Getting To Phangan

There are basically three ways of getting to Koh Phangan from Bangkok:
  • Bus/Boat
  • Train/Boat
  • Flight from Bangkok to Koh Samui/Boat
Koh Samui Airport is the closest airport to Koh Phangan, with Bangkok Air flying in over 20 times in a day from Bangkok, Phuket , Singapore or Hong Kong. 

Thai Airways are now also operating at Samui Airport on a limited service but some flights have reductions to compete with Bangkok Air.

It is slightly cheaper to fly to and from Surat Thani with Air Asia or Nok Air but boat & taxi fares and journey time tend to negate any savings. Also boats to & from Koh Phangan to Surat Thani do not connect well with flights therefore waiting times can be as much as three to four hours between boat arrival and flight disembarkation depending which service you take. The boat journey to & from Phangan takes approx 3 hours (Raja) and 1½ hours (Lomprayah) and from the pier at Donsak a further bus journey to the airport will take at least another hour plus the flight time to Bangkok! This means total journey time from Koh Phangan to Bangkok via Surat Thani can be up to eight hours!
We advise customers to consider the Lomprayah boat/bus service as it takes only 12 hours with good cost saving against flights!
The best cheap flight option is Lomprayah who have set up a new partnership with Solar Air and are providing a morning scheduled Catamaran boat connection to Chumpon, a bus to Chumpon airport then a flight to Don Muang airport in Bangkok arriving mid afternoon. Total journey time is about seven hours. The service is repeated the other direction with arrival on the island late afternoon. Note, if you have an international flight connection then as most depart from Suvarnabhumi (pronounced Sawanapoom) you need to add an extra couple of hours for connection times between the airports.

It takes a minimum of 5 hours to get to Koh Phangan from Suratthani Airport and a minimum of 1 hour from Koh Samui. The last boat leaves for Koh Phangan from Big Buddha Pier at 6:30pm so for flights arriving later than 5pm you may have to stay in Koh Samui.

Be aware, if you are booking flights back to Bangkok from Surat Thani and the flight is a morning or midday flight, it is unlikely that you have enough time for the connections when leaving from Koh Phangan - you should expect to stay a night in Surat Thani.

During Full Moon Party night there are speed boats operating all night to and from Koh Samui - simply ask at your accommodations or a travel agent.

All international and domestic flights from Koh Pha-Ngan can be booked at at all travel agency on Koh Phangan :
Flight Timetables
For more detailed information please follow these links - thank you!
Second Class (Air Con or Fan) Sleeper trains are the best option as you get a table and seat that turns into fairly spacious beds; the lower bunk is bigger, so sells out quickly! The best air con is First Class which has a sink and double bunks in each compartment. 

The options are Non-AC and AC and if booked at a travel agent then tickets are normally sold inclusive of the boat crossing to Koh Phangan. 
State Railways of Thailand - Train Time Table
For more detailed information please follow these links - thank you!
Most Bangkok travel agents will be able to sell a cheap combined travel ticket from Bangkok to Koh Phangan which includes the bus and boat ticket. But be careful of anyone who is offering really cheap prices in Bangkok as some agents are selling tickets at ridiculously low prices from Bangkok to Pha-Ngan for a reason - there is often a catch and normally a scam involved! - many buses are under maintained, breakdown frequently with there are often reports of theft of personal belongings, also the journey takes all day & night (about 18 hours total bus/boat travel time!) and it's not the most comfortable way to travel with lots of waiting time and often missed ferries!

These buses depart from Bangkok and normally arrive early morning in Surat Thani in time for first ferry to the islands. Note, that just for a few hundred baht (just a few dollars) more you can get a much faster and more quality service where normally you and your belongings are safe and secure!
These are three other much better quality bus/boat services:
  • Government bus & ferry (via Surat Thani) - Approx 14 hours
  • Lomprayah Bus & Catamaran (via Chumpon) - Approx 12 hours
  • Seatran Bus & Boat service (via Chumpon) - Approx 12 hours.
For travel from Koh Pha-Ngan to Bangkok you can book all your travel tickets at all travel agency on Koh Phangan :
Option 1: Cheap VIP bus/Boat
For the cheap VIP bus you will need to buy a combined taxi/boat/VIP bus ticket. The boat departs Thong Sala pier on Koh Phangan 12pm midday and a shuttle bus will drop passengers off in Surat Thani to wait about two to three hours at the VIP bus depot (where they will try to sell you food and drink!) until about 7pm at which time the bus will depart to Bangkok arriving approximately 6am. (total journey time 18 hours!).

Beware in high season, as this boat does not normally allocate seats and can often be oversold therefore customers may be offloaded especially after the Full Moon party! Around Full Moon this boat is also often delayed so if you have fixed connections be careful! This is the low cost option but if you book at Backpackers Information Centre, Haadrin you will have the best chance of a good bus company as we constantly monitor the companies we use and also ask our customers to email us with feedback about the quality of the service! Be aware many travel agents use different bus companies and often they make more commissions by putting the customer on poor quality services so be very careful who you book with especially as Lonely Planet warns about criminal agencies and bus companies operating scams out of Surat Thani. 
Option 2: Government Bus/Ferry
The Government Bus to Bangkok departs on the Raja Ferry from Thong Sala to Surat Thani at 5pm saving time and hassle as there is no hanging around or changing transports as the bus comes across on the ferry to and from Koh Phangan. It has a total journey time of approx. 14 hours and there are two bus options - the 24 seat bus which is more spacious for leg room and reclining seats or the 48 seat bus option. It also includes a meal and snacks. This service departs and arrives at the South Bus Station, Bangkok. 
Options 3 & 4: Lomprayah Bus & High Speed Catamaran OR Seatran Bus & Seatran High Speed Boat
The Lompraya Bus & Catamaran service is a high speed and comfortable service and routes via Chumporn rather than Suratthani, hence only taking 12 hours from Koh Phangan direct to the Khao San Road, Bangkok! Lomprayah operates two scheduled departures. 

The Seatran Bus & Seatran High Speed Boat service is a comfortable service and routes via Chumporn rather than Suratthani, hence only taking 12 hours from Koh Phangan direct to the Khao San Road, Bangkok! Seatran only operates a morning departure schedule. 

For information on both these services click here:
There are also many other bus routes (mostly via mini-bus) which route via Surat Thani with other major destinations on the west coast and through the South of Thailand. All these can be booked at Backpackers Information Centre, Haad-rin. There is an attached schedule listing for information only from Surat Thani for many of these, BUT we cannot confirm these times as schedules do change quite frequently and also the boat connection times for these routes from Koh Phangan are not listed!
If you are coming to Koh Phangan from the mainland, buses, trains and planes all stop at Surat Thani where you will be transferred to either the Surat Thani jetty for the Songserm Ferry Service (3 hours to Koh Phangan) or to Donsak pier which is a 50 minute bus ride away from Surat Thani town and then a further 2.5 hours ferry journey to Koh Phangan. If you stay overnight in Suratthani, the hotel will book you a ferry.
From Koh Samui the shortest crossing point is from the Bophut and Mae-Nam areas where several services operate. The quickest and most comfortable is the Lomprayah Catamaran (25 mins) that stops in Thongsala on Koh Pha-Ngan while the Haad Rin Queen operating out of Big Buddha (50 mins) runs the most frequent service (normally four times a day) and this arrives directly at Haad Rin Pier. Ferries also running from the port of Big Buddha include the Seatran Express (30 mins) and Songserm Express (45 mins). 
Boat Time Tables
The Following services operate from Koh Samui to Koh Phangan: 
For more detailed information please follow these links:
Haadrin Queen:
Haadrin Queen is a passenger ferry from Big Buddha on Koh Samui to Haadrin Koh Phangan normally departing four times per day. 

Haadrin - Big Buddha Koh Samui departure times are 0930, 1140, 1430 and 1730. The journey takes approximately one hour. 

Big Buddha Koh Samui - Haadrin departure times are 1030, 1300, 1600 and 1830. The journey takes approximately one hour. 

*Please check at your resort or a travel agency for their seasonal schedules and to confirm this service is operating.
From Surat Thani Donsak pier to Koh Phangan (Tong Sala) the main services is: 
Raja Car Ferry:
The Raja ferry is a vehicle and foot passenger ferry linking Koh Phangan with Surat Thani Donsak pier. 

Donsak to Koh Phangan - first ferry 0600 then a ferry departs every 2 hours until last ferry at 1800. Journey time is nearly 3 hours. 

Koh Phangan to Donsak - first ferry 0500 then a ferry departs every 2 hours until last ferry at 1700. Journey time is nearly 3 hours.
*Warning: Raja ferry company boats are extremely old and they have a fleet of about six ferries which are on a rotating maintenance schedule. Some of the boats run the journey in 2.5 hours but some take up to five hours. RAJA do not publicise which ferry you are on so if you are unlucky enough to be on the slow one then all your onward bus/train/flight connections will be affected.

*Please check at your resort or a travel agency for their seasonal schedules and to confirm these services are operating.
From Surat Thani Town pier to Koh Phangan Thong Sala pier the main services are: 

*Night Boat:
The Night Boat operates from Koh Phangan Thong Sala pier to Surat Thani town pier.
The Night Boat is a very basic boat with mattresses to sleep on and is the only boat operating a night time schedule. In the wet seasons this boat sometimes cancels its service or can be heavily delayed so be careful if you have fixed connections and follow on bus/train or flights. 

Departure from Surat Thani pier to Koh Phangan (Thong Sala pier) is 2300pm arrival 0600am 
Departure from Koh Phangan (Thong Sala pier) to Surat Thani pier is 2200pm arrival 0400am 
*Please check at your resort or a travel agency for their seasonal schedules and to confirm this service is operating. 

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