How to Get to Phuket and the Samui Archipelago
The Krabi province is without a doubt one of the best places in Thailand to spend a family holiday. There are just as many activities to engage in as there are islands to visit. Even the more laid-back person can find a place here for peace, solitude and the occasional Thai massage. However, a change of scenery can keep the vacation fresh, which is why we are showing you how to get to Phuket and the Samui archipelago. All islands are popular amongst tourists and, therefore, offer the same high-quality resorts, hotels, and villas as well as gorgeous beaches and awe-inspiring mountain ranges. Phuket is possibly Southern Thailand’s greatest shopping destination. Hopefully, you left enough room in your luggage for souvenirs.
If you haven’t included a trip to any of these locations, then don’t worry. The arrangements are easy to make and your hotel staff can often time help you out.
Despite being an island, Phuket is connected to the mainland thanks to the Sarasin Bridge in the north. Therefore, taxis, rental cars, and minibusses are popular transportation options. The most affordable one is the bus, which costs between 300 - 450 Baht per person. It depends on where you want to go like Patong, Kata or Nai Harn beach or to the bus station in the center of the town. Phuket is a rather larger island. So, the longer the drive is, the higher the price will be but expect a travel time of 3 – 4 hours.
However, if you are a mid-sized family then the better choice is to rent a private taxi. The prices range from 2500 – 3800 Baht, again, depending on your final destination. A big plus over the bus is that the taxi will drop you off right at your hotel instead of a bus station or travel agency. Or do you prefer to take the trip into your very own hands? Then get a rental car from either the airport (Hertz, Budget, and Avis) or at one of the local operators in Krabi Town. The latter is more affordable but make sure that you have the option of dropping the car off in Phuket. It is a comfortable 2-hour drive and with a GPS system, you won’t have to worry about getting lost.
To the Samui Archipelago (Koh Samui, Koh Phangan, and Koh Tao)
For a more traditional island feeling, then look no further than the three islands of Koh Samui, Koh Phangan, and Koh Tao in the Surat Thani province. Koh Samui is the largest of them all and has the wider selection of high-quality hotels, resorts, and restaurants. Koh Phangan has the reputation of a party island, largely because of the (in)famous Full Moon Party. It, nonetheless, offers plenty of family-friendly activities such as hiking trekking, archery and exploring the Ang Thong National Park. Then we have the little brother, Koh Tao, who is renowned for having some of the best diving spots in Thailand.
The fastest way to travel is via plane from Krabi to Koh Samui, which costs approximately 3,500 Baht per person. Bangkok Airways offers one flight per day (at 1:45 pm) and the duration is about one hour. The more common traveling method is with the ferry from the Don Sak Pier in Surat Thani. All the companies (Lompraya being the best) provide both the minibus ride from Krabi to the pier as well as the top-of-the-line ferry to your island. Here is a quick breakdown:
- Koh Samui – Price: ~600 Baht; Duration: 5 hours (2 – 2.5 hours for the bus ride)
- Koh Phangan – Price: ~ 800 Baht; Duration: 6.5 hours
- Koh Tao – Price: ~ 1,000 Baht; Duration: 8.5 hours
As much as we love Krabi and Ao Nang, we won’t hold it against you if you want to see a little more than just our charming, little province.