Samui Wining & Dining
Dancing the night away on Samui.

Dancing the night away on Samui.Calm by day, and a place where you can find hammocks slung between coconut trees, Koh Samui is a place where indolence reins by day, and people drink pink daiquiris by the poolside. It appears so relaxed that you’d be forgiven for thinking that once the sun goes down and dinner is over, then it’s time to turn in.


Of course, you can still have a very laid-back holiday and quiet evenings, and many people opt for precisely that. But the island has another side to it, like a multiple personality: it’s at night that its hedonistic side comes to the fore. Word has long since gone round that the nightlife here is on the extreme edge of fun. Even without neighbouring Koh Pha-Ngan’s infamous full moon party, Samui’s nights are the stuff of legend. You can check out lots of blog posts detailing what visitors get up to – somehow they manage to remember what happened – or you can take part in all the fun yourself, and party on the beach or in the clubs until the sun comes up, continuing for as long as you can hold out.


There’s an immense degree of choice when it comes to after-hours Samui. Much of it is fuelled by beer and cheap whisky, often served in small buckets. There are numerous places to start the night with a drink or cocktail or two, amongst them the unusual Bar Ice, where you can drink in a literally chilled-out environment – temperatures are sub-zero.


Staff hand out winter clothing at the door. It’ll be the only time you need wear anything as warm as this.


You may well want to try one of the thatched-roof beach bars that abound on the island. Sit and drink on a deckchair or at a low table on the sands whilst gazing out to sea. For one that’s hidden away, try the Black Rose Bar near Lomprayah ferry in Maenam.Dancing the night away on Samui. If you want a drink in very sophisticated surroundings, head for Woobar at W Retreat Koh Samui, at the other end of the bay.


If you’re visiting a few nightspots, the best way to travel is by taxi, especially if you’re in a group. Your main port of call will be Chaweng, as it has lounge clubs, bars of every kind and night clubs a-plenty. Lamai is Chaweng’s little sister when it comes to nightlife, but has a more visible seedy side than Chaweng.


Soi Green Mango, just off the beach road in Chaweng is a small but very raucous area filled with bars, and the enormous Green Mango Club, which for many is party central on Samui; it’s wellknown for its catchy tree house design, multiple bars and spacious dance floors. Sound Club, meanwhile, gets going a bit later and gets crowded after midnight. DJs spin some of the latest music and it’s an incredibly popular venue.


Down the beach road, you’ll find Ark Bar Beach Resort, right on the sands, and when night falls, it’s well-known as a bar and nightclub for those who’d like to seriously party. With DJs, pool parties and firedancing, the venue is a reveller’s destination in its own right.


About two kilometres away, just off the road that hugs the northern edge of Chaweng Lake, you’ll find Q-Bar, situated high up on a hill, offering great DJs, an impressive drinks list and a terrace for wonderful views. On the shores of the lake itself, on Soi Reggae, you’ll find one of Samui’s veritable institutions, the Reggae Pub, which was the original party spot for the island. The cavernous interior can hold hundreds and is dominated by a big dance floor.Dancing the night away on Samui. There are plenty of DJ’s and live bands playing to crowds nightly. It’s especially popular in the small hours.


For an even more hard-core party scene, you’ll have to head over to Koh Pha-Ngan and the Full Moon Party at Haad Rin Beach. It certainly lives up to its reputation, and often manages to exceed it. It started a couple of decades back, when someone decided to celebrate a birthday and somehow became a monthly fixture, with more and more people attending. Snowballing its way through the years, a good night can see more than 10,000 people revelling on the sands. Even though it’s held outdoors, it’s not for the claustrophobic, as you’ll be dancing shoulderto- shoulder in many places. But Samui has enough of a party scene that many people who live here and who enjoy a great time just don’t see the need to take a boat across the water for the night. Parties here on Samui are also now staged to coincide with full moon, half-moon and even black moon, adding still more incentive to simply stay put.


Last but not least, it has to be said that late night Samui can have an eerie edge to it. In the wee hours, all daylight rationality may have disappeared, and many holidaymakers end up doing things that astound them once the alcohol has worn off. People wander off and go missing for so many hours that their friends make the rounds of all the hospitals. Others end up in one night stands that may have lasting effects on their health, as well as their wallets. Nothing really surprising about any of this – but over and over again, we hear about holidaymakers and residents who just didn’t look after themselves. And of course driving while drunk is always a bad idea. And on Samui, for many, it’s the last idea they ever have.


The vast majority of revellers have a very good time, however, with nothing nasty to report the following day, apart from perhaps a megahangover. When daylight breaks, Chaweng and Lamai settle down to catch up on their sleep, and the streets are deserted until it’s time to wake up again and groggily head through another afternoon until evening comes again.


Samui’s nightlife is engagingly hedonistic and keeps people coming back for more. For some visitors, holidays aren’t for winding down at all, but for the very opposite. Whatever happens, nightlife here on the island is always guaranteed to be memorable, though whether in a positive or negative sense it’s up to you. Mostly.


 Dimitri Waring


Copyright 2020 Samui Holiday Magazine. All rights reserved Siam Map Company Ltd.