Koh Samui Beaches
The most famous beaches are Chaweng Beach and Lamai Beach on the east coast, which are long majestic sweeps of sand, hugely popular and backed by a host of hotels, restaurants, shops, bars and discos. However, if the traveller seeks a quieter scene, the smaller beaches and covers on the south, west or north shores afford tranquil hideaways. Moreover, each locale has its own character and ambience, offering a refreshing change of scenery as one tours the island.
Situated on Koh Samui's east coast, this is the island's longest and most beautiful beach. strip of powder-soft sand fronted by crystal-clear water. The beach is about 6 kilometers long and very suitable for swimming in the sea. The white sandy beach is clean and the water level is not too deep. Chaweng beach is the most attractive long beach with smooth white sand and clear water. The most beautiful white sandy beach on one of the world famous island, Koh Samui where you can find a blissful tranquility, yet the shopping and entertainment attractions of Chaweng are just a few steps away.
At Chaweng Beach, there is plenty of accommodation, ranging from five-star resorts to budget type. In the day time, Chaweng Beach is the centre for water sports such as windsurfng and jet-skiing and also a great social scene at night, when the dance clubs pulsate to the latest rhythms.
Chaweng has the highest density and widest selection of restaurants, clubs and bars on Koh Samui.
Lamai Beach is situated on the East coast of Koh Samui, just south of Chaweng Beach and smaller, but Lamai's beaches are clean and occasionally less crowded than Chaweng. The playful waters of Lamai Beach always attracts surfers, as they run a little deeper than any other beaches in Koh Samui. Behind the beach are several spas where visitors can treat themselves to an herbal sauna, a relaxing Thai massage, or even a mud facial. Lamai was the original destination for travelers to Koh Samui, and compared to Chaweng the town is a bit more tawdry and low budget, but it has its own distinct charms.
Greater Lamai is actually a large and beautiful valley, and as one travels inland away from the beach village the landscape is striking. Lamai has some pretty outrageous 'social' bars in the middle of town, and the once a week all girl Muay Thai boxing matches always seem to draw an eclectic crowd. Lamai has a lovely old Wat(temple), and is also the location of two of the most endearing original spas on the island, one on the beach, a hipster paradise called 'The Spa', and the other called 'Tamarind Springs', which has long been the class act on the island.
In the center of the North coast of the island, Maenam Beach offers spectacular views of Koh Phangan to the North, and the Ang Thong National Marine Park to the East. The waters are calm and clean, being protected from the North Easterly currents by Koh Phangan. Because the sans are golden rather than white Meanam Beach is usually much less crowded than Lamai Beach or Chaweng Beach, and Maenam's restaurants and bars still retain much of the local Thai flavor as well as being more reasonably priced, or even inexpensive. Overall Maenam is quieter, more relaxed, with local Thai community still pretty much intact. Meanam Beach is also home to the Santiburi Resort, still considered by many to be the premier hotel on the island. The major golf course on the island is also in Maenam Beach.
Bophut Beach is the beach/bay just to the east of Maenam Beach. Its lifestyle is relaxed and more traditional than the larger communities, referring to itself as Fisherman's Village. Bhophut's laid back vibe is popular with the more chic sort of travelers, and has a number of pricey but very good French-owned cafes and restaurants.
Choengmon Beach is one of the smallest of Koh Samui's tourist beaches, but lies in a secluded bay on the northeastern tip of the island, making it perfect for those who want peace and quiet. It doesn't have much of a town but there are a number of small restaurants and a couple of shops, in addition to some very luxurious (and expensive) hotels that surround the bay...and it is only five minutes north from the bright lights of Chaweng Beach.
On the south and west coasts are very isolated beaches not linked by the island's ring road, yet access is easy enough for those in search of tranquility. At Laem Set in the south, the sea is too shallow for swimming. However, the huge smooth boulders on the beach and the coconut palms leaning over at impossible angles make it look spectacular. ln the island's southwest, Taling Ngam Beach may not be quite as perfect as Chaweng Beach, but has a long strip of sand that is often deserted and makes an ideal spot for a beach ramble. At the northern end of the bay, the luxurious Ban Taling Ngam Resort has several swimming pools and villas set on a hill with great views of the beach.
Koh Samui Beaches Information by Tourism Authority of Thailand