Out of the Thai islands that I have visited, Koh Tao is easily my favourite. The beautiful surroundings, chilled out vibe and friendly people combine to create an idyllic, paradise island.
To get to Koh Tao we took a ferry from Koh Phangan. On arrival we took some time out for a spot of life maintenance. Keeping time aside for things like laundry, calls home and future travel planning is essential.
Significantly more organised after a productive afternoon, we headed out for a walk. Daylight faded as we meandered along the beach.
I was captivated by the beauty of the sea and sky converging. This beautiful sight set the tone for the next couple of days in Koh Tao.
That night we headed to one of the restaurants on the beach which served barbequed skewers and other Thai specialities.
We got a selection of seafood skewers and crab in tamarind sauce.
Unfortunately I’d dissected the skewers before I remembered to take a photo…
All the food was really tasty. I was particularly impressed with the seafood skewers – the seafood was smothered in a delicious, tangy sauce and grilled to perfection.
We woke up early the next morning to grab some breakfast at the hotel before heading to the beach. I ordered a pancake with pineapple and was presented with the following:
The pancake was ginormous! Essentially an American style pancake the size of a crepe, stuffed full of pineapple. Not quite what I was expecting but delicious and more than enough to fuel a day at the beach.
Sairee Beach is the most popular beach on Koh Tao. It has a huge variety of dive centres, resorts, restaurants, bars and nightlife. Despite all this, it still maintains a peaceful, serene atmosphere.
I enjoyed the rays of sun and admired the spectacular surroundings before jumping into the water. I’m far too restless to sit on the beach for any length of time, preferring a good swim in the sea.
After swimming we hired some paddle boards to explore the beach further. The water was relatively still allowing a very pleasant paddle board across Sairee Beach.
We ordered some veggie quesadillas and mushroom sushi rolls.
A change from all the Thai food we had been enjoying but an incredible meal nevertheless. The food was light, fresh and flavoursome!
We couldn’t resist heading back to the beach for a post-lunch walk to enjoy a bit more of the peace and sunshine.
This was until we couldn’t help but pop into one of the beach-side massage parlours. It seemed like the only thing after a morning of swimming and paddle boarding (any excuse really!). I went for an oil massage as my skin definitely needed a bit of extra moisturising and enriching. I’ve certainly had way more sun exposure than what my skin is used to in Scotland!
If the massage wasn’t relaxing enough as it is, it was accompanied by a mesmerising sea view with the lulling sound of waves rolling in. Absolute bliss!
Feeling rejuvenated and refreshed we headed to Blue Water; a cool and trendy cafe ideal for catching the sunset.
The relaxed ambience drew us in. We lay on the cushions on the deck and admired our surroundings. The soft sound of the evening waves gliding onshore. The gentle sea breeze maintaining the perfect temperature. I honestly don’t think I’ve ever been this chilled out before in my life!
As it became dark, we shook ourselves from a daze, and headed for dinner. We went to an amazing restaurant called 995 Duck which is casual and modest looking. It might not have any frills but the brilliant food attracts crowds. We went for duck in bean sauce with rice and a duck noodle soup.
Both were incredible. They really are the masters of roast duck. The rice dish was my favourite but I always favour anything served with rice. On top of being delicious, the food was also very affordable. Each dish was only about 45 Baht (~£1).
The next day we explored more of the island via a snorkelling trip around Koh Tao. Keep tuned for my next post to hear more about this!
For anyone seeking a holiday destination which combines relaxation and an abundance of activities, I would wholeheartedly recommend Koh Tao. In fact, it’s worth a visit for its atmospheric sunsets alone.
Sadly Koh Tao is the last of the Thai islands that we’ll be visiting. I’ve absolutely loved swimming in the sea, relaxing on the stunning beaches and sampling all the yummy Thai food. It’s safe to say, I definitely adapted to island life.
Bangkok’s up next! Time to get back into the fast-paced city mindset…
For more of Thailand’s beautiful beaches, check out: