Coconut island, Koh Samui is located in southern Thailand in a spectacular enclave of the Gulf of Thailand. The wedding season is year-round on this perfectly formed tropical island. Lightly bronzed skin, almost daily sunshine, azure skies and the gentle lapping of warm water on the white sandy shores are just some of the necessary ingredients for a memorable destination wedding.
As travel becomes easier with Thailand’s ‘Test and Go’ scheme, vaccinated travellers have relatively easy access to the Kingdom and Koh Samui. The island is the second largest after Phuket and offers a languid atmosphere perfect for a ‘toes-in-the-sand’ wedding or honeymoon.
Thailand is world-renowned as the land of smiles and its creative and exotic flair, attention to detail and exemplary service offerings. Not only does Koh Samui present the country’s largest concentration of luxury internationally-branded hotels like the Ritz-Carlton, Four Seasons, Conrad and Intercontinental, it enjoys a myriad of exclusive boutique-centric hotels and expansive private villas.
Koh Samui offers hotels and villas on the powder-soft sandy shores that dip into clear emerald waters as coconut trees defy gravity to provide shade from the sun. The largest wedding villa on the island boasts 26 bedrooms on the peaceful south coast of the island. If you prefer a more urban feel, then head to one of the glamorous beachside clubs like the newly opened Tembo in busy Bophut. If you seek complete privacy, consider a cloud-piercing hill-top retreat like Suralai with seemingly endless views over the tropical jungle-scapes, across valleys and down to the Gulf of Thailand.
Larger villas and international hotels each have a dedicated wedding planner to help you plan tiny details, celebratory pre-wedding adventures and honeymoon memories. You can also handpick a licensed wedding planner from the pool of international professionals who reside on the island. Lynn D. Grebstad, Public Relations & Communications for SKAL International Koh Samui said, “Samui is a wedding planner’s paradise. It’s lush tropical landscape, palm-fringed white sand beaches and pristine turquoise sea create the perfect backdrop to life’s significant moments such as a wedding or honeymoon”.
You’ll know that Thailand is famed for its extraordinary cuisine; there are a slew of cooking classes available on the island, though none is better than Yings Cooking Home in the south. Private yachts and rickety long-tail boats are always on hand for watery quests, so you can explore tiny islands, watch pink dolphins play or laze in remote boat-only bays.
If you have an adventurous nature, there’s ziplining, hiking, 4X4 island tours, diving, waterfall climbing and of course, trying your hand at the art of eight limbs, Muay Thai. There are plenty of Instagrammable moments with pretty swings, random dinosaurs and secret gardens. If your timings are right, you might even want to head over to neighbouring island Koh Phangan for a full moon party. You could even visit one of the two ethical sanctuaries on the island and meet some happy rescue elephants.
After almost two years without tourists, Koh Samui is more beautiful and enchanting than ever. The island has seen nature bloom in abundance. Turtles are returning in their droves to nest on their once-busy beaches, rare mammals are peeking out their snuffly noses to re-explore their native jungle, and the skies are full of magical birdsong.
Koh Samui is synonymous with tropical luxury and is easy to navigate; it takes just an hour to circumnavigate the freshly-laid beach ring road. The island is packed with a huge variety of delicious restaurants, from street-side Thai to freshly imported oysters in a wine bar or lavish lobster in a luxury hotel. There is something for every tastebud and pocket.
Rediscover Thailand and fall in love with its magic all over again.
Katie Hollamby is a well-travelled public relations specialist turned writer for various international publications, tourism boards and ethical brands. Originally from the UK, she’s worked around the world, lived in and explored North America, Egypt, United Arab Emirates, Maldives and now Thailand. She’s passionate about the welfare of animals and sustainability. For more adventures, you can follow her on Instagram @thekatybooks.