Thailand via bus, plane or train.
The only airline that flies directly to Koh Samui. They have approximately 10 flights per day, depending on the season. The Bangkok Airways counter at Don Muang Airport is on the arrivals level in the domestic terminal. For further information regarding flights to Koh Samui from Bangkok (and other locations) click on the link for Bangkok Airways. You can also fly by Thai Airways to the Surat Thani airport and arrange for bus and ferry transportation to Koh Samui. Click for more information from Thai Airways.
There are many trains running throughout the day from Bangkok to Surat Thani and return. The Surat Thani Train Station is about an hour from the ferry pier, where you catch the boat to Koh Samui. You will need transportation from the railway station to the pier.
The most popular trains are the sleeper trains where you travel at night and arrive in either Bangkok or Surat Thani in the morning. Any travel agent in Bangkok or Koh Samui can book a ticket for you that will include train, bus and boat, to or from Koh Samui. Prices vary depending on the class of train travel 1st, 2nd or 3rd. We recommend 2nd class air conditioned as the best value at approximately 700 baht for the train, bus and boat ticket combined.
Click here for additional information from the Thai Airways State Railway of Thailand.
All buses for Koh Samui leave from the Southern Bus Terminal in Bangkok. There are different classes of buses running between Bangkok and Koh Samui. There are buses operated by private companies and there are buses operated by the government. If you are taking the bus from Bangkok to Koh Samui, or vice versa, we recommend any of the VIP buses as there are fewer seats on the bus, and the seats recline to somewhat of a sleeping position. These buses tend to leave late afternoon, early evening.
A one way ticket including the ferry boat will cost you approximately 600 Baht. You can purchase a ticket that includes bus and ferry at the Southern Bus Terminal, or through any travel agent in Bangkok. The bus ride to Surat Thani is about 10 hours. Then you have another hour to the pier and then about a 90 minute ferry trip to Nathon. (Hint, bring a long sleeve shirt on the bus with you because they tend to really crank up the air conditioning.)
You have the same options taking the bus back to Bangkok. There are different class buses departing at different times of the day. Again we recommend the VIP bus and that you book a combination bus and ferry ticket with one of the many reputable Koh Samui travel agents.
If you have your own transportation, or are just finding your own way, you can walk or drive on to the ferries. There are two ferry piers to choose from on the island. Both piers are about one hour from Surat Thani . The only difference is that they are run by different companies. Cost for car and driver is about 250 baht. Cost for walk on is 60 baht. Ferries leave the pier approximately every two hours starting at 6:00 am. (Hint, if you go outside on the ferry, remember your sun-screen. You don’t want to arrive in Koh Samui sun burned!)