The Changing Face of Koh Samet
Living in Thailand offers many benefits and one of those is being able to escape to one of the many beautiful beaches, in fact some of the beach offerings are world class. I have always had a soft spot for Koh Samet as it was the first island I ever visited back in 2006, but in more recent years I have been disappointed in the island, in fact I have been a left a little sad by how it has changed.
Koh Samet was once a charming tiny island with dirt tracks linking the various beaches, the only access was via a ferry or occasional speed boat and you were more likely to bump into a back packer than a seasoned tourist. Now you are more likely to literally bump into a one of the hundreds of Chinese tourists there, as on some beaches it is busier than a crowded train in rush hour.
Being the nearest proper island to Pattaya and Bangkok it has appeal from weekenders escaping these regions and it is more of a party island than it has ever been.
It is not all doom and gloom as if you head further south from the main pier there are still oasis, hidden beaches with small resorts on them. It is in these locations where you are reminded of what Koh Samet used to be best loved for.