Should I spend 3, 4, or 5 days in Koh Tao?

Should you spend 3, 4, or 5 days in Koh Tao?

Most people spend two to seven days in Koh Tao during their visit. The beautiful island offers amazing highlights such as scuba diving and snorkeling, the beaches, the gorgeous scenery, and the hiking.

A true island paradise, Koh Tao brings backpackers and scuba divers from around the globe. The island has cheap scuba certification courses, but because of its popularity, the reef and sea life are starting to struggle. The island itself is strikingly beautiful with stunning beaches and many dramatic viewpoints. Hiking and exploring by motorbike are popular activities.

Do you have 3, 4, or 5 days to visit Koh Tao? Here's our comprehensive breakdown of how much time you might need for your trip along with some suggestions for things to do.

Is 3 days enough time in Koh Tao?

Koh Tao, a small island brimming with sights and attractions, holds immense popularity among tourists. Given only three days, you will likely find yourself rushing through the island's activities such as scuba diving and snorkeling, the beaches, and the gorgeous scenery. To really see what this island boasts, you'll more likely need two to seven days. However, if your schedule is tight, we have a handful of recommendations for making the most of your visit, including Mango Bay Viewpoint.

How to spend 3 days in Koh Tao

Scuba diving and snorkeling around Koh Tao is world-class, and is one of the main reasons why so many visitors come here. Spend a day exploring the beauty of the surrounding underwater world. The island is Thailand's most famous scuba diving destination for it's affordable certifications and prolific dive shops. There are a variety of dive sites near the island, but with fame and popularity come challenges. The coral and sealife is feeling the pressure of the high number of tourists, and the reefs show their damage. But the training you receive here is affordable and well-established.

A few tour suggestions include:

  • Full day snorkeling adventure around Koh Tao ($22)
  • Try Scuba Diving ($99)
  • Snorkel Trip to Koh Nangyuan and Bays of Koh Tao By The Oxygen ($26)

Koh Tao is known to be such a beautiful destination, so just exploring and taking it all in should be one of the top things to do on your list. The island is famous for its cheap diving scene and underwater beauty, but there are also stunning beaches with crystal blue waters as well as quiet bays.

Koh Tao is a very walkable city. With only a day in the island, you'll have no trouble exploring the local sights. The island is smaller than many islands in Thailand, and the small towns are usually no more than 5 kilometers apart. It's also possible to walk around most of the small towns.

The beautiful beaches await you in Koh Tao, so spend the day (or several, if you can) relaxing on the sand or swimming in the water. The white sand beaches have a mellow vibe with beautiful blue waters. This is a true tropical paradise with beachside cafes, easy snorkeling, and warm water. The beaches range from quiet and isolated to high energy and vibrant.

You'll absolutely want to spend some time enjoying the food scene in this island, so make sure you spend time at one of the local restaurants where you can taste the delicious cuisine for a meal or two. You'll find a huge ex-pat community on the island, and with them they bring a variety of international cuisines. There are also local establishments that sell the typical Thai dishes with lots of seafood, curries, and noodle dishes. It's fun to enjoy a beachside restaurant that lets you sit right by the water looking off into a tropical paradise.

Known for it's hiking, Koh Tao sees plenty of visitors looking to get outdoors. Spend a day exploring the natural beauty and scenery on a nearby hike. Hiking is the best way to enjoy the inland beauty of the island. There are paths that take you through the jungle covered land to viewpoints and remote areas. Many paths are rustic and not always well maintained so it's helpful to ask a local for directions beforehand.

This island is very popular for nightlife. After the sun goes down, head out to one of the many popular venues around town. While most people head for the island for its scuba diving, when the sun goes down everyone heads to the beach to party. The island has a very active nightlife scene with its own Full Moon Parties, dance clubs, beachside bars, and more. Head to Sairee Beach for the most active nightlife and entertainment options.

Is 4 days enough time in Koh Tao?

With only four days, you'll probably feel rushed to explore the island. After all, With its wealth of sights and attractions, Koh Tao is a top choice for tourists. To fully embrace Koh Tao, a longer visit is better. Most travelers tend to schedule about two to seven days to experience scuba diving and snorkeling, the beaches, the gorgeous scenery, and the hiking. Nevertheless, if your schedule is limited, we can provide some suggestions to maximize your visit.

The beach at Koh Tao The beach at Koh Tao

How to spend 4 days in Koh Tao

Having 4 days in Koh Tao will provide you with more time to take in the best activities in the island.

Perhaps the most famous place in Koh Tao is Mango Bay Viewpoint, so don't miss it. It might not be at the top of your list, but it's worth experiencing during your trip.

Because the nightlife scene is so popular here, you'll want to take full advantage of it more than once. From the bars and pubs to the nightclubs, there's something for everyone. Or, get some tickets to another show at the theatre such as a ballet or opera.

Is 5 days enough time in Koh Tao?

Five days in Koh Tao is often considered ideal, as many tourists spend two to seven days here. This would usually give you enough time to snorkel or scuba dive, swim at the beach, take in the beautiful scenery, and get out into nature. Further down, you'll find our recommendations to kick off your adventure.

How to spend 5 days in Koh Tao

With 5 days in Koh Tao, you'll have a bit more time to enjoy everything that the island has to offer.

Shopping in Koh Tao is very popular, and it's easy to see why. Spend time exploring the many shops and boutiques to find the perfect gift, souvenir, or outfit. The main beach areas of Mae Haad, Sairee, and Chalok Baan Kao have the highest concentration of clothing and dive equipment shops. Because it's an island with limited access, prices can be a bit high.

There are plenty of restaurants you haven't tried yet, so don't miss another amazing meal at local places for lunch and dinner. Try to go out of your way to find the small, locally owned places that offer the charm and ambiance that can only be found in Koh Tao.

More Info

If you're looking for more information about Koh Tao, we have even more advice to help you plan your journey.

Budget Your Trip is all about finding out how much everything costs so that you can travel cheaper and longer. Created by avid travelers Laurie and Bryan, our goal is to help you plan your next trip on the right budget. With average daily travel costs that are calculated from the budgets of real travelers, plus an analysis of hotel and tour prices, you can find out how much money you need to plan your next adventure. We also have plenty of travel advice, accommodation reviews, and activity suggestions.

Some of the links on this website are sponsored or affiliate links which help to financially support this site. By clicking the link and making a purchase, we may receive a small commission, but this does not affect the price of your purchase.