Nestling along the east coast of Koh Samui, Lamai is home to one of the island’s two famous beaches and is the perfect base for a tropical holiday. A varied selection of resorts and hotels make up Lamai accommodation, with many set along the beach itself just a few steps from the ocean.
In contrast to its neighbour, Chaweng, Lamai boasts a less chaotic, quieter ambience with peaceful retreats offering privacy and creature comforts as well as larger hotels with more conventional accommodation. Most of the nightlife here takes place backing the southern area of the beach, with the northern sandy strand and its restaurants and bars much quieter in the evenings.
In general, prices in Lamai are less expensive than in Chaweng, and bargain accommodation can be had in the off-season, especially during the September to November rainy season. If you want to tour the island, Lamai is much closer to Koh Samui’s undeveloped, agricultural southern region with its coconut-farming villages, pretty coastline and unspoiled beaches.
Here you’ll find smaller, more intimate villa and resort developments offering peace and privacy along with luxury accommodation furnished in the charming, traditional Thai style. It’s a good base for families, with quieter evenings perfect for romantic dinners or relaxing with new-found friends. The main street here is far less frenetic and crowded, and the southern part of the beach has the widest stretch of sand and the best swimming.
The best beachside Lamai accommodation can be easily found with a stroll along the beach itself, as most have beach access a short walk away from their villas. At the far southern end of the beach are two of Samui’s most popular attractions, the Hin Ta and Hin Ya rocks, known in English as the Grandfather and Grandmother and bearing a distinct resemblance to the male and female genitalia. This part of the beach is one of the loveliest on the entire island.
A major bonus of accommodation in Lamai is that all the attractions are within a comfortable walk of your resort. All holiday needs are here, comprehensive tourist services, the beach itself, restaurants, bars and nightlife, convenience stores and local shops. Most of the commercial activity lies at the heart of the three-kilometre beach, and the northern area boasts the most popular nightlife spots.
If you’ve decided on Lamai accommodation for your tropical holiday, check online reviews as regards comfort, style, amenities and exact location before booking. Not every resort is as it appears on its website, and may be close to all-night noisy bars, badly maintained or with few facilities. In contrast, the best resorts are set in manicured gardens backing the beach and offer superb accommodation and services at an international level.