bangkok to koh phangan

How to Go from Bangkok to Koh Phangan

The island of Koh Phangan in southeast Thailand is well known for its monthly Full Moon Party.  Travelers come here, to Haad Rin on the southeastern part of the island, where the night-long celebration focuses mainly on Sunrise Beach.  For a quieter part of the island, you’ll want to head to Hat Khuat and Hat Thian, where the white sand beaches are glorious.  Koh Phangan is located in the Gulf of Thailand and counts Koh Tao and Koh Samui as its neighbors.  Koh  Phangan is also known for its beaches, and for being relatively undeveloped.  Out of the group of three islands in the Gulf of Thailand, it’s most known for partying and for budget backpacking.  This guide covers whether you’re going from Bangkok to Koh Phangan or Koh Phangan to Bangkok as you’ll need to know the best way to travel between these two destinations.  There are several options for transport between Bangkok and Koh Phangan, but what’s the best way to go from Bangkok to Koh Phangan?  And what are the options for traveling to Koh Phangan from Bangkok?  Here’s our guide on how to get to Koh Phangan from Bangkok.

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Where is Koh Phangan

Koh Phangan is off the east coast of Thailand in the Gulf of Thailand.   Koh Phangan is about 700 kilometers (403 miles) southeast of Bangkok.  The distance from Bangkok to Koh Phangan is about 750 kilometers (460 miles) overland, via Surat Thani, from Bangkok.  Koh Phangan is in the Chumphon Archipelago group of islands that includes Koh Samui and Koh Tao. 

Koh Phanghan is the second largest of these islands (Koh Samui is the biggest) and the island is about 10 kilometers (6.2 miles) from Koh Samui.

The capital of Koh Phangan is Thong Sala, which is also the main port for Koh Phangan, on its west coast.  It’s from Thong Sala that you connect to the Thai mainland to Surat Thani.

Where to Stay on Koh Phangan

There are a host of places to stay on Koh Phangan – here’s our pick of the luxury places to stay on Koh Phangan mid-range places to stay on Koh Phangan, and budget accommodations on Koh Phangan.

Located on Thong Nai Pan Noi Beach, Buri Rasa offers luxurious beachfront accommodation – there’s an outdoor pool, and rooms have floor-to-ceiling windows and amazing amenities. This luxury Koh Phangan hotel is a fabulous place to stay. You can check rates and availability here.

The family-led resort hotel of Zama Resort is a fabulous mid-range accommodation option on Koh Phangan. There are beautifully appointed rooms here and the sunsets are marvelous. Service is fabulous and the combination of the pool and the private beach is just amazing. This place books out quickly, so check your dates here.

The prices are Samutra Residences on Koh Phangan belie an amazing location on Thong Sala beach. This is a great Koh Phangan budget option with great spacious rooms and a fab swimming pool and garden. It’s just steps from the beach. Book your room here now!

Travel Tips for Exploring Thailand

How to Go from Bangkok to Koh Phangan – Transport Options

In this guide on how to go from Bangkok to Koh Phangan, we’ll cover the fastest way to travel go from Bangkok to Koh Phangan, the easiest way to go to Koh Phangan from Bangkok, and the cheapest way to get to Koh Phangan from Bangkok.  Our guide on Koh Phangan is here.

How to get to Koh Phangan from Bangkok

For transport from Koh Phangan to Bangkok, then you have several options.  There is no airport on the island, the closest airport to Koh Phangan is on Koh Samui.  You can fly to Koh Samui from Bangkok, and then take a boat from Koh Samui to Koh Phangan.  If you choose to go to Koh Phangan overland, then you must go from Bangkok to Surat Thani and then take a ferry from Surat Thani to Thong Sala.

You can book through trips overland from Bangkok to Koh Phangan here.  If you book a through ticket from Bangkok to Koh Phangan then the connections are guaranteed.  If you’re staying on Khao San Road in Bangkok, then you can also take a bus directly from there to Donsak Pier, at Surat Thani on the mainland, and catch the ferry.  Again all connections are guaranteed and you’ll buy a through ticket.  Buy your ticket from Khao San to Koh Phangan here.

If you want to look at the individual parts of the overland trip to Koh Phangan from Bangkok then keep reading.  If you do not buy a through ticket, then you’ll be responsible for getting from the train or bus station in Surat Thani to the ferry port. (The center of Surat Thani to the ferry port is about 26 kilometers(16 miles).

You can see the various bus and train stations as well as the ferry ports in our map later in this article.

Bangkok to Surat Thani

You can take a bus from Bangkok to Surat Thani and then catch the ferry from Surat Thani to Koh Phangan or you can take the train from Bangkok to Surat Thani or you can take a taxi to Surat Thani from Bangkok. 

Surat Thani to Koh Phangan

The pier where boats go to Koh Phangan is at Surat Thani, it’s called Donsak Pier.  There is a train station here and also large buses from Bangkok (and other locations in Thailand) arrive here in time to meet the ferries that travel to Koh Phangan from Surat Thani.  However, the bus station in Surat Thani and the train station at Surat Thani are some distance from the ferry port. 

If you’re taking a through ticketed trip then you don’t have to worry about this, your bus will go straight to the pier and if you’ve bought a through ticketed train ticket, then you’ll be provided with a bus transfer to the pier as well.

Check through ticketed options from Bangkok to Koh Phangan here.

Train & Bus & Boat from Bangkok to Koh Phangan

Taking the train to Koh Phangan from Bangkok is, for me, the best way of traveling to Koh Phangan and this is also the cheapest way to go to Koh Phangan from Bangkok. (that’s if you pick the seats, and not the sleeper train).  You take the train from Bangkok to Surat Thani and then from Surat Thani to the ferry port by bus.  Most through tickets will finish when you arrive at the port in Koh Phangan, although you may have options to buy a transfer at the other end if you’ve already booked your accommodation.

If you book a train and ferry ticket at the train station in Bangkok BE SURE to book it directly at the train ticket windows.  The vendors at the stalls here in Bangkok will charge you a markup for no extra service. Here’s how to reach Koh Phangan by train…

Trains from Bangkok to Surat Thani

There are usually 9 direct trains a day from Bangkok to Surat Thani.  Trains to Surat Thani from Bangkok used to leave from Hua Lamphong train station in Bangkok.  However, at the beginning of 2023, they are (finally) moving the trains over to leave from Bang Sue junction – the timings are a bit muddled at the moment, just make sure you’re at the right train station if you’re taking this option!

There are seat seats on the trains to Surat Thani from Bangkok, and also sleeper trains too.  If you buy a ticket on the train from Bangkok to Surat Thani, then the cheapest will be a seat with no AC.

You can check the times of trains to Surat Thani from Bangkok here.

If your train is leaving from Hua Lamphong, then it used to be the central train station in Bangkok.  You can get to Hua Lamphong on the blue line of the Bangkok MRT, and this is often easier to use rather than getting stuck in the above-ground traffic in Bangkok.

If your train is leaving from Bang Sue Junction, then there’s an MRT station there too.  And yes it’s definitely easier to use that if you’re staying somewhere near another MRT station.

The train from Bangkok to Surat Thani takes between 11 hours and 13.25 hours.  You will need to buy a ticket ahead of time, especially if you want to have a sleeper seat.  Tickets for the train from Bangkok to Surat Thani cost around 220 THB upwards. 

The first train from Bangkok to Surat Thani is at 07:50 and the last train to Surat Thani from Bangkok is at 22:05.  It is a great way to save on accommodation costs and time to take the sleeper trains from Bangkok to Surat Thani and then to get the ferry to Koh Phangan.

Overnight buses also offer the option to save on accommodation costs when traveling to Koh Phangan from Bangkok.  Check your options here.

Ferries from Surat Thani to Koh Phangan

There are several ferry companies that run the route from Surat Thani to Koh Phangan and the trip takes from 90 minutes to 7 hours!  If you’re buying a through ticket then just ask what time you arrive on Koh Phangan. 

Here are the ferry companies that run to Koh Phangan from Donsak Pier and the times the trip takes.

  • Night ferry – leaves Koh Phangan at 10 pm, or Surat Thani at 11 pm and takes 6 to 7 hrs
  • Songserm runs two ferries a day in each direction – takes 3.5 hours
  • Raja Ferries have four trips a day in both directions and take 2.5 hours
  • Lomprayah runs twice a day in both directions and takes 1.5 hours.

You can book the ferry to Koh Phangan from Surat Thani here – and see the options.

The first ferry from Donsak Pier to Koh Phanghan runs at 5 am and the last (apart from the night ferry) runs at 6 pm.  Generally speaking the faster the ferry the most expensive it is.

Bus + Ferry from Bangkok to Koh Phangan

You can also take the bus from Bangkok to Surat Thani and then get the ferry from Surat Thani to Koh Phangan.  The benefit of the through ticketed bus to Surat Thani is that it goes directly to the pier in Surat Thani.  This is the cheapest option for going to Koh Phangan from Bangkok.  And it’s the least hassle. Check departure times here.

The bus + ferry from Bangkok to Koh Phangan takes from 10 hours to 16 hours.  You’ll need to check in for your bus at least 30 minutes before bus departure time in Bangkok.  It’s about 770 kilometers (478 miles) by road from Bangkok to Surat Thani Koh Phangan and the bus + ferry from Bangkok to Koh Phangan is one of the easiest ways to go from Bangkok to Koh Phangan. 

Buses are air-conditioned and recline and have footrests.

Buses from Bangkok to Surat Thani leave from either Khaosan or the Southern Bus Terminal in Bangkok. There are currently 3 buses that run from Bangkok to Surat Thani each day.  The first bus to Koh Phangan from Bangkok leaves at 7 pm and the last bus from Bangkok to Koh Phangan leaves at 9 pm.

Check evening bus times to Surat Thani from Bangkok here – note that these buses connect with the ferry and you CANNOT miss your connection.

These buses to Surat Thani from Bangkok are air-conditioned and by booking online here you can select your seats.  The bus from Bangkok to Surat Thani is not as comfortable as a train sleeper to Surat Thani, but it’s easier and a lot less hassle, especially if you’re staying in the Khao San Road area.

Check availability, prices, and book seats on buses from Bangkok to Koh Phangan here.

Flying from Bangkok to Koh Samui + Ferry to Koh Phangan

The quickest way to get to Koh Phangan from Bangkok is to fly to Koh Samui and then take the ferry across to Koh Phangan.  You’ll need to factor in getting from Koh Samui Airport to the ferry port as well as getting to the airport in Bangkok.

You can check flight prices from Bangkok to Koh Samui here.

And prices of ferries from Koh Samui to Koh Phangan here.

Map of Bus Stops and Train Stations for going from Bangkok to Koh Phangan

You can also see the train station and bus stops from Bangkok to Koh Phangan here

What is the quickest way to go from Bangkok to Koh Phangan.

Flying to Koh Phangan (via Koh Samui) from Bangkok is the quickest way to get to the island.  Flights to Koh Samui from Bangkok take just over one hour.  You can fly from Don Mueang Airport to Koh Samui or from Suvarnabhumi Airport to Koh Samui.  A one-way flight costs from around US$40, but you’ll have to likely add bags and seats to that cost.

There are usually 24 flights a day from Bangkok to Koh Samui International Airport.  The first flight from Bangkok to Koh Samui is at 7:30 am and the last flight to Koh Samui from Bangkok is at 7 pm.

There are four airlines that fly from Bangkok to Koh Samui, Bangkok Air, Thai Airways, Lion Air, and Nok Air. 

The quickest way to get from Bangkok to Koh Phangan

The quickest way to get to Koh Phangan from Bangkok is to fly to Koh Samui and take the ferry across to Koh Phangan.  Flying to Koh Samui from Bangkok takes about 65 minutes, then a ferry takes around 50 minutes.  A train and ferry to Koh Phangan from Bangkok takes up to 15.5 hours, and a bus and ferry to Koh Phangan takes around 15.5 hours. You can book tickets from Bangkok to Koh Phangan here.

The easiest way to go to Koh Phangan from Bangkok

The easiest way to get from Bangkok to Koh Phangan depends on where you are staying in Bangkok.  If you’re staying in Khao San, then it’s easiest to take a bus and ferry (check the prices and availability here) Flying is an easy option to go to Koh Phangan, but you will also have to get to the airport in Bangkok and then take a ferry from Koh Samui to Koh Phangan.  I prefer to take the overnight train, and this is how we traveled.

The cheapest way to go from Bangkok to Koh Phangan

The cheapest way to get to Koh Phangan from Bangkok is to take the bus and ferry – reserve your seats here.

The best way to go from Bangkok to Koh Phangan

And the best way to get from Bangkok to Koh Phangan? Well, now this depends.  I love traveling on trains, and this trip, for me is best by overnight train. 

Popular Routes in Thailand

Want to know more about different forms of transport in Thailand? Our guide to Thailand transport is here. And here’s how to travel some of the popular routes around Thailand, your options, and how we did it.

Final Words on How to Go from Bangkok to Koh Phangan

Going to Koh Phangan from Bangkok is an easy trip to take.  Koh Phangan is well connected by trains, buses, ferries, and flights and this is an easy journey.  You can take a bus and ferry combination, or a train and ferry combination, or a flight to Koh Samui and then a ferry across to Koh Phangan.

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