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How to get from Bangkok to Koh Tao in 2023

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Haad Tien Koh Tao

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Are you planning to visit Koh Tao? This is your guide how to get from Bangkok to Koh Tao. I also included possible onward journeys to the neighbour islands Koh Phangan and Koh Samui. Spend some time in this paradise place, get into diving or go exploring its white-sand beaches. There is plenty of things to do for everyone on Koh Tao.

Koh Tao for me is one of the most beautiful places in Thailand. Despite its size only being 21 km², Koh Tao offers lots of activities. It’s especially famous for its coral reefs and aquatic life encircling the island. Koh Tao is the perfect spot for people who love exploring the underwater world – whether it is by snorkelling or diving. But also the beach lovers, hikers and yogis will find something to do on the island.

Here are my top five activities on Koh Tao!

Two ways how to get from Bangkok to Koh Tao

There are two ways to get from Bangkok to Koh Tao. The first one is by bus, which is the cheaper but longer option. The more comfortable but also more expensive alternative is by plane. Both trips include a ferry ride. I added the current rates and times to give you the best overview (January 2023).

Bangkok to Koh Tao by night bus

There is a night bus which takes you from Bangkok to Chumphon where you then change to the ferry. You leave Bangkok at around 9 pm and arrive at the pier at around 6-7 am. The ferry ride takes another 2 hours.

The bus leaves on a daily basis at 9 pm from the Lomprayah Office in Bangkok which is close to Khao San Road. Summing up you can be on the island within around 12 hours for a price of 1.250 THB (around 35 Euros) per person.

Lomprayah VIP bus Bangkok to Koh Tao
Leg space in the VIP bus
Lomprayah Ferry office Chumphon
Lomprayah ferry office in Chumphon

You can book your tickets on 12Go. There are two busses available: the normal bus and the VIP bus. The difference is basically that you have more space in the VIP bus and you also get a snack. The normal bus is comparable to one of the usual travel busses. The seats can be lowered so you can get some sleep during the ride. The bus companies also provide blankets.

Bangkok to Koh Tao by night bus & ferrydaily 9 pm to 8.45 amPrice from 1.250 THB
current timetable & prices – Bangkok to Koh Tao (January 2023)

Bangkok to Koh Tao by plane

If you don’t want to travel over night you could fly from Bangkok to either Koh Samui or Surat Thani and take the ferry from there. It’s best to have a look at Skyscanner to check the flights*. Bear in mind that you sometimes have to pay extra for check-in luggage.

The flight from Bangkok to Koh Samui takes 1 hours and 15 minutes plus waiting time. You then have to take transport from the airport to the pier. The costs are around: 1000 THB for taxi (30 minutes), 400 THB for shuttle (30 minutes) 200 THB for the bus (1 hour). Depending on the boat company the ferry ride takes between 1.5 hours and 4 hours and costs around 700 THB.

To book the ferry tickets you can also go through 12Go or Direct Ferries. The journey steps are very similar when flying via Surat Thani, but it takes longer.

Route / CompanyTimesPrice
Koh Samui to Koh Tao / Lomprayah8 am – 9.30 am700 THB
Koh Samui to Koh Tao / Songserm10.30 am – 2.30 pm600 THB
Koh Samui to Koh Tao / Lomprayah12.15 pm – 2.15 pm700 THB
Koh Samui to Koh Tao / Lomprayah12.30 pm – 2 pm700 THB
Koh Samui to Koh Tao / Lomprayah3.30 pm – 5 pm700 THB
current timetable & prices – Koh Samui to Koh Tao by ferry (January 2023)

RouteTimesPrice
Surat Thani to Koh Tao 10 am – 2. 15 pm900 THB
Surat Thani to Koh Tao / Night boat (daily schedule and prices vary)9.30 pm – 6 amfrom 900 THB
Surat Thani to Koh Tao1 pm – 5 pm900 THB
current timetable & prices – Surat Thani to Koh Tao by ferry (January 2023)

Which option to take?

All in all the night bus & ferry is the cheapest option to get from Bangkok to Koh Tao. I would personally always prefer to go by bus at it’s much cheaper and less stressful in a way. No waiting at the airport, no worries about delays, less changes in transport and it’s also better for the environment.

You love breakfast? Check out my top five breakfast cafés on Koh Tao.

For those who have troubles sleeping on moving vehicles though and don’t want to deal with being tired the flight to either Koh Samui or Surat Thani might be the better option.

Chumphon Pinnacle Barracuda
Diving in Koh Tao is beautiful
Chumphon pier
The pier in Chumphon

Planning your onward journey

If you want to go to Koh Phangan or Koh Samui after your visit to Koh Tao you can easily book your ferry tickets through the local travel agencies. I can highly recommend Island Travel, as they are super friendly and reply fast on Facebook. So you can just check the time table and prices with them on Facebook and then go to the office to pay for your tickets. Another way is 12Go as well.

I hope you’ll heave a pleasant journey to beautiful Koh Tao and a great time on the island! If you have any questions please leave a comment below.

Do you need some help planning your next trip?

Book your accommodation

I usually book my accommodation via booking.com. They have a great choice & if you set some filters you will find the perfect place to stay.

Book your train in Europe

For train tickets in Europe it's best to use trainline. You can book tickets for different countries. They also know the bonus systems like BahnCard in Germany and will consider them in the pricing.

Book your bus and other transfers

Buy bus, train or boat tickets for many destinations on 12Go! You get an overview over all possible connections and can easily book your ticket through the platform.

Book a rental car

On rentalcars.com you can find an overview of different car hires & get the best deal.

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