Let’s get un-confused! If you carefully study a detailed map of Samui you will find that both Bo Phut Beach and Bang Rak Beach (the two bays that are next to each other) are in an area that is generally all referred to as ‘Bo Phut’. And this extends right the way from Bang Rak, way past Fisherman’s Village and up to the edge of neigbouring Mae Nam.
So to be realistic, the area that’s called ‘Bo Phut’ is made up of two separate beaches, Bo Phut Beach and Bang Rak Beach – and they run directly into each other, being connected by one long strip of coastal road.
This is an interesting area and in flavour falls somewhere halfway between Chaweng and an utterly deserted bay! It’s one long ribbon-development that skirts both beaches, with dense patches of bars, resorts and restaurants interspersed with big chunks of untouched land.
It’s quiet and lazy in the daytime and lively and laid-back at night, when the bars and restaurants come to life.
Bo Phut Location
The area of Bo Phut is on the north coast of Koh Samui, filling the north east half of the island. It’s close to Samui’s airport, being about ten minutes ride away by car. And it’s also one of the two parts of Samui that the Ring Road bypasses.
Bo Phut Beach
Well … there’s lots of sand and the occasional patch of fine gravel. The beach is narrow in places, with the water sometimes only a few metres away from the resorts and restaurants…For more information go to the Bo Phut Beach page.
Entertainment & Nightlife
There’s not a great diversity of distractions – there’s mainly bars and restaurants – but it’s a haven for both bar-hoppers and also for those who like to discover a new place to eat every night. Plus the fact that everything‘s all along one piece of road.
There are several very bouncy ‘beer bars’ (ie rock and roll and girls) on the Bang Rak stretch, mixed in with three or four English-style pubs such as the Admiral Lord Nelson and the Elephant and Castle. ‘Sports bars’ are plentiful, with The Office being renowned for its TV coverage of all games of rugby, everywhere. And, of course, then there are the restaurants.
Bo Phut Dining
What Bo Phut might lack in the way of nightclubs and go-go lounges, it makes up for in the variety and range of its eateries. Obviously there are little Thai restaurants and snack stops everywhere. But there are also award-winning 5-Star restaurants, too. Plus a whole range of English and German pub grub in-between.
Except for the pubs, all but one of the quality restaurants in this area are attached to resorts. But the self-standing Ocean 11, in the middle of Bang Rak Beach, has been awarded the Thailand Tatler Award of Excellence two years in a row.
You’ll also find superlative cuisine on offer in the nearby Fisherman’s Village, including the Balti dishes at the Tandoor Taj and a wide range of Mediterranean cuisine at Starfish.
But – still in the Bo Phut area – if you turn off onto the Ring Road and move towards Mae Nam, you’ll find a long line of some of the best resorts on Samui, together with their excellent eateries.
There’s not enough space to list them in detail, but if you look in at Bandara,, Anantara, Samui Palm Beach or Zazen then you’ll be in some of the most exalted gastronomic surroundings on the island.Bo Phut Shopping
Erm – there isn’t any! Seriously, this is an area that’s noted for its complete lack of shopping – unless you wander up to Fisherman’s Village, that is. And there you’ll come across a sprinkling of gift and souvenir shops, two interesting places selling women’s’ fashions plus a few places doing DVDs or soap carvings.
Bo Phut Accommodation
Mostly mid-range resorts (the pleasant Samui Mermaid at 500 baht for an air-con double room) onto the ‘boutique’ comfort of resorts like Punnpreeda or Saboey and right through to the Five-Star luxury of the plush resorts on the Ring Road – already mentioned under the ‘dining’ section.
Although it always pays to book in advance, this is one area where you have a good chance of just walking into comfortable accommodation.
[read the review on Cute Surprise for Your Girlfriend]
The Fisherman’s Village
This is something of a ‘one-off’ on Koh Samui. At one time this used to be a tiny two-street village full of fishermen, in their little wooden houses and complete with its own pier. Then it picked up a dive shop, a bungalow resort and a restaurant or two. Now it’s one of the island’s main tourist attractions – and only 15 minutes from the centre of Chaweng.
It’s one short street that touches the beach, but it’s crammed with tourist delights from end to end.
Having said that, it’s pretty, it’s interesting and it’s varied. There’s restaurants and pubs, sports bars, bistros and a whole range of shops and street stalls selling all sorts of enticing souvenirs, gifts and mementos. There are several places that offer accommodation, overall Fisherman’s Village is a place to enjoy visiting.