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How to get to the Full Moon Party from Koh Samui

Updated on August 2, 2011
show route and directions
A markerHaad Rin (Full Moon Party), Koh PhaNgan -
Haad Rin, Ban Tai, Ko Phangan, Surat Thani, Thailand
get directions

B markerChaweng Beach, Koh Samui -
Hat Chaweng, Bo Phut, Ko Samui, Surat Thani 84140, Thailand
get directions

Costs

  • transportation package to/from Samui hotel - 800 baht (US$24)
  • entry into party at port - 100 baht (US$3)
  • bucket drinks - 180-300 baht ($5-9), depending on alcohol; SamSong or Mekhong rum cheapest, good quality vodka the most expensive

The Koh PhaNgan Full Moon Party is one of the biggest tourist draws among the Thai islands, occurring every month around the day of the full moon. The event begins in the evening, and continues through the following afternoon, and typically pulls in 10,000-15,000 people from all around the world.

We attended on October 14, 2008, and had a great time. It's a perfect opportunity to get drunk (with bucket drinks), dance at around a dozen music stations along the beach, and see the sun rise above the Gulf of Thailand.

The tough part, and every web site will tell you this, is getting there, and, even more difficult, getting back, if you're staying on Koh Samui (if you didn't stay for the 5+ day minimum stay at the Koh PhaNgan hotels). I read plenty of horror stories (here they are: 1, 2, 3), all about the horrific return to Koh Samui at the wee hours of the morning.

Fortunately, at the hotel we were staying at in Koh Samui, they told us of a transportation package offered by Petchaburi Tours (I am in no way affiliated with this company, by the way). For 800 baht (about US$25), they arranged for a trip to the port via songthaew (a pickup truck with the bed converted into opposing benches), and then a speedboat from Koh Samui to Koh PhaNgan, and the same coming back. The best part was there were boats leaving every 20 minutes usually, but guaranteed to leave every hour on the hour from 6pm to midnight, and then returning every hour on the hour from 1am to 6am.

We bought the ticket on faith, and were pleasantly surprised:

  • the songthaew picked us up on time and took about 15 minutes to get to the port
  • at the port, they gave us laminated badges on a string, to hang around our necks - that was our entry to the speedboats
  • the speedboat took only 15 minutes and didn't induce motion sickness because the sea was so calm
  • you had to pay 100 baht entry to the party if you come in by boat, but you get a nifty commemorative rubbery red bracelet
  • the boat was waiting when we returned around 6am, and we only had to wait about 10 minutes for it to fill
  • the songthaew was also waiting back in Koh Samui to take us back to the hotel

No fighting for a spot, no waiting for hours, etc. Very smooth.

I can't find a Website for Petchaburi Tours, but ask your hotel/resort in Koh Samui. If they don't have any information, contact the reception of Amari Palm Reef Resort (+66 (0) 7742 2015-19) in Chaweng. We bought our tickets from them.

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    • travel2 profile image

      travel2 6 years ago from London, England

      I wouldn't fancy staying on Koh Samui and getting one of those boats in. better to get there a few days early. The warm up parties the days before were better nights than the actual full moon when we were there. Thanks for the hub

    • profile image

      peter 8 years ago

      In April, I visited Nikki Beach Koh Samui Bunglow Resort and found it very attractive. The rooms, service and almost everything were lovely there. I went there for a business meeting and after a hectic schedule, I took some days off from my meeting.I never felt alone while staying in that resort. The environment was so lovely and everything was just like what I expected from a good resort. Now I heard a news that Nikki Beach is arranging the best new year party hosted ever till date in Thailand Beach Resort at there own resort. This grand new year party starring blonde girl from London DJ RO-Z for their musical event on new year eve. I am planning to go over there and spend some quality time there. I am looking forward for this lovely trip once again. I think as usual, this time they will rock the Thailand Beach resort with ease. They have lots of verities in their New Year menu to make the visitors satisfied. In the Gala dinner schedule, the want to provide Shrimp and Lobster Cappuccino, Citrus Marinated Sea Scallops, Baby Organic Greens and many more in the vegetarian section. In the non vegetarian section they are coming with their new menu like Center Cut Grain feed Beef Tenderloin, Pan Roasted Snow fish Fillet and many more. But the hidden gem is their exclusive own menu is Nikki’s Chocoholic Temptation Plate which is made of Chocolate dipped strawberry, warm chocolate lava cake, chocolate milkshake and vanilla ice-cream. In the drink section they are different category like Rum, Vodka, Tequila, Gin, Whisky and above all Champagne. There are many brands in every category under their sleeve to give the visitors entire satisfaction.

      http://www.nikkibeachthailand.com/

    • profile image

      cat1981 9 years ago

      the party is on a public beach where anyone can enter for free, the 100baht charge is one of those rip off scams some of the samui speedboat companies use to get more cash out of the novice full moon partyer, just refuse to pay this fee - theres nothing they can do about it!

    • livelonger profile image
      Author

      Jason Menayan 9 years ago from San Francisco

      We really enjoyed it as well. Hope you're able to go and enjoy it!

    • Chef Jeff profile image

      Chef Jeff 9 years ago from Universe, Milky Way, Outer Arm, Sol, Earth, Western Hemisphere, North America, Illinois, Chicago.

      I recently had a wonderful chat with a new friend who has visited Thailand many times, and she told me my wife and I would find a renewed sense of life there.

      I can't wait to go!

      Cheers!

      Chef Jeff

    • Carlosweb profile image

      Carlosweb 9 years ago from USA

      Great hub!

    • livelonger profile image
      Author

      Jason Menayan 9 years ago from San Francisco

      @PlayaNorte: thanks!

      @SpotCoolStuff: Yes, if you want to say in Koh PhaNgan, you'll need to stay a few days before and after. But you won't have to worry about taking a boat there, just a taxi.

    • SpotCoolStuff.com profile image

      SpotCoolStuff.com 9 years ago from San Francisco, CA USA

      Good post! I've found that most of the guest houses from the mid-budget range on up will have some sort of transportation service to the festivities. The key, as you say, is to arrive on Koh Pha Ngan at least several days before the full moon.

    • PlayaNorte profile image

      PlayaNorte 9 years ago from San Francisco, CA

      great hub, thanks Jason! I can't wait to check it out when I plan my trip to Thailand!

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