Wyspa Koh Samet w Rayong Tajlandia

Koh Samet Island - a Little Paradise in Rayong

Koh Samet Island in Rayong is a paradise island close to Bangkok with wonderful white sand beaches. It is small and quiet, making Koh Samet a great choice for families with children.

I have a special sentiment for this island as it was the first island in Thailand we visited. We spent a fantastic holiday there and enjoyed it so much that we returned to the same place two months later.

At the time I hadn't blogged yet, so I don't have many photos or videos of the island, apart from those taken at the hotel, but this islet deserves to be described. Koh Samet is on our personal list of favourite islands, along with Koh Phi Phi, Koh Tao, Koh Nang Yuan, Koh Ngai and Koh Muk. Other Thai islands are also beautiful, but I have a special affection for the small ones.

Wyspa Koh Samet na wakacje z dziećmi w Tajlandii blisko Bangkoku

What to do on Koh Samet island

Koh Samet is definitely suitable for a very relaxing holiday. The island is located close to Bangkok in Rayong province. For this reason, it is a great option for those who do not want to spend too much time in transit but would like to go to a paradise island.

The island is fairly densely forested, with numerous sandy beaches stretching from the north to the south on its eastern shore. 

Of the eastern beaches, we visited the lovely but very touristy and crowded Sai Kaew Beach and Wong Duean Beach. The Sai Kaew area has the most hotels, restaurants and walking streets. This is where it's better to look for a hotel if you like a more touristy vibe. Wong Duean is much quieter, although there are many restaurants with food along it.

On the other hand, there is only one beach on the west of Koh Samet, Ao Prao. It was at Ao Prao that we stayed for our entire holiday. Ao Prao beach lies in a quiet bay and there are only three resorts.

Where to stay on Koh Samet

We have stayed at Ao Prao Resort each time and I would highly recommend this hotel, including those travelling to Koh Samet with children. It is sensationally located above a very quiet beach. The hotel offers cottages with family rooms and baby cots. The food is very varied and tasty. We spent a wonderful holiday there.

The beach at the hotel is great, with a gentle descent into the sea, fine sand and trees providing shade during the day. There are sun loungers on the beach and by the pools. On the sea there is little boat traffic , as only the hotel shuttle service arrives here (3 times a day). A footpath runs along the beach, which you can walk along with a pushchair. 

The hotel has its own shuttle service from the marina in Rayong (see https://www.samedresorts.com/aoprao/transportation/ for details and prices). The speedboat takes only 15 minutes and you disembark at the pier in Ao Prao. Hotel staff take care of your luggage. If travelling with young children, this is a very convenient option.

Footpath along the beach
Koh Samet island
Ao Prao Beach
Infinity pool

When to come to Koh Samet

The best time to come to Koh Samet island is between November and April. We have been twice, once in January (dry season) and the second time in March (Thai summer). We had great, sunny weather and good swimming conditions both times. The rainy season in Rayong province is most severe between September and October.

You can read more about the weather in Thailand in the post Best Time to Visit Thailand. Weather in Thailand

Best time to visit Rayong and Koh Samet

What you should know about Koh Samet

The entire island of Koh Samet constitutes the Mu Ko Samet National Park, so there is a fee to enter the island. Tickets cost THB 200 per adult and THB 100 per child.

The island has a shop (7-Eleven), a hospital and a pharmacy, as well as numerous restaurants. The 7-Eleven usually only has basic products for young children, so if going with babies and infants, read this post Niemowlę w Tajlandii.

Beware of sand flies! We have not yet been bitten once, but as many as three friends from Thailand have been bitten by these flies on Koh Samet, among other places. Locals use coconut oil on the body, which is said to have a repellent effect. The flies are attracted to scents, so it is better to avoid fragrant cosmetics. However, if you do get bitten, refrain from scratching and go to a pharmacy and tell them you have been bitten by 'Lin Talay' (read: lin taleh).

As an extra protection, I recommend that children wear swimsuits with UV fliters to the beach.

Koh Samet island for family holidays with children

Due to its location and peaceful nature, Koh Samet is a great choice for those travelling with young children. The island is small, very pretty and the beaches are really beautiful. Another advantage is that the island is close from Bangkok and the transfer is very quick and no plane flight is required. 

Koh Samet island with kids
Tajlandia z dzieckiem na wyspie Koh Samet

Getting around the island

You can get around Koh Samet in characteristic taxis with two rows of benches on the pace (song taew) or rented scooters. 

When we were on the island, the cost of a taxi was around THB 100 per adult from Ao Prao to Sai Kaew Beach.

How to get to Koh Samet

Wyspa Koh Samet z dziećmi

Koh Samet is relatively close to Bangkok, as it is only about a three-hour drive. Travellers from Bangkok have several options for reaching the island:

  • by private taxi and ferry
  • by bus from Ekkamai Station and by ferry/speed boat
  • from Mochit Station by bus and ferry/speed boat
  • by speedboat provided by the hotel from the Rayong pier
Ferries run between Ban Pae Pier in Rayong and Na Dan Pier on Koh Samet. The ferry takes about 25 minutes and the speed boat to Ao Prao only takes 15 minutes.

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