Which city is cheaper, Koh Phi Phi or Koh Samui?
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
Should I visit Koh Samui or Koh Phi Phi? This is a common question asked by many travelers. By figuring out which city has activities that align with your interests along with knowing which is more affordable, you'll understand where you can get more bang for your buck. So, let's dive into the details and the data, which all comes from actual travelers.
Koh Samui is a tropical, rainforest-covered, and lush resort island. Many visitors also come here because of it's amazing beauty. Visitors also love the food, scuba diving and snorkeling, and beaches.
Koh Phi Phi is a tropical, dramatic, and stunning island. Many visitors also come here because of it's amazing beauty. It's also popular because of the scuba diving and snorkeling, beaches, and hiking.
Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Koh Phi Phi and Koh Samui. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.
Picking the best cuisine and restaurants between Koh Samui and Koh Phi Phi can be difficult as they are each unique in their own way.
Koh Samui has a number of nationally recognized food spots and restaurants. Food on the island is fresh and delicious. You'll find fine dining restaurants as well as hole in the wall dives where you can enjoy local flavors. There are also international restaurants if you need a break from the curries. Beachfront restaurants offer a beautiful setting and sunset dinner cruises are a not to be missed experience. Authentically local dishes usually include some form of coconut but there are also other common Thai dishes available almost anywhere like curries or Pad Thai.
Koh Phi Phi offers number of good local restaurants to choose from. Most dishes feature seafood, and you'll find the highest concentration of restaurants around Tonsai Village. There are also restaurants dotting the way to Long Beach. Many restaurants offer outdoor seating, or a combination of an indoor/outdoor setting. Tropical fruit is also abundant on the island and adds to that tropical paradise atmosphere.
If the nightlife is your priority, you'll find comparable options between Koh Samui and Koh Phi Phi.
Koh Samui has a colorful and one-of-a-kind nightlife scene. All night beach parties, cheap bars, and lively dance clubs all give this island its party atmosphere. Young travelers from around the globe head here to enjoy music, cheap drinks, and world class fun. For the most active nightlife, head to Chaweng Beach, Lamai Beach or Bophut Beach.
Koh Phi Phi offers plenty to do in the evening. Despite its smaller size, there is still a party vibe and tons of nightlife on the island. Backpackers have long flocked to this island, building on the reputation it earned from movies like "The Beach." Booze cruises and all night beach parties are the norm here, so it won't be hard to find a party that lasts until sunrise.
Koh Samui and Koh Phi Phi offer a relatively similar set of luxury resort options.
For the ultimate resort vacation, Koh Samui is a great choice. The island is filled with countless resorts, hotels, and private villas that you can rent. You can choose from beachfront properties or resorts that are located in the hills, which offer beautiful views. The resorts often have pools and range from five star all the way down to budget-friendly.
If you're looking for a fantastic resort destination, Koh Phi Phi is a perfect choice. Despite it's popularity with backpackers and small size, this island also has some of Thailand's most luxurious resorts. Head to Long Beach or Laem Tong to appreciate the quieter side of the island.
There's scuba diving or snorkeling available in both Koh Samui and Koh Phi Phi.
Many visitors partake in scuba diving or snorkeing while visiting Koh Samui. It's easy to arrange snorkeling or scuba diving trips through hotels or travel companies, but it's also possible to snorkel right off the shore in places like Chaweng Beach. Due to the island's popularity, the coral isn't always the healthiest, but the water is clear and you'll likely see some interesting sea life just off the shore.
The scuba diving and snorkeling in Koh Phi Phi is not to be missed. The dramatic limestone cliffs and colorful coral make this a top scuba diving and snorkeling destination in Thailand. There are countless vendors who offer scuba diving or snorkeling trips from the island. You might even see sharks, sea turtles, or seahorses during your trip. Head to the reef at dusk for the best chance of seeing black tip reef sharks.
For a relaxing beach holiday, both Koh Samui and Koh Phi Phi are good choices.
Travelers come from around the world to visit the beaches in Koh Samui. The white sand beaches are lined with coconut trees and look out on crystal blue waters, making this a perfect tropical destination. There are lively activity-filled beaches as well as quiet retreats where you can enjoy a peaceful setting away from the crowds.
With world-famous beaches, Koh Phi Phi is a very popular vacation destination. This island has some of the most dramatic beauty in Thailand and the beaches will not disappoint. Although it's usually referred to as an island, Koh Phi Phi is actually a small archipelago with Koh Phi Phi Don being the only inhabited island. Nearby Koh Phi Phi Leh is famous as the filming place of the movie "The Beach" (which you'll hear playing at hotels around the island every night). The beaches are beautiful with white sand and clear water. It truly is a tropical paradise.
If you're looking to go hiking, Koh Samui and Koh Phi Phi both have various trails.
Many visitors go to Koh Samui for the hiking trails. Hikes will take you inland through the beautiful rainforest. There are hidden waterfalls as well as Buddha gardens and ridge trails with breathtaking views. Hikes range from easy to challenging, so make sure you understand the skill level required before you set out.
Koh Phi Phi is a popular spot for hiking. With its dramatic cliffs, this area has beautiful, but challenging hikes that take you to stunning viewpoints. The dramatic photos that you see of the islands often require a hike, but the reward at the end is well worth it.
Koh Samui often provides a better shopping experience than Koh Phi Phi.
Koh Samui has a variety of shopping areas worth visiting. The resort areas have the most interesting shops and you'll find the most options around Chaweng. There are boutique shops as well as some malls. You can sometimes negotiate prices down in independently run stores, but some places advertise fixed prices.
Koh Phi Phi has some shopping areas for those that seek them out. Shopping is limited on the island but you'll find a few souvenir shops with trinkets that you can purchase. Because it's an island, you can expect prices to be high.
There's generally more to do with your family in Koh Samui than Koh Phi Phi.
You'll find plenty of family-friendly things to do in Koh Samui. The island is one of the slightly calmer, family-friendly options in Thailand. It has a number of activities that all ages can enjoy including water parks, water sports, and temples to explore. Snorkeling is also fun and there's an aquarium and zoo that you can check out.
Koh Phi Phi is not the most family-friendly destination. This island is on the smaller side and it has a remote tropical island atmosphere. The best side of the island for families is the north end where you'll find the quietest and most beautiful beaches. It's best to avoid the area around Tonsai which has the highest concentration of backpackers and day trippers.
With fun activities for couples, both Koh Samui and Koh Phi Phi make for a good place to visit.
Koh Samui is a great resort island if you're traveling as a couple. Dinner cruises, beachfront restaurants, and beautiful sunsets all make this island a romantic destination for couples. There are also spas, resorts, and fine dining restaurants that you can enjoy.
For those traveling as a couple, Koh Phi Phi has plenty to offer. Stunning beaches, dramatic landscapes, excellent snorkeling and scuba diving, and a remote tropical atmosphere make this is a great place for couples and honeymooners. Head to the quieter north side of the island where you'll find the better resorts and less backpackers, as well as the best beaches.
For backpackers, both Koh Samui and Koh Phi Phi are fairly comparable places to visit.
Plenty of budget travelers and backpackers visit Koh Samui. The island feels a bit more like a holiday destination than a backpacker destination, but it still has a lively nightlife and affordable accommodation around Lamai Beach. It's also a nice place to go for yoga or Muay Thai classes.
Koh Phi Phi is a mecca for backpackers and budget travelers. Most people visit this island as a day trip, but for those who linger, they'll be rewarded with dramatic landscapes and beautiful beaches. Most backpackers hang out around Tonsai where things are the cheapest, but the quality can also be very poor.
Koh Samui and Koh Phi Phi both offer public transit to get you around.
While Koh Samui offers some public transit options, it might not be your first choice. Songthaew, the Thai version of a bus, and taxis or motorbikes are the best ways to get around the island.
Koh Phi Phi has a few public transit options. There are water taxis and private boats that you can hire.
Koh Samui and Koh Phi Phi are similar when it comes to walkability.
Koh Samui is generally not a very walkable resort island. The roads have a good amount of traffic and generally aren't designed for walking.
Koh Phi Phi is somewhat walkable. You can't walk all of the way around the island because of the cliffs, but you can walk from Tonsai to Long Beach.
Visitors can find plenty of fun things to do in both Koh Samui and Koh Phi Phi. With generally more activities and things to do, visitors tend to spend more time in Koh Samui than Koh Phi Phi.
The ideal length of time for a trip to Koh Samui is 3-7 days, and the ideal length of time for a trip to Koh Phi Phi is 2-3 days.
Visitors enjoy the nightlife and food when visiting the laid back resort island of Koh Samui. You can also relax and pamper yourself at one of the resorts. One day is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do. The entire area has lots to do.
You'll find food and scuba diving and snorkeling around the island of Koh Phi Phi. People often spend their time relaxing at one of the resorts. Since there is so much to do in the area, one day is probably not enough for all of it. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do.
Visitors enjoy the food and scuba diving and snorkeling when visiting the rainforest-covered destination of Koh Samui. Many visitors also spend a good bit of time hiking. This resort island offers something for everyone. Since there is so much to do in the area, a weekend is probably not enough for all of it.
You'll find scuba diving and snorkeling and nightlife around the remote destination of Koh Phi Phi. Hikers are also drawn to this area. This is a popular place to visit for a weekend.A weekend should give you a good understanding of everything this island has to offer. This island offers a variety of activities to choose from.
Visitors enjoy the scuba diving and snorkeling and shopping when visiting the tropical resort island of Koh Samui. People enjoy relaxing at one of the resorts. Many people spend five days here.If you enjoy all that's offered here, then five days is just the right amount of time to spend here. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel.
Travelers enjoy the nightlife and food when visiting the dramatic island of Koh Phi Phi. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision. It's also a relaxing resort destination. Five days is plenty of time to see everything, even with extra days to spare.
Visitors enjoy the shopping and nightlife when visiting the destination of Koh Samui. Anyone can find something fun to do here. This is a popular place to visit for one week. Travelers enjoy the resorts in the area as well. In one week, you should have a good grasp of this resort island.
Koh Phi Phi is a popular choice for travelers. People enjoy relaxing at one of the resorts. One week is usually plenty of time to spend here with extra days to spare. With this much time, visitors often visit nearby destinations or take day trips. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.
These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.
The average daily cost (per person) in Koh Samui is $43, while the average daily cost in Koh Phi Phi is $56. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each city. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Koh Samui and Koh Phi Phi in more detail.
Looking for a hotel in Koh Samui or Koh Phi Phi? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.
Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.
Here are some examples of typical transportation prices from actual travelers in Koh Samui:
Also for Koh Samui, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:
Below are a few samples from actual travelers for transportation costs in Koh Phi Phi:
Prices for flights to both Koh Phi Phi and Koh Samui change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.
Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Koh Samui:
For Koh Samui, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:
Here are some examples of typical meal expenses from previous travelers to Koh Phi Phi:
Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Koh Samui.
For Koh Phi Phi, here are some examples of average entertainment and activity prices from previous travelers:
Here are a few samples of the prices for alcohol and nightlife in Koh Phi Phi from other travelers:
When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Koh Samui and Koh Phi Phi, we can see that Koh Phi Phi is more expensive. And not only is Koh Samui much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Koh Samui would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Koh Samui and be able to afford a more luxurious travel style by staying in nicer hotels, eating at more expensive restaurants, taking tours, and experiencing more activities. The same level of travel in Koh Phi Phi would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Koh Phi Phi than you might in Koh Samui.
Both destinations experience a tropical climate with warm weather most of the year. Instead of summer and winter seasons, they usually have a rainy season and a dry season.
Both Koh Phi Phi and Koh Samui are popular destinations to visit in the summer with plenty of activities. Koh Samui attracts visitors year-round for its warm weather and tropical climate. Koh Phi Phi attracts visitors year-round for its warm weather and tropical climate.
It rains a lot this time of the year in Koh Phi Phi. It's quite rainy in Koh Samui. In July, Koh Samui usually receives less rain than Koh Phi Phi. At this time of the year, Koh Samui gets 143 mm (5.6 in) of rain, while Koh Phi Phi receives 287 mm (11.3 in) of rain.
In July, Koh Samui is generally cooler than Koh Phi Phi. Temperatures in Koh Samui average around 24°C (76°F), and Koh Phi Phi stays around 28°C (82°F).
Both Koh Phi Phi and Koh Samui during the autumn are popular places to visit. The warm tropical climate attracts visitors to Koh Samui throughout the year. The warm tropical climate attracts visitors to Koh Phi Phi throughout the year.
December to February is the dry season in Koh Samui. October to December is the rainy season in Koh Samui. December to March is the dry season in Koh Phi Phi. May to November is the rainy season in Koh Phi Phi. Koh Phi Phi gets a good bit of rain this time of year. It rains a lot this time of the year in Koh Samui. Koh Samui usually gets less rain in October than Koh Phi Phi. Koh Samui gets 240 mm (9.5 in) of rain, while Koh Phi Phi receives 304 mm (12 in) of rain this time of the year.
Koh Samui is cooler than Koh Phi Phi in the autumn. The temperature in Koh Samui is usually 24°C (75°F) in October, and Koh Phi Phi stays around 27°C (81°F).
The winter attracts plenty of travelers to both Koh Samui and Koh Phi Phi. Plenty of visitors come to Koh Samui because of the warm tropical climate that lasts throughout the year. Plenty of visitors come to Koh Phi Phi because of the warm tropical climate that lasts throughout the year.
December to February in Koh Samui is the dry season. December to March in Koh Phi Phi is the dry season. In January, Koh Samui usually receives more rain than Koh Phi Phi. At this time of the year, Koh Samui gets 51 mm (2 in) of rain, while Koh Phi Phi receives 31 mm (1.2 in) of rain.
In the winter, Koh Samui is cooler than Koh Phi Phi. Typically, the winter temperatures in Koh Samui in January are around 22°C (72°F), and Koh Phi Phi is about 28°C (82°F).
The spring brings many poeple to Koh Samui as well as Koh Phi Phi. Koh Samui attracts visitors year-round for its warm weather and tropical climate. Koh Phi Phi attracts visitors year-round for its warm weather and tropical climate.
May to November in Koh Phi Phi is the rainy season. It's quite rainy in Koh Phi Phi. Koh Samui usually gets less rain in April than Koh Phi Phi. Koh Samui gets 55 mm (2.2 in) of rain, while Koh Phi Phi receives 120 mm (4.7 in) of rain this time of the year.
In April, Koh Samui is generally cooler than Koh Phi Phi. Temperatures in Koh Samui average around 24°C (76°F), and Koh Phi Phi stays around 29°C (84°F).
|Koh Samui||Koh Phi Phi|
|Temp (°C)||Rain (mm)||Temp (°C)||Rain (mm)|
|Jan||22°C (72°F)||51 mm (2 in)||28°C (82°F)||31 mm (1.2 in)|
|Feb||22°C (72°F)||11 mm (0.4 in)||28°C (83°F)||22 mm (0.9 in)|
|Mar||23°C (74°F)||24 mm (0.9 in)||29°C (84°F)||52 mm (2 in)|
|Apr||24°C (76°F)||55 mm (2.2 in)||29°C (84°F)||120 mm (4.7 in)|
|May||25°C (77°F)||164 mm (6.5 in)||28°C (83°F)||318 mm (12.5 in)|
|Jun||25°C (77°F)||145 mm (5.7 in)||28°C (82°F)||279 mm (11 in)|
|Jul||24°C (76°F)||143 mm (5.6 in)||28°C (82°F)||287 mm (11.3 in)|
|Aug||24°C (76°F)||140 mm (5.5 in)||28°C (82°F)||262 mm (10.3 in)|
|Sep||25°C (76°F)||196 mm (7.7 in)||27°C (81°F)||399 mm (15.7 in)|
|Oct||24°C (75°F)||240 mm (9.5 in)||27°C (81°F)||304 mm (12 in)|
|Nov||23°C (74°F)||335 mm (13.2 in)||27°C (81°F)||165 mm (6.5 in)|
|Dec||23°C (73°F)||134 mm (5.3 in)||27°C (81°F)||62 mm (2.4 in)|
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