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Updated by Joanna James on Dec 07, 2023
Headline for The 5 Most Exciting Festivals in Koh Samui, 2023 - Colour, glamour and culture in the tropical island paradise
Joanna James Joanna James
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The 5 Most Exciting Festivals in Koh Samui, 2023 - Colour, glamour and culture in the tropical island paradise

Breathtaking seaside allure abounds on the island of Koh Samui, never failing to enchant the many longing island visitors. For those intrigued by local tradition and authenticity, the island paradise is also the host to a multitude of colourful, glamorous and cultural festivals — all year round.


Koh Phangan Full Moon Party - Vibrant Thai island revelling for the boisterous

The island of Koh Samui is blessed with boundless vibrance, sure to treat its travellers to oodles of blissful times, but even for visitors to Samui, the full moon parties of neighbouring Koh Phangan are decidedly unmissable. Buckets of booze, thumping music and wildly vibrant vibes set the scene for Koh Phangan’s monthly full-moon parties. From dusk till dawn, the golden sands of the 800-metre Haad Rin Beach, on southernmost Phangan, sees nearly 30,000 partygoers every full moon day, excited to revel in the lively beachside dance music festival. Unleash the party animal in you and let yourself lose to claim the quintessential Thai island party experience.


Songkran - ‘Soaking wet’ traditional Thai New Year

Every 13th of April, a wave of excitement engulfs the Southeast Asian nation as people across the country joyously celebrate the traditional Thai New Year, widely known as Songkran. The island of Koh Samui is no exception, embracing the festive spirit with fervour. Songkran is synonymous with exuberant water battles that saturate the Thai streets, leaving everyone drenched and immersed in the essence of the festival. The connection between the lively water festivities and the traditional New Year may not be immediately apparent, but one thing is certain – the eagerly anticipated customary tradition remains an integral part of the celebration.


Phuket Vegetarian Festival - Bizarre and gruesome, a fascinating spectacle

For those vacationing on the island of Koh Samui, a visit to Thailand’s biggest island, the neighbouring island of Phuket, for its eponymous vegetarian festival, definitely wouldn’t be in vain. Witness some of the most extreme, bizarre and gruesome acts with the likes of body mortification and firewalking. After a day of fun and exhilaration, retreat to one of the finest Chaweng Beach, Koh Samui hotels the likes of Avani Chaweng Samui.


Koh Samui Regatta - Sail the alluring waters of the turquoise Andaman

In May every year, expert and amateur sailors alike flock to the eastern coast of Koh Samui, as the island plays host to Samui Regatta — an annual sailing competition featuring long-distance racing, short sprint racing, and thrilling cruising displays. The 5-day event is one of the most renowned on the island, with lively parties and other atmospheric festivities to complement the event.


Khao Phansa - A dose of holy on your tropical island getaway

Away from the fun and vibrance of the festivities that characterise idyllic Thailand, Khao Phansa is one of the most sacred religious events of the Buddhist nation. Khao Phansa, which is celebrated in Samui and the rest of Thailand, marks the beginning of the rainy season across most of Southeast Asia. It is a time for Buddhist monks to retreat to the temple, where they remain for a period of three months.