How to get from Bangkok to Koh Tao Island

Koh Tao is an island in the Gulf of Thailand, a real paradise to escape the busy streets of Bangkok. Every year Koh Tao attracts thousands of people in search of a relaxing vacation on the beach or diving into the underwater world. Find the best way how to get from Bangkok to Koh Tao Island.

How to get from Bangkok to Koh Tao Island

Koh Tao Island is some 410 kilometers south of the Thai capital, so the long journey from Bangkok to Koh Tao can be expected. However, despite the long distance, getting to this island is pretty convenient.

Below you will find detailed information on how to get to Koh Tao from Bangkok. You can choose the option you like the most to make sure that it suits your needs best.

Flights from Bangkok to Koh Tao

Koh Tao is a small island that does not have its own airport, so the only way to get there is by boat. From Bangkok, you need to fly to one of the nearby airports and combine different means of transportation to get there.

To fly from Bangkok to Koh Tao, there are 3 different options and multiple airlines to choose from.

1. Flights to Samui Airport

The first option is a flight to Koh Samui and then a ferry to Koh Tao. This is the fastest, most convenient and most recommended way to travel, with a minimum of transfers. However, this can be one of the most expensive ways for getting from Bangkok to Koh Tao due to the cost of the flight.

It can be a good option if you plan to visit Koh Samui as well. There is a good number of daily flights from Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK) to Samui Airport (USM) operated by Bangkok Airways. The flight duration is approximately 1 hour and the sailing time between the islands is approximately 2 hours.

Search Flight to Koh Samui from Bangkok

How to get from Koh Samui to Koh Tao

From Koh Samui you need to take a ferry to Koh Tao. There are several companies that operate the Koh Samui - Koh Tao route, all departing from different piers. To get to the pier, you can a private taxi, shared minivan or bus that are available at the airport.

Koh Samui to Koh Tao

  • Seatran Discovery: Seatran Discovery operates ferry from the Bangrak pier. The pier is located in Bang Rak area between Big Buddha temple and Big Buddha pier. This pier is the closest to the airport as it’s just 5 minutes away by car. There are 3 ferries leaving daily at 09:00, 13:00 and 16:30, and it takes two hours to reach Mae Haad Pier in Koh Tao. The one-way ticket price is between 600-800 THB per person.
  • Lomprayah: It has catamarans departing from the Pralan pier at 13:30 and from the Nathon pier at 13:00, taking two hours to reach Mae Haad Pier in Koh Tao. The ticket price is about 600 THB.
  • Songserm: From the port of Nathon the ferry departs daily at 11:30 arriving in Koh Tao around 14:00 after stopping at Koh Phangan. The ticket price is about 500 THB.

For current ferry schedules and ticket prices please check: Ferry from Koh Samui to Koh Tao 

The detailed guide for getting from Koh Samui to Koh Tao can be found here: Transportation from Koh Samui to Koh Tao

Koh Samui to Koh Tao

2. Flights to Chumphon Airport

The second option is a flight to Chumphon Airport as it is less expensive alternative than flying to Samui. The low-cost airline Nok Air offers two daily flights to Chumphon Airport (CJM) departing from Don Mueang Airport (DMK) in Bangkok. The flight time is only about 1 hour.

The route through Chumphon is relatively fast, but you will have to take a bus or taxi from Chumphon Airport to the pier to take the 1.5 hours ferry to Koh Tao.

Search Flight to Chumphon from Bangkok

There is also a possibility of combined flight ticket with the transfer to the Thung Makham Noi pier and the boat to Koh Tao with the Lomprayah company.

How to get from Chumphon to Koh Tao

Once you arrive in Chumphon it is easy to arrange a ticket for a bus to Chumphon pier and ferry to Koh Tao. There are 2 companies who offer this joint ticket: Lomprayah and Songserm.

Chumphon to Koh Tao

  • Lomprayah: The catamarans depart from Thung Makham Noi pier at 7:00 and 15:00, taking 1 hours 45 minutes and to reach Koh Tao. The ticket price is about 650 THB. They also provide a bus to and from Bangkok.
  • Songserm: From Ta Yang pier, a ferry departs daily at 7:00 and arrives in Koh Tao around 9:45. The ticket price is about 500 THB.

For current ferry schedules and ticket prices please check: Ferry from Chumphon to Koh Tao

3. Flights to Surat Thani Airport

There is the option to fly to Surat Thani and then continue the journey by taking a ferry. This is not the most convenient way since it will take you the longest transfer time from the airport and the longest ferry ride, but you have much more flight options. From Don Muang Airport (DMK) in Bangkok, there are 3 airlines, Nok Air, Air Asia and Thai Lion Air flying to Surat Thani Airport (URT). From Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK), Thai Vietjet also operates a flight to Surat Thani Airport.

Search Flight to Surat Thani Airport from Bangkok

These airlines might be offering a combined plane and boat tickets to Koh Tao Island. However, it is not mandatory to buy a plane + ferry ticket because it can cost much higher than bought separately.

How to get from Surat Thani to Koh Tao

Once you arrive at Surat Thani Airport, you can buy your ferry ticket to Koh Tao with the transfer to the pier with the companies Lomprayah, Songserm and Seatrans. Sailing time is approximately 4-6 hours.

Surat Thani to Koh Tao

  • Songserm: Songserm provides a daily boat which leaves Tha Thong Pier in Surat Thani at 8:00 arriving at 14:30. The trip costs around 500 THB. Night boat from Ban Don Pier leaves at 23:00 and arrives at 6:00 in the next morning. The cost is about 400 THB per trip.
  • Lomprayah: Lomprayah catamaran operates at 11:00 and arrives at 15:00 in Koh Tao. The cost is about 950 THB per trip.

For current ferry schedules and ticket prices please check: Ferry from Surat Thani to Koh Tao

Bus from Bangkok to Koh Tao

The most common and practical way to travel from Bangkok to Koh Tao is by bus. This is the favorite option for backpackers and travelers since everything is organized and you don't need to face the hassle of going through airport and transfer. Of course, it will take you the whole day to get from Bangkok to Koh Tao.

1. Bus from Khao San Road

There are two private companies operating route from Khao San Road in Bangkok to Koh Tao: Songsem Express and Lomprayah Catamaran. Both have air-conditioned buses that take you directly to the Chumphon pier, where you take the ferry to Koh Tao. Day and night travel options are available. The journey by bus takes about 7-8 hours to Chumphon, and the ferry takes around 2 hours more to Koh Tao.

  • Songserm: Songserm has two buses leaving Khao San road daily around 6:00 and 19:00 to reach Chumphon and from there you take the same company ferry to reach Koh Tao at around 07:00. The price of the combined bus and ferry ticket is about 1,000-1,200 THB.
  • Lomprayah: Lomprayah buses depart from Khao San Road area at around 6:00 and 21:00 and arrive in Koh Tao at 14:45 and 8:45, respectively. The bus stops at Hua Hin to pick up more passengers. If you want to save time and money on accommodation, the night bus is a good choice. You will probably need to wait on the pier until the ferry arrives, which can take an hour or two. From Chumphon, you will take the same company ferry at 7:00 to reach Koh Tao at 9:45. The ticket costs 1,100-1,300 THB and includes bus and ferry.

The current schedule and prices of combined ticket can be found here: Bus + Ferry from Bangkok to Koh Tao

2. Bus from Southern Bus Terminal (Sai Tai Mai)

Another option is going by bus to Chumphon on your own. The bus is leaving from the Southern Bus Terminal (Sai Tai Mai) in Bangkok. There are many daily buses departing to Chumphon, especially in the early morning and late afternoon. The ticket costs about 250 - 500 THB and the trip takes about 6-7 hours. The bus will drop you at Chumphon Bus station. From there, you can take a taxi, motorcycle taxi or songthaew for about 25 kilometers to the pier to take the ferry to Koh Tao.

You can book bus tickets online here: Bus from Bangkok to Chumphon

Train from Bangkok to Koh Tao

If you want to make part of the trip to Koh Tao by train, you have to get to the Chumphon Railway Station and from there to go to the pier for taking the ferry to Koh Tao. The train and ferry combination is the cheapest way to travel to Koh Tao from Bangkok. However, the train is slow and it can take around 8-10 hours.

There more than 10 daily trains departing from Bangkok Railway Station to Chumphon, from 8:00 to 22:00. Thai train seems to be old, but inside the seats and beds are quite comfortable and wide. There are fan or air-conditioned trains that have sitting and sleeping classes. If you choose this option, we recommend you choose a sleeper train to make the most of the trip at night. It also helps you to save a night of accommodation. Our recommendation is to make sure to arrive at Chumphon station before 06:00 as the morning boat departs to Koh Tao at 07:00. The rest of the trains arrive too early so you will have to wait longer until the first boat leaves. However, you need to be aware that trains in Thailand are notoriously delayed and not recommended if you are on a tight schedule.

Best train from Bangkok to Koh Tao:

  • Express Train #85 which leaves Bangkok at 19:15 daily and arrives in Chumphon between 4:00 and 5:00
  • Ordinary train that leaves Bangkok at 22:30 and arrives in Chumphon 06:00 the next morning.

You can check the current schedule and buy the ticket from Bangkok Railway Station to Chumphon here:

Train from Bangkok to Chumphon

Depending on the train you choose, train ticket cost from 500-1,800 THB.

Once you arrive in Chumphon Railway Station, you will find it easy to arrange a ferry ticket to Koh Tao. The boat companies, Lomprayah and Songserm, provide free transfers between the railway station and ferry departure pier. They will bring the minibus to pick you up at Chumphon Railway Station to the ferry which leaves 07:00 and arrives on Koh Tao about 08:45 or 09:30.

You can also take an advantage of a combined ticket on your train and ferry journey from Bangkok to Koh Tao. Combined tickets for a train and ferry journey from Bangkok to Koh Tao can be booked here: Train from Bangkok to Koh Tao 

Chumphon Pier

Booking Tickets

We recommend that you book your combined ticket or ferry to Koh Tao in advance, especially during high season or before Full Moon Party in Koh Phangan. The boats, buses, and minivans are limited, so it is best to guarantee your seat.

You can search and book your transport to Koh Tao from Bangkok using the 12GoAsia website.

Tips

Koh Tao has lots of incredibly impressive places that pull tourists all year round. Explore the best things to do in Koh Tao to better prepare for your next holiday in Thailand.

Check out the complete travel guide to admiring the stunning views from Koh Tao Viewpoints including the things to see, how to get there, entrance ticket price, and other tips.

Koh Tao has a selection of nice beaches. Explore the most beautiful beaches on the turtle island with our guide to Koh Tao Best Beaches!