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Samet Island in the Gulf of Thailand is located less than a hundred kilometers from Pattaya, so its visit is possible as a one-day excursion, and as a full-fledged independent rest with accommodation in a comfortable hotel. Relatively close location allows you to get to the island of Samet from Pattaya quickly, inexpensively and comfortably. And the choice of transport depends on your personal preferences and recreation budget, and also – in some cases – on the number of your satellites. Detailed information on the types of transport along the Pattaya-Samet route, the timetable and the fare between the popular resort and the island is below on the page. Note: you should know that Samet island is often referred to as Samed Island, but in reality it same island.
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Features of the trip to Koh Samet from Pattaya
Since Koh Samet is a small island without an airport, your journey from Pattaya always consists of two stages: a trip along the roads of Thailand to Ban Phe (a small village on the coast in Rayong province, from where ferries and boats go to the island) and directly from the mainland to the Koh Samet (the island is only 6.5 km away from the mainland). In most cases, these stages of the journey are paid for separately (with the exception of organized transfers and one-day excursions), so different types of land and water transport can be used in any combination of your choice.
Information on the cost of water transport and the schedule of ferries between Ban Phe and Samet Island can be found at the end of this article. And the cost of the selected water transport simply add to the cost of land transport, to get the final price of transport between Pattaya and Samet Island. And of course, in the recreation budget, the resulting amount should be multiplied by two, if you plan to return to Pattaya with the same types of transport.
A feature of Samet Island in the Gulf of Thailand is that it is a natural reserve of Khao Laem Ya – Mu Ko Samet. The island has a territory of just over 13 square kilometers, and a special fee is charged for the visit – 200 Thai Baht per person, regardless of the length of stay at Samet. Here you need to remember that the cost of some hotels on the island (when booking accommodation in them online) is exempt from the fee fee of 200 baht (more precisely, it is already included in the cost of living). Therefore, please clarify this question when booking. There are also some tricks to avoid paying the fee when arriving at Nadan Pier (for more details, see the article “Useful advice when visiting Samet Island”). Finally, starting in 2016, you need pay 20 baht per person for the maintenance of the Nadan pier, when you arrives to this main pier.
Taxi from Pattaya to Koh Samet – cost and features
The relatively small distance between the city of Pattaya and the resort island of Samet (less than 100 km) allows very quickly and with maximum comfort to reach the destination by taxi. At the same time, you can use the services of street racks by taxi order, negotiate with a taxi driver in the parking lot yourself or order a car taxi transfer in advance using the international services Kiwitaxi and having negotiated all the details of the trip in your native language. In all these cases, the cost of the trip will be from the doors of your hotel in Pattaya to the ferry pier in Ban Phe. The advantage of a taxi is that you will be taken to the right pier immediately, and you will not be lost another hour to drive around the other hotels in Pattaya and collect fellow passengers, as it often happens with transfers and excursions.
Here it should be noted that the cost of a taxi will be higher than the cost of other modes of transport, but only if you travel alone. If you two, three or four, then the trip is not only the most comfortable, but also inexpensive. So, the cost of a taxi when ordering online is approximately 1400-1600 THB (or 41-46 USD), depending on the class of the car, the number of passengers and full baggage seats. Those. The cost per passenger when traveling three together will be about 450-500 THB, i.е. it’s not much more than offered in most Pattaya street travel agencies and at hotel counters for a transfer on a minibus. And if you are travel with friends or family, then a taxi ride will generally be the fastest, most comfortable and inexpensive.
Transfer by minibus from Pattaya to Samet
The second most popular way to travel to Samet Island from Pattaya is using an organized transfer. This option usually includes a trip on a comfortable minibus directly from the door of your hotel to the Ban Phe pier on the mainland, the Nuan Type pier directly on Samet Island or to other piers. At the same time, the most affordable option will be the first transfer option – from the hotel in Pattaya to one of the piers in Ban Phe. The minimum price that can be expected in this case is 250-300 THB per person to one side (for example, at 35 Group Pattaya, which I already recommended for trips on the page How to get from Pattaya to Koh Chang).
It should be borne in mind that some transport companies charge an additional charge of about 100 THB per person in cases where the hotel in Pattaya is located in the southern part of the resort, ie. in the far part of Jomtien (area of the Ambassador City hotel). Options, which including payment for the ferry to the island, differ slightly higher price (70-100 baht more expensive). Given that the standard price of this ferry to Na Dan pier on the island of Samet is 50 baht (when you buying in both directions, i.e. 50+50), we can conclude that there is no reason to overpay, because you will be sold a ticket for the same ferry, but at a higher price (because the price of a ferry to one side often starts from 70 baht), and a minibus will often follow further to the island of Koh Chang.
Of course, there are exceptions: some transport companies have their own small speedboats, that deliver minibas passengers to the island and back from the island at the time of arrival of the minibus to the mainland pier. But all these questions should be clarified in advance. Personally, I like the option with an ordinary ferry for 50 baht, because on it less swaying. If you look at the maps of Samet and see that the hotel or beach you have chosen is not located in the area of the main village on the island (Na Dan) and in the area of another pier, you can immediately go to this pier, but the cost will usually be higher (information about ferries in corresponding section of the article below).
It may be more advantageous to order the transfer immediately in both directions – route Pattaya – Samet – Pattaya. In this case it is necessary to focus on 700 baht per person and in this cost should be included not only the transfer to the minibus, but also the sea transport to the island and back. You can find and variant with a transfer to the best (according to many) beach on the island – Ao Phai beach. In this case, the trip to both sides to the specified white sand beach will be about 950-1000 baht per person, and in one direction – approximately 850-900 baht. In one direction in this case, ordering a transfer does not make sense at all.
Choosing an organized transfer from Pattaya to Samet, you should take into account the popularity of this route, ie. in the high season to find tickets “today for tomorrow” may not work because of the limited supply from the companies inspected. Therefore, it is better to take care of buying such a transfer a few days before the proposed trip. Finally, be careful when ordering a transfer in unverified street agencies. Sometimes for delivery customers, some transport companys can be used old minibuses, and along the way there will be too many stops, as a result you will seat with minimal comfort, and the trip will take much longer.
Day trips to Samet from Pattaya
For tourists who want to change the situation for a short while and visit Samet with a short-term visit, ie. to spend on this island only one day, and in the evening to return to your hotel in Pattaya – there is a variant with a special excursion. This method allows you to get an idea of the island and spend on its beaches most of the day’s time, not too caring about the way to move to Samet and back. You can order the excursion in numerous street agencies in Pattaya. And if you want the excursion to take place in your native language, you can find special offers from local guides with using Internet.
Such an excursion, which includes not only the journey to the island, a beach lounger and a full dinner, will cost around 1500 baht per person. Of course, the cost of an organized tour is slightly higher than an independent trip, but for someone, comfort is more important than saving money. Order of a one-day excursion to Samet from Pattaya can be preferably done in advance, although some companies allow you to make an order today for tomorrow. Departure from Pattaya usually in the morning at 07-00, return to Pattaya from Koh Samet – after sunset.
Public transport from Pattaya to Koh Samet
The most affordable, but somewhat more complicated, because of the transplant option is to get to Samet from Pattaya – using public transport. In this case, your way to the island will consist not of two, but of three stages: the transfer from Pattaya to Rayong, transfer to Ban Phe and directly to the island by water transport. As with passing buses from Bangkok, you need to catch them on the Sukhumvit highway, and this is the main difficulty, because there is no exact timetable, the bus signs are often in Thai, and even the bus may just not stop. Therefore, it may be necessary to help from the local residents, who will help stop the bus for a small fee. Stopping is better to search near the intersection of the Sukhumvit highway and Pattaya Central Rd.
In general, the middle cost of a trip to Rayong from Pattaya is about 70 baht. And another 30 baht will cost the road to the Ban Phe pier on songthaew (passenger pickup). With the second part of the way, there will be no problems – the route is well known and popular not only among tourists, but also among local residents. Further on one of the three piers (they are all within 500-600 meters from each other) you bye standard ticket for a ferry or speedboat to the island of Samet is purchased. It is a pity that the route from Pattaya to Samet we can not buy a bus ticket on the popular service of transport in Asia, which I usually recommend for inexpensive trips to other destinations in Thailand.
As you can see, the total cost of the trip from Pattaya to Samet by public transport is 150 baht, i.е. twice cheaper than the cheapest transfer. But possible problems with finding and stopping the right bus make this way a little more complicated and make this option not so popular as a taxi, transfer or excursion. The return trip is easier, but remember that there are two bus stations in Rayong, and buses to Pattaya are sent only with one of them.
A trip from Pattaya to Samet on a rented car or motorbike
Since transport rent in Thailand is very common and allows in some cases to get full freedom of movement at a reasonable price, many tourists often have a desire to make an independent trip to the island of Samet from Pattaya. The idea at first glance is very tempting, but there are a number of nuances that can reduce your desire to use such an option to naught. Firstly, large ferries do not go to Samet, how on Koh Samui or Ko Chang. Those. You can get to the rental car only to the Ban Phe Pier. Of course, there is a large guarded parking lot, but what’s the point of paying for car rental and parking (which is 400 baht per day for a car or 30 baht for a motobike), and to walk on the island by yourself?
This can also happen on the way back, if you return not the same day. As a result, even when traveling alone, to achieve any savings is almost impossible. But this method can deliver a lot of problems. Therefore, it is much easier to use ready-made variants of the trip, during which you do not need to think about solving transport problems, you can drink delicious Thai beer and take a nap, leaving the forces directly for rest on the island of Samet.
Ferries and boats on Koh Samet from Ban Phe (schedule and prices)
And on the coast in the village of Ban Phe, and directly on the island of Samet, there are several piers, so when you first travel from Pattaya to Samet, you may have some confusion with the many names of piers and beaches. If you use an organized transfer for a trip from Pattaya or Bangkok, you probably will not be able to choose the destination: transport companies usually deliver to a certain pier and from there they take tourists on the way from Samet Island back to Pattaya. For example, the popular company 35 Group Pattaya delivers to Nuanthip Pier, although as always in Thailand, many maps have alternative names, for example, Nuan Thip Pier. From there, cheap ferries to the Nadan pier on the island go and there if you want you can find a speedboat that will deliver to any beach in Koh Samet in 10-15 minutes.
Nearby there are also piers Seree and Jadet, and the largest in Ban Phe village pier with name Sri Ban Phe Pier. This is the pier I recommend to specify as the destination when traveling from Pattaya to Samet by taxi, because from here the maximum number of ferries leaves and from here the easiest way to reach not only the main island settlement on Samet – Nadan (Na Dan, Nadarn, Nadan), but also to other beaches on the island. Also from here you can use easiest wayfrom getting on songthaew (passenger pickup trucks) to the bus station in Rayong and make the return journey. The piers in Ban Phe are located within walking distance from each other (no more than 500-600 meters), so you can easily reach the desired one, even if you were brought to another. Detailed information on the location of piers and the schedule of ferries and boats from them you can find on the page “Piers in Ban Phe and Koh Samet, the schedule of ferries.”
If we talk about the time of the ferry service between Ban Phe and Koh Samet, the first ferry to the island leaves at 06:00 am, and the last ferry usually at 17:00 local time, ie. arrives on the island about an hour before dark. Ferries leave every hour, and if you are late just a little – next to the pier there is a lot of small Thai cafes, where you can eat and drink (cheaper than in Koh Samet). Travel time to the island, when it comes to the Nadan pier in the north-eastern part of Samet, is 25-30 minutes (depending on the direction of the wind and the height of the waves).
The fare for one person is from 50 baht. Despite the term “ferry”, here it is not at all about the usual huge marine vessels with a compartment for motor transport. Rather, it is about large boats that resemble ferries to Koh Lan near Pattaya, but designed for even fewer passengers, because unlike Pattaya “brethren”, ferries from Ban Phe to Koh Samet do not have a second passenger deck and in general much smaller in size. Usually on top of such a boat there is a special ground where you can take sunbathing and enjoy the sea.
Na Dan Pier (Nadan pier) is the best choice if you plan to stay on the beaches of Sai Kaew, Ao Phai or Ao Thubtim in the eastern part of the island. If you plan to stay (or have already booked the hotel at the best price with the help of Hotellook (a map of hotels with prices located below) on other beaches of Samet Island, you can immediately poison yourself to the pier, which located not far from your hotel. For example, Ao Wong Duen Pier is suitable in a situation, when you are interested in the beaches of Ao Saengthian or Ao Nuan, a ticket from Ban Phe to the ferry costs 60 baht per person, and ferries depart four times a day: 8:30, 12:00, 13:30 and 16:00.
Map of Koh Samet with hotels at the best prices
(in the lower right corner you can choose the price range)
When you need to get to the Ao Wai pier in the south-eastern part of Samet Island, you can use the appropriate ferry costing 100 baht, which departing from the main pier of Ban Phe at 11:30 and 14:00. The return flight from this island pier is at 14:00, and the journey time is from 40 minutes. Finally, to get to the southernmost pier of Samet Island – Ao Kui – you can use a ferry from Ban Phe, which leaves at 10:00 am and costs 120 baht per person.
A faster way to the island is passenger speed boats. Right on the piers you will find many offers for delivery to the island from 200 baht per person in just 10-15 minutes. When buying tickets in both directions, you can save a little, because round-trip tickets are sold for 350 baht per person. Delivery to other beaches of the island will cost or at a similar price, or 50 baht more. At the same time, there is a possibility not to wait for the full filling of the speed boat, but for paying the whole boat at once. For the price it will cost 2000-2500 baht. If you travel with large company, then the option is not the worst. Especially since you are easily delivered to any beach and you will additionally save 200 baht per person.
Separately, it should be noted that public transport on the island – green passenger pick-ups singteo (songthaew) is very democratic at a price (from 10 to 60 baht per person for the passage to the nearest / most remote beach). Therefore, if you do not expect a direct ferry to the distant piers from Ban Phe in the near future, you can safely sail to Nadan pier, and then use local transport. The indicated prices are actual for full filling of the pick-up (8-10 passengers). If you do not want to wait – you can pay more, but go immediately, without waiting for the full load of passengers.
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