Beaches & Hotels
May 6, 2024

Your total guide to Choeng Mon beach

Why choose Koh Samui's Choeng Mon Beach? Easy – there’s lots to love. Here’s my not-very-impartial answer, updated with the area’s newest hotels.

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Choeng Mon Beach, Koh Samui

Why should you stay on (or near) Koh Samui's Choeng Mon Beach? Easy – there’s lots to love. Here’s my not-very-impartial answer, plus ten great reasons to choose Choeng Mon, from its biggest fan. Just updated – my favourite Choeng Mon Beach hotels for both couples and families. Enjoy!

What is Choeng Mon like?

Choeng Mon Beach in 2003
Choeng Mon Beach in 2003

I first visited Choeng Mon Beach in 2003 and have returned to it ever since. While new hotels (including some incredible high-end options) have widened your options, it retains much the same ambience as ever. Charming, casual beach bungalows, beach massage huts and restaurants make up much of the beach-front, giving it a very personal feel. If you like, you can spend your entire Koh Samui vacation supporting Choeng Mon's many local and family businesses.

Where to stay on Choeng Mon Beach

SALA Samui Choengmon Beach Resort
SALA Samui Choengmon Beach Resort

My pick: SALA Samui Choengmon Beach Resort

Directly on Choeng Mon Beach, SALA Samui Choeng Mon is very family-friendly but is just as popular with honeymooners. An unlikely but magic combo – I don't know how they pull it off. In addition to a family pool and an adults' pool, room options include villas with private plunge pools.

More hotel ideas

Choeng Mon Beach at Honey Cottages
Choeng Mon Beach at Honey Cottages

Tip: Choeng Mon Beach and its surrounding area offer a great choice of hotels, there's something for the high-rolling honeymooner, sweet family or frugal flash-packer. I might put Honey Cottages in the "two-ish" star range, but – as with many independent hotels in Thailand – this is not to its discredit.

If you're a beach fanatic excited for your sun-bed, sandcastles and tiki-torch happy hour ... skip the high thread-count linens and head to Honey. It's one of my favourite spots on Koh Samui. Other budget and mid-range options directly on Choeng Mon Beach include PS Thana Resort and Kirati Beach Resort – but I think Honey's location is the best of the three.

On Choeng Mon? Near Choeng Mon? Confused what's where? To completely get your bearings on the island – find everything you need to know in The Koh Samui Guide. Checklists ... maps ... all that Organised Person Happy Place stuff is included, too.

Where to stay near Choeng Mon Beach

Views from Garrya Tongsai Bay near Choeng Mon Beach
Views from Garrya Tongsai Bay

My pick: Garrya Tongsai Bay

Just across the Choeng Mon bay (kayak-able), Garrya Tongsai Bay is one of my favourite spots on Samui. This resort has many aspects to its ‘secret sauce’ – serenity and seclusion are most of all. For thirty-plus years, Tongsai has blended into natural surroundings in its own bay – one in which all motorised watersports are banned to ensure your total peace and quiet. I love The Tongsai Bay for its environmental aspects (and animal-loving ethos in particular).

*Garrya Tongsai Bay is the rebrand of what was The Tongsai Bay. It's a little-known hotel brand under The Banyan Tree umbrella with a focus on 'wellbeing resorts' in Thailand, Japan and China.

More hotel ideas

Tip: Sea Dance Resort of the sweetest boutique hotels on the island, with amazing food and drink. Found out the roughly 101 reasons you'll love it and don't miss my interview with Khun Poy, the resort's owner.

Need help? On Choeng Mon? Near Choeng Mon? Confused what's where? Learn your way around the island and get the total lie of the land using The Koh Samui Guide.

What to pack for Choeng Mon Beach

What to pack for Choeng Mon Beach
Mosquito repellent, kids' Thailand travel guide, yoga sling sandals, Thai slang audiobook

1. Mosquito repellent

This isn't to say that mosquitoes are any more voracious on Choeng Mon than elsewhere – just that you'll want mosquito repellent anywhere at sunset (but especially at the beach if there's no breeze). My forever favourite is Incognito Mosquito Repellent – it's totally natural, has no DEET and isn't tested on animals.

See my review my raving love letter where I profess to love the stuff more than coffee. Pre-pandemic it was available on Amazon U.S. and Amazon Canada but (for the time being at least) is only available on Amazon UK. For a two-week trip, I'd estimate using one 100ml bottle per person.

More mosquito tips? See how to avoid mosquitoes in Thailand.

2. Thailand travel guides for kids

Choeng Mon Beach draws a happy crowd of all ages – both families and couples alike. Coming to Samui with kids? Choeng Mon sand makes perfect castles. To introduce your children to Thailand before you travel (or augment bedtime stories during your trip), this kids' travel guide suits ages 8-12. For more suggestions and other ages, see these children's books about Thailand.

3. Comfy sandals

Unlike other Samui beaches, you won't need water shoes on Choeng Mon Beach itself. However, it's a very walkable universe and you can easily hop from your pool bed to shops and restaurants on the Choeng Mon high street. In terms of comfiness, these yoga sling sandals mean you’ll: (A) walk upon an extra-squooshy yoga mat that’s (B) strapped to your feet with a t-shirt. Can happy feet get happier?

While there are a few tricks to picking the right shoes for Thailand – these puppies are perfect for all sorts of itineraries. If they’re on your feet, I’m jealous.

4. Must-Know Thai Slang

After a day or two in Choeng Mon, you'll have a favourite spot for morning coffee or happy hour cocktails – it's inevitable. As you befriend the staff, try learning some beginner Thai slang and enjoy the absolute hilarity that follows. Never have you met keener teachers and, in no time, you'll either be able to swear like a sailor tell a beach dog that it's a honey precious angel baby.

10 reasons to choose Choeng Mon Beach

A calm day on Choeng Mon Beach
A calm day on Choeng Mon Beach

1. Incredible sand

The sand on Choeng Mon is really soft, white and sugary. Fans of Chaweng Beach will say their beach is best for exactly the same reason...buuut this is my website and my sand-subjectivity loves Choeng Mon best.

2. Total convenience

Just a minutes walk to the village on the high street, you can buy anything you need or have forgotten – beach tennis? More sunscreen? Another book? Choeng Mon’s high street has all the services you could need: laundry, banks, car rental shops, pharmacies, etc.

3. Top secret?

Spending time on Choeng Mon Beach still feels like you know a really good secret. It feels very "tucked away".

Sailboats and catamarans just off Choeng Mon Beach
Sailboats and catamarans just off Choeng Mon Beach

4. Extraordinary beach dining

There’s fine dining at both ends of the beach, and casual breakfast and lunches in between. You can eat every meal with your feet in the sand.

5. The perfect size

Choeng Mon Beach is long enough to make a lovely stroll at sunset. But - it’s small enough to walk everywhere.

Massage hut on Choeng Mon Beach
Massage hut on Choeng Mon Beach

6. Ideal proximity

Choeng Mon is close to Koh Samui Airport, just a few minutes drive, so your holiday starts sooner – and you can sleep in later for a crack-of-dawn departing flight.

7. Unexpected choice of food

A great selection of restaurants – there's Thai, of course, but lots of other cuisine choices, too. Indian, pizza, Korean, etc.

Sandcastles on Choeng Mon Beach
Sandcastles on Choeng Mon Beach

8. Immediate access

Though Choeng Mon has a quiet main road, it's close to the ring road – just a short drive in either direction to larger Chaweng and delightful Fisherman’s Village. Go ahead and plan to visit your neighbours!

9. The freshest seafood

Eat fresh seafood on the beach every night. If you get up early (not long after sunrise) you can watch fishermen at work. Then, at dusk, stroll along and choose a handsome looking fish and choose exactly how you'd like it cooked. Grilled? Fried? Steamed with tamarind?

An extra-special Choeng Mon Beach sunset
An extra-special Choeng Mon Beach sunset

10. Choeng Mon's secret sunsets

Not every beach on Samui can offer you a sunset – but, more often than not, Choeng Mon puts on a good show.

Your questions

We’re hoping to finally return to Koh Samui this year, it’s been too long! We’re long time fans of SALA Samui Choeng Mon, but have you seen/stayed at the Kimpton Kitalay Samui yet? I’m interested to hear what it’s like.

Kimpton Kitalay Samui
Kimpton Kitalay Samui's bar

As a quick side-by-side comparison, Kimpton Kitalay Samui would suit families looking for a kids’ club, dog owners (or dog lovers) and anyone with a preference for a larger resort. Kimpton is a shade trendier than SALA Samui Choeng Mon, suiting a Bangkok Soho House set.

Rooms: Kimpton is bigger with 138 rooms, suites, or villas vs. SALA Samui’s 69.

Family rooms: Kimpton offers a Family Room option with one king bed, two twin beds and two bathrooms.

Kids’ club: Kimpton’s kids’ club, Junio, is 500 square meters (5300 sqft) and is really cool (“inspired by a busy seaside port”). There’s no kids’ club at SALA, but plenty of beachfront for some old-fashioned buckets and spades.

Gym: Kimpton’s is bound to be newer.

Yoga: Offered at both. Kimpton's classes are poolside (or Tai Chi on the beach), SALA's are in a dedicated open-air yoga sala, up amongst the coconut trees.

Accessibility: Kimpton offers an accessible entrance, public space, room and restrooms and an accessible restaurant. This is rare for Samui and nice to see.

Design: Kimpton is “nautical", whereas SALA Samui is more traditionally Thai.

Room types and sizes: Both resorts offer rooms, pool villas and suites. Kimpton’s rooms range from 58 to 628 square meters (624 to nearly 7000 sqft). SALA Samui’s rooms range from 47 to 326 square meters (approx. 500 to 3500 sqft).

Extra beds: Kimpton prefers guests to book connecting rooms rather than add extra beds. SALA Samui will add extra children’s beds for a nightly fee.

Pool: Kimpton’s main resort pool is enormous – in fact, the only Olympic size swimming pool on Koh Samui. SALA Samui has two very generous pools, one for families and one for adults only. All three are oceanfront. Both resorts have villas with private pools.

Dining options: Kimpton has five on-site bars and restaurants, whereas SALA Samui has two, plus a street front Mediterranean option.

Sustainability: SALA Samui has a ‘Travel Sustainable’ credential and limits its single-use plastic.

Pets: If you’re local and have a dog, they’re welcome at Kimpton (not at SALA Samui). Or, if you’re dog-obsessed, just stalk the hotel yellow lab, Emma. (I definitely will). Another lifetime highlight? Watching someone take a corgi stand-up paddle boarding. A corgi wearing ski goggles. Ohhhh, yes yes yes.

If you love the intimacy of SALA Samui, you might weigh up whether you’d like a newer, nautical option that’s twice as big – perhaps with dogs – or maybe true love lasts a lifetime? SALA is a Thai company, whereas Kimpton is an Intercontinental brand. From there, I leave it to you!

Choeng Mon Beach

So how to plan your perfect trip? For beach-by-beach comparisons around Koh Samui, hotel ideas and tips for renting private villas, The Koh Samui Guide is invaluable in your trip-planning and your best friend when you get here. Enjoy!

P.S. You can find every tip for Koh Samui's best beaches and hotels in the archive, or subscribe by email and get all the details straight to your inbox. Enjoy!