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What to Do in Koh Phangan Besides Partying

 



Lying around 12km north of Koh Samui, Koh Phangan is barely developed yet, a very charming island. Koh Phangan is famous for its full moon and half-moon parties, and many travelers visit the island to party hard and enjoy a party like no other. However, we are here to tell you that Koh Phangan is also a stunning island blessed with gorgeous nature and has so many other fun and exotic things to do besides partying.

This tropical paradise has great viewpoints and scenery like the coconut tree groves that are scattered around the turquoise water and the white sandy beaches. Most of the must-do activities and must-see attractions in Koh Phangan are related to nature, from viewpoints to waterfalls and stunning beaches. The island of Koh Phangan was uninhabited and completely deserted 600 years ago, the island was discovered later by monks when they realized its spiritual importance and tranquility.



Things to do and see in Koh Phangan

Go diving and snorkeling around Koh Phangan

The turquoise, clear water around Koh Phangan offers some excellent scuba diving and snorkeling sites. Most people don’t know that Koh Phangan features all that is necessary to discover and explore the underwater marine world, because of its reputation as a party island, unlike Koh Tao, which is the most famous island on the Gulf of Thailand for the submarine activities. However, you must be sure that Koh Phangan is also a great destination to enjoy all the water activities. Just head to any beach along the north and west coasts of the island, and enjoy the most amazing snorkeling experience. There are many dive centers in Koh Phangan, which can organize a trip for you to the best diving spots.


Thong Sala Night Market

Thong Sala Night Market or Panthip Market is one of the experiences that you should not miss when visiting Koh Phangan. You will find the market in the center of Thong Sala town in front of a 7-eleven market on a parking lot. In general, night markets are one of the fun and delightful things to experience in Thailand, where you will get to taste some delicious local Thai food and explore some of the locals’ products from souvenirs to clothes, jewelry, and more.

The night markets in Thailand offer a fascinating Thai experience, and Thong Sala Night Market is the main shopping hub and the capital town of Koh Phangan. At Thong Sala Night Market, expect to find a great variety of local street food at very low prices, from pad thai to grilled fish, to crusty pizza, and different kinds of meat. The market is open every day from 4 pm till late at night.


Go Beach Hopping

Beach-hopping is one of the must-do things in Koh Phangan. Yes, Koh Phangan is not that big, with a perimeter of around 40 kilometers yet, the island has more than 30 beaches; each one of them has a different shape, size, and vibe. Renting a motorbike on Koh Phangan is cheap, easy, and is a great way to explore most of the beaches on the island. Some beaches are not easily reached by road, so another excellent option for beach-hopping is hiring a longtail boat for the whole day, and go on cruising and exploring the hidden beaches of the island. If you don’t have the time to explore all the 30 beaches of Koh Phangan, there are ten beaches that you just can’t miss, Haad Rin Nok, Malibu Beach, Haad Khuat, Haad Son, Haad Seekantang, Haad Thong Reng, Haad Salad, Thong Nai Pan Yai, Haad Khom, and Thong Nai Pan Noi.

Check out the available trips between Koh Phangan and the different islands here.


Hike to the Waterfalls

Hiking to any of the several waterfalls in Koh Phangan is a challenging, exciting, and fun experience that you also can’t miss when visiting this stunning island. Koh Phangan has several waterfalls, but the most notable and popular ones are Than Praphet, Paradise Waterfall, Than Sadet Waterfall, and Than Prawet Waterfall. The best time to visit any of those breathtaking waterfalls is right after the high season, from July to October, when the climate of the island starts to get better, and there are fewer crowds. Some other thing that most people don’t know about Koh Phangan is that this beautiful island is not only about the crazy black moon and full moon parties, the island is also home to some of Thailand’s best waterfalls. Don’t forget to carry drinking water with you, as the weather can get very hot.


Relax at a Yoga Center

As you may know, yoga originated in India so many years ago, and over time it became trendy, especially in the past couple of years. Yoga is believed to have a positive impact on both the body and the mind, as it blends spiritual and physical exercises, which makes it very useful for our minds, souls, and bodies. Koh Phangan has many yoga centers and retreats such as Blooming Lotus Yoga in the northeast of Haad Rin, Agama Yoga Retreat, and Orion Healing both in Sri Thanu. You can choose to book only one session at any of those centers, or if you’re staying for more than a couple of days, you can stay at one of the yoga retreats, and book several sessions.


Enjoy the beach activities at Haad Rin

Haad Rin is a town and a peninsular beach in Koh Phangan. It is mainly known for being the venue of the full moon and black moon parties on the island, but it is also a place where you can enjoy all the different kinds of water and beach activities, fun, right?! This part of the island is usually crowded; even though Haad Rin is not the capital town of the island, because of the parties that are held every month, Haad Rin attracts plenty of backpackers and young people to the island. Haad Rin has many good choices of beach activities such as bikini contests, beach volleyball, beach football, and a variety of watersports like kayaking, jet skiing, parasailing, and more.





Spend a day at the Challenge Phangan Park

The Challenge Phangan Waterpark is based on the Total Wipeout TV show. The park offers a great atmosphere and a variety of challenges to test your skills. The Challenge Phangan Park is located on the west coast of Koh Phangan between Chao Phao and Sri Thanu bays, at Sweet Water Lake. The water park has an exhilarating and fun obstacles course that you should pass in the shortest time possible. The course includes monkey bars, swinging shapes, stepping stones, balance beams, rope swing, climbing mountain, rolling barrels, and many more. Between the races, you can take a break and enjoy a drink or a snack at the restaurants/bars. At the Challenge Phangan Waterpark, they care about the safety of their visitors and participants, so any children under ten years old must be accompanied all the time by an adult, and any participant under 18 years old must wear a life jacket.


Take a Cooking Class

Thai food is adored by many people all around the world, but when you visit Thailand and try their local dishes, you will find them extra authentic and delicious. There is nothing better to bring home than learning to cook some of the most delicious Thai dishes to impress your family, friends, and loved ones. The beautiful island of Koh Phangan features some good choices of cooking schools, where you can apply for a class to learn the basics of Thai cuisine, and know the ingredients needed to prepare some of your favorite dishes like tom kha kai, pad thai, and many more. All the schools in Koh Phangan, such as My Wok and Me, C&M Culture Centre, and the Phangan Cooking Class, will offer you the chance to know all the tricks and tips to become a Thai chef.


Discover the viewpoints of Phangan Island

With its stunning mountainous landscape, Koh Phangan features an excellent choice of breathtaking viewpoints. Khao Ra is the highest spot in Koh Phangan, and hiking all the way up is very enjoyable and beautiful. Khao Ra is a mountain that is 627 meters tall and is found in the north-central part of Koh Phangan. The hike to the highest peak of Khao Ra Mountain can be very exhausting, so the best way to get there is by hiring a guide that costs around 500 Baht in order not to endanger yourself or get lost in the jungle. There are plenty of other beautiful viewpoints in Koh Phangan like Haad Rin, Haad Yao, between Chaloklum Bay and Haad Maehaad, and many more. Some of these viewpoints can be very tricky and hard to reach, so always be careful.


Enjoy the Sunset

Some people say that there is no place on earth that has more beautiful sunsets than Koh Phangan, and one of the best places to enjoy this stunning scenery is Amsterdam Bar. Watching the sunset at Amsterdam Bar is a great way to end your day of exploration on the island.

What is great about this place is that it will give you the chance to enjoy this breathtaking scene while staying in the swimming pool and sipping your drink. At this time of the day, a DJ plays some beautiful music in the background, which completes the whole picture of this beautiful moment, right? Sunset, music, water, and drinks? What can be more perfect than this? If for any reason you can’t make it to Amsterdam Bar, Secret Mountain is another excellent place to enjoy the beautiful sunsets of Koh Phangan. Secret Mountain is a restaurant that serves local Thai food and drinks. There are no entrance fees for both places, so you will only have to pay for what you ordered.


Chaloklum Beach

Chaloklum Beach is one of the most favorite beaches in Koh Phangan by many visitors. The beach is not touristy or crowded as it is one of the hidden beaches on the island. Chaloklum Beach features soft white sand, warm water, and serenity. The beach is about 2 kilometers long, and you will find it north of Koh Phangan. There is no loud music or drinks on the beach, and you will find a nice and beautiful little fishing village right in the center of Chaloklum Beach. This is the perfect place to visit on the island if you want to have the emerald water all by yourself and just chill back and relax.


Admire Koh Phangan’s Giant Tree

Dipterocarpus Alatus or The Yang Na Tree is one of the most famous natural landmarks in Koh Phangan. The tree stands at around 53 meters tall, and its circumference is about 15 meters, which makes it one of the country’s tallest, largest, and oldest trees, as it has been on the island for around four centuries. Anything that is old and natural is considered lucky in the Thai culture, so people usually visit the tree to tie flowers and ribbons around it. You can find this beautiful tree in Baan Tai close to the famous Wat Pho temple. The tree has a sign that says Biggest Yang Na and is marked with a red and yellow ribbon. The tree is free to visit, and you’ll find it just one the roadside.


Visit Ang Thong National Marine Park

Ang Thong National Marine Park is a beautiful archipelago of around 42 islands in the Gulf of Thailand. You can reach it by a kayak, a boat trip, or a day trip from Koh Phangan or Koh Samui. The park features some stunning lakes, hidden caves, and breathtaking waterfalls to explore, all surrounded by thick jungles and towering limestone mountains. The main activities to enjoy at Ang Thong National Marine Park are diving, sea kayaking, hiking, relaxing, and snorkeling. There are numerous boat companies that run daily trips from Koh Phangan. Ang Thong was established in 1980 as a marine national park, and it covers an area of 102 square kilometers. You will reach the Ang Thong National Marine Park from Koh Phangan in 45 minutes by a speedboat and 2 to 3 hours by a slow boat.


Explore the Island by a Motorbike

One of the most fun things to do in Koh Phangan is exploring this gorgeous island by motorbike. There are so many hidden gems that you will find very interesting to explore at your own pace. Renting a motorcycle in Koh Phangan is a very cheap and exciting way to discover what the island has to offer. The roads of the island can be very hilly and steep, so it is recommended to have a good experience in driving motorbikes. If you keep riding down from Ai Chaophao towards Haad Yao, you will be rewarded with a stunning view of Phangan Island.


Go to Herbal Sauna

Herbal Sauna Baan Tai is one of the best and most unique places in Koh Phangan. Located smartly near Koh Phangan’s giant tree, the Herbal Sauna is found at Wat Pho, the Buddhist temple. It was established by a group of monks as a form of relaxation and herbal remedy for many illnesses. The sauna was built mainly for the monks, but recently, it became available for foreigners. There are two chambers in the sauna, one for males and one for females. Different kinds of herbs are mixed together with water and heated until the water vaporizes and funneled into these two rooms, where the patient will breathe the herbal steam. There is a herbal shop, sitting area, and lockers in the Herbal Sauna. The atmosphere there is great and relaxing, and the steam will open the skin’s pores allowing your body to get rid of all the dirt, toxins, and oils, as well as helping you to completely relax.


Visit the Chinese Temple

Guan Yen ‘The Chinese Temple’, is the most visited and largest temple in Koh Phangan. This gorgeous temple is sitting on a hill next to the road between Chaloklum fishing village and Thong Sala. Up, on the hill, on a clear sunny day, you will get to see the island of Koh Tao, and you will be welcomed by a stunning panorama view of Koh Phangan.

The temple was built in 1992, when a woman named Malavan had a dream of Guan Ing the Chinese Goddess, who asked Miss Malavan to build a lighthouse, so it will be easier for the fishermen to find their way back home safely at night. Malavan had a monk friend, who she told her dream to; the monk took her to Koh Phangan, where she found the location that appeared in her dream. After only a short time, the story started to spread all around the island, and many people and locals gave donations and helped Miss Malavan and the monk. Because of the people’s generosity and kind gestures, they changed their minds about the lighthouse and decided to build this beautiful Chinese temple to honor Guan Ing.

Book your ferry now between Koh Phangan and Koh Samui, Koh Tao, Phuket, Krabi, Koh Lanta and many others and enjoy incredible discounts!


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