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Once upon a time Koh Samui was a back packers haven. However this beatuful island has been "rediscovered" thanks to Bangkok Air building an airport on the Island you can now get there easily from Bangkok and Singapore. The Island is amazing but is getting rather built up these days so you need to plan where you will stay with caution. If you want to be in the heart of the action head for Chewang Beach but do bear in mind it will be you and many thousands of others. Travellers wishing to still be close (the whole island is 20 mins from anywhere else) should consider Boh Phut (Fishermans Village) or Lamai where there are far less people and the shuttle buses that circle the island 24/7 will take you whereever else you wish to go.
The beaches on Koh Samui can be some of the most beautiful you will ever come across. There are a number of islands that are reached easily, although most people only know the islands because of the Full Moon party on Koh Phangan which should be avioded unless you are a backpacker or under 22 or you will look very out of place.
Koh Samui is amazing, the beaches, people and weather are classic Thailand but a choose your spot with care some parts of the island have the gridlock of and major city on a weekend evening.