Why Visit Surat Thani?
Surat Thani or the 'City of Good People', is a typical Thai city and an important transit point located in the largest province in Southern Thailand. A lot of travellers arrive here on their way to the popular islands of Koh Tao, Koh Samui, and Koh Pha Ngan, or other parts of the country such as Krabi or Phuket.
However, it is worth stopping and spending some time here if you are keen to try delicious southern-style street food, explore deserted beaches, secret waterfalls, discover the beauty of colourful Chinese temples, or just experience a real Thai working city.
Surat Thani City Pillar Shrine
This is a place of ritual and respect which gives an insight into Thai culture. Visitors come here to pray or simply admire the gorgeous architecture.
Mu Koh Angthong
A stunning marine national park off the coast of Surat Thani, Mu Koh Angthong covers 42 islands in area of 102 square kilometres split equally between land and water. Take a tour and enjoy an unforgettable experience. Tours usually depart from Koh Samui, Koh Tao, Koh Pha Ngan.
Cheow Lan Lake
A magnificent 185-square-metre body of water surrounded by limestone rocks and dense rainforest, Rajjaprabha Dam or 'light of the kingdom' is definitely worth a visit. It is situated in Khao Sok National Park, about a 1.5 hour drive from Surat Thani City, an area which is home to a plethora of animals and plants. You can see wild bears, elephants, cats, tapirs, monkeys, various kinds of birds, snakes, lizards, and one of the largest flowers in the world, Rafflesia. People have called it Heaven on Earth.
Surat Thani has an airport, and you can get there in 1 hour from Bangkok, choosing direct flights from various airlines. There are shuttle buses and taxis which may take you the short journey from the airport into downtown Surat Thani, or another option is a private taxi.
The cheapest option is to travel by train or bus and it can take about 9-12 hours from Bangkok. The train station is 13 km west of downtown, and frequent buses operate on the route. We suggest visiting the train station in advance of travel to get departure information and secure the lowest price.
Surat Thani has three bus stations: Talad Kaset 1 (off the north side of Talad Mai Road), Talad Kaset 2 (across from Talad Kaset 1) and Bor Kor Sor Mai (7 km west of downtown). Talad Kaset 1 operates local orange buses to and from the train station and Bor Kor Sor Mai. Talad Kaset 2 operates regional minibuses and a few regular buses, to Chaiya (1 hour), Krabi (2 hours), Chumphon (2.5 hours), Phuket (3 hours), Hat Yai and Ranong (5 hours), Khao Lak and Trang (4 hours).
Onward travel to the islands from Surat Thani (all from Donsak port)
Surat Thani — Koh Tao 4h30
Surat Thani — Koh Pha Ngan 2h45
Surat Thani — Koh Samui 1h45min