Koh Phangan is a popular spot on the ol’ backpacker trail, and for good reason too! The island boasts picture-perfect beaches, stunning hikes, chilled cafés, and world-class scuba diving so there is plenty to keep you entertained. However, most people end up going to one of the world-renowned Full Moon parties and spend the rest of their time lying hungover on a beach. It would be a crime not to explore at least some of the island though, so read on to discover how to spend 48 hours in Koh Phangan.
If you are desperate to enjoy one of the main parties, make sure you spend the majority of your first day exploring the island so you don’t feel as though you have missed out on what Koh Phangan has to offer.
Hire a Moped
The best way to explore Koh Phangan is to hire a moped and get a bit further off the beaten track. Of course, you could easily loll about on the main beaches all day but it’s nice to discover some coves of your own and get into the wilds! Check your insurance, make sure you feel comfortable behind the bike, pack a snorkel, some water and snacks and set off on an adventure.
The roads are fairly well defined across the island and you can choose to follow signs and routes offered by the moped rental companies or simply find your own way.
A perfect day of exploration on Koh Phangan is likely to include some hikes and waterfall spots (Phaeng and Than Sadet waterfalls are beautiful); beach and snorkel time around Ko ma (an island off the Koh Phangan attached by a small patch of sand), and time spent discovering the quaint fishing village of Chaloklum Bay (harking back to what the island used to be like).
If you’re not planning on going to a Full Moon Party, check out one of Koh Phangan’s epic sunsets at Apichada Lookout Bar or the tranquil (and aptly-named) Zen Beach.
Experience the Full Moon Party
If you do want to attend one of the world’s craziest parties, buy an obligatory neon vest, don some glow-in-the-dark paint and head to Haad Rin beach. Buy a bucket to share with friends and spend your night dancing your heart out with your toes in the sand.
With fire dancers, endless sound systems, buckets, shots, cocktails, and hordes of revelers looking to have a good time, you’re sure to have a night to remember!
If you don’t happen to be on Koh Phangan during Full Moon, but still want to party, fear not! The island hosts Half Moon, Black Moon and Jungle parties throughout the month so an epic night out is never far away!
Koh Phangan Cafés
Whether you go to the Full Moon Party or not, your second morning should be spent enjoying a coffee and a relaxed brunch at one of Koh Phangan’s chilled out cafés. Opt for a healthy Buddha bowl breakfast with fresh fruits or some tasty avo’ toast to set your day up right!
All the cafés have excellent wifi so you can sit here and call home, upload some of your epic Full Moon pics or plan the next steps on your journey.
The rest of the day is yours to enjoy at your leisure. Take a boat trip, head off on another hike or simply relax on the palm-fringed beaches. The turquoise water is the best place to cool off in the hot Koh Phangan sunshine or why not retreat to one of the beachside bars and cafes for a cold smoothie?
By this point, you will probably have fallen in love with the island and will be avidly finding out if you can cancel your next accommodation/transport and stay here forever instead!
If you do have a little longer, why not enroll in a Muay Thai boxing course, get your PADI scuba diving certification or take part in a peaceful yoga retreat?
Cover photo: Source