The Jewelry of Southern
Angthong National Marine Park
Ang Thong National Marine Park is a pristine archipelago of 42 islands in the Gulf of Thailand with towering limestone mountains, thick jungle, white-sand beaches, fertile mangroves, waterfalls and hidden coves and lakes to explore. Within sight of Koh Samui, Ang Thong park is a protected area of more than 100sqkm of land and sea, and home to a rich variety of exotic wildlife and sea creatures.
On the northern coast of Koh Samui is the famous Big Buddha shrine. Probably Samui's most well known landmark, the 12-metre high golden Buddha can be seen from several kilometres away. Inside the surrounding temple are many different shrines and other smaller ornate Buddhas. There is also a small market selling a wide range of lucky charms and other souvenirs, alongside numerous food stalls.
Bophut's Fisherman’s Village
Fisherman’s Village Samui is a historical part of Bophut, with rustic-style buildings housing boutique stores, trendy restaurants and a small selection of hotels lining the narrow Beach Road. Every Friday, the whole area becomes the site of the Fisherman’s Village Walking Street market, attracting huge numbers of shoppers from across the island for the amazing variety of wares and the lively atmosphere.
Hin Ta and Hin Yai
Art often imitates Nature, but less common is Nature imitating Art, especially the art of the ribald. But in Thailand anything is possible including, on Koh Samui, the natural geological formations known as Hin Ta and Hin Yai Rocks (the Grandpa and Grandma rocks), which look, respectively, like male and female genitalia.
Koh Tao – meaning ‘Turtle Island’ – lives up to its name, being the scuba diving destination of choice in Thailand. The perfect white-sand beaches which ring the hilly 21 km² island are surrounded by the crystal-clear waters of the Gulf of Thailand. The vibrant coral reefs there are home to a wide range of exciting and colourful sea creatures, including turtles, naturally.