Monday, 30 January 2012

KOH SAMUI SHOPPING: ESSENTIAL BARGAINING TIPS

Be sure to read this blog post to get some Koh Samui shopping advice. 

During your stay at ShaSa Resorts and Residences, you’ll know doubt want to get out there and hit the shops and markets that abound everywhere on Koh Samui island, and pick up some of the excellent bargains in clothes, gadgets, jewelry and souvenirs just waiting to be had.

Koh Samui shopping is both cheap and plentiful on the island – at every single beach, every single town and village, you’ll find vendors and stalls, shops and malls all vying for your business. But while you’ll notice that the price of goods is much cheaper than your home country than they are when Koh Samui shopping, you still might end up paying over the odds if you’re not too careful.

There’s a trick to Koh Samui shopping that every shopper needs to be aware of – you gotta bargain hard to get what you want at the right price! Bargaining is pretty much the done thing in Thailand – unless the store is an official one with clearly marked prices, virtually everything you buy has to be negotiated. 

So how to negotiate? The trick to bargaining when Koh Samui shopping is to first of all, know what a realistic price is for the item you are trying to buy. Second, always bargain with a smile on your face – don’t get angry or upset as this won’t get you anywhere. You can bargain hard, but always keep it friendly.

To begin with, ask the Koh Samui shopping vendor what the price is. Naturally, the vendor will always start off with a high price, perhaps two or three times the actual price. For example, if you’re buying a T-shirt and the vendor asks for 500 baht, then the real price is probably going to be more like 200 or 300 baht. Offer him 100, but do it with a smile on your face. Guaranteed, the vendor will look shocked! But it’s also guaranteed he or she will make a lower counter-offer. He might say “okay, 350 baht”. In that case, offer 200 baht, and then he or she’ll probably say 300. Now you’re getting closer! 300 baht isn’t a bad price at all, but with skill you may be able to get that T-shirt for even less, but remember not to push too hard or they may just refuse you altogether! With practice, you’ll soon get the hang of it.

And of course we should mention that if you can speak some Thai, even if it’s only a few simple phrase such as “How much is this?”, your Koh Samui shopping will be much easier and the prices you’ll be quoted much cheaper.

Have fun with your shopping!

Sunday, 29 January 2012

MUST SEE KOH SAMUI EVENTS & FESTIVALS

Picture above is a Kratong, used to celebrate the Thai festival Loy Kratong in Koh Samui. 


The festivals and events of the island should be included in your Koh Samui things to do list. The Thai love festivities and enjoying parties. Their festivals and events are among the most unique and extraordinary in the world. There are so many festivals and events in Koh Samui. These festivals and events are among the long list of Koh Samui things to do.

The Songkran is a festival celebrated from April 13 to April 15. Songkran is derived from Sanskrit words that mean “New Year” but in Thailand, “Songkran” is known as the Water Festival. It is a day to celebrate new life and new beginnings symbolized by cleansing using water. Usually, the Thais celebrate it by pouring small amounts of water on themselves or on their family and friends. Nowadays, the celebration has evolved into a whole day water fight on the streets. One of the many Koh Samui things to do is participating in the water fights.

Traditionally, Songkran was a religious holiday and the Thais would travel back to their hometowns and visit relatives. Families would gather together and have a feast. Their homes would prepare for the New Year celebration by cleaning and washing the holy artifacts in their homes. The religious tradition of Songkran is not popularly known to most people but the water fights are known worldwide.

People, both locals and foreigners, look forward to the water fights during the Songkran celebration. They would aim water pistols on passersby and some even have buckets and hoses of water prepared. Though the celebration is quite wild and rowdy, foreigners should be mindful that the uniformed police, the elderly and the injured should not be included. Also, drivers of motorbikes and bicycles should not be aimed at with water pistols and the like. If your idea of Koh Samui things to do includes water fights and getting drenched on the street, then you should join in on the fun! It is a great way to experience a unique festival in Koh Samui island.

The Loy Kratong is among the many Koh Samui things to do as well. It is celebrated during the full moon of the 12th lunar month. Usually, the festival is held in the month of November. It is also popularly known as the Festival of Light. Among the other festivals, the Loy Kratong is perhaps, the most anticipated festival in the Thai calendar aside from the Songkran.

If you want to include the Loy Kratong in your Koh Samui things to do list, then you should prepare your offerings. The kratong will carry them into the sea or the local river. The Loy Kratong comes from the combination of the Thai word “loy” which means “to float” and kratong which is a name of a small craft that locals make. Traditionally, the kratong is crafted from strips of the trunk of the banana or the leaves of the banana. Nowadays, the materials are far more creative and advanced. The kratong contains the offerings such as money, flowers, incense sticks, food and candles.  

Saturday, 28 January 2012

GOLFING IN KOH SAMUI

Koh Samui is home to the Santiburi Samui Country Golf Course. (photo courtesy of pr.syndacast.com)

Staying at ShaSa Resort and Residences, you’ll surely never run out of things to do in Koh Samui. Whether it’s exploring the island, with its jungles and its oceans, or simply relaxing and having the time of your life with our award winning spa and massage facilities, you’re sure to have the time of your life.
But there’s more to Koh Samui than just relaxing and checking out the sights. Did you know that the island is also a sporting hub in Thailand? That’s right, sports are BIG on Koh Samui - none more so than golf. Koh Samui is one of the premiere golfing destinations, and here at ShaSa Resort we are more than happy to arrange a day out for you at one of the excellent facilities on the island when you’re looking for things to do in Koh Samui. 

From mini golf to championship-standard golf course, the golfing scene on Koh Samui island is really taking off. Santiburi Samui Country Club is one of the best things to do on Koh Samui – the island’s first professional golf course, it’s set in a breathtaking location up on the hills overlooking Mae Nam Beach, just a short drive away from ShaSa Resort.

Santiburi Samui Country Club offers action packed golf at its very best – it’s a hugely challenging 18-hole course, with each one offering its own unique challenges. With its rolling hills and steep slopes, its winding fairways fringed by coconut palm forests, cliffs and creeks, this course is not only a huge pleasure to play on, but it’s also one of the most beautiful in all of Asia – a perfect balance of natural harmony and entertainment.

As well as Santiburi, Koh Samui is also home to Thailand’s first-ever professional mini-golf course as well. If you’re travelling with kids and looking for some things to do in Koh Samui that will keep them active while they’re being entertained, then Mini Golf International is the perfect day out! Set in the jungle overlooking Choeng Mon Beach, this complex houses 18 highly original mini-golf courses, offering hours of fun for you and your family. They welcome beginners as well as professionals, and the expert coaches are on hand to give you a few tips if it’s your first time playing.

Golf is one of the best things to do in Koh Samui, and it’s one of the most enjoyable too. Take a break from your stay at ShaSa Resorts and ask our staff about playing some golf – we’ll be delighted to fix you up with a round! 

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Big Buddha Beach Nightlife

The Big Buddha Beach has some of the most entertaining bars in Koh Samui.


In Koh Samui travel to Big Buddha Beach and get a whole new experience of nightlife on the island. The Big Buddha Beach is ideal for visitors who want a relaxing, chill and somber time to spend the night away. You will not find Go-Go bars here. You will not find bars with flashing neon lights and bursting music. You will not find girlie bars or wild parties. Instead, you will find night spots by the beach serving cocktails, beers under the starry night and beside the beautiful sea. Families can enjoy a quiet bonding time over dinner by the beach and take in the wonderful view of the sea. Travelers can chill with a few beers and cocktails along the places by the sea in Big Buddha Beach. Indeed, this place offers a twist to your Koh Samui travel experience. 

Big Buddha Beach is a frequent destination of tourists because of its close proximity to the airport and the famous Chaweng Beach. Though it is known for its quiet and relaxing atmosphere, it is the home of the much anticipated Full Moon Party. It is a night of bonfires, dances, singing and traditional performances from the locals by the beach. Visitors will get a cultural Koh Samui travel experience that they cannot get anywhere else.

If you plan to try out the Big Buddha nightlife, check out these places:

ShaSa Resort- This resort lies near the Big Buddha Beach. Families, couples and friends looking for a luxurious stay on the island should check out this hotel. It has executive villas with verandas overlooking the sea. Imagine spending the day lounging by the pool, getting a spa massage and having a luxurious bonding time with family and friends. Then at night, come over to the Big Buddha Beach, try out the restaurants and chill with a few drinks.

Heart & Soul- This is a bar and grill unlike any other on the island. It plays Northern Soul and Jazz grooves all night long. The owner, Lee Hughes, pays tribute to the music that was considered the foundation of the UK rave scene. Music lovers will enjoy a dining experience filled with beats from The Velvets, The Ojays, Gladys Knight, Sheila Ferguson and many more.  Discover a unique type of music while sipping fancy cocktails, marinated steaks, fresh kebabs and charcoal grill dishes at night. Diners will have a Koh Samui travel experience that they never expected.

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

COMMON SCAMS IN KOH SAMUI

Like many other tourist destinations, Koh Samui has its fair share of scams that you should be wary of. 

Koh Samui travel, as with any other venture to any foreign land, can be hampered by scams. The wary tourist is well advised to pay heed to warnings from others who have done Koh Samui travel and have actually had become easy, unknowing prey to “friendly” people out to make easy money.

Holiday Club and Time Share Scams

Koh Samui travel is an easy setting to get scammed since Koh Samui is a prime tourist holiday area. Being such, Koh Samui has a good number of time share and holiday schemes that could easily attract the unsuspecting but willing tourist into putting his hard-earned cash into such a system. On the street, a visitor is first asked to accomplish a “questionnaire” or a “survey”. Afterwards, using his contact information provided in the questionnaire, he is called and informed of winning in a “legit” draw that involves the seemingly “legit” survey he’d participated in. He is then asked to collect his prize. When he arrives, the scam artists use intimidation and pressure to get him to invest money as initial deposit on a holiday club, a property offered for time-share or to attend an orientation seminar on such. This is undoubtedly hard-sell, but some victims are left with no other choice but to pay up in order to get away from such scammers. Koh Samui travel would be much more pleasurable if you won’t have to experience the trauma from such rackets.

Boat/Jetski Insurance Scams

If you choose to do Koh Samui travel, then you’d also somehow wish to enjoy the ocean for which the location is famous for, and what better way to do this than to rent a boat or a jetski. Unfortunately, this fact provides a ripe opportunity for both locals and foreign nationals to prey on unwitting visitors. Their method of operation is simple: they approach you with offers for boat or jetski rentals. They bargain with you, and then let you use the equipment. When you decide to return it, they “inspect” the equipment and come up with a list of damages, which might have already been present in the equipment even before they had it rented out to you. They claim insurance does not cover the damages, so the cost would have to fall on you. Make sure that you emerge from your Koh Samui travel refreshed and not victimized by such scammers.

Sunday, 22 January 2012

SECRET BUDDHA GARDEN

The Secret Buddha Garden is one of the most amazing must see sights in Koh Samui



Initially built by Samuian fruit farmer Nim Thongsuk at age 77 back in 1976, the Secret Buddha Garden, otherwise known simply as the Magic Garden, is peacefully nestled in the hills of Samui. The road leading to this landmark was originally designed as a military road, but it wouldn’t hurt to request the guards to allow travelers to pass and visit the garden.

Otherwise, a rugged terrain vehicle can be maneuvered through the network of rivers and mountains interspersed by jungle to reach this breathtaking garden two hours from the Lamai temple. Navigating through this complicated route requires an experienced driver, plus expert advice from one of ShaSaResort and Residences’ tour assistance guides to boost your adventure plans.

Tour assistants from the hotel will provide you with the best routing suggestions possible to reach the Secret Buddha Garden.  The garden, although reachable only via out-of-the-usual routes and methods, will be worth all the effort you have to go through, as the view from Samui’s highest point affords the traveler a great breathtaking overlook from the north to the south of Samui island, the mainland and its bordering islands.

ShaSa Resort and Residences also provides superb complimentary WiFi internet facilities so you can view an online map to the Secret Buddha Garden. See photos of significant spots and points of interest within the garden, plus generous reviews of first-hand visitors to the garden in the comfort of your room or just about anywhere at ShaSa Resort and Residences.

With the ShaSa Resort and Residences Health Club, prepare yourself for the trek ahead to the Secret Buddha Garden. Use their various fitness equipment designed for cardiovascular workouts and resistance training so the network of steps and uneven terrain within the garden will be nothing short of an effortless trek by the traveler. The sauna room and the nearby hydrotherapy pool at the health club of ShaSa Resort and Residences will get you all sufficiently pumped up for the long, arduous journey ahead. The spectacular view of the Gulf of Thailand is another bonus offered by the health club.

Don’t want to take the kids along on the trip to the Secret Buddha Garden? ShaSa Resort and Residences has this covered, too. Entrust your kids to the gracious babysitting service available at the Kids Club. While waiting for mom and dad to come back from their trek, the kids are given educational art classes like batik painting and craft making.  Let them explore the joys of reading with well-stocked shelves of children’s books in a number of languages. They are also kept amused with an array of cartoons, the latest video games, and the largest LEGO brick collection within the island.

Tired muscles and sore feet after the trek? Fret no more. ShaSa Resort and Residences offers balcony massages for travelers who decide to go on a journey to the Secret Buddha Garden. With elegant pampering afforded by expert masseuses, those after-trek aches and pains easily melt away at the ministrations of these hospitable people at your service. Refresh yourself with a mango smoothie from the pool bar, listen to acoustic guitar music, or simply arrange for private dining after that exhausting trek. ShaSa Resort and Residences has you covered. 

Friday, 20 January 2012

New Years in Koh Samui

Koh Samui is one of the best places to go and welcome in a New Year. (photo courtesy of samuizoom.com)

The best time to enjoy your Koh Samui travel experience is by visiting the island during New Year’s Day. Koh Samui is an exotic island in Thailand that has successfully preserved its local traditions, culture and landscape. However, it has also successfully developed into a resort destination with international standards. There are many visitors from all over the world anticipating the various festivities in Koh Samui, including New Year’s Day.

Thailand is an ideal place to celebrate New Year’s Day because the festivities are extraordinary and unique among the rest of the world. In Koh Samui, the people celebrate three New Year celebrations in a year. In January 1, they celebrate the worldwide New Year’s Day. Around the first week of February, they again celebrate it together with the Chinese for the Chinese New Year. On April 13, the people of Koh Samui celebrate it yet again following the Thai solar calendar. The April 13 New Year’s Day is culminated by the Songkran, the last day of celebration. It is a Koh Samui travel experience that you should not miss out on. April 13 is a special day for Thais because it is the first day on the Thai solar calendar.

The Songkran is highly anticipated not just by the Thais but the tourists as well. It is commonly known as the Water Festival. This festival makes the Koh Samui travel experience unique compared to other islands. In Koh Samui, people playfully enjoy the water fights on the street. They prepare water pistols, gallons of water and water balloons to aim at those joining the celebration. The streets are full of players joining in on the water fight. Traditionally though, Thais would travel back home to gather with their relatives and they would perform a cleansing ritual by pouring water onto themselves. Nowadays, some Thais still continue this tradition but they also participate in the long awaited water fights.

Aside from the water fights, there are many other things you can enjoy during your Koh Samui travel. You can enjoy the lovely floats decorating the rivers of the island. The Loy Krathong is another celebration during the Thai New Year wherein the people build kratongs (small crafts) to contain their offerings of food, flowers, money, candles, incense sticks and so on. They would let the kratong sail along the rivers around the island. This is another long anticipated Koh Samui travel experience for most tourists because the floats are beautifully decorated and the designs are intricately traditional Samui. The festivities include dances and performances by the locals.

Since most tourists enjoy their Koh Samuitravel in resorts near beaches, the island also has made popular the beach parties at night during New Year’s. They have laidback parties with bonfire, dancing and singing of traditional Samui songs. The parties can be a cultural experience for those that have yet to experience New Year’s at Koh Samui. The clear blue seas, the tropical wind and the laidback atmosphere attracts many visitors to the island especially during New Year’s.


Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Koh Samui Travel: Mountain Bike Trails

There are several wonderful biking trails in Koh Samui. 

Just because you are here on holiday at ShaSa Resort, it doesn’t mean that you have to sit back and do nothing all day long – although you’re more than welcome to if you want! But for those guests of ours who prefer to be a little bit more active during their Koh Samui travel breaks, we strive to put together as many activities as possible for our guests to enjoy.

If you love the great outdoors and the warm sunshine, and you want to keep yourself in shape, then one of the best ways to see this wonderful island is from the seat of a mountain bike. Yep, that’s right. Koh Samui travel is perfectly suited to mountain biking – its lush tropical terrain is simply breathtaking to behold – many of the best views are wasted when you travel by car from place to place. So saddle up and peddle off for an experience you will never forget.

Koh Samui travel on mountain bikes is easy. You can rent mountain bikes from just about anywhere on the island, and they’re incredibly cheap too, starting at around 100 baht a day. The bike you get might not be a brand you’ve ever heard of, but don’t worry as all the bikes are perfectly capable of tacking Ko Samui’s challenging terrain.

For a true endurance test of Koh Samui travel, rent yourself a mountain bike and go all out – try and complete a full circuit of the island if you dare! Just give yourself plenty of time so that you’ll be back before dark. The route takes around 4 to 5 hours, with time for the odd break, so we’d suggest setting out in the morning if you’re planning this (the reason being, the roads can be quite scary at the best of times, and at night with no headlights it’s ten times as bad!).

If you want a more technical challenge then we suggest that you head inland with your mountain bikes. One of our favorite spots for a bike ride is around Mae Nam Valley. Here you’ll find some great hilly terrain with loads of ups and downs, amidst stunning scenes of farmland and coconut groves. You may want to bring a compass and a map, and try not to damage any farmer’s crops!

For a real daredevil challenge on your Koh Samui travel mountain biking adventures, there’s only one place to go. Head on up the road to Wanorn Waterfall, which lies just south of Nathon. A word of warning though – this Koh Samui travel route is tough, and so you’ll need to be pretty fit to manage it. The condition of the road isn’t too bad at first, but it quickly gets a whole lot worse once you gain some altitude. At around 200 m, the road becomes a gravel track, and later on you’ll be having to dodge boulders, navigate through slippery mud and deal with a 1:4 gradient (believe us, that is steep!). And you’ll have to do all this while staring over the edge of a ravine…

But! If you do make it to the waterfall, you’ll be delighted you made it. The view from here is quite simply spectacular – it offers some of the most incredible photo opportunities and you’ll be able to cool off with a refreshing dip in the pool by the waterfall. It’s the ultimate Koh Samui travel experience but not for the lighthearted! 

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Mae Nam Beach

The Mae Nam Beach is a great place to go with the whole family

If you have been thinking about coming to Thailand for a few or weeks but hesitant to rub elbows with the rest of the million or more visitors to this country, don’t give change your mind yet or find another destination. If you know where to look, you can find a Ko Samui beach that is just right to bring out the backpacker spirit in you.

Mae Nam Beach could be one of the places you’re looking for. It’s a district in Ko Samui, an island in the Gulf of Thailand that is more known for its Chaweng and Lamai beaches. The island is next to Phuket as the most popular island destination in this Asian country. Because the largest beaches can get overcrowded in peak season, some visitors stay away from the island’s populous areas and look for their own Ko Samui beach destination.

For starters, stay at the ShaSa Hotel – Samui Boutique Hotel where you can get your first taste of Ko Samui beach view and breeze from its large terraces and pool bars. Kayak and water sports are also available. With the perfect hideaway to go home to at the end of the day, you can confidently explore the rest of the island. Go to Mae Nam Beach via the hotel’s shuttle service bound for Changwe. From there, you can ride a songthaew (some sort of a minibus) to Mae Nam which has a 7-km stretch of beach with white sand and coconut trees. Most of the time, the sea is calm and soothing to see.  Its shallow water is also appropriate for swimming and sunbathing especially for families with children.

Of course, a Ko Samui beach is not all there is in Mae Nam though the beautiful sunset from the east end is worth the time for coming here. Though many people would rather run to the nearby Changwe for its discos and a-go-go bars, there are a number of visitors who come to Mae Nam instead if they’re looking for a night of fun. There are some excellent pubs in the area where you can share some drinks and chat with a loved one or friends in Ko Samui beach venues. If you’re passing through Mae Nam on the way to Chaweng, you can drop by Mae Nam’s classy restaurants by the sea and in the village by the pier. You can also find a quite popular bakery and cafĂ©.

Everybody seems to be eyeing on Thailand but that doesn’t mean you have to look the other way if you want some peace and quiet.  Don’t forget that there is a quiet Ko Samuibeach accessible from pristine boutique hotel awaiting you.

Monday, 16 January 2012

TOP 5 DIVING SITES IN KOH SAMUI

Koh Samui has some of the world's top diving sites. Don't miss out!

Koh Samui and other outlying islands in the Gulf of Thailand are endowed with a good number of diving sites that serve as Koh Samui attractions. They can be great spots for diving all year round, but the Andaman low season beginning May until August is highly recommended for diving enthusiasts who want to make the most out of their diving adventure. Shasa Resort and Residences provides great tour and travel assistance for snorkeling and diving activities.

Green Rock

Probably so-named because of the vast array of swimming dwellers that abound in its waters, Green Rock promises to provide a stunning underwater vista to the diving explorer out to savor Koh Samui attractions. Be delighted by its network of tunnels and swim-throughs exquisitely afforded by the various rock and boulder formations outcropping from the main pinnacle, which rises a meter above water and extends 28 meters below it. Swim with blue-spotted stingrays and white-eyed morays while enjoying spectacles of hawksbill turtles, butterfish and angelfish. A bonus:  nearby nesting grounds of the highly territorial and moody titan triggerfish.

Chumpon/ Chumporn Pinnacles

Located within the Angthong National Marine Park, Chumpon Pinnacles is one of the outlying Koh Samui attractions normally considered as Koh Tao’s premier diving site. With depths at a manageable 14 meters underwater graduating to 35 meters, this dive site will prove to be a real challenge to novice divers and is best explored with more seasoned or expert divers. Standing out among the smaller rock pinnacles is a singular, large granite rock formation extending to 16 meters below the sea water and serving as home to pink anemone fish and sea anemones. Large, oceanic fish abound: man-sized groupers, barracuda, bat fish, grey reef sharks, mackerel, trevally and tuna. Whale sharks are occasionally spotted.

Samran Pinnacles

Still another diving spot considered as one of the surrounding Koh Samui attractions is the Samran Pinnacles. Recommended for more seasoned divers, water currents tend to be relatively stronger and the waters much deeper than the average diving sites. Lying twelve meters underwater are numerous rock formations, home to barracudas, large jackfish and trevally.

Southwest Pinnacles

Ascending majestically above water in this site is another rock pinnacle worthy of belonging to the many Koh Samui attractions. Lying five meters just below the surface, this pinnacle gently undulates downwards and out then fuses with the seabed at 30 meters. Smaller rock outcroppings dot the primary pinnacle to afford a most spectacular underwater view. Be fascinated by blue ringed angelfish, bannerfish, yellow-tailed barracuda, giant groupers, as well as occasional sightings of grey reef and whale sharks.

White Rock

With two pinnacles submerged 18-22 meters beneath the water while extending two meters above it, diving in White Rock will surely excite any diving adventurer looking to explore one of the many Koh Samui attractions the island has to offer. Some of the most common colorful and interesting underwater fauna native to this cool diving site: angel and butterfly fish, blue-spotted stingrays, moray eels, turtles, sea snakes, and the titan trigger fish. Staghorn corals lying on the White Rock seabed have also become dwelling places for breams and damsels. If you’re lucky, you might even come across the red-breasted wrasse, the longtom, and the hexagon grouper.

Saturday, 14 January 2012

Bophut Beach Nightlife

The Bophut beach nightlife scene is quite fun. (Courtesy of photography-on-the.net)


Have one of the best experiences of Koh Samui nightlife  in Bophut, known for the Bophut beach and the Fisherman’s Village. The beach is a long stretch from the Big Buddha and Maenam beaches. The Fisherman’s Village is at the heart of the beaches; it is an image of the island’s shift to modernity with its high end boutiques like Karma Sutra, luxury hotels like ShaSa Resort and a strip of classy restaurants. Despite the many up and coming markets and night spots in Bophut, there still remains the charm of the old salts of the village.

You can explore the Koh Samui nightlife by going around the pier of Bophut. Turn left to experience the Bophut beach nightlife or turn right to try out the restaurants and guesthouses. FYI, you won’t see Go-Go’s or girlie bars in this area. The charm of Bophut is its laidback and chill atmosphere where people can relax and have a good time at night.

Here are some places to check out for your Koh Samui nightlife in Bophut:

ShaSa Resort- This is a luxury hotel near Bophut Beach. Actually, there aren’t a lot of places to stay in Bophut area itself but there are hotels nearby for you to check out. Bophut has become popular compared to other places in Koh Samui because of its reputation for elegance, charm and laidback atmosphere. Experience night life in Bophut beach then come home to luxurious accommodations in ShaSa Resort where you can enjoy the executive villas, spa treatment and an overall luxurious stay at the hotel.

Karma Sutra- This place is the perfect spot to spend your time in Bophut. It was originally a Chinese shop house with intricate wooden interior that was transformed into a bar, restaurant and boutique all in one. You can have a cozy meal all throughout the day until night time in this place.

The Pier- This is one of the classiest restaurants in Bophut beach. It has an amazing view of the Gulf of Thailand amidst the cool, coastal wind and an impressive menu to choose from. Try out Koh Samui nightlife with class by checking out the international seafood dishes served in this restaurant. The centerpiece of the restaurant is a grand wooden staircase where diners can go up and dine while the view of the Gulf of Thailand mesmerizes them. Plus, the staff members are friendly and hospitable.

Thursday, 12 January 2012

LAMAI SHOPPING

Listed below are some of the best places to go to get some shopping done in Lamai, Koh Samui


Just a short drive north-east from ShaSa Resort andResidences, Lamai is perhaps the best nearby Koh Samui shopping location for our guests. Here is a place where you can find everything you will possibly need – be it swimming gear, toiletries, clothes, souvenirs, gadgets, tailor made suits or jewelry, Lamai has it in abundance.

 Lamai is actually fairly typical of Koh Samui shopping locations, in that the main shops and markets are all located in a pretty centralized area. In fact, virtually all the shops and vendors worth checking out are located on the main, Beach Road that runs through Lamai, or on the sois that run off the road. As always when doing your Koh Samui shopping, it pays to look around and see what’s available first; compare the quality of goods in different shops and try to get the best price!

Lamai Night Bazaar

Although it’s supposedly a night bazaar, you’ll find that many of the stalls open up for business before the sun comes down. This Koh Samui shopping haven is located smack bang in the middle of town, across from the McDonald’s restaurant. It’s much like the night markets you get in Bangkok’s Patpong or Khao San Road, with stalls lining both sides of the street, selling tons of pirated goods, from clothes and flip flops, to watches, knives, lighters and various other knick-knacks.

69 Slam Underwear

Although you might be expecting a display of saucy lingerie, you’ll actually find there’s far more to this popular store once you step inside. Guaranteed, no trashy tourist junk in here – they offer high quality beachwear, swimming clothes, accessories and jewelry. Well worth a look but it does cost more than what you’ll find on the street!

Asian Lights

One of our favorite Koh Samui shopping stores is this tastefully fitted store, which has a fanatastic selection of hundreds of different kinds of handmade lights and lamps. You’ll find innovative designs here in all kinds of shapes and sizes, and what’s more the prices are good.

Buddy Boutique Shopping Plaza

If you’re looking for a Koh Samui shopping experience that’s a bit more upmarket, check out this place for its range of stylish designer boutiques and brand name stores. Sure, the bargains are harder to find, but if you want genuine Thai antiques and Thai silks, quality clothes and (real) electrical goods, this is the only place to be. 

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

AFTERNOON COCKTAILS AT LAEM SETT

There's truly no better place in the world to enjoy a refreshing afternoon cocktail than on Laem Set beach


With its seaside beach setting characterized by soft, pristine sand and providing a great venue for peaceful, lazy afternoons, cocktails by the beach along ShaSaResort is nothing short of heavenly. Imagine the sea lapping softly at the beach and the lethargy-inducing soft wind against your face. Beyond the Sea at ShaSa Resort promises to give the traveler pampering service that truly goes beyond the sea.

Out-on-the-Terrace Cocktails

With a great, expansive view of the Gulf of Thailand, Beyond the Sea at ShaSa Resort easily provides an unrivalled afternoon cocktails experience to the visitor out for a breezy, great time. Nurse your perfect cocktail brew prepared meticulously by Beyond the Sea bartenders. Sip to your heart’s content while gazing out at the clear blue ocean and inhaling refreshing gulps of ocean air. Indulge in lazy conversations with your loved one or travelling companion while seated at lounge chairs or low chairs that allow you to stretch your legs. Here at ShaSa Resort, afternoon cocktails have never been sunnier than what you can truly experience at Beyond the Sea.

Afternoon Cocktails Inside Beyond the Sea

A 360-degree tour of the interiors of Beyond the Sea at ShaSa Resort will reveal tasteful, minimalist details which could be a Zen-like affair to the traveler wishing to unwind in restful comfort. Indulge in afternoon cocktails here while looking out large bay windows. Feel your cares melting away while you sip your excellent cocktails and gaze out those windows that invite you to either dip your tired feet into the pool or go out further into the ocean. Wooden interior walls, chairs provided with cushions, lounging chairs that invite you to hang loose, attentive service from dedicated waiters….blissful contentment at Beyond the Sea, the brasserie at ShaSa Resort.

Go Barefoot

The idea of going barefoot while enjoying sips on your afternoon cocktails might just be the key to let the wooden floor out on the terrace at Beyond the Sea drain tiredness away from you. The low chairs beckon that you do so—they are designed for really lazy, casual afternoons where kicking off your shoes or heels could become so addictive, you’d want to do it every afternoon here at Beyond the Sea on ShaSa Resort. But do get some spa treatment at the ShaSa Health Club first, so the afternoon cocktails while barefoot would be a great cap for your spa experience. 

Friday, 6 January 2012

Want to Scuba Dive in Paradise?

Scuba Diving in Koh Samui should atop your Koh Samui things to do list.


Scuba diving with amazing creatures in Koh Samui should be on your list of Koh Samui things to do! Scuba diving is a popular water sport in Thailand and many tourists from all over the world make time to visit just to experience the rich and abundant waters of Thailand. Experience a whole new world under the sea using the diving equipment. See the majestic creatures of the waters of Thailand. The coral reefs and multitude of sea creatures will never cease to amaze you. Fill your hungry eyes with the sea cows, giant barracuda, sharks and even manta rays! Yes, there are many other Koh Samui things to do but why miss out on such a unique underwater experience?

Since the start of the 70s, Koh Samui has been the center of attention for many visitors looking for a rich, well preserved coast. Situated on the east coast of Thailand, the island is a sheltered coastal paradise that is a diver’s haven because of the coral reefs and dynamic sea creatures. The diving sites have majestic rock formations and coral reefs that cannot be seen anywhere else.  Because of the popularity of the island for scuba diving, tourists have made it a point to include the water sport in their list of Koh Samui things to do. Nowadays, Koh Samui is one of the world class diving sites.

Where to stay in Koh Samui

ShaSa Resort- Before heading out for a scuba diving adventure, check in at the exclusive villas, spa treatment and pampering at the ShaSa Resort where you can get the best quality accommodations. Families, couples and groups of friends can find a relaxing place to stay on the island in this hotel. It is near various diving sites so you can easily travel back and forth.

Koh Samui Diving Sites

There are various diving sites on Koh Samui. Here are the best ones to go to:

  • Chumphon Pinnacle
  • Sail Rock
  • Koh Nang Yuan
  • Koh Tao
  • Southwest Pinnacle


Diving Season in Koh Samui

Lots of tourists include scuba diving in their list of Koh Samui things to do because the diving season is available the whole year. However, the best time to go is from the month of May until August. During these months, the Andaman coast experiences a low season. From September until November, the Northeast monsoon winds bring surface swells into the island so there is 30% decrease of visibility.

Monday, 2 January 2012

Hidden Hotspots of Koh Samui

The amazing Buddha Footprints is a hidden gem in Koh Samui. (Photo Courtesy of Flickr)




Koh Samui, the third largest island in Thailand, is a treasured gem because of the many Koh Samui attractions. Roughly in a circular shape, the heart of the island is the majestic Khao Pom peak of a mountain jungle. The naturally beautiful landscape of the island is a top destination of tourists from all over the world. Holiday goers are attracted to the laidback beach villages, clear seas and the many island resort to choose from. It is the perfect getaway from the bustling life of the city.

Here is a guide to the hidden hotspots and Koh Samui attractions:

  • The Buddha Footprints are quite difficult to locate compared to the other Koh Samui attractions in the island but the extra time and effort to go there is guaranteed to be worth it. This hidden hotspot is situated on a hilltop shrine that is only a few kilometers away from the famous Butterfly Garden. The Buddha Footprints are four footprints etched one on top of the other. It is a sacred artifact that cannot be found anywhere else on the island. You will have to climb about 163 steps to the top and then you will get a magnificent view of the island.
  • The Chinese Temple the Goddess Zhao Mei Guan Im is one of the Koh Samui attractions you should not miss. It is a 30-year-old temple consisting of only one building. This temple is fairly new with a humble altar and expertly made paintings that depict the stories of Zhao Mei Guan Im. The most renowned painting is the one situated on the stone altar. This temple has a view of the Turtle Island near Koh Mud Sum mainland. If you look towards the south, you can see the fishing boats sailing under the beautiful sunset. You can easily get there by following the route from the Snake Farm of Samui.
  • The Hin Lad Waterfall Temple is among the many Koh Samui attractions. This temple is relatively small and is located along the Hin Lad Waterfall trail. It is a peaceful and tranquil place. Along the path to the temple, there is a bridge where you can stop over and feed the fish. There is also a Buddha statue towards the back of the temple.
  • The Hua Thanon is also one of the many Koh Samui attractions. It is a fishing village that is mostly inhabited by Samui’s Muslim residents. It is one of the few places that carry the traditional Samui way of life with the teakwood houses and authentic seafood restaurants. There are plenty of boutiques that sell ethnic clothes and jewelry here.