Laem Yai is a remote coastal village on the northwestern tip of Koh Samui. Providing an excellent balance of development and natural scenery, Laem Yai attracts travellers wanting to visit an off-the-beaten-path place, and experience the real Thailand.
LAEM YAI STYLE
Laem Yai has its own unique charm. Tucked away amidst lush greenery this tiny coastal village still preserves the untouched natural beauty and magnificent scenery. Several five-star resorts and luxurious villas hidden in the beautiful tropical gardens do not cause a dissonance, but on the contrary, add a modern touch to the area.
Laem Yai beach stretches for a couple of kilometres from the west to east baring a fantastic playground for both children and adults alike. Consisting of a rather coarse sand and coral pieces, this beach is like a huge treasury, where you can fish out some beautiful stone or a coral fragment to bring back home. Laem Yai features with a shallow sea, which is not very suitable for swimming, although ideal for younger children to frolic in the coastal waters.
When the sun reaches the zenith, you can easily find a refuge under the verdant palm trees lining over the water at impossible angles, or grab a refreshing coconut at the restaurant set right on the beach. Offering a tropical getaway from the hustle-and-bustle, Laem Yai stands out among other Samui retreats, and it’s a perfect place to spend your laidback holiday.
WHAT WE LOVE
Upscale villas and high-end hotels
Unparalleled natural scenery
Family-friendly shallow beach
Lush greenery and tropical gardens
Tranquillity and serenity all around
LAEM YAI LOCATION
Situated towards the west of Samui Airport on the northwestern tip of Koh Samui, Laem Yai is an ideal base to hide from the madding crowds and immerse into the beautiful natural scenery.
FERRY AND BUS
There are plenty of companies that carry out transfers from Phuket to Samui. The trip consists of terrestrial and marine transfers and ranges from six to seven hours. Buses depart from the central bus station in Phuket and bring travellers to Koh Phangan pier where passengers make a transfer for the modern and fast catamaran, which brings visitors to Nathon Pier located on the north-western coast of Koh Samui. Usually, there are two daily transfers for Koh Samui, but the timing can range due to the travel operator.
Although it is possible to get to Laem Yai, Koh Samui over land or water, the best way is to fly:
AIRPORT AND PIER TRANSFERS
It takes around 45 minutes to reach Laem Yai from Samui Airport depending on traffic. If you are travelling by ferry from Phuket, the trip from Nathon Pier takes around 15 minutes. Ministry of Villas can arrange a chauffeur to greet you upon arrival and escort you to your villa.
Alternatively, there is a taxi desk at the arrival level which arranges one-way fares at a fixed-price. If you opt not to use the taxi desk, there are numerous taxi drivers waiting outside the arrival terminal so you can negotiate the price with them. Even though there is a big sign “Meter-Taxi” on the roof of taxis, local drivers rarely use them, so it is recommended to discuss the price beforehand. You can opt one of the transfer options – a shared mini van with other travellers or a private taxi. A shared taxi is essentially cheaper but usually requires at least five passengers to depart.
There are several options, so we’ve ranked them according to our recommendations for first-time travellers:
Ministry of Villas can arrange a private car and chauffeur for you. Depending on which villa you are staying in, the cost for the private car and chauffeur can vary, so it’s recommended to contact our Ministry of Villas team to get the complete information about the private transfers.
It might be challenging to find a taxi at Laem Sor as the village is rather secluded and remote. However, you can always request a pick-up by phone or ask your villa manager to arrange a taxi for you.
Due to the rather remote location of Laem Yai, many visitors feel a necessity to rent a motorbike to explore further afield, though, there are no motorbike rental shops in the village. If you decided to rent a scooter head to the nearby Nathon, with no lack of rental shops. Take into account that you must always have an international drivers license on your person, otherwise, the local police can issue you a ticket with a summons to appear in court. And, of course, make sure you wear a helmet.
If you are travelling to Samui by plane, the airport is an excellent place to rent a car at one of the rental shops located at the exit of the airport. Car travel is a perfect way to explore the island, and have freedom in movement around. Always opt a 4×4 wheel drive car, as Samui’s landscape is rather hilly, and it can be challenging to get to your cliff top villa on the economy-type vehicle. Also, take into account, that the lower rental price implies the absence of insurance and a poor condition of the vehicle so choose the international brands, if possible, when renting a car, such as Hertz, Avis and Budget Car Rentals, which are more trustworthy than the local rental shops.
LAEM YAI VILLAS
Laem Yai is a home to one Ministry Approved stunning Villa Akira. Perched atop of the hill, this tropical five-bedroom property offers some of the most fantastic views of the island. Villa Akira price starts from USD $588 per night, making it an affordable holiday escape as the property can accommodate up to 12 persons.
The fabulous Villa Akira has dedicated staff including butlers, chef, nannies, 24-hour security personnel, and many other services you won’t find in a hotel. This is why we say “Spend just one night in a villa and you’ll never stay in a hotel again.”
LAEM YAI DINING
A rather remote and secluded, Laem Yai, though, doesn’t have a shortage in dining options. Comprising of authentic midrange, upmarket fine-dining and shack-style beachfront restaurants, Laem Yai will satisfy even the most demanding clientele.
There are several fine-dining restaurants located at five-star hotel resorts inviting non-staying guests to join the dinner at their venue. Specialising in elaborated contemporary Thai and western cuisines, these venues provide the elegant dining experience for a matched price.
Those wanting to sample traditional local cuisines and fresh seafood barbeque can opt one of the restaurants located right on the beach. The strategic location of these eateries along with the authentic (yet, spicy) Thai dishes will treat your taste buds and feast your eyes.
LAEM YAI NIGHTLIFE
Due to its unbeaten location, there is, probably, no better place in Samui to watch the fabulous sunset, than Laem Yai.
The scenery of Laem Yai beach on sunset will leave you speechless. The broad stretch of the flame-coloured sand extending to the horizon and the brilliant reflections on the sea surface casted by the beams of the setting sun is a truly unforgettable view.
For a more traditional nightlife experience, head to one of the bars set along the main ring road, where the delicious tropical cocktails and friendly atmosphere go hand in hand with fantastic clifftop vistas.
LAEM YAI SHOPPING
If you are in Samui only for shopping, Laem Yai is definitely not a place to stay then. There are neither massive shopping centres like in Chaweng, nor fancy boutiques like in Bophut, instead, there is serenity and tranquillity all around.
A few minimarts located along the main ring road sell groceries, various beverages, sunscreens and other necessities, so you can be sure to find basic items in the proximity to your accommodation.
Should you want to relish in the retail therapy, you might need to take a drive to the neighbouring Nathon – an administrative capital of Samui, or Chaweng – a heart of the action and shopping mecca of the island.
LAEM YAI RELAXATION
Notwithstanding where you are staying – at the upscale hotel or exclusive villa – in Laem Yai you can be sure to get the most relaxing holiday of your life. Secluded, tranquil and quiet, this coastal village exudes chill out vibes.
When the sun is at its zenith, you can shelter at the beach restaurant, cool down and sip a cold fresh juice or ice-cold beer. Those wanting a bit of pampering, are blessed with beach massage shacks, where you can get an authentic Thai massage or foot reflexology performed by smiling and rather skilled local women.
Whether you want to simply lay around on the white sand or rent a kayak to cruise along the coastline, get a refreshing drink or an authentic Thai massage, you can be sure that Laem Yai has it all.