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Koh Tao is one of the best dive sites in Thailand and just a very beautiful tropical island in the Gulf of Thailand. Therefore, every year thousands of travelers want to get to Koh Tao directly from Bangkok. Since the direct transport between the capital of Thailand and this island does not exist, all tourists have to use several modes of transport. Perhaps for some it seems to be a significant drawback, but in reality the transport in Thailand is very well developed and there is no problem in the fact that somewhere in the middle of the route to change the aircraft on a bus or a bus to the ferry. Especially in this article we describe the most popular ways of getting from Bangkok to Koh Tao fast and not expensive.
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How to get to Koh Tao from Bangkok. Bus + ferry
One of the cheapest ways to enable easy access from Bangkok to Koh Tao, is a combined bus + ferry route. The advantage of this variant is not only the lowest price, but also the ability to use night transport. Of course, night trip by bus can be a bit tedious, but I personally often use night buses to move in Thailand. Firstly, it is very time-saving in my thai travels, and secondly – allows you to save money for living, because everyone can sleep for a few hours on the bus (without hotel in this night).
Speaking directly about route Bangkok – Koh Tao, at first you can find joint routes, which sells Lomprayah company – one of the most famous sea ferry companies in Thailand. The company’s office is located near Khao San Road in Bangkok, however, book and buy joint tickets bus + ferry, you can advance on the Internet. I usually use the service transportation booking in Asia (direct link to all the options of transport from Bangkok to Koh Tao). This international service offers many options for combined routes with different costs and different modes of transport. On the left side of result page you can see icon to determine which vehicles will be used on a particular route, and after – to read the description and the name of the transport companies.
At the time of this writing, the cost of the joint bus + ferry route from Bangkok to Koh Tao by Lomprayah company is 1150 THB (or 30 euros). Bus from Bangkok goes to 21-00 from the area of the street Khao San Road, but you must come to the Lomprayah office no later than the 20-00 (on the bus line registration begins at 19:00). If all of the passengers already in place, the bus can start departure before 21-00, such as 20-30! The office of the company Lomprayah you get a special sticker on luggage, bus tickets with the numbers of seats and tickets for the ferry (be sure to save before the end of the trip). If possible, ask the seats in the first half of the bus salon, away from the toilet! If you arrived to Thailand in Suvarnabhumi Airport and you just want to go to Koh Tao, you can take advantage of special Minibus from the Suvarnabhumi Airport on Khaosan Road for 120 THB, and a little further to walk to the office of the company Lomprayah or stay in one of the cheap local hotels.
It is a night trip, therefore is better to buy water and snacks still in Bangkok, because stops on the route is not provided (only sanitary stop with the possibility to eat in the small cafe (after midnight). The bus can be cool from the air conditioning, but there are blankets. In the opinion of some tourists, some bus on this route are not entirely new, but the bus takes you to the pier in Chumphon region, and the last part of the route to the island of Ko Tao takes place on the high-speed catamaran of Lomprayah. If you suffer from seasickness, better to take a special pill for motion sickness. Speed ferry arrival to the island of Koh Tao in 08-45 If the night buses – not your option, you can use the morning bus from Bangkok in 06-00. Despite the less travel time (about 9 hours), on the island of Koh Tao you’ll only in 15-00 (03-00 p.m.). Koh Tao island is located about 70 km from the mainland.
Just I want to note that this is the most convenient way to get to Koh Tao from Bangkok by bus and ferry, but not the cheapest. If you want to try to save money or you do not like the schedule, you can overcome all the way alone. First you need to get to the Southern Bus Terminal in Bangkok, find buses to the city of Chumphon (there are the nearest to the island of Koh Tao ferry piers). Bus price in this case – 300-400 baht per person. After this you need get to one of the ferry piers in Chumphon (50-100 baht), and then – just to pay the ferry to Koh Tao (from 500 to 700 baht, depending on the ferry company and time of departure). Given the fact that before the Southern Bus Terminal it’s best to get a taxi in Bangkok to save a lot of money does not work, and often a separate trip not only more difficult, but turns even more expensive than buying an joint ticket.
How to get from Bangkok to Koh Tao by train and ferry
If you prefer not to use the buses for long trips in Thailand, you can use the night train to Chumphon + ferry to the island. Depending on the carriage class, the cost of a trip from Bangkok to Koh Tao is from 1200 baht to 2200 baht. In the first case – a trip in the second-class carriages with conventional chairs and fans. The most expensive option – a trip in sleeper carriage of first class. However, the best option if you want a good night’s sleep and save money – the second-class carriages with a fan or air conditioning. By the way, because of the very low temperature in air-conditioned carriages, many prefer the cheaper option – sleeping car 2nd class with fans. Joint ticket Bangkok – Koh Tao in the latest version will cost 1570 THB.
How to get to Hua Lampong railway station in Bangkok (including how to get from Suvarnabhumi Airport) you can find on the link in this sentence on a separate page. If you buy an integrated ticket train + ferry to Koh Tao, you will be taken free of charge from the railway station in Chumphon to the ferry pier. If you buy a ticket on the train from Bangkok to Chumphon, you can find the company Lomprayah office directly at the train station in Chumphon and buy a ticket on the ferry directly there. Given the fact that the train in Thailand is often delayed, I recommend ordering tickets online combined to select options, where between the train and the ferry has a small margin of time (1.5-2 hours).
You can buy tickets for the integrated train + ferry in advance, using the famous search service in Asia. Next to each option you can read reviews from travelers as well as to see the place of embarkation and disembarkation (Map opens when you click on the name of the start or end point of the route in the search results). For example, when choosing a company Chumphon Fame Tours, you may notice that the office of this company is not located at the railway station (as is the case with Lomprayah), and a little further and you will need to pass a couple of minutes on a city (400 m., see picture below).
From Bangkok to Koh Tao – flights
Since Koh Tao not have international or domestic airport, you have to be prepared for the fact that part of the road you will in any case have to do on land and water. Using a flight from Bangkok to Koh Tao is possible, if you want to overcome all the way as quickly as possible, and not low on money. This is the fastest, but also the most expensive option. The closest airport to the island of Koh Tao is the airports in Chumphon and Koh Samui. You can fly to Chumphon from Don Muang Airport in Bangkok for 1 hour. The cost of a ticket from 65 to 70 euros per ticket in the two sides, or about 35 euros for a one-way ticket. Schedule is not very convenient – early morning or evening. Most likely, it will be a low-cost airline Nok Air, and the best prices for airline tickets you can find through a search form below. From the airport in Chumphon you need to use local transport for getting to one of the ferry piers and buy a ticket for the ferry to Koh Tao.
If you want to get to Koh Samui from Bangkok, the flight would cost considerably expensive – about $ 100 one way. Read more about this – the article here. Every day is done many flights between Koh Samui and the capital’s airport, Suvarnabhumi (Bangkok Air airline). From Samui Airport, you need to get local transport to the pier to go to Koh Samui and Koh Tao (usually the first stop of ferry to Koh Phangan). Ferries between the islands of schedule you can see at this link (you need change date). Note: the last ferry Koh Samui ko Tao goes to 17-00 with Nathon pier, so you should use the morning planes from Bangkok, or you will be forced to spend the night on the island of Koh Samui and to go to Koh Tao on next day. The cost of the ferry Koh Samui – Koh Tao is from 600 to 700 baht, depending on the ferry company and, accordingly, depending a specific ferry pier of Koh Samui. Enjoy your travels!
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