Ko Pha Ngan

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Eco-friendly travel guide to Ko Pha Ngan advises how to be a responsible tourist. Learn how to explore the attractions in a sustainable way and how to respect the local people and culture. Make your trip green by supporting locally owned hotels, organic restaurants and other businesses. Read more on how to protect the environment by making conscientious choices and how to travel green in Ko Pha Ngan, Thailand.


  • Air quality: 3.5 / 5
  • Exploring by foot: 4 / 5
  • Exploring by bicycle: 3 / 5
  • Public transportation: 3.5 / 5
  • Parks: 2 / 5
  • Outdoor activities: 4 / 5
  • Locals' English level: 3 / 5
  • Safety: 4 / 5
  • Accommodation: US$30 - $800
  • Budget per day: US$50 - $1000

Responsible Travel

Ko Pha Ngan is a very popular island in Thailand that is well-known for having a high number of tourists every year. Although the island is situated on the gulf and located in the Surat Thani Province, it is governed by the law of Thailand. You will get to see a very good culture, tradition, and many other things on the island.

The vibrancy of the people and culture of this island will help you to get a very good feeling and experience. The tranquility and peace of the island make it very special for the travelers. Also, the island is very well known for offering good views and full-moon parties that you can enjoy. Here are some of the things that you need to keep in mind while traveling to the island.

  • While you are on the island make sure to visit the tourist attractions with the help of local transportations like electronic cars to keep the island free from pollution
  • Make sure to visit all the parks in the city to get very fresh air and a very good experience of visiting the city as an eco-friendly traveler
  • When choosing the place to stay on the island, you can choose green hotels to keep the city free from pollution and save natural resources
  • Along with traditional cuisines of the island, make sure to try the street foods of the island as well to get a very good eating experience
  • On your trip to Ko Pha Ngan, make sure to eat food and purchase things from the small shops to help them and save a lot of money


Air Quality and Pollution

The air quality is very important to know before visiting a place. The air quality of Ko Pha Ngan is good to moderate most of the time in the year. So, you will need to take precautions if you are being diagnosed with different problems like asthma or serious breathing issues. Bad air quality or pollution of air can create a lot of problems for people who have different conditions.

You can also take the help of doctors to know what are the medicines that you need to carry on this island as the air quality becomes moderate sometimes. If you do not have any conditions, then you can visit the island safely without taking such precautions. The average Air Quality Index (AQI) of this island is around 50 - 60, you can check the AQI of the island before visiting by visiting online websites.


Respect the Culture

Culture is one of the very important and crucial things that attract people from different countries to this island. You will be able to see a very vibrant culture and tradition on this island that is very different from Thailand. The people of this island are very friendly to travelers. From foods to different paces, you will be able to get a very good party vibe on this island. From the full moon party to famous beaches, all of the things of Ko Pha Ngan will give you a very good cultural and traditional touch.


Top 10 Places to Visit

  • Ban Tai Beach - This is one of the best places on the island that you can visit to have a lot of fun and experience the nightlife. This place is also known as the fun and party central of Thailand by the locals
  • Herbal Sauna Baan Tai - It is a very popular place on the island that is located near the biggest tree, which makes it special for the tourist. TH tree is known to standing for centuries and currently 14 meters in diameter
  • Thong Nai Pan Noi and Thong Nai Pan Yai - It is a twin cove that is located on the island and known for having very good scenic beauty. Apart from good pictures, you will be able to participate in many outdoor activities as well
  • The Challenge Phangan Waterpark - If you like to do outdoor activities, then make sure to visit this palace that provides many water activities that increase the adrenaline rush
  • Haad Rin Beach - This place is popular in Ko Pha Ngan for having a full moon party, and a lot of people gather on this beach to participate in the party. More than 15,000 people gather on this beach every month for the party
  • Thong Sala Night Market - Apart from partying, you can also visit the Thong Sala night market to get a wide range of traditional street foods along with other goods as well
  • Mae Haad Beach - This beach is very special from all the other ones that you can visit on this island as you will be able to see 2 different colors of the water on this beach
  • Amsterdam Bar - Relax after visiting different places in Ko Pha Ngan in this bar that offers a great view of the sunset with a wide range of drinks from local to international. The great ambiance of this place makes it very special
  • Phaeng Waterfall - The great views are not limited to beaches and sunsets, but you will also get to witness a great waterfall in the middle of the island that provides a great view
  • C&M Study Center - A study center on the island that helps to learn traditional learning methods to travelers. It will provide a small cooking course that will help you to understand the culture of the local people very well


Explore

After stepping on the Ko Pha Ngan island, you have a wide range of places available that you can visit to have a very good experience of traveling. From beaches to mountains, everything is available on this island that you can visit to have a memorable time. Compared to other places, the beaches of this island are most famous among tourists. There are many beaches available on this island that you can visit. You can also visit some green parks and gardens that will help you to get very fresh air as an eco-friendly traveler. Here are some of the places given below with details that you need to visit on your tour to Ko Pha Ngan.


City Parks

  • The Challenge Phangan- This is mainly a waterpark made for fun and adrenaline rush. You will be able to get a lot of outdoor activities in this waterpark that will help to get a very good experience. This park is located between Chao Phao bays and Sri Thanu that offers fun for both kids and adults. Apart from water sports, you will be able to rock climb, rope swing, and many more. Make sure to visit early and try as many fun activities as you can in this water park.


National Parks

  • Than Sadet-Ko Pha Ngan National Park - This is a national park that is situated on the southern part that was first discovered in 1983. You will be able to get a very great view of this part of the water and hills. You will be able to get close to nature as green is surrounding the park and waterfall. Many great monarchs have visited this park in the past. You will be able to trek in this park as it provides many trekking opportunities.


Beaches

  • Secret Beach - This is one of the best beaches on the island that you need to visit, which is also known as Haad Son by the locals. Despite being a small beach compared to others, you will get to see some of the best sunsets, palm trees, crystal clear water, and others. Many people believe it is a hidden gem on the island that is far better than some big and popular beaches.
  • Long Beach - The long beach is also known as Haad Yao as this is one of the longest beaches on the island. The beach is almost 1 km long and decorated with palm trees, restaurants, beach resorts, and others. You will be able to get the best snorkeling experience on this beach.


Landmarks

  • Haad Rin Beach - The full moon party of Ko Pha Ngan beach is very well-known all around the world and people from different countries visit this beach to witness the party
  • Yuan Na Nai Tree - This tree is known to be the landmark of this island, which is also 14 meters tall and known to be the tallest tree on the island. These trees are known for mostly rubber production, and it can grow more than 50 meters high


Museums

  • The Royal Phangan Warship Museum - This museum is known to be the first real museum on the island that was built in 2011. The museum itself is a ship that helps to know how warships looked in the past. Visitors can stand on the boat and witness the different exhibits and history of the boat. You will also be able to see many exhibits on the island and the history of the Ko Pha Ngan. You can visit this museum to know a lot of things about the ship and the island.


Eat

.Eating on Koh Phangan island is one of the best experiences and helps you to get the best feelings about the island. Your tour to Koh Phangan will not complete unless you try some of the best and local foods of the city. This island is not popular for the killer sunsets and beautiful beaches, it is also popular for its immense and delicious food.

The country’s delicious items are the best in the world. The prices of most of the foods are cheap compared to other countries. Seafood such as different types of fish and many fish items dominate the market. You can try different types of fish available frequently. Apart from that, Thai food, Indian food, Chinese food are available on this island. Here is detailed information about the different food sections.


Traditional Local Restaurants

Make sure you have tried all the traditional dishes available on this island before leaving the place. Here we have listed down some of the best traditional restaurants in the city.

  • Chaloklum Restaurant: If you ask local people which is the best local restaurant in Koh Phangan, then the first name they would say is Chaloklum Restaurant. It is famous for Aun Jai seafood. Apart from that, the restaurant provides some of the warmest services to its customers along with fresh and delicious items.
  • Two Brothers: Another famous restaurant in Koh Phangan is Two Brothers. This restaurant served seafood with a view out over the sweep of the bay. It is decorated properly with bamboo chairs with sand between your toes. This restaurant is famous for its fantastic fish dish.
  • Island View Cabana: This restaurant is located near Mae Haad Beach. You will get outstanding outdoor views from the restaurant. The specialty of this restaurant is seafood. This restaurant is situated near the sea, so you can enjoy your food while watching the beauty of the beach.


Vegetarian and Vegan

Many tourists prefer vegetables in place of fish or meat to maintain their health. Also, to keep your body healthy and out of disease, you should take enough vegetables on a regular basis. If you want to taste some vegan foods on Koh Phangan island, then you have many options. This island has some renowned and famous vegan restaurants throughout the city and provides some delicious and mouth-watering dishes. Here are some of the best vegan restaurants that you should visit.

  • Midnight Bistro: This is one of the best vegan restaurants available in Koh Phangan. It is famous for pizza which is made with sweet potato and has vegan cheese. The specialty of this pizza is it is loaded with vegetables. This is possibly the best vegan restaurant in Koh Phangan. But the main disadvantage of this place is there are only a handful of seats available.
  • Pure Vegan Heaven: If you want to do your lunch, then it is the perfect restaurant for you. It is located in Phuket Town. Here you will get a large range of meals along with desserts, drinks, and coffees. You will get a good portion of food for the price you pay. The food is delivered to you with a proper presentation. You will definitely love the restaurants.
  • Vegan Phangan: if you want proper Thai food, then you can visit here. Different Thai dishes such as massaman curry, tom yum, Penang curry, etc are famous; it is located near the Ban Tai resort in Koh Phangan.


Street Food

Street food is one of the main attractions of this city. You can know about the food and culture of the city from there. Dining in a famous restaurant is mandatory, but street food is also mandatory and adds some extra energy to your body. Hence, try to add some street food to your list and do not forget to visit them. Some of them are drip coffee, spicy papaya salad, masala vegan burrito. Etc.

If you buy street foods from the local street food vendors, as a traveler, you will be supporting them and praising them for their efforts. Some of the street vendors make such good and delicious foods that even a big restaurant fails to do that. Also, you can save a lot of money by eating from a local shop.


Drink

As mentioned in the early section that Koh Phangan is the fifth biggest island in Thailand, you will get different types of drinks and beers easily. You will get different types of wines, various beverages, many other local drinks from the beachside bar and restaurant. Most of the bars are nicely decorated and famous for full moon party venues.

Every year, a lot of people travel for a full moon party on the occasion of Christmas eve and New year. It is very popular for both locals and foreigners. They visit bars, pubs, cafes in the city and create a great memory by drinking different drinks. Apart from alcoholic beverages, people also love to drink some non-alcoholic drinks such as fruit juices, cold coffees, etc. You will get a very good experience in the city when it comes to drinks.


Tap-water

The best part about the Koh Phangan, you will find a water filter machine in any street. You will get this benefit in Thailand. You can use these machines by yourself. Just open the cover and place the bottle inside the machine and take out one Baht (the currency of Thailand). You have to put the coin inside the machine and then press the Start button and you will get water from the machine.

This type of water filter machine is installed very frequently all over the city. Since it is an island, the amount of salt in the water is a little higher. Hence, it is advised not to drink normal water without boiling. As water is the most essential for our body, so, they introduced the latest technique of getting water. The water from the machine is filtered twice, so it is safe for your health.


Organic Cafés

To keep your body healthy, organic dishes always play a crucial role. Here are some of the popular cafes in Koh Phangan that can provide your quality organic foods and drinks.

  • Doppio Cafe: This is actually the center point of Koh Phangan. You can start your breakfast quest across the street at that other coffee place. You will get Italian flavor in the coffee. You will get various coffee, snacks, and cold drinks. The cafe is decorated properly with a fantastic collection of wooden cutlery sets such as spoons, forks, chopsticks, etc.
  • Karma Kafe: You will get gluten-free coffee, healthy juice at an affordable price. This place is quite nice and offers a good variety of foods and juices.


Breweries

Koh Phangan is well known for having a great and wide variety of beers and different types of alcohol in the city. Some of the local beer brands are giving a tough fight with the established brands. If you love to drink beer, then Koh Phangan island is the best place for you. You will get an outstanding atmosphere with an amazing view. You can visit the places that are mentioned in the section below for getting the best beer in the country.

  • Beck’s Beer Bar
  • SOHO Bar Phangan
  • The Masons Arms


Activities

After spending 3 or 4 days on Koh Phangan island, now it is time to explore this beautiful and peaceful island. This island is known for the famous, full moon party. Every year millions of people join the full moon party. They have included eight things you should see in Koh Phangan if you get a chance.

  • Secret Beach: You should visit this beach because it’s clear, shallow, sky blue water, and most of the time it is quiet. Therefore, you can enjoy your day, hanging out in the water without large waves. The main attraction of this beach is a nice hanging palm tree.
  • Bottle Beach: This is a nice beach which is harder to reach as the roads are kind of dangerous. The people often come there for the longtail boats. It is advisable that always visit this beach in the morning as you will get a proper view of the beach and for a boat tour.
  • Tony Palm Beach: Tony palm open area got two beaches. Both of them are long with white sands and clear water. As the beaches are long, you have plenty of room for yourself. Also, if you want a spectacular view from the top, then you should visit this beach.
  • Thong Yang Beach: You might even see horses on the beach. Beautiful blue water, nice white sands, and a huge rock from which you can see the whole beach.
  • Mae Haad Beach: This beach is connected to one small island called Como island and gives an interesting view.
  • Night Market: Many places in Koh Phangan, Night Market is worth visiting. You can find loads of fresh, delicious Thai food and cheap clothing.
  • Full Moon Party: Most of the people visited Koh Phangan because of the Full Moon party. There are thousands of young people partying in the moonlight.
  • Coconut Beach: You can visit Coconut beach. It got beautiful water and most of the people did not visit the place.


Yoga and Retreats

To calm your mind, yoga and meditation will always help you. Many people like to do meditation and yoga in the early morning, as fresh air is available in the morning. You can visit Coconut beach in the early morning.


Accommodation

As this is the fifth biggest island in Thailand, you will get a cheap motel to a rich hotel for accommodation. You will find many accommodations in the city, but it is best to book a hotel before you reach the island. Always try to book a hotel near the beach. You will get a proper view of sunrise and sunset. It looks amazing when the first rays of the Sun fall on the seawater. You will get all types of accommodation.


Green Hotels

If you love peace, then there are some of the green hotels that you can choose for your stay on Koh Phangan island.

  • Anantara Rasananda Villas: If you love trees and a peaceful place, then Anantara Rasananda Villas is the best option for you.
  • Kupu Kupu Phangan Beach Villas: This hotel is very famous for holding the achievement of being the tallest eco-friendly hotel in Koh Phangan as the hotel is surrounded by trees.


Hostels and Guest Houses

You should do proper research before reaching the city. If you want hostels and guest houses in the city from low to high price. Among the various hostels and guest houses, the Phangan Guest House is the famous one.


Apartments

Are you planning to stay at the apartment with your loved ones in Koh Phangan? You can also spend your valuable time in the apartment. As the island is a traveler spot, you will get the facility here. Some of the best apartments are listed in the section below.

  • Baan Jai Dee
  • Kalulushi Bungalows
  • Twin Villas Apartments with Swimming Pool.


Couchsurfing

Couchsurfing is a social network specifically dedicated to travelers. It is a service that allows you to connect and to offer or receive free accommodation during the trips.

This is very popular in Koh Phangan. It is one of the best ways to travel to the local areas. To locate Couchsurfing, you can contact different services. Also, the people of Koh Phangan offer Couchsurfing in the city as you can take help from them.


Camping

Sometimes, travelers decided not to pay for hotels and live in a tent. If you want to stay in a tent after reaching Koh Phangan, then you can. This is an eco-friendly way to travel in the city. Here are some of the best camping places given below.

  • Sarikantang Resort and Spa
  • Santhiya Koh Phangan Resort & Spa
  • Palita Lodge


How to Get There

Another important thing that you should consider before planning to Koh Phangan is what are the different ways are available to reach there in a short time and reasonable price. You should have detailed knowledge about the different transport systems.

Koh Phangan is connected to the major city of Bangkok. From Bangkok you can take a ferry service, to reach Koh Phangan. Let's check different ways you can avail to reach Koh Phangan from different parts of the World.


Air

You will get flights from Bangkok to Samui, the nearest airport of Koh Phangan, and then hire a boat to reach Koh Phangan.


Bus

A direct bus is available from Bangkok. You will be able to get other buses available from different cities from various countries.


Train

Sorry, you can not reach Koh Phangan via direct Train from other countries. You can take a train from Bangkok to reach Surat Thani and then take a bus or hire a car to reach your destination.


Hitchhiking

There are multiple options in the city for hitchhiking. If you love adventure, then hitchhiking is another popular way of transport. But you will get this service nearest to Bangkok and you can start your journey along with witnessing all the scenic beauty of nature.


Others

Another very important way to reach Koh Phangan is the Ferry service. You can take a ferry from Koh Samui or Bangkok and it will take 30 to 40 minutes to reach Koh Phangan.


Moving Around

Moving around the city will help you to get the best experience in the city. You can take different transportation systems to move around the city. You can hire a car for long distances, if you want cold wind, you can take a ferry to move around. Here are the details about the transportations available in the city.


Walk

Walking is the best way to explore the city. You can learn the local culture, lifestyle, and other local traditions by adopting your foot as a mode of transportation.


Bicycle

Another mode of transportation is bicycles. You can hire a bicycle for a day to explore the city. You can explore the city faster if you choose a bicycle instead of walking.


Electronic Vehicles

Most of the travelers choose an electronics vehicle as a mode of transportation. You can move very fast by taking this. It is comfortable enough when you compare it with the others.


Public Bus

You can also take public buses for transportation. Local people use buses, and it is frequent enough in the city. If you want to cover a short distance, then you can avail of a public bus.


Tram, Train and Subway

As mentioned in the early section, trains and trams are not available in this city. But you will get a subway to cross a road.


Sustainable Shopping

Your tour is incomplete if you do not go to the market for shopping. Koh Phangan is famous for its local crafts, hand-painted batik, handmade jewelry, etc.


Food Markets

You can visit Thong Sala, as you will get the white sausage served with pizzas. You will get both traditional and international foods in this market. Some of the famous food that you will find here as listed below.

  • Pad Thai
  • Green Curries


Flea Markets

Compared to other places, you will find fewer flea markets in the city. You will get newly designed by Kalise and much more. Check out the list to get from the market including flower dress, Orange tree, Butterfly shirt, etc.


Second Hand Stores

Most of the second-hand store is situated in the Ananda Yoga and Detox center. There are some places that sell good quality second-hand products in the market. Some places that you can visit such as Thongsala, Haad Rin, etc.


Eco-Fashion

There are various sustainable fashion brand stores available in Koh Phangan. You can visit there and get the products. For that, you need to explore the city very well.


Recycling

The local people of Koh Phangan keep their city clean and maintain a healthy environment. As mentioned in the earlier section about the water filter machines. People of Koh Phangan stored the rainwater and filtered it. They always keep the beaches clean.


Waste

Most of the waste including plastic bags and bottles is recycled in this city. The government takes some initiatives to keep the city clean.


Work and Study Abroad

Most of the students visit Bangkok for higher studies. As this is a small island, the infrastructure for graduation is not up to the marks. As the people of Koh Phangan depended on the tourists, they started their own business such as car service, hotels, restaurants, etc.


Exchange Student

As Thailand is an industrial country, most of the time, students went there for professional purposes.


Au Pair

If you are looking for Au Pair in Koh Phangan, then you will find many options. One of the things that help travelers to earn money and help the local people is Au Pair. you can also take help online as well.


Volunteering

If you want to volunteer in this city, then the best way to do it is by volunteering at the temples to keep them clean. Most of the people from Koh Phangan depended upon small businesses. So, you can volunteer them to keep the beaches clean and clear.


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