A part of Rayong province, Ko Samet is well established as a popular destination for overseas visitors and weekend excursionists from Bangkok. The island was, however, famous long before the advent of tourism, being immortalized by the classical Thai poet Sunthon Phu, who set part of his epic Phra Aphaimani on the island, where the hero of the tale defeats a giant by playing a magic flute.
Lying 6.5 km offshore and appearing as a thin sliver of land shaped roughly like a nail with a sloping flat head, Ko Samet is far less developed than its
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popularity might suggest and remains a picturesque island with many attractive coves, bays and some excellent beaches, perhaps the most stunning being Hat Sai Kaeo. Accommodation is mostly bungalow style, concentrated mainly on the northern and eastern sides, while the scene becomes quieter and more remote towards the southern tip.
Ferry boats to Ko Samet depart regularly from the pier at Ban Phe. journey takes about half an hour.