Do you want to travel to Koh Tao, Thailand? Here’s our DIY Travel Guide to Koh Tao, with suggested tours.
Located in the Gulf of Thailand is a small but breathtaking island, Koh Tao. The “Turtle Island” is surrounded by abundant marine life and crystal clear waters making it one of the best diving destinations in the world. You can get a PADI license here for an affordable price. Read more of our guide to know what to do, where to stay, and where to eat.
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Things to do in Koh Tao, Thailand
1. Enjoy Sairee Beach
One of the most popular and accessible beaches in Koh Tao is Sairee Beach. The waters are calm and warm and it’s really good for swimming. There are also many restaurants and bars nearby so if you are done enjoying the waters, you can grab a drink. Nightlife is bustling here compared to other beaches.
One of the things listed in our travel guide to Koh Tao is getting a PADI License. PADI means Professional Association of Diving Instructors. In Koh Tao, you can learn how to dive from well-experienced instructors and be given diving certifications recognized internationally. It’s pretty cheap to learn here compared to other islands. Plus, the view and the marine life is so worth exploring.
Suggested Tours: Nava Scuba Diving Experience at Koh Tao
3. Visit Nang Yuan Island
A separate smaller island from Koh Tao is Nang Yuan. With clear waters and an abundance of fishes, it’s one of the best spots to snorkel. You can also hike on a hill to check out a spectacular view. Come here early morning to avoid the crowds.
Suggested Tours: Snorkeling Adventures in Koh Tao and Nang Yuan
4. Hike to John-Suwan Viewpoint
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Koh Tao is not a barren island with only white sand and waters; it also has hills and luscious jungles. It’s not an easy hike uphill and would take 15 – 30 minutes, but the panoramic view of the island and the sea are worth it. I don’t recommend you to wear flip-flops as it not that durable, and it may be harder to climb. This will give you the best view of the sun setting or rising.
5. Snorkel at Ao Tanote
If you want to be away from the crowds, go to Ao Tanote Beach. There are still a few restaurants and resorts nearby, but definitely not as jam-packed as the other beaches. It’s definitely a great place to snorkel as there are many colorful fishes and corals. Indeed, a breathtaking place to visit in Koh Tao.
Suggested Tours: Snorkeling Adventure in Koh Tao
Where to stay in Koh Tao, Thailand
Set in Ko Tao, 300 m from Mae Haad Pier, The Miracle Guesthouse & Diving features free WiFi access and free private parking. Every room includes a flat-screen TV. You will find a kettle in the room. Each room has a private bathroom with a bidet and shower, with free toiletries provided.
Price: Starts at USD 28 for a Double Room
Located in Koh Tao, 0.8 mi from Jansom Bay Beach, Simple Life Cliff View Resort provides accommodations with a restaurant, free private parking, a seasonal outdoor swimming pool, and a bar. Guest rooms are equipped with air conditioning, a flat-screen TV with satellite channels, a fridge, a kettle, a shower, and a desk. At the resort, each room is fitted with a private bathroom.
Price: Starts at USD 113 for a Superior Double Room
Located in Koh Tao, 1.4 mi from Jansom Bay Beach and 1.1 mi from Mae Haad Pier, Phandara Luxury Pool Villas provides accommodations with free WiFi, air conditioning, and access to a garden with an outdoor swimming pool. There is a private bathroom with a shower and a hairdryer in each unit, along with free toiletries.
Price: Starts at USD 336 per night for a Villa
Where to Eat in Koh Tao, Thailand
Address: 20/27 Moo1 Sairee soi 1, Moo 1
Located in Sairee Beach is a Thai Restaurant, the Gallery Restaurant. Thai food is exceptional, according to visitors. Healthy options and vegan options are available. Our travel guide to Koh Tao recommends you to choose the “Trust the Chef” in the menu.
Address: 9/9 Moo 1, Above the Coffee House
If you are craving delicious fresh seafood, Barracuda Roof Top Restaurant & Bar is the place to go. Their seafood platter is absolutely worth devouring. Plus, it will offer you a great view of the sea, especially during dusk; it’s also quite affordable.
Address: Sairee Beach, Behind Silversands Resort
Enjoy the food and drink, the view, and the vibe at the FIZZ beach lounge. Sit on a bean bag by the beach and enjoy your Thai or international food. It’s a great spot to be alone or with friends when you are in Koh Tao.
About the Writer
Hey, I’m Lyza! I once was a person who just imagined going to places “one day” but decided to pursue my dreams. My first travel abroad was in Japan, solo, last 2018, and fell in love with the journey since. I aim to visit 10 countries before turning 30 and 2 new places in the Philippines every year. Besides traveling, I love organizing trips, taking pictures, reading, and making new friends. Follow my adventures through my Instagram.
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