If you are looking for vibrant nightlife, large shopping malls and all-night parties, then perhaps our island isn’t for you! However, there are still plenty of things to do in Koh Phayam, but they usually revolve around rest and relaxation, which is generally why most people come to visit. Our island takes you back to how the Thai islands used to be before tourism took over. So take your time, look around and enjoy Koh Phayam for what it is. Here are our suggestions for things to do in Koh Phayam.
1. Visit different beaches
Although Koh Phayam is the second-largest island in the Andaman Sea, it is still only 10km long and 5km, so it is easy to get around in the day. Motorbikes can be rented from the main town, and the roads are now relatively well maintained with few unsurfaced paths. Scooters give you the best opportunity to visit several places in a day, but some of the beaches you can get to on foot through the lush jungle. However, Ao Mook, one of the most serene beaches, needs to be accessed via longtail boat as the paths have become overgrown.
2. Take in the views
Most of the island’s views are impressive but arguably, the most impressive is in the north of the island. From a high vantage point, you can look down on Buffalo Bay (Ao Khao Kwai) and even enjoy a beer, cocktail or a soft drink in the local bar, which is not surprisingly incredibly relaxed. This particular viewpoint can be accessed from Long Beach (Ao Yai), although the final journey to the top where the viewpoint is and bar are located is unsurfaced, so care should be taken.
3. Take in the sunsets
Our bungalows are a romantic place to watch the sunsets sipping on a cocktail and generally just being at peace with yourself and your loved one. However, if you want to see the sunsets from a different spot, you could try going to Long Beach, where you will find some good quality eateries or the northern point of Buffalo Bay
4. Take to the waters
If you are searching for things to do in Koh Phayam and enjoy water sports, the Andaman Sea in the high season is a perfect place to go snorkelling or diving with trips organised by a variety of different clubs and schools. Often these trips will take you to the Similan and Surin Islands, which are renowned for their marine beauty. During the low season (from May), you can also try your hand at surfing off Long Beach when the surf is considerably better. If that all sounds a little too energetic, you could laze in the waters of one of the bays and cool off.
5. Visit the mangroves
On the west of the island, you will find impressive mangroves which travel from the west of the bay to more central regions. The groves need to be accessed by boat, with kayaks being the preferred option. You can gently paddle your way through exploring their natural beauty, and it is a great way to escape the intense sun.
6. Explore the jungle
All across Koh Phayam, you will find rugged jungle trails, particularly near Monkey Bay, where you can experience firsthand the local wildlife. As the name would suggest, you are likely to see monkeys, giant monitor lizards and the island’s famous hornbills. It is a superb way to burn off any excess energy while getting to grips with nature.
7. The pier temple and Big Buddha
As with almost anywhere in Thailand, Koh Phayam has a temple, but this one is slightly more special as it is built at the end of a pier. It is a small shrine with very little to see, although this doesn’t take away from the spiritual experience. You will find a Big Buddha across from the pier, which can be reached by climbing a few steps. It is again an excellent viewpoint overlooking the pier temple and provides a fantastic photo opportunity.
8. Experience the hippie lifestyle
Many of Thailand’s islands were renowned for their hippie and Rastafarian ways of life in days gone by. In most places, this influence has been replaced by tourism and western ideologies, but here on Koh Phayam, it is very much alive and well. There are several bamboo bars around the island adorned with Rasta colours or images of Bob Marley. The Hippie Bar at the northern end of Buffalo Bay is the one that appears in many guide books and is well worth visiting. It is lit up in red and green at night, which can be either impressive or intimidating depending on your point of view!
9. Practice yoga or just laze around
Let’s face it, the main reason that you came to the island was to relax and not search for things to do on Koh Phayam. The island is quiet even during the high season, so you will easily find a secluded spot on one of the many beaches. Monkey Beach, Ao Mook and Ao Ko Kyu are frequently deserted, so you can just appreciate the scenery all on your own. Many beaches have hammocks swinging from the trees so you can just lay back, relax or even just fall asleep. If you feel like practising yoga or meditation, then what better place than one of these islands?
10. Visit nearby islands
Just off Koh Phayam, you will find some smaller island such as Koh Khang Kao and Koh Yee, which are yet to be touched by tourism and therein is where their beauty lies. Day trips run from various places on the island and give you the opportunity to do a spot of fishing or snorkelling in the crystal clear waters.
Need some further advice?
If you are unsure of things to do on Koh Phayam, you could always talk to a member of our friendly and helpful team. They could make suggestions, organise transport or trips or alternatively, bring you so drinks as you laze at our bungalows.