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Updated by Joanna James on Mar 16, 2024
Headline for Koh Samui: 5 free things you can experience on the island – Travelling on a budget
Joanna James Joanna James
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Koh Samui: 5 free things you can experience on the island – Travelling on a budget

As the second-largest island in Thailand, Koh Samui remains one of the most attractive destinations to date. If you're travelling on a budget, here are some free things you can do and see!


A mummified monk

Many locals visit the Buddhist temple Wat Khunaram, however, this temple is a little different from the rest. Within the temple lies a mummified monk, and the corpse has not decayed for years. Hundreds of tourists flock to Wat Khunaram temple to witness the remains of the ex-abbot, Luong Pordang. Since the monk's death in 1973 (where it is believed he predicted the exact date of his death), he has been mummified in the same upright position. The main belief is that how he led his life focusing on health, simplicity and meditation has allowed his body's preservation even after death. The best time to visit the temple would be early morning, as this is when most religious activities happen.


Bug Buddha Temple

It is of no surprise that Thailand is home to many temples, and one of the major landmarks in Koh Samui is the statue of Buddha in Wat Phra Yai temple. Built in the year 1972, this golden statue sits at a height of 12 metres and can be seen quite clearly even from afar. You will likely spot the statue on your descent to and on the way to your resort in Koh Samui, the likes of Avani+ Samui Resort. Apart from its significant religious prominence, many devotees and tourists visit to admire the temple's unique architecture. For those who enjoy a good view or two, you'll find a dragon-designed winding staircase leading to a platform with spectacular views to take in the surrounding glistening sea.


Stunning waterfall

For the nature enthusiasts in Koh Samui, the Namtok Na Muang waterfalls (also commonly known as 'Purple Waterfalls' is as scenic as it gets! There are two waterfalls to see, the first, Namuang 1 ends in a pool of cold water giving you ideal dipping conditions. To see Namuang 2, you'll need to do a bit of an uphill climb from the first waterfalls, roughly half an hour away by foot. Since this location involves a bit of climbing the best time to go would be during the daylight, so that you can see where you're going and you'll be safer.


Fisherman's Village

Lined with vibrant stalls, local boutiques, restaurants and rustic buildings, Fisherman's village is a favourite to visit. Offering you insight into local life and a glimpse of the Chinese-Thai culture, this area was once home to a fishing community. The ideal time to visit would be after sun-down hours, to enjoy the area without the sun glaring down.



The main free activity to embark on would be exploring the many stunning beaches Koh Samui boasts. Chaweng Beach, Lamai beach and Silver beach are some of the more popular options.