How to travel around the Islands in Thailand

But there are so many islands!

Yep, there are so many islands in Thailand that it is impossible to count them all. Regardless of how big they are or whether you can visit them or stay on them. They surround Thailand in all sizes & places  and they make some of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. It’s crazy to think about getting around them all but here is a guide on how to travel around the Islands in Thailand.

Thailand is a very popular destination to visit whether it is a family holiday, during a gap year or just a paradise get-away for a few weeks. Due to the thousands of people visiting each year, the transport around the islands is more convenient than ever.

Joe and I knew that it was possible to get a boat to the different islands, but were unsure on the costs or consistency of them.

Just to make things a little easier for you…

Here’s a short guide of some of the costs to the main islands and what to expect when getting on those boats.

First of all, try and get yourself one of these booklets. They will be provided free of charge from most travel operators and will be so helpful to plan your route & budget. The booklet provides times and costs of each boat that will leave each island and arrive at the other. Such a handy little book to help you travel around Thailand. Obviously the longer the boat ride, the more it will cost, but you can literally book one ticket to take you from one side all the way over to the other. It just might take you a day of travelling.


The costs.

The cost of the ferries vary obviously depending on where your going. The cheapest fare is about 300 baht for neighbouring islands and then it goes up to about 1,400 baht for longer journeys such as heading to Bangkok. Your looking at about 300 baht to 800 baht to get to the islands depending on where you go.

How often do they run?

Boats run regularly throughout the day. They leave early morning from 6am until late at night. Some islands even offer an overnight ferry to further destinations.If you are travelling from the West side of Thailand, you will most likely get a boat to Krabi and then a bus to Suratthani Pier. From there a boat will take you to your destination. If travelling from the East, obviously the other way round.

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Your ticket…

When you purchase your boat ticket, you will take that ticket to the check in office at the pier. There they will give you a colour sticker for yourself & your bag dependant on where your going. You’ll see everyone with different coloured stickers so if you get lost, just follow the colour. Simple 🙂 Try to get to the pier half an hour before the boat leaves so you have enough time to get your ticket if you get stuck and will give you first choice of seats 🙂

The men on the boat will usually take your bag and pile them all up on top of each other, so don’t put in anything valuable or fragile. It’s like a game of Jenga when everyone tries to pick out their bag.

The Ferry.

The ferry themselves are pretty basic. Some are more comfortable than others and some have rooftop decks for you to top up your tan. Just remember your suncream! For someone who doesn’t like boats, I feel safe on them and they don’t rock as much as I thought. It quite a good time to catch up on some sleep infact.


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The boats can get quite costly depending on where your going so try to plan your route so you only really do one long boat ride from one side of Thailand to the other. Once you reach the other side, Koh Samui, Phuket, Krabi & Suratthani all have airports for flights out of Thailand. Its the most convenient way to get to the islands and its definitely an experience.

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