Koh Phangan, Thailand
When to go
Koh Phangan has two high seasons – from May to November and from January to March. It’s still pleasantly sunny during the off-peak periods, but be prepared for rain. By far the busiest times are during the full moon, when hotels book up for days leading up to and after the infamous monthly parties.
PlanesFly into Koh Samui Airport (www.samuiairportonline.com), 15 kilometres from Koh Phangan. Operated by the hip, Hawaiian-shirt-wearing people at Bangkok Airways (www.bangkokair.com), it receives the airline’s regional jets from Bangkok, Phuket, Singapore and Hong Kong, among others. Thai Airways (www.thaiairways.com) also flies from Bangkok. From there, you'll have to take a boat transfer to Koh Phangan.
BoatsIf you have time to spare, you might want to take a Seatran Ferry (www.seatranferry.com) from the mainland to one of three ports on Koh Samui, but be prepared for confusing timetables and a rather long trip (it takes between one and three hours in dry season, depending on the boat). Once on Samui it’s easy to get ferries and longtail boats to Koh Phangan.
AutomobilesNarrow, steep roads make driving here tricky for the uninitiated. You can hire cars on the island, but we recommend tootling around town on a bicycle instead.