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Getting Around Koh Tao

With its growing network of great quality roads getting around Koh Tao is not difficult. It is easier now for tourists to explore the island than ever before. The three major villages of Sairee, Mae Haad, and Chalok Baan Kao are all connected by a wide concrete road. Just after Mae Haad, you’ll find a turning that leads over to the East Coast. While not all roads on Koh Tao are concrete yet, the majority are. It’s becoming increasingly less common to need to use dirt tracks.

Do be aware that however you plan on getting around Koh Tao, the roads do not have a sidewalk so you need to take care as the space is shared by vehicles, human traffic, and crossing dogs alike! Also, bear in mind that the road users on Koh Tao come from many different countries and continents. Rules on the road can vary – and are often missed or forgotten altogether! So you do need to be constantly vigilant and aware of your surroundings to maximize your safety. We recommend riding and/or driving “defensively”, accidents are common and often speed is the culprit.

By Foot

If you are staying in fairly central accommodation, getting around Koh Tao on foot is feasible. Certainly, if you are staying close to your dive centre, then it won’t take you long to get to your classes every day. 

Some fantastic hiking trails lead to some of the more remote beaches and bays and island viewpoints, so bringing a decent pair of trainers for walking is a good idea. If you are keen to explore but are not sure about heading out alone on foot, you can sign up for a hiking tour. Koh Tao is home to some stunning nature and epic views, so it’s worthwhile to get out of the built-up areas and into the jungle. 

By Taxi Car

Pick-up truck-style taxi cabs and longtail water-taxis are both readily available. Taxi cabs on land are not particularly well priced, so unless you are travelling in a large group, need to get up a particularly steep hill, or you don’t feel comfortable hiring a scooter on Koh Tao, then they don’t represent good value for money as a regular method of getting around on Koh Tao. One-way fares start at 400THB per cab. Many tour operators include a two-way taxi transfer when you book activities, best check with your travel agent.

Longtail taxi boats are generally priced more fairly and are a fun way to travel around the island. The bonus too is being able to explore some of the more remote coves and hidden coastlines along the way. One-way fares start at around 300THB, and you can hire a longtail for the day for about 1500THB. You can read more about taxis in our shops and services section.

If you need a taxi car on Koh Tao we recommend Sam, his number is at the bottom of this page.

Scooter Rental

Renting a scooter is one of the easiest and most efficient ways of getting around Koh Tao, and with prices starting at just 200THB per day, Koh Tao scooter rental is a favoured choice by many visitors. Reputable rental shops offer a range of package options that include insurance. All Koh Tao scooter rentals should come with a helmet for each passenger as standard. 

A word of warning –  Koh Tao is not a good place to learn to drive. If you do not have a license or any previous experience, we’d advise bicycle rental or sticking to walking instead. 

Bicycle Rental

Except for some very steep hills, Koh Tao’s roads are easy to get along by pedal power. Some of the twisting routes that lead over to locations on the East Coast provide amazing scenery. There are many places to make a quick stop for photo opportunities. 

There are a few shops around the island that rent pushbikes, mountain bikes, and even electric bicycles. Bicycles are nowhere near as popular as scooter rental on Koh Tao though, so there is not as much choice of where to rent from. We recommend Oli’s Motorbike Rental in Mae Haad. 

two couples having fun on scooters on Koh Tao