Diver is a course for divers who want to be more prepared and confident in any diving situation. You will learn how to prevent and manage problems, and how to help yourself and others in case of an emergency. This course will make you a safer and more responsible diver.

Becoming a divemaster is an option for those who love diving and want to make it their career. You will gain professional-level skills and knowledge, and be able to lead and supervise other divers. You will also have the opportunity to work in the dive industry and share your passion with others.

Blue Dive

Koh Tao is perfect for those who love yoga. You can practice yoga at Blue Chitta Yoga Studio, try immersive yoga at Baan Talay Resort, or do yoga on the beach at Shambhala Yoga Centre. Yoga on Koh Tao is great for your health and soul, and it can also improve your breathing control for the diving experience.

Yoga on Rocks

Koh Tao boasts an array of stunning beaches and bays, each with its own charm. The crystal-clear waters make them perfect for swimming and snorkelling, offering an abundance of activities on this compact island.

**Sairee Beach:**

   - Stretching 1.85 km, it's the longest and busiest beach on Koh Tao.

   - Numerous beach bars and restaurants provide a vibrant atmosphere.

**Jansom Bay:**

   - Excellent for snorkelling, accessible through Charm Churee Villa with a 200 baht entrance fee (May change).

**Sai Nuan Beach:**

   - Reachable only by foot or water taxi, offering a swing and shade under coconut palms.

   - Bars available for refreshments.

**Chalok Baan Kao:**

   - The third-largest beach in the south, featuring a small town with 7-Eleven, dive centres, and restaurants.

   - Home to a turtle conservation program.

**Freedom Beach:**

   - A bit challenging to reach, located at the southern tip.

   - Unique beach view with trees providing shade.

   - Connects to Chalok Baan Beach via a concrete path.

ocean-Image by donghyun Cho from Pixabay


There are many so if you're not interested skip down!

Koh Nang Yuan Hike: As mentioned before the ionic viewpoint of Koh Nang Yuan, is a small island connected to Koh Tao by a sandbar. Take a taxi boat from Sairee Beach or Mae Haad Pier and pay an entrance fee to access the island. Follow the wooden walkway and stairs to the viewpoint, where you can admire the stunning panorama of Koh Nang Yuan and Koh Tao. Be prepared for crowds and heat, and bring water and sunscreen.

Jor Por Ror Viewpoint Hike:
Explore Jor Por Ror Viewpoint on Koh Tao, near the island's southern end. The hike rewards you with stunning views of Shark Island and a scenic journey through green hills.

Sai Daeng – Shark Island Hike:
3.2 km hike from Sai Daeng Beach to Shark Island, taking two hours. Follow a dirt road along the coast, passing resorts and bungalows, and then climb up a steep hill with ropes and ladders. Enjoy the spectacular views of Shark Island and the east coast of Koh Tao from the top. Descend carefully and walk to the small pier where you can rent a kayak or a longtail boat to visit Shark Island.

koh-tao-Image by Kevin Mc Loughlin from Pixabay

Hin Wong Bay – Mango Bay Hike:
4 km hike to Hin Wong Bay and Mango Bay, encountering nature on a rugged dirt road. A small sign near the Family Mart leads to Hin Wong Bay, where you can snorkel or relax on the beach. Continue along the road, passing a temple and a viewpoint, and reach Mango Bay, where you can enjoy the crystal clear water and the coral reef.

Mango Viewpoint – John Suwan Viewpoint Hike:
Moderate hike from Mango Viewpoint to John Suwan Viewpoint, passing four viewpoints along the south of the island. Start from Chalok Baan Kao's main road and follow the signs to Mango Viewpoint, where you can enjoy the views of Shark Island and Chalok Baan Kao Bay. Continue along the dirt road, passing Freedom Beach and Taa Toh Beach, and reach John Suwan Viewpoint, where you can see both Chalok Baan Kao Bay and Thian Og Bay.

palm-trees-Image by Carl Porter from Pixabay

Night Market

Check out the local night market in Koh Tao. Situated opposite Koh Tao Leisure Park, this lively market offers a wonderful experience of street food specialities and original souvenirs.

Filled with fragrant street food and local handicrafts, it provides a fantastic evening in the heart of Koh Tao. This is something locals do more than tourists.

food-Image by Hasse Froom from Pixabay

Full moon Party

You might want to consider going on an excursion to Koh Phangan for the full moon party from Koh Tao. A full moon party is a monthly event that attracts thousands of travellers from all over the world who come to dance, drink and enjoy the music on the beach. You can book a boat ticket from Koh Tao to Koh Phangan and join the party for a few hours or stay overnight on the island. The full moon party is great fun but be careful and responsible as it can also be crowded and chaotic.

Fire Show


To get to Koh Tao can take a bus from many different locations in the country to a nearby pier. From there, you can catch a ferry that will take you to Mae Hadd Pier, the main port of Koh Tao. This is a convenient and affordable way to travel to Koh Tao.

Below the Asian Public Transport widget, you can conveniently change the departure point to wherever you are departing and book your bus and ferry.

A plane ride to Koh Samui, a nearby island, followed by a taxi or bus and ferry trip, is another option for reaching Koh Tao.

Book your plane then you can easily book the other transport below.

The Flock


Sairee Beach in Koh Tao is a popular area with a lively atmosphere, beautiful beach, coral reef, and many bars, clubs, restaurants, and street food stalls. It's great for first-time visitors, families, snorkelers, and party-goers. However, it can be very busy, so it might not suit those looking for a quiet and relaxing beach.

Mae Haad is a great choice for travellers who want to enjoy easy access to the main town and other beaches. You can find everything you need in Mae Haad, from shops and services to restaurants and coffee shops. The beach is also a popular spot for snorkelling, especially around the shipwreck that attracts much fish. However, if you are looking for a lively party scene or a quiet retreat, Mae Haad might not be the best option for you. It is more of a practical and convenient place to stay than a scenic or exciting one.

Ao Thian Og, or Shark Bay, is a serene beach in the southern part of Koh Tao, known for its secluded charm and natural beauty. The bay is home to harmless black-tip reef sharks, enhancing the snorkelling experience alongside vibrant fish and coral. Luxurious resorts with spacious rooms and stunning views are available, providing access to the panoramic John Suwan viewpoint. However, the high cost and isolation may not appeal to everyone, and the coral is less vibrant due to environmental damage.

Chalok Bay is a peaceful and scenic place to spend your vacation. This bay has a stunning view of the nearby islands and the Ang Thong Marine National Park. You can swim in the gentle water or just relax on the beach. This is a good place for a variety of food too if you're not into the whole Thai food thing.

Tanote Bay on the east side of Koh Tao is a peaceful and scenic place to relaxing place to stay. You can enjoy the lovely beach and the amazing sunrises from your cosy accommodation. There are not many places to stay, so it's not crowded or expensive. However, if you are looking for nightlife, this is not the place for you.

For a short-term rental in Koh Tao, you have plenty of choices. One of the best platforms to find and book your ideal accommodation is VRBO, the world's leading marketplace for vacation rentals. Go on, get yourself a beachfront condo. Why not?


Koh Tao is mainly for tourists who want to explore the underwater world.


There are many options for tours on the island, depending on your level of experience and interest. You can join snorkelling trips that take you to the best spots to see colourful fish and coral reefs.


You can also enroll in open water courses that teach you the basics of scuba diving and certify you to dive up to 18 meters.

Or you can book scuba diving trips that let you dive deeper and see more amazing marine life, such as sharks, turtles, and rays.


travel-3118976_1280 mage by Simon Vetterli from Pixabay.jpg

Koh Samui is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Thailand. It is an island in the Gulf of Thailand, known for its white sandy beaches, crystal clear water, and lush tropical forests. Snorkelling, diving, hiking, golfing, and spa treatments.


Ko Pha-ngan is an island in the Gulf of Thailand, known for its natural beauty and vibrant nightlife. Ko Pha-ngan is famous for hosting the Full Moon Party. Also offers many other attractions, such as waterfalls, temples, beaches, and diving sites.


Chumphon Thailand, is a secret gem in Thailand. With gorgeous beaches and great location

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