Having already stayed in Koh Phangan, we chose to move across to Koh Samui a few days before the Full Moon Party kicked in at Haad Rin. Our accommodation was situated in Bangrak, near to the Big Buddha.
After partying in Koh Phangan, our time in Koh Samui was rather more tranquil, focused around the beach, a little sightseeing and our favourite local restaurant, Shambala. As fate would have it, our planned final trip to photograph their food was foiled, as they were closed on our last day in Samui (catering for a wedding). So the one place we would recommend to everyone, is the one place that we have no pictures of (oh sweet irony!). My partner and I ate there on at least five separate occasions. From stuffed squid, fresh salads, spicy masaman curry to their divine coconut pie with vanilla ice-cream, we always left with full bellies and yet somehow a full purse. If you are staying near Bangrack, or out for a day trip to the Big Buddha, then do not miss out on the chance to eat great Thai food at an even better price at Shambala.
Our last evening in Samui was spent dining at Ocean 11 restaurant in Bangrak. The meal itself was very average, but the service, décor and beach front location set a wonderfully romantic tone for our last evening in Koh Samui. A good choice of restaurant if you don’t mind paying more – as a special treat perhaps…..
Most evenings, there are some some brilliant pancake carts outside the 7Elevens. Using home-made batter, made to order and with a selection of savoury and sweet fillings, we couldn’t resist. Once you’ve had one, you just have to go back for more, as we did on many occasions. We loved the banana and nutella; and the banana and cinnamon filled pancakes. At between 30 – 60 THB, it was a real steal for a sweet treat.
When travelling through exotic countries such as Thailand, try to resist the urge to purchase food items that need a machete to get into. Our coconut purchase proved to be a true work-out. After twenty minutes, the coconut had been dropped from a second storey balcony, smashed, pulled and hacked into with a small penknife. The spoils of coconut juice and flesh did taste sublime, however the disapproving looks from other hotel guests dissuaded us from a second purchase.