Where to Stay in Koh Samui: 9 Best Areas

The best areas to stay in Koh Samui are Chaweng Beach, Lamai, Bophut Beach, Mae Nam, Choeng Mon Beachs, Chaweng Noi Beach, Bang Rak Beach, Bang Po Beach, Lipa Noi. In this post, I will help you to find where to stay in Koh Samui for first time tourists, for couples, honeymoon, family, nightlife, full moon party, and budget backpacker.

Koh Samui is the largest of the three main Gulf of Thailand islands and is one of Thailand’s and Southeast Asia’s tourist mainstays and is the perfect vacation spot for backpackers and package tourists alike. Samui is part of three islands on the coast of Surat Thani, from the smallest Koh Tao to the Full Moon Party island of Koh Phangan and then Koh Samui, which is the largest and most populated.

Choosing the best beach depends very much on what you’re looking for in your holiday. If you want crowds and excitement, you should plump for Chaweng or Lamai on the Eastern sunrise coast. To get away from it all, look at quieter locations such as Choeng Mon Beach, Bang Po Beach, or Lipa Noi Beach. And if you want somewhere in the middle, then Chaweng Noi Beach or Bophut are good options.

Known as the second largest island in the country, Koh Samui has well over a thousand hotels and resorts, hostels, and guesthouses. There is so much to choose from that visitors will have no problem finding something that suits their price range. 

Areas of Samui that have plenty of budgets and backpacker-friendly accommodation include Chaweng, Bophut, and Lamai. If you are looking for a mid-range place to stay, almost all of the island’s beaches will have some good choices. For five-star luxury, you might consider hiring a private villa, of which Samui has a plentiful supply. Choeng Mon Beach and Mae Nam Beach are two places with luxurious villas and exclusive resorts.

A good idea that allows you to enjoy a holiday of contrasts is to spend some time at one of the busier beach resorts like Chaweng or Lamai and then move on to a more out-of-the-way beach like pretty Chong Mon, Bang Rak or Lipa Noi Beach. This two-stop holiday allows you to explore Samui to the fullest. You can also check out How Many Days in Koh Samui is Enough? and these best hotels in Chaweng area.

💖 Best Area for first-timers:Chaweng
💎 Best luxury hotel:The Library – SHA Plus
🏨 Best mid-range hotel:Lub d Koh Samui Chaweng Beach – SHA Plus
💰 Best budget hotel:Montien House


📌9 Best Areas to Stay Koh Samui

1. Chaweng, where to stay in Koh Samui for nightlife

Chaweng Beach, where to stay in Koh Samui for nightlife
Chaweng Beach

Chaweng is the most popular place to stay in Koh Samui. If you want to be right at the heart of the action, then Chaweng Beach on the east side of the island is the choice for you.

In Koh Samui’s nightlife capital, you will find all the bars, beach clubs, and nightlife that you could wish for along the beach and on the main street. Quiet, it isn’t, but Chaweng Beach is one of the most developed and touristy beaches in Samui, and if you’re happy with crowds, then this will be the perfect base.

Chaweng has Koh Samui’s largest number of accommodations, so there are good places to stay here that will suit almost any budget. In particular, there are some good hostels here. These are a fairly rare find on tourist-oriented Koh Samui, so Chaweng is a great destination for backpackers who love the bright lights. 

Chaweng Beach is also the place to head if you are keen on watersports. There are lots of places that rent jet-skis, canoes, SUP Boards, and the like. Chaweng Beach is the most popular beach on the island, approximately 7 km long, making it the longest beach on the east coast.

There are shops, restaurants, banks, and tourist-friendly facilities all over Chaweng and if you want everything to be easy to organize and arrange for your stay, you will love it here.

Stay in Chaweng if you’re looking best place in Koh Samui for nightlife, you want to be in a busy, buzzing place, you’re looking for hostels and budget accommodation, you want a great beach with good watersports, you’re looking for good shopping.

Best places to stay in Koh Samui in Chaweng:

  • luxury hotel: Anantara Lawana Koh Samui Resort -SHA Extra Plus This 5-star luxury provides modern Thai-style suites and spacious villas. It has Featuring a first-rate spa, on-site restaurants, and an outdoor infinity pool with sea views
  • mid-range hotel: Chura Samui This 4-star resort boasts relaxing massage treatments and a white marble infinity pool overlooking Chaweng Beach. This hotel offers free WiFi in all areas.
  • budget hotel: Montien House – SHA Plus this beautiful beachfront resort offers a large outdoor pool and memorable dinners on the beach. It provides massage services and luxurious accommodation with private terraces.

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2. Lamai, where to stay in Koh Samui for budget tourists

Lamai, where to stay in Koh Samui for budget tourists

If Chaweng is the tourist capital of Koh Samui, then Lamai is its second city. Lamai is also on Samui’s East Coast just to the South of Chaweng. Lamai also has good nightlife but is more laid back, cheaper accommodations, and food.

It is another destination with every tourist facility you can imagine and many hotels, with some great hostels and budget places. It is home to most of the backpacker accommodations on the island.

The nightlife here is not quite as high octane as Chaweng, but there are still many bars and restaurants but a little less crowded than Chaweng Beach.

The East Coast of Koh Samui is, of course, on the wrong side for sunsets over the sea. Instead, why not set your alarm and head down to watch the sunrise? Watching the crimson sun emerging from the turquoise ocean is a beautiful sight and well worth an early start.

Families with young children will happy to spend a day fun out at a Coco Splash water park with 14 slides and rides and a 6,500 sq. ft arcade.

Stay in Lamai if you’re looking for the best place to stay on a budget; you want good nightlife, but not quite as in-your-face as Chaweng, you want a good choice of accommodation at all price ranges, you want a wide choice of restaurants, you’re happiest in a busy place;

Best hotels in Koh Samui in Lamai:


3. Bophut Beach, where to stay in Koh Samui for families

Bophut Beach, where to stay in Koh Samui for families

Located on Koh Samui’s northern coast, the quiet Bophut Beach is best known for its night market Fisherman Village, and the iconic “Big Buddha” 12-meter tall gold statue of Buddha is nearby. In fact, there are two beaches at Bophut, both nestling in the same bay. 

Until fairly recently, Bophut was an out-of-the-way place to stay, but these days there is plenty of hotels, resorts, and tourist development. You will find some excellent resorts, especially in the mid-range to high-end price brackets.

The historic fisherman’s village offers a more traditional Thai experience. it consists of a collection of old wooden Chinese buildings that have been renovated and filled with boutique hotels, seafront bars, restaurants, cafes, and traditional shops. It is a picturesque spot and unique in Samui.

This area is also one of the best in Koh Samui for shopping. Bophut is great for families with children who want a laid-back and local vibe.

Stay in Bophut if you want to explore the famous fisherman’s village, you want a nice five-star resort, you like plenty of facilities but not crowds, you want somewhere close to the Airport, you are a keen shopper.

Best places to stay in Koh Samui in Bophut:


4. Mae Nam, where to stay in Koh Samui for backpackers

Mae Nam, where to stay in Koh Samui for backpackers
Staying in Maenam Daemyong Middle School

Located on the North Coast of Koh Samui, the long and quiet beach of Mae Nam is home to many cheap accommodations. It’s a popular destination for backpackers and budget travelers. It is a short drive from the airport but is far enough away that you won’t be disturbed by aircraft noise.

This beach is a nice place for families to stay, and there are some good family resorts in the mid to upper price range. 

Mae Nam beach has golden sands that shelve very gently into the sea. Since it is shallow, it is a great place for kids to play in the water in supervised safety.

You can try frisbee golfing at Samui Frisbee Golf, zip-lining at Canopy Adventures, or learn a kitesurfing lesson.

Koh Samui tourism is beginning to specialize in private villa rentals, some of which are self-catering and some full board. Mae Nam has some great villas, some of them truly spectacular.

If money is no object, then you might consider a villa rental as an interesting alternative to a hotel or resort. And if you prefer a complete service, then Mae Nam has some well-appointed resorts too.

Stay in Mae Nam if you want to be away from the tourist center, you want to be close to the airport, you’re looking for luxury and tranquility, you’re traveling with family.

Best hotels in Koh Samui in Mae Nam:


5. Choeng Mon Beach, Where to Stay in Koh Samui for Couples

Where to stay in Koh Samui Choeng Mon
Choeng Mon

Choeng Mon is a small and exclusive beach that caters to slightly higher-end tourism, although there are some more economical places to stay for budget travelers and backpackers.

The Beach is in the Northeast corner of Koh Samui, conveniently located for airport transfers. Choeng Mon Beach is a one-kilometer-long bay with fine white sand, shallow warm clear water, great for families with kids.

Since Choeng Mon is a quieter and more relaxed spot than much of Samui, it is a perfect choice for couples or anyone who wants a low-key place to spend their holiday relaxing by the sea.

Even though there are fewer facilities than at some of Samui’s beaches, there are still some nice beach restaurants and bars.

If you choose a place to stay up on the hill behind the beach, you can enjoy some fabulous views over the beach and the small island that lies just offshore.

Stay in Choeng Mon Beach if you are looking for the best area to stay in Koh Samui for couples and honeymoon in a quiet beach, you want a private and luxurious 5-Star resort, you want to stay somewhere quiet, but close to busy beaches.

Best hotels in Choeng Mon Beach:


6. Chaweng Noi Beach, peace and tranquility area to stay in Koh Samui

Chaweng Noi is the little sister beach to Chaweng. It comprises a pristine one-kilometer stretch of golden sand that is fronted by mainly four-star resorts. 

Since the beach is difficult to access without going through hotels, it is far less busy than its larger neighbor. So Chaweng Noi is a great choice of location for people who want access to a comparatively peaceful beach that is also really close to all the action of Chaweng.

There are some good restaurants and bars in the hotels, but you should note that there isn’t really much in the way of shopping or infrastructure, you’ll need to go to Chaweng for that.

Stay in Chaweng Noi Beach if you want a quieter beach, you want a place that’s close to nightlife but peaceful, you love to sunbathe or just chill on the beach, you’re happy without nearby shops and facilities.

Best hotels in Koh samui in Chaweng Noi Beach:


7. Bang Rak Beach, where to stay in Koh Samui for laid-back atmosphere

Bang Rak Beach is also known as Big Buddha Beach after the large statue that sits on a small island just offshore. It is a great location with a long sandy beach.

There is a limited choice of accommodation in Bang Rak and less development than many Koh Samui Beaches. And that’s the point since Bang Rak appeals to people looking for an exclusive and private place to stay.

Much of the accommodation in this area consists of private villas. These are often extremely luxurious and architecturally impressive. Independently-minded travelers who have the budget can find some great places to stay here.

It is worth remembering that busy Bophut is in the next bay to the west, so even though this is a quieter spot, you aren’t far from plenty of things to do.

Bang Rak also has a pier where you can take a boast to the famous Koh Phangan for its Full Moon Parties.

Stay in Bang Rak Beach if you want to stay in a private beachfront villa, you want a laid-back atmosphere, you don’t want great swimming off the beach.

Best places to stay in Bang Rak Beach:


8. Bang Po Beach, good choice for a quiet family retreat

Bang Po Beach is a long beach on the western side of Koh Samui’s North Shore. It stretches from a little stony cape Laem Noi in the west to a beach Ban Tai in the east.

It is a relatively out-of-the-way place and lacks the frenzy of beaches like Chaweng and Lamai. So, it is a good choice for a quiet family retreat.

Some of the interesting attractions nearby are Buddhist Temple Wat Sisu Wanna Ram, Zen Painting Exhibition, and Mountain Viewpoint Bang Por.

This beach is a handy choice location if you are traveling to or from Koh Samui by ferry since Nathorn Town and the pier is a short drive to the South.

Koh Samui’s main circuit road runs close to Bang Po Beach beach here. The majority of the places to stay are beach bungalow resorts in the budget to mid-range categories. The beach is pretty, but offshore swimming is not the island’s best. 

Stay in Bang Po Beach if you are looking for a quiet budget or mid-range resort, you are traveling with family, you want stunning views of nearby islands, you want to be close to Nathan Pier for the ferry to Surat Thani.

Best hotels in Koh Samui in Bang Po Beach:


9. Lipa Noi, where to stay in Koh Samui for sunset views

Lipa Noi Beach is one of the few resorts on Koh Samui’s Western sunset coast. It is situated to the South of Nathon town and North of a Thai naval base. The location doesn’t sound too glamorous, but it is a very attractive beach with some good places to stay. 

Lipa Noi’s accommodation consists of good, largely mid-priced resorts, all with restaurants and bars. What Lipa Noi doesn’t have is a great number of restaurants, bars, and shops outside of the resorts. If you are a keen diner or shopper, then this might not be the beach for you.

But, if you enjoy relative peace and quiet and pretty sunsets, Lipa Noi is a good option.

Stay in Lipa Noi if you want a long but narrow beach, great for walks, you are looking for a chilled-out place, you want to stay on the sunset side of the island, you want to be close to Nathan Pier for the ferry.

Best places to stay in Lipa Noi:


See More:

By now, as you know all the best areas to stay in Koh Samui, you won’t be a Koh Samui newbie anymore. Armed with the information and recommendations above, you are now ready to make a choice, book a place, and set out on your adventure to discover the delights of this unforgettable island. Enjoy your trip!

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