Saturday, December 31, 2011

Koh Samui Street Food: Chinese Noodles

Chai-see Ba-mee Gee-ow is a franchise of Chinese-style noodle stalls which are to be found outside 7-11 and Family Mart convenience stores, on street corners and in just about every populated area in the whole of Thailand. The noodle stalls are instantly recognisable with their distinctive yellow light boxes with bright red Thai script.  

Chai-see Ba-mee Gee-ow, Chinese noodle and soup stall, Bangrak, Koh Samui

The most popular dish is 'ba-mee gee-ow', which translates as 'yellow noodle dumplings', which can be served in hot soup ('sai naam') or served with a hot bowl of soup on the side ('heng'). The dish contains yellow, Chinese noodles, rice-noodle dumplings stuffed with pork with sliced ham and green vegetables. The dish is very tasty, as is the soup, with no strong flavours to put off fussy eaters and cheap at only 40 Thai Baht per bowl.

You can order to take your food away or eat-in on provided plastic table and you are provided with dried chilli, sugar, vinegar, crushed peanuts and fish sauce which can be added to the dish to suit your own tastes.

Written by Samui Holiday Villa Rental, your portal to luxury Koh Samui Villa Rental.

Big Buddha Statue & Temple, Bangrak, Koh Samui

Koh Samui's Big Buddha statue is one of the island's top tourist attractions and is located within Big Buddha temple ('wat pra-yai'), on a tiny island, on the far eastern side of Bangrak Bay.  Built in 1972, the impressive 12 meter high golden statue glistens in the tropical Samui sun and it is one of Koh Samui's best known landmarks as it can be seen from several kilometers away.

Koh Samui's Big Buddha statue, located in Bangrak, is one of the island's top tourist attractions

The access road to the Big Buddha Temple is located just after the fish market, next to the long established BBC restaurant and there are usually adequate spaces for parking in front of the entrance to the temple just after the first shops that you pass.
Next to the car park are several cheap Thai restaurants, several souvenir shops, ice-cream and refreshment stalls alongside a small selecton of chic boutiques and art shops which are worth a quick browse.

As you pass through the temple gates, a staircase leads up to the Big Buddha statue and at the base of the stairs are two pogodas where monks give blessing to the locals in exchange for offerings which include flowers, candles, food and water.

On the left, is a covered area where you can sign the underside of a temple roof tile (to be added to temple roofs in future building projects) in exchange for a small donation of Thai baht.

To the right are fortune telling machines. To tell your fortune, you first need to work out the day of the week that you were born on. Place a ten baht coin in the machine of the day of your birth (there are 7 in total, one for each day), read the number that is shown when the lights stop spinning and then read the fortune that corresponds to this number which are displayed on the wall in both Thai and English.

At the base of the Big Buddha statue is where locals to pay their respect to the Buddha
Up the staircase brings you to the base of the Big Buddha statue itself. In front of the statue is a small shrine where locals give offering for Buddha, and around the statue are a number of bells which can be rung for good luck using the pices of wood provided at the top of the staircase. This is also a very good spot to take some snaps of the stunning sea and island views which surround the temple.

Big Buddha is well worth a visit to soak up some local culture, take some nice photos and enjpy the views. Please note that visitors are requested to dress politely (i.e. no bikini or thongs). 

Read more information on Koh Samui Island, Thailand, Koh Samui activities and things to do and Koh Samui tourist attractions.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Koh Samui Hospital (Government Hospital)

Koh Samui has one government hospital named Koh Samui Hospital which is located in Nathon, on the island’s western coast. The hospital has undergone a huge face lift recently with a clean, modern waiting area and well-organised staff.

Koh Samui Hospital is clean and well-organised

The waiting room usually has ample seating for all visitors and is well-organised with numbered counters each serving a different purpose. Register at the registration counter and you are given a counter number where you should wait until your name is called. You may then be directed to different counter to pay for treatment, and another which issues pharmaceuticals.

Though not many of the staff are fluent in English, some have enough English skills to allow understanding. Costs for treatment and drugs are extremely reasonable, especially when compared to Koh Samui's International hospitals. 

The main hospital building, car park and landscaped gardens are very clean and well-maintained with ample parking, outside eating areas and a children's play park. A shop sells refreshments, snacks and boxed rice dishes and there is a coffee shop just inside the side entrance to the main building. There is still a lot of re-building going on within the other parts of the hospital as they continue to pour resources into upgrading the interior of the buildings.

I would recommend Koh Samui's Government run hospital for all major and minor emergencies as it is always fully-staffed and the only hospital on the island with the resources to deal with life-threatening injuries and life-saving surgery. I have visited the hospital many times and have always been happy with the service and costs. When my son was delivered at the Koh Samui Hospital (on our paediatrician's advice) I just couldn't believe how well everything went and how friendly and well-organised the staff were. The only thing that could be improved on are the wards which are clean and comfortable, but lacking privacy. There are basic private rooms available at very low rates but they are given on a first come, first served basis.

To reach Koh Samui Hospital, follow the ring road through Nathon from north to south and then take a right turn at the large set of traffic lights just after the town. The hospital is located at the bottom of this road.

Outside eating area, nest to children's play park with stunning views towards Thailand's mainland

Samui Holiday Villa Rental is your portal to Koh Samui Villa Rentals

Friday, December 2, 2011

Koh Samui Sea View Villas - A Guide to Hilltop Villas With Views on Thailand's Most Beautiful Island

Koh Samui, a tropical island holiday destination in Thailand's Gulf, offers some of the best beaches in Asia and truly stunning sea and island views, making it one of the best South East Asian destinations to enjoy a luxury villa rental holiday with exceptional tropical views. Samui sea view villas are dotted around the island with the largest density in the busy northeast of the island, specifically the Bophut and Maenam hills, Plai Laem, and the hills above Chaweng and Chaweng Noi. Typical sea view villas have two to six bedrooms with views ranging from partial views to complete 360 degree panoramas and rental rates ranging from approximately $150 to $1,500 USD per night. But just what level of luxury can you expect in return for your hard-earned cash?

At the top end, you can expect to pay between $600 and $1,500 USD per night for a top-class, luxury, three to five bedroom hilltop villa with panoramic views. For this price you would expect the villa to have uniquely designed, stunning interiors with only the most opulent in furnishings, artwork and fittings. These villas can be fully staffed with the latest in electronic lighting and top-end entertainment systems with a villa manager to take care of your every wish. At the other end, you can expect a smaller, two to four bedroom villa with swimming pool and good to excellent sea views, though not panoramic, for around $300 to $600 USD per night which would include daily cleaning.
Rental rates for villas on Koh Samui are highly seasonal. Most of the smaller, medium-budget villas have a high season from December to April and July to September, mid-season from May to June and October to December and peak season during Christmas and New Year. The more luxurious, hilltop panoramic view villas generally have four different rental rates which take into account Asian festivals such as Chinese New Year or Songkran (Thai New Year) when rental rates can sky-rocket.

The best times to look for a bargain are September to mid-December and the months of May and June. The annual monsoon arrives towards the end of the year, usually in November, so booking during the middle of the year should offer more favorable weather. At these times, the majority of luxury sea view villas offers low-season rates and often has free night promotions such as stay four nights and pay for only three.This is also a good time to pick up a good deal on a reduced occupancy rate as you can often save about 20%, for example, on booking a five bedroom villa with only six guests who require the use of three bedrooms only.

Bob Johnston is a leading content writer on Koh Samui hilltop villas and Koh Samui seaview villas.
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Sunday, November 20, 2011

Tesco-Lotus Supermarket and Cinema, Chaweng Town, Koh Samui

The largest supermarket on Koh Samui island, Tesco-Lotus (Chaweng) is located on the island ring-road, just between the junctions which take you from Chaweng Town to Chaweng Beach. Please see location on our Koh Samui Map and Interactive Villa Guide. The supermarket has a large stock of food, clothing and electrical products and is one of the first stops for most holidaymakers on arrival to Koh Samui.

Tesco-Lotus as seen from the main island ring-road

Tesco-Lotus also offers a large food court with a good choice of both Thai and international menus, a cinema,  ten-pin bowling, restaurants, cafes, clothing stores, a pharmacy, children's play area and arcade and countless mobile phone shops offering cheap, local SIM cards.

Tesco-Lotus offers a major cineplex cinema

The food court has a cash-card system and you can purchase a card from the booth, adjacent to the children's play area. The court offers almost every Thai dish you could think of and a few European menus. The food is reasonably priced and reasonably tasty but not up to the same standards as other local Thai restaurants in the area.

Tesco-Lotus food court

The cinema and ten-pin bowling are located towards the back of the compex, behind the food court. The cinema is modern with three screens and a snack-bar and plays both Thai movies (with Thai soundtracks) and Hollywood flicks with English soundtrack and Thai subtitles. For movie screening information please see the major cineplex listings for Tesco-Lotus, Koh Samui.

Restauarants and cafes on offer include favourite Thai franchise restaurants such as Fuji Japanese restaurant, MK (Korean) restaurant, Canyon Coffee, KFC and S&P Bakery.

Behind the cinema, the Homepro store offers all you could possibly need for those on a long vacation planning any DIY home improvement projects. Homepro also offers a large range of all electrical products including TVs, washing machines and kitchen appliances.

Tesco-Lotus is the perfect place to stock up your fridge and grab a bite to eat and is a good option to pass time and keep the kids busy on rainy afternoons.

Samui Holiday Villa Rental is your portal to Koh Samui villas including the definitive portfolio of Koh Samui beach villas and truly exclusive luxury Samui villas.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Koh Samui Aquarium and Tiger Show

The Samui Aquarium and Tiger Show is located on the southeastern coast of Koh Samui and offers an aquarium, tiger zoo and show, bird zoo and show, sea lion show and otter show.

Samui Aquarium and Tiger Show, Koh Samui Island, Thailand

The aquarium is open every day from 9am with bird and tiger shows starting each afternoon from 1.30pm, so make sure you arrive at least an hour before that to allow yourself time to get through the aquarium and take a look around the bird zoo. The aquarium itself has a reasonable selection of sea life to admire including some species of sharks and large sea turtles which you can feed. Though it is not a modern aquarium and certainly not up to the standards set by large, modern aquariums around the world, it is quite nice to see Thailand's indiginous sea-life up close and personal.

After lunch, the show is kicked off with a Bengal Tiger show. This involves the tigers jumping through burning hoops, walking across various obstacles and sitting nicely in formation. I have to admit that I thought the show was a little uncomfortable to watch as the tigers seem quite aggressive towards the trainers, the trainers looked extremely nervous and I just don't really like to see large, wild animals outside their natural environment. In saying that, my son, who was about 4 years old when he first saw the show enjoyed it tremendously.

Next the bird show, which I enjoyed a lot more than the tiger show. Parrots show off their intellect by riding bicycles and playing games, large eagles grab objects from the trainers' hands in mid-flight (or from volunteers' hands!). Both myself and the family really enjoyed the bird show, especially the kids. After the show is over, kids can go to the stage and have the birds sit on their heads or shoulders (take care as obviously the big bird's claws are large and sharp).

Once you have taken in the aquarium, tiger show and bird show you can have a look at the sea lion and otter shows or just take a stroll and admire the bird species which are kept in large cages in the gardens of the aquarium. You can also pay a fee to have your photo taken with a Bengal Tiger, though I would have to argue that both this and the Tiger Show step a bit over the line and I don't really agree with this practice.

All in all the show is reasonably entertaining for adults and very entertaining for children. If you don't like seeing big animals locked up or people taking pictures of themselves with baby tigers then this is definitely not the place for you. A visit to the Samui Aquarium and Tiger Show will take up about 3 hours of your day and is a good family day out.

Samui Aquarium and Tiger Show is situated next to the Samui Orchid Resort and ticket costs are 450 THB for children and 750THB for adults which gives you access to the aquarium and all shows.

Samui Holiday Villa Rental is your online portal to Luxury Samui villas and Koh Samui Holiday Rentals. Offering Koh Samui beach villas, seaview villas, garden villas, villa resorts and apartments. View our villa and holiday rentals on our new Koh Samui Map and Interactive Villa Guide. Owners and managers of Peerapat Villa, a 4 bedroom, sea view, Samui luxury villa for rent in Bangrak on Koh Samui island's busy North-East coast.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Coco Splash Waterpark, Koh Samui, Thailand

Coco Splash is a petite waterpark with several waterslides, a bar and a restaurant with child-friendly, shallow pools. Located in Lamai, on the eastern coast of Koh Samui, the waterpark has been opened since the start of 2011 and is already making a big splash with island locals and tourists alike.
Coco Splash Waterpark and Restaurant Grill

The largest, yellow slide and the kid's slide

There are three different slides in the park; the largest yellow slide, a small blue kid's slide and an intermediate slide towards the rear of the park. The largest slide might not look like much in the photo but it definitely gets your heart pounding as you pick up speed and slam into the shallow pool at the bottom! The kid's slide is very slow and good for young kids and the curving intermediate slide is good fun for older children.

Sun-beds and covered bamboo salahs with table and chairs

Coco Splash Waterpark, Koh Samui Island, Thailand

The restaurant offers snacks and meals at reasonable prices and free wifi is available. Coco Splash has an entrance fee of 200 THB per person. Entry is free if you don't want to use the pools and slides.

I would highly recommend Coco Splash. My son (7 year old) loved it and didn't stop for the whole afternoon we were there The park has life guards on the larger pools but please remember to supervise your children at all times, especially young children.

To get to Coco Splash, turn from the island ring road at Lamai onto the McDonald's road (see McD sign at junction). Follow the road for about 300 meters and then take the sharp right at the small bridge. The waterpark is 100 meters along this road.

Samui Holiday Villa Rental is your portal to Koh Samui holiday rentals, Koh Samui villas, Samui beach villas and Koh Samui sea view villas. Owners and managers of Peerapat villa, a 4-bedroom luxury Koh Samui villa for rent.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Loy Kratong Festival, November (annual Thai Festival)

The Loy Kratong Festival occurs during the full moon of the twelfth lunar month and falls in November each year (but on a different calender date each year). The festival is thought to be Brahmin (which forms part of Hinduism) in origin and the purpose of the festival if to thank the water Gods and to float away any problems or bad luck you may have and start afresh  'Loy' is the Thai word for float and 'kratong' is the name for the float itself which is constructed from banana plant stalk and leaves.

Kratongs are made from banana stalk and leaves with flowers, candles and joss sticks
The kratongs are decorated with flowers, delicately folded banana leaves, candles and joss sticks with some coins for good luck. In the south of Thailand people also often add tufts of their hair or pieces of fingernails to the kratong though this practice is unheard of in the rest of Thailand.

When the moon is full, hundreds of thousands of people all over the country float their kratongs on ponds, rivers, canals and beaches (but check the tides as they may cause the kratong to come back which is not good luck!). Loy Kratong is traditionally a time of quiet contemplation and reflection for Thai people to think about the past year and look to the future.

Popular places on Koh Samui to float your kratong are Plai Laem temple and Chaweng lakeside.

Samui Holiday Villa Rental is your portal to Samui luxury villas, Offering Koh Samui beach villas, seaview villas, garden villas, villa resorts and apartments. Owners and managers of Peerapat Villa, a 4 bedroom, sea view, Samui luxury villa for rent in Bangrak on Koh Samui island's busy North-East coast.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Bangrak, Koh Samui - A Tourist Guide to Bangrak Beach and Town

Bangrak Beach and Town lies on the busy, northeastern coastline of the beautiful, tropical island of Koh Samui in the Gulf of Thailand.  The town is about 5 minutes' drive to popular Fisherman's Village in Bophut, 5-10 minutes' drive to idyllic Cheong Mon Beach and 10-15 minutes' drive to the bright lights of Chaweng, Koh Samui's most popular and busy beach area.

Bangrak is relatively quiet compared to it's neighbouring town of Chaweng though the area has been becoming steadily more popular in recent times. Bangrak's magnificent sea views, towards the neighbouring island of Koh Phan Ngan, and convenience of location has made it a popular area for holiday rental properties and there is a wide choice of rental properties and villas dotted around the hillsides and the beach. The town also offers several low to medium-budget hotels and several beach front, luxury Spa resorts.

Bangrak Bay and town, Koh Samui, Thailand

Bangrak Beach has fantastic sea views towards the neighbouring island of Koh han Ngan, Koh Samui, Thailand

Bangrak Town, Koh Samui, Thailand

Bangrak Beach, Koh Samui Island, Thailand
The beach itself is quiet and picturesque with the best swimming spots towards the east of the bay as the wetern end is quite rocky. Towards the eastern end of the beach is a choice of small beach front resorts, bars and restaurants. Some of the beach resorts and spas, such as Samui Pier and Saboey,  offer sunbeds on the beach.

There are a number of rickety, wooden piers along the eastern end of the beach where you can catch speedboats to Koh Phan Ngan Island. These piers are very busy during the monthly Full-Moon parties on Koh Phan Ngan when speedboat taxis run throughout the night. The far eastern end of the beach is where you will find the large, concrete pier which has ferry services to neighbouring islands.

Bangrak has a good choice of bars and restaurants offering both Thai and International cuisine. Bars stay open to 1am, but during busy periods they may stay open later as long as there are enough paying customers. The most popular bars are M & M's, Cosmic Bar and The Premiere Sports Bar. There are no nightclubs in Bangrak but if you want nighlife, Chaweng is only 10 minutes away.

Bangrak's Big Buddha statue, Koh Samui Island, Thailand
At the far eastern end of the Bay you will find Bangrak's largest landmark,  the Big Buddha statue. This  huge, golden Buddha statue is built within the grounds of a temple and toursits are more than welcome to take a look around (polite clothes should be worn). There is a plethora of shops around the base of the statue and you can climb the steps to the statue to see great views. Locals believe that walking around the staute, ringing the bells, will bring good luck.A few hundred metres east of the Big Buddha ststue you will find Plai Laem Temple, with its own impressive statues and beautiful temple buildings

Bangrak's Fresh Market is found next to the Big Buddha Statue and here you will find fresh seafood straight from the fishermen's boats as well as meat, fresh fruit and vegetables.

Visit our homepage for more info on Koh Samui Villa Rentals and Peerapat Villa, our Samui villa for rent in Bangrak, Koh Samui

Find Bangrak Beach and Town on our Koh Samui Map and Interactive Villa Guide.

Read more Koh Samui things to do and koh samui local restaurant reviews by visiting our blog

Monday, October 3, 2011

Koh Samui Beach Villas - Luxury Beach Villa Rental on Koh Samui Island, Thailand

Koh Samui Beach Villas - Luxury Beach Villa Rental on Koh Samui Island, Thailand
The emerald-green, tropical island of Koh Samui is surrounded by the crystal-clear, cobalt-blue waters of Thailand's Gulf and has become a first choice destination for the private jet-setting elite seeking fully staffed, luxurious, opulent beach villas with modern, contemporary architectural flair. In recent times, the island has become a shining beacon in South-East Asian villa architecture and offers some of the best modern examples of contemporary beach villas to be found anywhere in the world.
Koh Samui also offers some of the best beaches to be found in South-East Asia with fantastic views over golden sands to the contrasting shades of the Gulf of Thailand and tropical, jungle-covered limestone islands beyond.
The layout of most recently built Koh Samui beach villas is generally quite similar. The villas are arranged in separate pavilions with a larger pavilion, often built on two floors to maximize the beach and sea view, towards the rear of the property. Several smaller pavilions, built on one floor, are then placed between the main pavilion and the beach creating a U-shape with the central focus of the property being a terrace area with large, infinity-edged swimming pool which literally flows onto the beach.
The majority of beach villas are located in the quieter areas of the island, towards the northwest, west and south. Of course there is also a large choice of beach villas in the more populated northeast of Koh Samui but generally rental rates increase the nearer the villa is to this part of the island. If you are looking for lower rental rates in a convenient location, check out beach villas in Bang Por, on Koh Samui's northwest coastline. Bang Por beach is a very clean, quiet beach with soft, golden sands and good swimming but only 25 minutes drive to the popular northeast of the island.
An important tip when booking a beach property is to ask the booking agent about the quality of the beach, depth of the water and if the waters, directly in front of the villa, offer good swimming. At certain times of the year, water depth can be very low in some places around the island and some beaches don't really offer good swimming at these times. However, in my experience, the majority of beach villa renters don't often venture onto the beach, except for an evening stroll. Instead, they enjoy the beach views from the luxury and comfort of their chosen villa.

By Bob Robert Johnston

Bob Johnston is a leading content writer on Koh Samui and Koh Samui luxury villas. He is also General Manager of a Koh Samui beach villas holiday rental company.
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Friday, September 30, 2011

Koh Samui Marathon - The Princess Cup

September 18th, 2011 saw the return of Koh Samui's annual Marathon, The Princess' Cup. Several thousand runners joined a multitude of races including a full marathon, half and quarter marathons, childrens' marathon and fun run. The object of this annual event, which began in 2010, is to promote tourism on beautiful Koh Samui island.

The marathon started in Nathon, on Samui's western coast and was offered a multitude of cash and other prizes. Marathon results can be seen here. Well done to all!

Samui Holiday Villa Rental is your portal to Koh Samui Villas, Koh Samui Holiday Rentals and Property Management. Offering Koh Samui beach villas, seaview villas, garden villas, villa resorts and apartments. Owners and managers of Peerapat Villa, a 4 bedroom, sea view, Samui villa for rent in Bangrak on Koh Samui island's busy north east coast.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Paradise Park Farm

I have visited Paradise Farm several times over the past few years and thoroughly enjoyed every visit. Of all the day trips to be reommended on Koh Samui, this is definitely up in the top 3 of the best Koh Samui family days out.

Exceptional views from the Farm's mountain-top infinity pool

Paradise Park Farm is arranged on about 18 acres of mountain-top land, deep in the mountainous interior of Koh Samui and is one of the highest points on Samui at about 600 meters above sea-level. The Park contains many different species of animals including rabbits, Gibbon monkeys, deer, emu, parrots and cockatoos to name but a few. Paradise Park is very well maintained and the animals appear to be looked after very well by the large number of very friendly and helpful staff.

Mountainous jungle Views

As you enter the park, you will be greeted by the Gibbons who are extremely friendly and curious. Soon they will be up on your shoulder or lying down for a tickle. The hardest part of the day is saying goodbye to them as you will want to take them home with you!

Parrots and many more large, colourful birds. Be careful, some of them bite!

Next to the Farm's restaurant you will find many large, colourful birds inlcuding parrots and cockatoos. The staff will let you know which birds to stay away from as some of them do bite!

The Farm's deer

The fenced interior of the park contains deer, emus, goats and avaries containing many species of birds.
Gibbons have got to be the cutest of all monkeys!

After all the hard work and walking around you can relax in the park's restaurant and bar or at the mountain-top infinity-edged swimming pool which must have the best sea views in all of Koh Samui. Paradise Park Farm is a must for all visiting families to Koh Samui. Absoutely fantastic.

For more info, photos and directions click this link to visit the Paradise Park Farm homepage.

Samui Holiday Villa Rental is your portal to Samui Villas and Koh Samui villa rentals.

Koh Samui Snake Farm & Show

If you're looking to add a bit of excitement to your trip to Koh Samui, try the Samui Snake Show located in the South of the Island.  Not only will you be impressed by the handler's ability with the Cobras and Pythons, he handles the scorpions and centipedes pretty well, too.

The Thai Cobra
The Cobra pit and handler
After the show you can get to know the snakes better

Most of the action accurs in the snake pit with Thai Cobras, Giant Pythons, centipedes and scorpions. When I asked if they had King Cobras, they replied that they used to, but they were too big so they "sometimes got out during the show".

The handler will show you the snakes, scorpions and centipedes up close and will show you the centipede's jaws as they bite him. He explains that once you are bitten about 50 or 100 times, your body becomes immune to the poison - but the inch long teeth still hurt!

Wait for the finale, invloving the centipedes he ate at the start of the show!

The snakes appear to be kept in relatively good conditions and you can have a look at them all before or after the show in the farm's small Reptile Zoo. After the show, guests can handle the snakes and take photos with the Python.

I really enjoyed my visit to the Samui Snake Farm and would definitely recommend it to visitors to Koh Samui, though I think it's a once in a lifetime type of show and I doubt if I will be back again for a second show!

Visit the Samui Snake Farm homepage for more information and directions.

Samui Holiday Villa Rental is your portal to Samui holiday rentals including a definitive listing of Samui Villas, Koh Samui Beach Villas, Koh Samui Apartments and Koh Samui Villa Resorts. We are also the property managers of Peerapat Villa, a Samui villa available for holiday rental.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Pee Shet Restaurant, Bophut, Koh Samui

Restaurant "Pee Shet" has been a favourite local Koh Samui restaurant of mine for several years now. "Pee Shet" serves some of the most delicious seafood dishes you are likely to find on Koh Samui and is fantastic value for money. Recommended dishes are Soft Crab with Black Pepper (Boo Nim Pad Prik Thai Dam), Shark curry (Blaa Chalam Pad Cha), Steamed yellow curry with seafood (Hor Mok Talay) and believe it or not - the fried rice (Khao Pat) is to die for.

Deep fried crispy pork with fried kaffir lime leaves, pickled garlic and sun-dried chillies

Hor Mok Talay - Steamed yellow curry with egg and seafood, stuffed into a cabbage and steamed
The restaurant is very popular with ex-pats and Thais alike and there are some English speaking staff who can take your order.

You won't find luxury in this recommended Koh Samui restaurant, but don't let the plastic tables and chairs fool you - the food is fantastic .

Don't let the plastic tables and chairs fool you
There are several covered bamboo salas
The restaurant is located just next to the Bophut (Fisherman's Village) traffic lights. As you drive from Fisherman's village, turn right at the traffic lights and the restaurant is immediately on your left (10 metres from traffic lights). The restaurant is open 7 days from about 5pm until late.

See sestaurant location on our Koh Samui Map. Check the "Restaurant" box in the category legend on the right-hand side of the map to see restaurant location.

Samui Holiday Villa Rental is your portal to Koh Samui Villas, Koh Samui Holiday Rentals and Koh Samui Property Management. Offering Koh Samui beach villas, seaview villas, garden villas, villa resorts and apartments. Owners and managers of Peerapat Villa, a 4 bedroom, sea view, Samui luxury villa for rent in Bangrak on Koh Samui island's busy North-East coast.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Hot Pan BBQ Buffet, Bophut, Koh Samui

You will find "Hot Pan BBQ" restaurants all over Thailand and there are several in Koh Samui. This is a Thai derivative of Korean Restaurant style BBQs where you cook your own meats on your own personal BBQ on your own table.

Korean-Style Hot Pan BBQ
The BBQ itself has hot charcoals under a grill in the centre which is surrounded by hot water for cooking vegetable to create a soup. 

Central Grill surrounded by hot soup
You collect your raw meats, vegetables, noodles or whatever else you want to eat and simply cook it yourself at your table. If you can't use chop-sticks there are forks and spoons available in this Hot Pan Restaurant (but some others don't have forks) There are many meats available including liver, intestines and awful  but you can stick with the pork and beef steak if that doesn't appeal. Also on offer, for the less adventurous, is fried rice, spring rolls and french fries.

When you are finished gorging yourself, there is also fresh fruit and ice-cream on offer.

And all this for an amazing 119 Thai Baht per person which is around 3-4 USD.

The restaurant is very large with more than 50 tables
The restauant is located about 50 metres from the Bophut Traffic Lights (near Fisherman's VIllage), opposite the entrance to Bophut temple and is open from around 5.30pm until late.

See sestaurant location on our Koh Samui Map. Check the "Restaurant" box in the category legend on the right-hand side of the map to see restaurant location.

Samui Holiday Villa Rental is your portal to Koh Samui Villas , Koh Samui Holiday Rentals and property management. Offering Koh Samui beach villas, seaview villas, garden villas, villa resorts and apartments. Owners and managers of Peerapat Villa, a 4 bedroom, sea view, Samui luxury villa for rent in Bangrak on Koh Samui island's busy North-East coast.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Rice Soup Breakfast, Bophut, Koh Samui

This recommended restaurant is a great place for the authentic Thai breakfast of Rice Soup (joak). As only breakfast is served, the restaurant is only open from around 7am to 11am every morning. Other foods on offer include "Baton Go" which is a bit like a long, un-sugared donut and Dim Sums, which are steamed in bamboo dishes and served with both soy sand sweet chilli sauce.

Next to the serving area is a table with a selection of Dim Sums so that you can choose which ones you would like to be prepared.

Quick Tip! Rice soup is usually served with meat (minced pork balls) and awful such as liver and intestines, but you can try your best to order without the awful with a lot of gesturing and pigeon English.

You can also try super-sweet Thai style iced blsck tea (cha dam yen), ice tea with milk, coffee or ovaltine (hot or cold). There is also complementary fragrant tea in the teapots on each table..

Breakfast restaurant serving rice soup and dim sums

The best restaurants are always busy

Rice Soup, completely awful free!

Dim Sums are steamed in bamboo dishes

Dim Sums
The restaurant is located on the left hand side, about 100 metres before the Bophut Fresh Market as you are driving from Chaweng.

See sestaurant location on our Koh Samui Map. Check the "Restaurant" box in the category legend on the right-hand side of the map to see restaurant location

Samui Holiday Villa Rental is your portal to Koh Samui Villas, Koh Samui beach villas, and luxury Samui villas.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Koh Samui Fishing Tour - A Great Family Day Out

A few weeks ago, myself and some friends who were visiting from the UK decided to go on fishing trip for the day. The weather was fine, the beer was flowing and the fish were biting. Altogether a fantastic family day out and well recommended.

Taking our motion sickness medicine (just in case!) and setting off for sea
We got picked up at the 7-11 in Bangrak around 8.30am, arrived in the Plai Laem dock a few minutes later and then we boarded the boat to set off. The pickup went smoothly and staff very friendly and welcoming.
As we set off, the boat driver gave us a run down of waht we would be doing. The plan was to do some fishing near the big rock between Choeng Mon Beach and Koh Phan Ngan, then eat a prepared lunch on the boat (hopefully with some fried fish!). Next, relax for an hour  and do some swimming on a small deserted beach. The rest of the afternoon would be spent searching for more fish.
Getting the bait on - and getting on the beer!!!
And so, the rods, bait (squid) and beers were brought out and the fishing began.

Soon the first fish were being reeled in. Several small Groupers and a small White Snapper were the catch of the morning and were freshly fried on the boat for lunch. I have to admit that my group and I did not catch any fish in the morning. I think we were on the wrong side of the boat as all the fish were caught from the other side!

We soon stopped for a fine lunch of fresh fish, fried rice, salad, spring rolls and fruit salad and the last of the beer. Then it was off to moor the boat near a deserted beach for some swimming and relaxation.

Deserted beach

Show offs

Soon we headed back out to sea for some more fishing around some rocky outcrops not far from Samui's NE peninsula. Our group got more than a few bites this time and soon we had a few more Grouper fish in the bag.

Soon, it was time to head back to port and we were given an opportunity to buy a tacky printed dinner plate with our photo (I did wonder why they took our family picture as we boarded the boat). I have to admit, I did buy it but I sent it home to my mother in UK to put on her mantelpiece! We were then dropped back off at the 7-11 around 4.30pm with our bag of fish and walked back to our home showing our catch off to our very impressed neighbours. We didn't tell them that we didn't catch them ourselves and showed them off with huge, satisfied smiles.

Our competitors!

Life jackets are available, but may not fit the children!

Our after lunch swim

All in all, a great day out. If you are a serious fisherman, you will probably be disappointed at the size of fish caught - especially when you look at all the huge fish on the brochure. Better you try the night fishing trip where you can catch live squid which you use as bait to catch larger fish including Barracuda, Cobia, Shark, Mackeral, Sailfish, Snapper, Grouper and Trevally. We did see one Baracuda chasing some fish early in the afternoon but these are much more easily caught at night when they feed.

Prices for the fishing trip are 1,500 Thai Baht (around $50 USD) per person including lunch, fishing supplies and soft drinks. Book with us for discounts!

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