You’ve bought your tickets to Koh Samui, booked your resort, and now you need to pass the toughest challenge, packing your bags. Don’t panic! Here’s what you need to know about packing for a Koh Samui vacation – what you need to take, and what you can leave at home.
Suitcases/ Image via Jenifer Corrêa/ Flickr
Consider Your Clothing
Before you start to narrow down your wardrobe into suitable Koh Samui choices, think about two things – the climate in Koh Samui, and the culture. It is hot in Thailand, most of the year, and you will only want to bring clothes that keep you cool and allow your skin to breathe. Leave polyester and manmade fibers at home, and choose garments that are loose fitting and made of breathable cotton or fibers that take sweat away from the skin.
You also need to consider that most people in Thailand dress conservatively outside the resorts and the main resort towns. If you are going to be visiting a temple (which you should do while in Thailand) you will need clothes that cover your legs, arms and shoulders.
What Are You Going to Do?
Pack for all eventualities, and in some cases you can make different outfit combinations out of a set of neutral pieces. For example, you need some shoes that will allow you to hike up a waterfall or go sailing – these could also be worn on the plane when you need to keep your feet warm. You may want to dine out somewhere nice, so make sure you take a dressy top or shirt, a skirt or long pants, and some accessories. These can also be worn with more casual pieces for drinks after the beach.
Samui Sunset/ Image via Steve Jurvetson/ Flickr
Your Koh Samui Wardrobe
For girls, leave the jeans behind as it will always be too hot to wear them. Pack shorts, skirts, dresses and Capri pants. Take a pair of yoga pants or leggings with you to wear for Thai massages or around the spa. Choose lightweight materials like silk, linen, and cotton. You may want to take a pashmina or a light cardigan if there is a cooler day or evening.
For guys, it’s really simple – shorts, swimming trunks and your underwear. Plus, a selection of T-shirts and a couple of polo shirts for the evening. You will need to take a pair of lightweight long pants if you want to visit Thai temples.
Shoes for Koh Samui
Flip flops are the convenient choice for Koh Samui seeing as you will be spending most of your time on the beach, around the pool, or in the bars. It is a good idea to also take a lightweight closed-toe pair of shoes or sandals for visiting temples or for when you want to dress up a little at night. If you are hiking you will definitely need something more supportive than flip flops. Alternatively, have a great pedicure and you’re good to go.
Make Sure You Take Sun Protection
The sun is strong in Koh Samui, as it is in the rest of Thailand. Take high-factor sun protection to protect your skin from the burning rays, and some light clothes and a hat to cover up. If you forget your sun lotion, don’t panic – you can buy pretty much every type in Koh Samui.
Other Essential Toiletries
As well as sunscreen, make room in your bag for bug spray. You can buy all kinds of toiletry brands in Thailand but if you like something in particular, take it with you. Pack an electric toothbrush, your favorite scent, your favorite shampoo for vacation, and your makeup. Also bring with you any products for sensitive skin or eco products as these are not readily available on the islands.
Do You Need Rain Gear?
It does often rain in Thailand but you are unlikely to need a waterproof jacket because it will be too hot and sticky to wear. It could be a good idea to take an umbrella if you don’t want to get wet in a shower but bear in mind that showers are normally heavy and it is easier to just dry off back at the hotel.
Don’t worry about packing too much because it is incredibly easy, and cheap, to have your laundry done in Thailand. You can find a laundry service at the top resorts as well as at cheap, neighborhood places next to budget accommodation. You don’t need to pack loads of different outfits, just choose the best ones, in the lightest and most comfortable fabrics.
Check out packing tips for your Thailand trip at Koh Samui Sunset – learn what to pack and what to take right here.
To find out where to stay on Koh Samui and where to eat, check out PhuketOn. Packed with information on Phuket, Bangkok, Koh Samui and more, PhuketOn is your destination for your Thai trip.