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For many travelers, Suratthani, alo known as Surat Thani, is a gateway to some of Thailand’s greatest islands. Koh Tao is perhaps the best of them. Thailand’s greatest diving destination, Koh Tao is famed for its tropical climate, colorful coral reefs and native wildlife. From turtles to coral to some of Thailand’s best seafood, Koh Tao has it all.
Though you should spend some time in the under-explored and under-appreciated mainland haven of Suratthani, the big attraction in this region is undoubtedly the excitement and adventure of Koh Tao.
With great beaches, fantastic viewpoints and non-stop nightlife, Koh Tao has something for everyone.
If you’re making the trip to Koh Tao from Suratthani, you have three main options:
Whichever journey you choose, Koh Tao is an exciting and engaging destination, full of interesting adventures and you’ll be treated to lots of great views along the way.
If you choose a combined bus and ferry journey from Suratthani to Koh Tao, the first stretch of your route will carry you through the mesmerising streets of Suratthani, with its roadside seafood restaurants, laid-back charm and friendly locals.
From here, you’ll reach Suratthani Pier (or you’ll perhaps start your journey at Suratthani Pier, if you’ve chosen a simple ferry trip from Suratthani to Koh Tao!). Suratthani Pier is busy and bustling, full of small boats, bigger ferries and the hustle and bustle of coastal life.
After departing from Suratthani Pier, you’ll begin experiencing the best stretch of the journey, as you glide along the sumptuous sea separating Koh Tao from Suratthani. Occasionally, you’ll pass other boats, from imposing ferries to small local fishing vessels. At other points, you’ll be the only boat in sight, surrounded only by the deep blue of Thailand’s inviting ocean.
You’ll also be treated to views of distant shores, local wildlife and the approaching sands of exciting Koh Tao. As you pull into Koh Tao’s pier, you’ll be greeted by one of Thailand’s most friendly, welcoming destinations.
The fastest journey to Koh Tao from Suratthani is by High Speed Ferry, from Suratthani Pier to Koh Tao Pier. If you’ve already spent some time in Suratthani and you want a relatively short journey to Koh Tao’s idyllic sands, this is your best option.
This High Speed Ferry is serviced by Lomprayah, costs just over $30 and takes an average of around 4.5 hours. This boat has an onboard toilet and is very comfortable and convenient.
The cheapest option to get to Koh Tao from Suratthani is a combined High Speed Bus and Ferry ticket, with Songserm, for $27. If you choose this option, you can depart from Suratthani town or Suratthani train station. The combined journey takes around 7 hours.
The most popular way to get to Koh Tao from Suratthani is by Standard Bus and Ferry, provided by Lomprayah. This takes you from Suratthani Airport to Koh Tao Pier, making it a fantastic choice for those who don’t want to spend any time exploring Suratthani.
The entire journey takes an average of around 5.5 hours and costs around $40.
The ferry ride from Suratthani to Koh Tao is a simple journey, perfect for those who have already spent some time in Suratthani and want to start their journey to Koh Tao from Suratthani Pier.
The journey is basic but very comfortable. The ferry from Suratthani to Koh Tao has AC, onboard toilets and comfortable seats. You can enjoy the excellent views of the Gulf of Thailand, and its surrounding shores, both from your seat and from the boat’s observation decks.
If you take a combined bus and ferry from Suratthani to Koh Tao, you experience the same ferry journey described above.
But before this ferry journey, you will spend some time on a bus, which can depart from one of the following four places: Suratthani train station, Suratthani centre, Suratthani Airport or Suratthani bus station, leaving you lots of options depending on your plans.
The bus journeys aren’t as beautiful or enjoyable as the ferry ride, but they’re a great insight into the laid-back life of chilled-out Suratthani.
Though all ferries have onboard toilets, buses very rarely do.
There are around 13 departures to Koh Tao from Suratthani every day.