aerial shot of a beach in Koh Phangan, Thailand with several hues of turquoise waters / how to get around Koh Phangan

How to Get Around Koh Phangan: 3 Best Ways

Are you planning a trip to Koh Phangan, or perhaps you’re already there and trying to find out how to get around Koh Phangan?

This transportation guide covers all the ways you can do just that! Koh Phangan isn’t a small island, and there’s plenty to discover.

But the island is home to pocketed areas similar to small beach towns. If you plan to stay in one of these areas, it’s walkable, but eventually, you’ll need to use transportation to explore more of the island.

Coco Garden, Mae Haad Beach, The Village Green, Rose Villa, and Panburi Village are popular beach areas in Koh Phangan.

All areas can be considered if you visit the island for a few days. If you’re visiting specifically for the Full Moon Party, stay in CoCo Garden or Coco Hut Village; both areas are near Haad Rin Beach, where the Full Moon Party takes place!

But if you’re visiting for a week or more, I’d recommend you go on Google Maps and see which area would be most convenient for you to stay in, considering transportation!

If you need to know how to get to Koh Phangan, refer to my guide mentioned below!

RELATED: How to Get to Koh Phangan

Songthaew Koh Phangan

song taew, a pubic transportation taxi van driving throughout the island / how to get around Koh Samui, Thailand

Songthaew taxi pickup trucks operate as public transportation around the island, but you can also use them as private taxis, though it will cost more. More on that later.

If you prefer not to rent a scooter in Koh Phangan, this is the cheapest way to get around.

Also, it’s quick and convenient. Throughout the island, you’ll spot these shared taxi trucks driving along the main roads, looking for passengers to take them around the island.

Put your hand up to flag one of the pickup trucks to stop and let the driver know where you’d like to go. The driver won’t stop for you if they have no room in the Songthaew truck.

Once it stops, speak to the driver, tell them where you’d like to go, and ask for the price.

Depending on your destination, using a Songthaew in Koh Phagan costs 100 to 300 Baht, which is $2.80 to $8.42 US. A short trip is 100 Baht, and a longer one is 200+; from there, it’s up to how you negotiate your trip cost.

To get the best price, you’re encouraged to negotiate with your driver for your trip cost in Koh Phangan; plenty of the Songthaew trucks are driving around anyway. Prices do slightly increase at nighttime because fewer trucks are on the road!

When you’d like to get off the Songthaew truck, click the button, which is usually located below the seat somewhere inside on the roof. It’ll ring the driver. They’ll promptly stop for you to get off, pay your driver, and be on your way.

The word “Songthaew” means passenger vehicle.

TIP: The Songthaew Taxis also operate as private taxis in Koh Phangan; if you use them that way, the driver will charge you more than 100-300 baht, considering no passengers are splitting the trip cost with you.

Other times, the driver will tell you to wait for a few passengers so they can lower the price of your trip.

Rent a Scooter or Motorbike

several scooters parked on a street in Kata Beach Phuket

Renting a scooter or motorbike is the most popular way to explore Koh Phangan and most of Thailand’s islands.

Scooter/motorbike rental shops are everywhere, and you can often arrange rentals through the hotels/hostels you’re staying at.

Renting a scooter in Koh Phangan generally costs 150 to 300 Thai Baht / $4.20 to $8.42 US per day. Those considering staying for two or more weeks can often negotiate a lower price! Gas is around 35 to 40 Thai Baht per liter.

There are many advantages to renting a scooter in Koh Phangan. Considering the island only has one form of public transportation, a scooter is the fastest/most convenient way to get around.

It is also best to take in the island’s stunning roads and coastlines by scooter. Petrol/gas is also quite cheap and readily available, and unlike some places in Thailand, you don’t have to worry about scooter parking!

But there are a few disadvantages to renting a scooter/motorbike, which include a few safety hazards; sometimes, the roads in Koh Phangan can get very wet from a storm or quick rainfall, and driving around on wet roads with a scooter is not safe.

Yes, you may see all the locals driving around on their scooters in rainfall and think it’s safe. Well, it’s not, and they’re also very experienced scooter drivers. Don’t risk it; this is a common scooter accident in Thailand.

Rent a Car

a charming empty road amongst the jungles and palm trees of Koh Tao, Thailand

Renting a car is an excellent idea for those visiting Koh Phangan with their family or a group of friends.

Having a car on the island will allow you to explore on your own time and visit many remote beaches in Koh Phangan, which are ideal for remote/peaceful island vibes. Koh Phangan isn’t complicated to navigate; when going to beaches, the roads are straightforward.

The cost of your car rental will ultimately depend on the make of the car. Prices for a car rental in Koh Phangan range from 500 to 1700 Thai Baht, which is $14 to $47 US a day. Google “car rentals” in Koh Phangan and look at some reviews before deciding on a shop!

Jeeps are available for rent in Koh Phangan, but renting one will cost you more. But I mean, what better way to get around an island with a group of friends than in a Jeep?

An advantage of renting a car is that you don’t have to worry about rainy roads in Koh Phangan when it rains, unlike when renting a scooter.

However, you should still be aware of stray dogs and the many scooters driving around you.

palm tree hanging low on a stunning remote beach during a sunny day in Koh Phangan, Thailand

Things to Do in Koh Phangan

Ko Ma: Located in the Northern part of Koh Phangan is Ko Ma, an island attached to Koh Phangan by a long strip of sand, and you can visit just by walking over! It’s a sight to see!

ATV Safari Tour: On this ATV Tour, you will experience Koh Phangan’s jungles and coastlines!

Snorkel Tour/Island Hopping: You will visit Nang Yuan and Ko Tao islands from Koh Phangan during this snorkeling. Ko Tao is known for its stunning waters full of healthy coral reefs and tropical fish, making it the perfect place for snorkeling.

Pantip Night Market: Open daily from noon to 10 PM, Pantip Night Market is an excellent market with many different foods to try!

Day Trip to Ang Thong: Near Koh Phangan is Ang Thong National Park, which is rated one of the best national parks in Thailand. Comprising 42 islands, the park is full of mangroves, luscious green scenery, and more!

Wat Ruese Pa Saeng Temple: The most famous Buddhist temple on the island is Wat Ruese Pa Saeng, located in the heart of the jungles of Koh Phangan. As you finish hiking toward the temple, you’ll see stunning views of Koh Phangan’s dense green jungles.

Where to Stay in Koh Phangan

Here’s a list of some of the best hotels on the island, all mentioned in price categories that consider all budgets!

Budget: Echo Beach Hostel or Phatra Hostel

Mid-Range: Silan Residence or Explorar Koh Phangan

Luxury: Santhiya Koh Phangan or Panviman Resort

deck with seaviews during sunset at a bungalow in Koh Phangan, Thailand

How to Get Around Koh Phangan — Final Thoughts

There you have it; those are all the best transportation methods for getting around Koh Phangan.

Overall, Koh Phangan is a large island. Still, as mentioned before, the many beach areas on the island where most hotels are located are very walkable and have plenty of shops, convenience stores, and restaurants to visit.

It’s when you’d like to visit different beach areas, explore different hiking trails and attractions, or venture off to remote beaches when you need some form of transportation!

By the way, Koh Phangan is one of the cheapest islands in Thailand for those looking to visit on a budget!

Are you planning to visit Koh Samui? Check out my transportation guide for Koh Samui! There are more options to get around Koh Samui than Koh Phangan!

mountainous ranges and clear skies along the ocean in Koh Phangan, Thailand

How much is a taxi in Koh Phangan?

There aren’t taxis in Koh Phangan but Songthaew pickup trucks instead; depending on where you’re going on the island, it should cost between 100 and 300 Thai Baht per trip.

Is Grab available in Koh Phangan?

No, Grab is not available in Koh Phangan. The ride-sharing app does operate on some islands in Thailand, like Koh Samui and Phuket, but it does not operate on most islands.

Are there tuk tuks in Koh Phangan?

Songthaew pick-up trucks can be considered tuk-tuks in many places in Thailand, including Koh Phangan.

While you won’t find the traditional tuk-tuk like in Bangkok or Chiang Mai, here you’ll find Songthaew shared pickup trucks taking passengers around the island.

Do you need a car in Koh Phangan?

No, you don’t. You can visit the island and stay in a walkable beach area, and anytime you’d like to go somewhere, you can use a Songthaew or go on a guided group tour!

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