What is Southern Thailand like?
Southern Thailand, with some 3,000 km of beautiful coastline and more than 30 beautiful islands, lapped by the emerald waters of the Gulf of Thailand and the Andaman Sea, is a region that attracts everyone from party goers to lonely honeymooners.
It can be roughly divided into 3 parts, west coast, east coast and Andaman coast.
The East Coast
A short distance from the capital, the coastal city of Pattaya has been dubbed the "East Coast Riviera". Further east, the pretty island of Ko Samet is a favorite destination for Bangkok's young people, while Ko Chang, Thailand's second largest island, is part of a vast marine national park that is increasingly developing its tourism potential.
The Gulf Coast
To the south, Thailand's Gulf Coast offers the affordable, family-friendly resort of Hua Hin. Further south, Pranburi is growing rapidly, with its design-conscious resort clientele.
Koh Samui, the largest of the 80 or so islands that make up the Samui archipelago, has its own airport and is primarily a mid-to-high budget vacation spot.
Koh Phangang in turn, is known for its infamous Full Moon Party, which has been celebrated for almost 20 years and gathers up to 20000 people from all over the world in high season. Koh Phangang is also a beautiful island waiting to be explored further.
Koh Tao is one of the cheapest places, a famous mecca for diving and a large and beautiful island for beautiful walks.
Inland from the Andaman Sea on the west coast is Khao Sok National Park, while Thailand's largest island, Phuket, is the kingdom's premier vacation spot. It is home to some of the world's most luxurious hotels, which contrast with the rustic fishing villages and mangrove swamps.
The province of Krabi is famous for its coastline with impressive limestone karst cliffs. Off the coast lie Phi Phi Island, popularized by the movie The Beach. One of the most beautiful islands in the country, although its high prices may surprise travelers.
Even neighboring Koh Lanta is developed, but cheaper and more relaxing, while smaller islands like Koh Lipe and Koh Kradan are more rustic and less developed. The east coast, on the other hand, is a collection of very different islands.
Places to visit in southern Thailand:
Ko Phi Phi Don