Getting around on Koh Phangan: transport
The most traditional way of getting around Koh Phangan is by longtail boat. this way of transport is not expensive, fun and a great way to see the island and visit isolated beaches. You can book longtail boat tours or dive trips at any travel shop on the island.An easy and relatively safe way to get around Koh Phangan is by taxi also called songthaew. Prices are negotiable and vary depending on the amount of people in the car, your destination and the time of the day.
Probably the most common way of getting around on Koh Phangan is by motorbike. You can hire automatic or gear motorbikes in every village. It is possible to visit a big part of Koh Phangan because the Southwest and Northwest have good cemented roads. To explore more remote areas you can rent a 250 CC dirt bike or quad bike.
When you rent a bike you will be asked to hand over your passport and sign a contract. When the bike is returned the owner will check the bike for damage and if all is ok you will get your passport back. It is important to read the contract and check the motorbike thoroughly before signing the contract, the prices for repairs are quite high in the contract so make sure you’re not paying for damages you did not make and have to argue to get your passport back.
Having a “Koh Phangan Tattoo” is a very well known expression on the island so remember to drive very carefully, wear a helmet and not to drive faster than 40 km/h. Be aware of stones, sand, coconuts, dogs and water on the road and use the rear brake instead of the front brake as much as possible. Also it is recommended not to put any valuables in the basket. In the main town of Thong Sala the police sometimes performs helmet checks in the daytime. In case you get stopped driving without a helmet you will be fined.
As there are still quite some (steep) dirt roads, 4WD jeeps are a good way as well to get around Koh Phangan. Most of the hired jeeps are not insured, so shop around if you want insurance. Hiring a jeep is a great way for making daytrips to the more remote parts and attractions of Koh Phangan like the Than Sadet waterfall, Thong Nai Pan or Haad Rin.