Before Ko Samui started to add monkey shows, elephant rides, shooting ranges and all manner of other tasteful activities to entertain us tourists, this place always used to be about the simple pleasures in life – beautiful beaches and laid-back lifestyles. Our mission today, was to get back to what Ko Samui does best.
So, from the rather scruffy main town of Na Thon, we headed about a 10-minute drive south, to one of the smaller scale resorts. Actually, getting a taxi to take us there was a trial in itself. Even though all the taxis had "Meter Taxi" written on top of them, getting one to put it on the meter proved to be an impossibility. As soon as we told them where we wanted to go, they'd get out their laminated map of the island and told us they'd take us on an island tour for an exorbitant price. Finally, we got a tuk tuk driver to wearily agree to take us there for something approaching a reasonable price.
Our destination was an attractive little boutique hotel called the Siam Residence – it sits on the beach, and has a restaurant, a large pool, and 10 holiday cottages. The restaurant manager told us that the island's beaches had suffered badly in some serious floods that hit 3 months ago, so the beach wasn't looking its best – but, even so, those white sands looked pretty inviting.
We didn't have long, so we had a relaxing dip in the pool, and then had a lovely alfresco lunch looking out to sea. As ever, the Thai curries were gorgeous.
When you don't have long in Ko Samui, it pays to go back to basics.