The many islands of Southern Thailand are a tropical paradise popularized in such movies as The Beach and known today as a wonderful place to enjoy a vacation on one of the many wonderful beaches that the islands have to offer. One of the many tropical islands is actually located relatively close to the Thai city of Bangkok, making it a quick and convenient destination for international travelers flying into the city. The island is known as Ko Samet and it is popular with more than just international tourists, it is also a popular destination for the Thai people due to its proximity to Bangkok. There is no airport on the island, so a boat from the mainland of Thailand is the only way to reasonably make the journey. There are ferries daily from the mainland ports at Ban Phe or Nuan Thip.
The island of Ko Samet was only recently opened to overnight travelers, as it is an island gem that was protected by the Thai Forestry Department until October of 1981. Most of the island is still a national park known by the rather lengthy title of Khao Laem Ya-Mu Ko Samet National Park. Since it is a national park, there is actually an entrance fee of 200 Thai baht for international adult visitors and 100 baht for children. As one might imagine, a tropical island protected from tourism until such a recent year and still primarily a national park today is likely to have some spectacular natural wonders for visitors to enjoy.
One of the natural wonders is the cliffs of the south-west coastline, which is considered to be a wonderful location to enjoy a sunset. Most of the island's beaches, however, are on the eastern coast of the island. Many of the beaches are located in small bays that may be only 200 meters in length. The beaches of Ko Samet are a joy to touch as they feature very fine and silky white sand, in a notable contrast to a small pebble-like consistency of some islands in the world. Particularly intriguing is a beach known as Ao Wong Duean, located near the center of the eastern coastline. The beach extends in both directions to form a nearly complete circular shape.
Another popular beach that is also considered to be quite beautiful is Hat Sai Kaew, which apparently translates as Diamond Beach. This is likely due to its sparkling white crystal sand. Many beach activities are available as the beach is a relatively lengthy 1 kilometer long. Windsurfing, swimming, and also the beach's nightlife are some of the recommendable ways of enjoying the sparkling goodness of this diamond treasure. In contrast, the beach of Ao Noi Na located near Hat Sai Kaew offers a more tranquil and relaxing atmosphere for a traveler to enjoy. Ao Prow is likely an even better choice for those who are only interested in enjoying nature.
Have a wonderful stay on the island of Ko Samet, should you decide to make it your choice for a holiday.