The best places for yoga on Koh Samui
Whether you already love yoga, or want to try it while on holiday, just about anything is better with an ocean backdrop.
Koh Samui Yoga
You bend, you stretch... you get to feel impossibly smug. Whether you already love yoga or want to try it while on holiday, just about anything is better with an ocean backdrop or smells of frangipani. As Koh Samui positions itself more and more as a destination for all things green, organic and healthy, Samui's yoga options are really expanding. Namaste-rfully add some Koh Samui yoga to any portion of your holiday.
Where to find yoga on Koh Samui?
Whatever your schedule and skill level, finding yoga on Koh Samui will not be a problem. Yoga's a big thing here and makes a perfect activity to do in the shade when the sun's a little too strong (and an ideal way to enjoy a rainy day or all of rainy season as well).
Where's best for Koh Samui yoga?
I'd say choose your own adventure. If you'd like a little yoga everyday, balanced between an island vacation, you might like a hotel with complimentary guest classes offered in a sala or on the beach each morning. Find a long list of hotel yoga options, organised by beach, below.
Otherwise, consider staying at two of Samui's dedicated yoga retreats, either Absolute Sanctuary or Vikasa Yoga Retreat. The former offers diverse wellness programming including Pilates whereas Vikasa hosts yoga teacher training courses.
Start with The Koh Samui Guide. How to use the guide? First, use it to solve your big questions, like how to choose your perfect beach and hotel. Then, use it to enjoy every last detail – like finding enormous cocktails and great coffee. Most of all, you'll arrive 100% prepared – with crucial packing advice, cultural savvy and Samui safety tips – ready to roll.
Which hotels on Koh Samui offer yoga?
If you’d like to add an hour or so of yoga to your beach holiday, it’s easy to do at dozens of island resorts. You’ve got options. The following resorts offer yoga classes for their guests. Some are included for free with your room rate and others charge a nominal fee. Many offer their classes in beautiful open-air pavilions or poolside before breakfast (when it’s still nice and cool). In-house hotel yoga is a great, convenient option as you won't have to venture far and can easily fit it in before breakfast or happy hour.
As an example, SALA Samui Choengmon Beach Resort’s classes are complimentary for guests and are offered on Monday, Wednesday and Sunday mornings (7:30 am to 8:30 am) in their open-air yoga sala. Bookings are required, mats are provided and all levels are welcome. Private sessions are available for THB 1500 per person (or THB 2000 for two people).
- SALA Samui Choengmon Beach Resort
- Melati Beach Resort & Spa
- Melia Koh Samui
- Garrya Tongsai Bay Samui
- Hyatt Regency Koh Samui
- Kimpton Kitalay Samui
- SAii Koh Samui Choengmon
- Six Senses Samui
- Cape Fahn Hotel Samui
- The Ritz-Carlton, Koh Samui
- Cielo Boutique Hotel & Spa Samui
- Anantara Bophut Koh Samui Resort
- Bandara Resort & Spa
- Peace Resort Samui
- Zazen Boutique Resort & Spa
- Celes Samui
- Karma Resort
Chaweng and Chaweng Noi
Love endorphins? Don’t miss Koh Samui’s best hotel gyms and fitness facilities.
DIY Koh Samui yoga
Unroll your mat and go. Rather do your own thing? Introvert alert – want to enjoy your Samui yoga on your terms? Not a problem. You might find a nice, relaxing corner to unroll your mat within your hotel – hopefully somewhere with lots of Thai ambience. You might favour your own room with a view if you want to control the air-con. During the hottest months of Koh Samui's climate (April and May), you'll almost certainly want to yoga in air-conditioning.
If space is a bit tight, ask at reception if there's a quiet corner you can use for a little while. No need to share your downward dog with the world, right?
Otherwise, hit the beach. Take a friend and find a stretch of sand to call your own. Even on a popular beach like Choeng Mon, it tends to stay quiet until as late as 8:30 in the morning with just a handful of dedicated runners, fishermen and other early risers.
Koh Samui yoga retreats
For serious sessions of Koh Samui yoga, consider booking a yoga retreat. Several resorts with a health focus offer holidays built on invigorating sunrises at frightening times of day, lots of yoga, and perhaps little else (certainly not Singha). Will you see results? Absolutely. Will you be sad never to see a Samui Nutella pancake? Only you can say.
Amongst the offerings, you might consider (in alphabetical order):
A wellness sanctuary with a yoga and Pilates focus on the outskirts of Choeng Mon. Your options include drop-in classes and/or staying as an in-house guest for retreats and programs of varying duration.
Day Pass: If you’d like to try Absolute for the day, take advantage of their Full-Day Wellness Experience. The program runs from 9:30 am to 3 pm and can be booked as either a private pass or a group pass (the latter costs slightly less – ideal if you're travelling solo and want some company). The private option includes a Pilates class and a private yoga class, a Thai massage, use of the pool, steam room and infrared sauna, and a light lunch. Need something to do on a rainy day? Look no further.
Yoga classes include Absolute Fit, Detox Yoga, Hatha Yoga, Hot Yoga, Pranayama, Meditation, Restorative Yoga, Yin Yoga and Yoga Core. Unless otherwise noted, all of the above classes welcome beginners.
- Beginners: Gentle Flow (Vinyasa) and Intro to Yoga classes are specific beginner classes.
- Intermediate: 'All Style Yoga' and Hot Flow intermediate classes are offered weekly.
- Retreats: Five, seven and ten-day yoga retreats and fitness retreats are also available.
Absolute's yoga classes are held in the indoor yoga studio and the outdoor yoga sala. If booking accommodation at Absolute Sanctuary, you can add yoga or Pilates classes on a drop-in basis, or buy a 3/5/7 class card or unlimited class passes for various durations (1 week, 2 weeks, etc).
Anahata sits beachfront in Lipa Noi and offers bungalow accommodation with yoga and meditation classes available at an additional cost. As at Absolute Sanctuary you can (A) stay on site and take ad hoc yoga classes when you feel like it or (B) book as a yoga retreat guest.
Anahata's yoga classes are held Monday through Friday mornings and guests receive a special rate of 200 THB per class.
One-week, two-week, three-week and month-long fitness retreats are also available that include yoga and other fitness classes such as Aqua Fit, Muay Thai (Thai boxing) and daily massage options.
Kamalaya is more of a wellness sanctuary, however, it does offer two yoga retreat options (amongst various sleepy/healthy/detoxy/nutritiony options).
Kamalaya is unique for offering a totally private yoga retreat – all your instruction is one-on-one with your instructor/s. Ideal if you're a shy beginner or want total focus. The retreat is called ‘personal yoga synergy’ and can be booked as a three-, five-, seven- or fourteen-night retreat.
Prefer the company of others? Group retreats are held at certain times of the year for all levels.
Stay on-site in ‘tented’ accommodation high in the hills near Lamai and enjoy daily yoga classes at an additional cost. The morning class is typically Rise and Shine Yoga, with Yin Yoga offered a few evenings each week.
Perhaps saving the best-known for last. Vikasa is on a gorgeous hillside between Lamai and Chaweng and is an established authority for yoga on the island. Their cliffside site is gorgeous, the food is great and they have a flexible drop-in schedule if you’ve already booked to stay elsewhere.
- Vikasa's yoga classes include flow, complete, chill, gong, align, sound, and ecstatic dance.
- Most classes are offered in English with some in Thai.
- Retreats are also available (yoga retreats, plus lifestyle and detox retreats)
- Yoga teacher training is available (foundation, advanced and yin yoga).
- Mats, blocks and yoga towels are provided.
Vikasa's rooms cater equally to couples and single travellers, with both a pool and gym on-site. Room options include single rooms, garden bungalows, and double rooms (single or double beds) with ocean views and/or balconies. Guests must be aged 18 or older. Room rates include yoga classes.
It’s an inclusive and welcoming place for all levels, espoused in their own words: “We believe that everyone is a yogi, and that means you. You don't need to be flexible or thin or have the ‘right’ clothes. You don't need to know ancient Sanskrit or burn incense in your home. All you need to do is show up with an open mind and do your best”.
Need another reason to stick around after class? It goes like this: “Hello, massaaaaaage”. (Most of Koh Samui's yoga retreats include daily Thai massages or other massage treatments).
What to pack for a yoga retreat in Thailand?
Namaste-rful trip-planning? For enjoying yoga outdoors on a tropical island – it starts with packing mosquito repellent. To keep your mind on your muscles (not on Thailand's mosquitoes), I recommend applying some natural bug spray before your practice. Spray extra if your classes are in the evening. My most-beloved, totally-obsessed-with favourite for DEET-free protection is Incognito Natural Anti-Mozzie spray.
What do you wear to yoga in Thailand?
Please see my Koh Samui fitness tips for suggestions on workout clothes that will suit the island's heat and humidity, as well as guidance for sun protection. Note that, even in a shady yoga sala, you’ll still want to protect yourself against Thailand’s extra-strength UV.
Your Koh Samui yoga FAQs
Is Koh Samui good for yoga?
Definitely. Koh Samui is becoming a great destination for yoga fanatics (and those of us with genuine intentions to touch our toes one day).
When is the best time to book a Koh Samui yoga retreat?
It’s an especially good idea if you're coming to Thailand during cooler, rainier parts of the year – on Koh Samui that’s typically November, December and January. October would also be a good time – it's a typically cloudy month but the breezes tend to be good. If you don't need blue skies, add October to the list.
While classes typically have fans and take place in shaded salas, I would find it too hot and humid to enjoy yoga in the hotter months (typically late March to mid/late May). At this time of year, I’d need air-conditioning (perhaps sacrilege to dedicated yogis).
Questions about Koh Samui's weather?
It – and everything else you need to know – is all in The Koh Samui Guide.
How much is yoga on Koh Samui?
Whether you want to drop in for a spontaneous class when clouds gather or are coming with an ambitious yoga schedule, you'll find Koh Samui yoga prices very competitive to big cities like London and Melbourne (often in gorgeous, landscaped, open-air and ocean-view spaces). As you'd expect, higher prices reflect prettier surroundings in pricier parts of the island.
Drop-in yoga prices on Koh Samui
Drop-in yoga classes are widely available on Samui. Not much of a planner? Below, find some easy options for drop-in yoga on Koh Samui. They’re ideal for rainy days and for anyone with good scheduling intentions and little follow-through. Some yoga studios offer drop-in classes, weekly passes, or you can book a one-off private session. (Prices current at the time of writing – July 2023).
The Wellness Day Programs at Absolute Sanctuary are:
- Yoga and Pilates (Group): 6545 THB
- Yoga and Pilates (Private): 6839 THB
A two-hour sunrise session of stand-up paddleboard yoga including hotel transfer and instruction. Beginners are welcome but participants must be 16+ and able to swim at least 50 metres.
- SUP yoga: 1340 THB
One drop-in yoga class on Koh Samui costs between 300 to 700 THB. That’s approximately £7-15 or AU$13-30. Note that some studios offer a discount for first-timers – worth asking. Classes almost always include equipment but double-check when booking.
Many of the hotel classes listed above are complimentary for in-house guests, though some come at an extra charge, typically between 300 to 700 THB per person.
- Absolute Sanctuary: 700 THB
- Fit Koh (Yogarden): 450 THB
- Kapuhala Koh Samui: 450 THB
- Marga Yoga: 400 THB
- Tak Yoga: 300 THB
- Vikasa: 500 THB
A three-class pass, where offered, will cost between 1000 to 1500 THB (approximately £22-33 or AU$43-65). When booking a multi-pass, check whether it has an expiration and whether you can share it between friends and family.
- Absolute Sanctuary: 1500 THB
- Marga Yoga: 1000 THB
For the slightly more dedicated, a five-class yoga pass will cost between 1250 to 2250 THB (approximately £28-50 or AU$54-97).
- Absolute Sanctuary: 2250 THB
- Tak Yoga: 1250 THB
A ten-class Koh Samui yoga pass will cost between 2000 to 3500 THB (approximately £44-77 or AU$86-151).
- Marga Yoga: 3000 THB
- Tak Yoga: 2000 THB
- Vikasa: 3500 THB
Private Yoga Class
Need some one-on-one instruction? Many Samui yoga studios offer private classes (as do many of the yoga-friendly hotels mentioned above). Expect a one-hour private class to cost between 1200 to 3200 THB. That’s approximately £26-70 or AU$52-138.
- Absolute Sanctuary: 3200 THB
- Marga Yoga: 1500 THB
- Tak Yoga: 1200 THB
- Vikasa: 2300 THB
Staying in a villa with zero intention of leaving? It’s worth asking if an instructor will come to you for a private lesson – many offer such a service.
1 Month Unlimited Classes
No surprise, two of Samui’s best-established yoga studios – Vikasa and Absolute Sanctuary – offer unlimited passes (as well as day passes for shorter stays). A month’s pass will cost 4000 THB or 7000 THB respectively. That’s approximately £88 or £154 or AU$172-301)
- Absolute Sanctuary: 7000 THB
- Vikasa: 4000 THB
Let's see some certificates. Wherever you choose, make sure to ask about your instructor's training and to see their certification. As with anything enjoying tremendous popularity, you can predict eager arrivals on the bandwagon.
Need more? There are dozens of other options for Samui yoga. Hole-in-the-wall studios come and go across the island in the most unlikely places, with instruction often available in Thai, French, German, Russian, etc. I always advise checking an establishment's reviews and asking to see relevant licensing or certification.
Is there hot yoga on Koh Samui?
Yes, it’s offered at Absolute Sanctuary near Choeng Mon (which – as mentioned above – also offers a Day Pass option. Choices for the day pass include both group and private Yoga & Pilates Programs as well as a more general Be Fit Program).
Don't wilt. Koh Samui's climate means you're practising ‘hot yoga’ whether you like it or not. As you rehydrate like a fiend, don't fill up with tap water on Koh Samui. Bottled water only. You might find that drinking a fresh coconut is a great way to rehydrate (lots of micro-nutrienty-replenishy stuff in a coconut) but I always pack a few tubes of Nuun hydration tablets.
Koh Samui yoga
The reward for your hard work? Of course, you'll need to get to know a particular Koh Samui yoga pose... it's a difficult lying-down technique called "Thai Massage Please". I feel bendy already.