14 Best Things to Do in Koh Samui with Kids

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Are you looking for the best things to do in Koh Samui with kids? If you’re looking for the perfect family vacation spot, look no further than Koh Samui. This beautiful Thai island has something for everyone, including plenty of activities that kids will love. From swimming and snorkelling in the crystal-clear waters to exploring the jungle trails, there’s plenty to keep everyone entertained.

Discover the best things to do in Koh Samui with family and tips for visiting as a family.

This Koh Samui resort is great for families

Koh Samui with kids

The Ultimate Guide To Visiting Koh Samui With Kids

Koh Samui makes for a perfect travel destination for the whole family regardless of your children’s age.

Parents regularly bring their little ones on holiday to this island where everyone can relax and have fun. You can get one of your own Koh Samui rentals along the beach to enjoy privacy or book a five-star resort.

Whichever one you choose, everyone will be comfortable, and the Thai absolutely love babies. But first, let’s plan your visit!

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Best Places To Stay In Koh Samui With Kids

There are many accommodation options in Koh Samui, from a five-star beach resort to more affordable villas and apartments. It really depends on your budget and what kind of holiday you want.

Some of the larger, international hotels have childcare facilities such as kids’ clubs and nanny services. You can also find high chairs and strollers, which are unlikely to be present outside of top resorts. Most Samui resorts also have swimming pools.

The villas and beachside rentals may have more flexibility if you request specific items.

Here are some great places to stay in Koh Samui with kids:

Tips For Visiting Koh Samui For Families

When it comes to visiting Koh Samui with toddlers, babies and kids, there are a few things you should know to make the most of your trip. Here are some top tips:

  • Choose accommodation that has direct access to the beach so you can easily take advantage of the beautiful sandy beaches and clear waters. Many of the larger resorts have their own private beaches which are perfect for families.
  • Avoid the animal shows. Various animal shows take place on Koh Samui including ones with monkeys or elephants. Families may think it’s a good idea to bring their children to see the exotic animals, but they rarely walk away satisfied. Animals in Thailand aren’t really taken care of compared to what you expect back at home.
  • Be careful with food. Thai food is notorious for being very spicy. Dishes are full of chilli, and even the most simple-sounding meal may be too hot for kids’ taste buds. In some of the smaller restaurants, staff may not have strong English skills to understand you want something non-spicy.
  • Don’t forget mosquito protection. One of the worst things about warm climates is the number of mosquitoes flying around, especially in the evening. Bring long sleeves to protect your arms when you’re out in the evening and use an anti-mosquito spray suitable for your children and their ages.
  • Be sun safe! Exposure for as little as 30 minutes can lead to sunburn and even heat stroke at any time of the year. This includes overcast days. You should always be mindful when you’re in Koh Samui to avoid the midday heat and to always wear sun protection.

Best Things To Do In Koh Samui With Kids

Now that we’ve covered the best tips for visiting Koh Samui and basic trip planning resources, it’s time to get to the good stuff – what to do with kids in Koh Samui!

Here are the top ten things to do in Koh Samui with kids:

1. Take The Ferry To Koh Tao

Koh Tao with kids

Koh Tao is a small island with exceptionally clear water that’s a few minutes away from Koh Samui on the ferry.

This attracts people who want to go snorkelling and experience marine life up close. Equipment is available to rent when you arrive.

Families with older kids, especially teenagers, will love a day trip to this island. But there is also a small beach area with shallower water, making it good for younger kids too.

2. See The Big Buddha Temple

The Big Buddha is one of the most popular tourist attractions on Koh Samui. It’s a 12-metre-tall golden statue that sits on top of a hill and can be seen from almost anywhere on the island.

The views from the base of the statue are stunning, and there are a number of small temples and shrines located nearby.

3. Visit The Koh Samui Beaches

Koh Samui with kids

A day at the beach is always great fun when looking for things to do as a family and Koh Samui has plenty of beaches to explore!

Not every beach is perfect for a family day out on the beach if you want space and privacy. Essentially, Chaweng Beach gets the most tourists and has a few bars and great restaurants with vast numbers of tourists.

Mae Nam and Bophut Beach are quieter and more private. Local families tend to come here for the day to build sandcastles and paddle in the gentle warm waves of the sea.

However, if you’re here with teenagers, you’ll find a lot of entertainment around the Chaweng area.

Another great option for postcard-worthy beaches is Koh Lipe, which is a fantastic day trip option from Koh Samui or for longer stays.

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4. Go To Aquapark

Aquapark, as the name suggests, is a water park that sits on the water in front of Monkey Bay Restaurant. Large inflatable slides and trampolines are just a few of the highlights here.

Young kids will love a few hours of playing inside the park. And safety is essential with everyone required to wear a life jacket to keep kids safe in the water, while they have the time of their lives on the slides.

5. Take A Day Trip To Ang Thong Marine Park

Best for older kids and teenagers, a day trip to Ang Thong Marine Park is an excellent way to see more of Koh Samui and the neighbouring islands.

The day trip includes opportunities for water activities, such as kayaking, snorkelling and swimming in the crystal-clear waters. You’ll see the untouched archipelago of 42 islands and enjoy some local wildlife spotting.

AngThong translates into Golden Basin. Some of the most popular spots are Wua Ta Lap island, Mother Island, The Emerald Lake and SamSao Island.

This is a great way to spend a day as a family, especially if you have older kids who are looking for some more adventure. Due to it being such a long day in the hot sun, it might not be best for babies, toddlers and young kids.

6. Visit The Butterfly Garden

Imagine a small garden with thousands of colourful butterflies fluttering in all directions, and you have the Butterfly Garden.

The butterfly garden is located near the Big Buddha and is home to over 80 different species of butterfly.

Families visit and learn about the insect’s lifecycle and see displays of the different life stages. The garden itself has pupae, caterpillars, and butterflies.

One of the highlights is being swarmed by thousands of multi-coloured insects.

This is a great activity for younger kids as it’s relatively short, but everyone will enjoy being surrounded by so many butterflies!

7. Take A Cooking Class

Get the whole family involved in learning how to make delicious Thai food.

Most cooking classes will start with a trip to the local market where you’ll learn about the different ingredients used in Thai cuisine.

Then it’s back to the kitchen to cook up a storm! These classes are great fun for kids as they get to be involved in every stage of the process, from shopping to cooking to eating!

Classes typically last around three hours, so it’s a great way to spend half a day as a family.

8. Try Some Water Activities

koh sumai with kids

Koh Samui is the perfect place to try out some water activities as a family.

There are plenty of options, from stand-up paddleboarding and kayaking to snorkelling and swimming.

If you’re staying near Chaweng Beach, there are plenty of places to rent equipment or book tours.

9. Pink Elephant Samui Water Park

This water park is a great option for families in Koh Samui with kids. Located on the shores of the Maenam Beach

There’s a shallow pool for little ones to splash around in, as well as loads of water slides and other water activities for older kids. There are even jacuzzies for the adults to enjoy!

10. Canopy Adventures

This is another great activity for families with kids in Koh Samui.

Canopy Adventures is located in the jungle and has a series of zip lines and other aerial obstacles for you to overcome as a family.

It’s a great way to spend a few hours together and bond as a family, all while getting some fresh air. They cater to ages 7 and up with different levels of difficulty to suit different ages and experiences (no experience is necessary).

11. Explore Na Muang Waterfalls

Koh Samui has two waterfalls, both of which are located in the interior of the island. Na Muang Waterfall is the taller of the two and has a number of small pools that kids can paddle in.

The path to get there is easy to follow and it’s a great place to spend an afternoon if you want to avoid the beach.

12. Football Golf

This is a great activity for the whole family to enjoy. Football golf is played with, you guessed it, a football (or a soccer ball, depending on where you’re from)!

The aim of the game is to get the football into the hole, much like regular golf.

But don’t worry, this is a lot more fun than it sounds!

There are 18 holes to play, spread out over a huge course. It’s a great way to spend an afternoon as a family competing against one another with your kicking skills.

13. Visit Pig Island

For a unique experience, take a half-day trip to Ko Mat Sum – known for its friendly pigs! Here, you will have the chance to ethically interact with the pigs in their unusual habitat.

You also get to experience some of the best snorkelling near Koh Samui, off the coast of Koh Tan. This half-day day tour experience is suitable for most ages, so it’s a great option for families.

Check prices and availability for the Ko Mat Sum & Koh Tan Tour

14. Lamai Viewpoint Ziplining & Cable Car

Get the best views with 3 natural attractions and an exciting zipline ride. With impressive views at Lamai Viewpoint, easily reached from Lamai Beach, you get to experience the cable car ride to the top, zipline your way down and get a view at Valentine Stone too.

This experience is suitable for ages 6 and up so a great one to do with your more daring kids!

You can even visit the Funny Fish Spa for a nibbly pedicure!

Check prices and availability of the Lamai Viewpoint Zipline Experience

Make sure you check out our massive South East Asia packing list with a free printable checklist for all ages:

The Ultimate South East Asia Packing List

If you are looking for more family-friendly places in Thailand, find out why Kata Noi in Phuket is another fantastic family-friendly travel option to extend your Thailand adventures.

Where Is Koh Samui?

Koh Samui is an island in Thailand and is a part of the Surat Thani Province. It is located about 35 kilometres off the east coast of the Thai mainland in the Gulf of Thailand. Koh Samui is the second biggest island in the Thai Kingdom (after Phuket).

How To Get To Koh Samui

The best way to get to Koh Samui is by flying into Koh Samui International Airport. The airport is serviced by Bangkok Airways, Thai Airways, and a few other smaller airlines.

Best Time To Visit Koh Samui

The weather in Koh Samui is sunny and warm most of the year. Their rain and monsoon season is typically between October and December and they do experience significant rainfall during this time.

The best time to visit Koh Samui if you are wanting the most chances of a sunny day is during February and March, although the weather will still be pleasant outside these months too.

How To Get Around Koh Samui

The best way to get around Koh Samui with kids is by buses, songthaews or tuk-tuks, which are easily found around the city. You can also rent a car for exploring, but be aware of the heavy traffic.

Koh Samui’s main ring road is 51km and cuts through most major beach towns, with songthaews circling the route throughout the day. They are like pick-up trucks for people that operate as a kind of shared taxi. They are cheap and easy to use, just flag one down and tell the driver where you want to go and confirm the price.

Koh Samui FAQs

Plan your family holiday to Koh Samui with these travel tips for visiting:

Is Koh Samui dangerous?

Koh Samui, like any other tourist destination, has its own set of safety considerations. However, overall, it is considered a relatively safe place for travellers. It’s important to take general precautions, such as being aware of your surroundings and securing your belongings.

Is Koh Samui worth visiting?

Absolutely! Koh Samui offers a wonderful experience for families. With its beautiful beaches, lush landscapes, and a wide range of family-friendly activities, it’s definitely worth a visit. From water sports and outdoor adventures to cultural attractions and delicious local cuisine, Koh Samui has something to offer for everyone in the family.

What is the best part of Koh Samui to stay?

The best part of Koh Samui to stay largely depends on your family’s preferences. Chaweng Beach is popular with a wide range of hotels, restaurants, and shops. Bophut is known for its charming Fisherman’s Village and relaxed ambience. Lamai Beach is another great choice, offering a mix of entertainment, dining options, and a family-friendly beach.

Is Koh Samui better than Phuket?

Both Koh Samui and Phuket are popular destinations in Thailand, each with its own unique attractions. Koh Samui offers a more relaxed and laid-back atmosphere, with beautiful beaches and a slower pace of life. It’s a great choice for families seeking a quieter and more intimate experience. Phuket, on the other hand, is larger and more developed, offering a wider range of activities, nightlife, and shopping options. It’s a better fit for families looking for a livelier and bustling destination. Ultimately, the choice between the two depends on your family’s preferences.

Koh Samui is a great place to visit with your family, and there are plenty of things to do that will keep everyone entertained. From water activities to cooking classes to visiting the butterfly garden, you’re sure to find something for everyone in your family.

Which of these Koh Samui activities for families are you most looking forward to?

things to do in koh samui with kids