Koh Samui may be the second most visited resort destination after Phuket, but the island is second fiddle to none when it comes to modern tropical allure. Five star resorts — easily some of the top luxury hotels in Asia — are nestled amongst coconut groves, steps away from gentle lapping waves. At night, bustling walking streets take turns cropping up around the island as DJs spin into action at happening beach bars and sophisticated lounges.
Small enough to circumnavigate in an hour or so, self-drive and chauffeured vehicles are the most convenient ways to explore Koh Samui's eclectic shores — ranging from the tourist mecca Chaweng to the relatively untouched Taling Ngam beaches — and don't forget the forested island interior. Longtail boat and luxury yacht charters provide the most picturesque way to beach hop around the island as well as to explore the islands a little further offshore.
In addition to domestic connections, a handful of regional cities offer direct flights landing at the quaint Samui International Airport including Singapore, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, and Penang. Koh Samui is also a launch pad for visits to nearby sister islands of Koh Phangnan and Koh Tao; each island offers a distinctly different vibe and unique doses of tropical temptation.