In this post, I will talk about our total expenses, resort where we stayed in Koh Tao and other activities we did while on the island.
If you haven’t read my previous articles about Koh Tao yet, the links are below.
First, I will be sharing about how much I spent for a five-day trip to Koh Tao. Because we took the overnight bus and not flew unlike in our Koh Phangan trip, we were able to save a little bit for the transportation.
Transportation (one way) : 1,100 x 2 = 2,200 THB (roundtrip)
Accommodation (3 nights) : 4, 200 THB / 2 pax = 2,100 THB
Where We Stayed
For our accommodation, we stayed at Ko Tao Resort where we had a great time.
We were picked up from the pier on our arrival day. In addition, there were two swimming pools in the resort which was my favorite. One was an infinity pool and the other was a mini pool for kids. As I mentioned in my other posts, you should book accommodation where you can just do anything you want if you don’t want to scuba dive or snorkel.
Additionally, I also like that we were surrounded by tall trees. It felt like we were in a jungle and then, once we walked out of it, there was the sea in front of us, so perfect for vacation. Another thing was the accessibility to shops, restaurants and convenience store. I didn’t regret booking with them because I think they were one of the best resorts in Koh Tao.
While we were talking to other tourists, they shared where they were staying. Few of them booked in resorts/guesthouse on top of the hill away from the downtown area so they felt isolated. They also couldn’t drive a motorcycle because of the steep and dangerous road. Hearing their stories made me feel relieved for choosing Ko Tao Resort. The staffs were all friendly and accommodating to us. So, I give them double thumbs up!
There is just one thing, the food in the resort is a bit pricey for us. A ham and cheese sandwich, for example, cost almost 200 THB and it’s just an average looking sandwich. As a result, most of our meals are from eating outside. We actually found great places to eat. One restaurant that I would highly recommend is called Ying Yang. They have Thai and western cuisines from prices around 150-200 THB and they’re large servings. Moreover, the taste was really good.
Alongside that street, there is another restaurant we found where I’ve tried their seafood salad for the first time in my life. I loved it. I think it was because of the sauce but I am proud to say that unlike in my other island trips where we craved for pizzas or pasta, I was looking for seafood in Koh Tao. Luckily, the food options on the island didn’t disappoint.
Overall, I would estimate that for food expenses on this trip, I spent an average of 180 THB per meal. For snacks time, we bought bread, chips, and drinks from 7/11. And speaking of 7/11 store, they don’t use plastic bags following the “no plastic” policy on the island. So that means it’s either you bring your own bag or carry your stuff by hand.
In total, my expenses were between 7,000 – 7,500 THB for the entire five-day trip. That already includes the transportation, accommodation, island day tour and all the meals, snacks and little souvenirs I bought from Koh Tao.
Activities in “Turtle Island”
What other activities can be done on the island other than scuba diving and snorkeling? Well, there is really nothing much in my opinion. It was even a good decision on our part that we only rented a motorcycle for one day because there were only a number of spots worth visiting- beaches, bays, and viewpoints.
With that mentioned, in my opinion, the best way to enjoy Koh Tao is to learn scuba diving. They have beginner’s classes for 2,500 THB to 10,000 THB depending on how many hours you want to go underwater. We didn’t avail of this ourselves because we only had limited days. Instead of scuba diving, we did the whole day tour snorkeling which was already energy draining. The rest of the time, we only stayed in our resort shade bathing, reading and relaxing.
In conclusion, I was right to plan only a few days for this Koh Tao trip. So, instead of our usual seven-day island adventure, we only spent five days for this escapade. However, I’m not saying that it’s not worthy to visit. Koh Tao is unique in itself and it has its own best places and things to do.
In reality, what tourists usually do which I also advise others to do is to stay in Koh Phangan for a week or so and then go for 2-3 days in Koh Tao. It’s like killing two birds with one stone. Although, it ultimately depends on everyone’s holiday and preference.
That’s it, guys! I hope I was able to give you some idea about expenses and expectations when traveling to Koh Tao in Thailand. In summary, I shared my own experience of my recent island trip to “Turtle Island”. I highly recommend Ko Tao Resort because of its great location, facilities, and its friendly staff. Lastly, if you want to go to this island, you must try scuba diving. Otherwise, join an island tour or visit Nang Yuan island.