Thailand’s third biggest island, Koh Samui is a beautiful and interesting island. Koh Samui’s repertoire of things to do and see is varied and interesting.
A certain pair of amusing rocks called Grandmother and Grandfather is one of the main attraction for visitors, the large Buddha statue in Bangrak and some attractive waterfalls notably Na Muang waterfalls.
Big Buddha temple majestically sits on a small rocky island off Koh Samui and locally known as Wat Phra Yai.
This golden Buddha statue was built on 1972 and has quickly become one of Thailand’s most recognizable iconic landmarks. Big Buddha temple can be accessed via a causeway that connects it to the main island.
Since this is a sacred place, visitors are advised to dress modestly and be polite.
HIN TA AND HIN YAI ROCKS (Grandfather and Grandmother rocks)
These odd-looking rocks situated on Lamai Beach have been a source of mirth and wonder on the island since they were discovered many years ago. Grandpa and Grandma rocks, look, respectively bear a striking resemblance to male and female genitalia.
The legend goes that these rocks were created when a couple were travelling by boat with their son to his forthcoming wedding. The unfortunate family were caught by a violent storm of the coast of Samui and their vessel capsized. Unable to swim, they drowned and magically became the rocks as a sign of their good intention towards his proposed bride and her family.
The rocks stand there up to this day and have turned into one of the island’s biggest attractions.
NA MUANG WATERFALLS
There are few things that capture that island paradise feelings as a waterfall. A set of two magnificent cascades on Koh Samui states that the beauty of the island is not limited to its beaches.
Na Muang is a popular place for families to swim and relax, of course you will want to wade through the waters below to truly experience the raw natural beauty of these majestic waterfalls. There’s also a nearby elephant safari camp where one can book a ride on an elephant.
You can spend your entire day swimming, hiking, exploring and picnic food as a peaceful alternative to a beach.
It sounds a little macabre, but it’s not. These Mummiefied Monk at Wat Khunaram is an unusual sight yet it offers a unique insight into Thai culture. It’s absolutely fascinating, if a little weird for some.
One of the weirdest things about the experience is the fact that the monk – known in life as Luong Pordaeng – is casually wearing shades which have been placed upon him to hide the decay of his eyes.
Aside from Mummy Monk, Wat Khunaram is a fairly Buddhist temple, where local people can come daily to pray. Visitors are welcome to join or observe the daily rituals and have a look around.
SECRET BUDDHA GARDEN
Secret Buddha garden is hidden high up in the hills/mountains on Koh Samui’s south side. Magic garden was built in 1976 by a local Samuian fruit farmer Mr. Nim Thongsuk at the age of 77.
Magic garden with its many statues, waterfalls, spirit houses and tropical flowers and plants has a special, mystical atmosphere. Statues represent many creatures in various poses, including one of Khun Nim himself, in a relaxed position sitting on a rock.
There are several viewpoints along the way to secret Buddha garden offering a stunning panorama view over the southern part of Samui island.
The temple is located in the north of Samui not far from Wat Phra Yai on the road from Big Buddha to Cheong Mon Beach.
Wat Plailem is famous for the hundreds of fish that live in lake below the temple waiting to be fed. These temple is a living and active temple, where devotees come daily to pay homage to Guanyin and the Buddha.
SAMUI AQUARIUM AND TIGER SHOW
Samui Aquarium is located in Hua Thanon, the Aquarium hosts many local species of coral fishes, huge cat fishes and several sharks. This family-oriented attraction has enough time to entertain the kids and the whole family on an afternoon outing.
At the zoo, the main attraction is the Bengal tigers and Leopards. There’s also an opportunity to take your photograph with some of the tigers and leopards for an extra charge.
After enjoying the impressive size of those “cats” you will be invited to a bird show, where parrots, sea hawks and eagles will perform some amusing tricks for your pleasure.
On the way out, don’t forget to say “Hi” to the few birds and monkeys in smaller cages across the parking, some of the parrots are quite friendly and have some funny behavior.
SAMUI SNAKE FARM
Snake shows by the snake whisperers are the highlight of a visit to Koh Samui’s Snake Farm located near the coast on Koh Samui’s southwestern tip.
Two shows a day features cobra demonstration from a brave handler, audience interaction with safer reptiles, creepy displays of scorpions and centipedes. Visitors get a rare and up-close look at many of Thailand’s most fearsome reptiles, definitely not for the faint-hearted.
The insects display are hosted by a brave pair of people who hold the Guinness world records for handling scorpions and centipedes.
Snake shows are held at 11am and 2pm daily.
ANG THONG NATIONAL MARINE PARK
Angthong National Marin Park is a pristine archipelago of 42 islands in the Central Gulf Coast of Southern Thailand with soaring limestone mountains, jungles, white sand beaches, fertile mangroves, waterfalls, hidden coves and lakes to explore. Snorkeling, hiking, sea kayaking, diving, sailing and simply relaxing on one of its idyllic beaches are the main activities to enjoy on Angthong.
Get a few friends together and enjoy a private boat charter or you can book and go with a tour party.
Note: The park is sometimes closed in the months of November and the first 3 weeks of December to allow for the natural rehabilitation of the environment.
Ladyboy Cabarets might not everyone’s cup of tea, but it’s just amazing! Ladyboys offer some of the finest night-time entertainment in Koh Samui with shows that are jam-packed with glitz, glam and a touch of humour. Most have at least three shows every night, and after the shows, you’d be able to take photographs of your favourite performers.
Starz Cabaret is the leading Cabaret show on Koh Samui, located at the back of Chaweng Shopping Centre. Daily show time 8pm – 10pm nightly.
Moulin Rouge Cabaret – formerly the Christy’s Cabaret feature three shows nightly. Lip-synced divas offer nightly shows that, straight or gay, are guaranteed to put a smile on your face. Entrance is free. Moulin Rouge is located in a side street next off Chaweng beach Road (close to Burger King).