Countries are reopening their borders and travel is back on. Seeing pictures and videos of people getting back to chasing their wanderlust has gotten us excited to plan our next trip ourselves.
In true Flip Flop Life fashion, we’ve been researching about the best tropical destinations to add to our bucket list and we just couldn’t skip Thailand. With its booming economy, year-round tropical weather and fascinating culture and food, it’s a great option for those who would like to travel or even live abroad.
If you’re like us, then you believe in making the most of being able to work from anywhere. Thailand is a great place to do that. The capital, Bangkok, is a modern city that has all the luxuries and amenities that you could ask for. It has an international airport that can take you anywhere and more malls than many American cities. But for Flip Flop Life – Koh Samui, found 425 miles south of Bangkok, is the place to be.
Koh Samui is a gem in the Gulf of Thailand that attracts thousands of visitors ranging from budget travelers to the jet-set crowd. Here, apart from white sand beaches, countless activities, and crystal waters, you can find accommodation to suit any budget from simple beach bungalows to five-star resorts.
With world-class beaches, inland jungles, and beautiful waterfalls, Koh Samui is the perfect holiday getaway. The clear, calm sea is perfect for kayaking and sailing. The sunset is gorgeous over the Gulf of Thailand and there are many great spots to sit down and enjoy a nice meal or ice-cold drink. It truly is a dream beach. But did you know you could also call this resort island home without breaking the bank?
There are three main beach towns in Samui. Each has its own distinct character and feel. The most popular stretch of powdery white sand is Chaweng Beach on the eastern coast of the island. The center of tourism for decades, this 5km beach offers swimming, watersports, restaurants, bars, and resorts galore.
Chaweng is great for holiday-goers, but it can be a bit too crowded, touristy, and expensive for those looking to stay long term. It lacks privacy and seclusion but makes up for it with convenience as anything you want is within close reach.
On the east side of the island is the dreamy Lamai Beach, a 4km stretch of sand, palm trees and turquoise sea. The crescent-shaped beach is perfect for sunbathing, with calm waters ideal for swimming and watersports.
Lamai beach is almost as popular as Chaweng but has fewer crowds and a more laid-back atmosphere. Here, you will find many vendors walking the beach selling fruit, ice cream, Thai papaya salad and cold drinks. After sundown, there’s a great nightlife scene and many great restaurants to try.
The beach is close to the main attractions of the island and an ideal choice for those who want to stay in Koh Samui for longer periods of time.
Distinct from both Chaweng and Lamai is Bophut Fisherman’s Village. What was once a sleepy fishing community by the sea, is now one of the trendiest spots in Samui Island. Wooden shophouses have been converted into boutiques, restaurants and bars that add to Koh Samui’s unique and unforgettable charm.
While Koh Samui’s most popular beaches are on the eastern coastline, Bophut sits at the top of the island close to the iconic Big Buddha statue. The vibe here is relaxed with a good selection of budget accommodations and luxury villas to choose from. From this point, you get majestic views of the island and both sunrise and sunset views.
Strolling around Fisherman’s Village, you can grab street food or a drink at the many lively bars. Nightlife is great and you won’t run out of options for a nightcap or people-watching. You’re sure to enjoy the energetic atmosphere of Bophut.
For those looking to move to Koh Samui, we would recommend checking out this timeless, well-preserved district. It’s less touristy than the other parts of the island with a unique appeal and charm.
For all the luxuries that Koh Samui has to offer, a couple can comfortably live here on a budget of $2,000 – $2,500 per month. This places Koh Samui solidly on our short list of places to consider if you want to go all in on island living.
If you need advice on the best flip flops to take along with you, we’ve got you covered. Check out our reviews and recommendations for the best flip flops to pack for your upcoming beach adventures!