Koh Phangan Bars
This island will always be known for the famous monthly Full Moon Party, however, this is not the only place on Koh Phangan where you are enjoy a few drinks, dance with friends, listen to awesome live music and watch the mesmerising sunsets or sun rises. There is a huge choice of Koh Phangan bars on offer to suit every type of traveller. If you’re planning on coming to the island purely for the nightlife and to sample the best Koh Phangan bars, you should stay in the south west area of the island. Haad Rin or Baan Tai have the largest and most concentrated collection of bars and parties in Koh Phangan. Thongsala, which is close to Baan Tai has a few Western type pubs and bars where you can sit with a chilled beer and even watch your favourite sports on big TV’s.
Koh Phangan has plenty of Reggae bars which can be found scattered all around the island, from Chaloklum in the North West, right down to the south east coast. Most are very chilled out and some offer live reggae music at least once a week. If you are looking for something a little quieter then head for the north west coast or north east coast. Here you will find many small beach bars where you can relax with a cocktail or two, have a meal and admire the evening sunset. It simply doesn’t matter what type of bar you love to have a drink at because there really is a Koh Phangan bar for everyone.
Expect a mix of laid back traditional local bars nestled between trendy hotspots, which offer slightly more sophisticated surroundings. Gone are the old days when this part of the island was a ‘top secret’ location that was untouched but never forgotten. This side of Koh Phangan is now more accessible than ever and offers visitors some of the most luxurious surroundings, which can be enjoyed for hours with friends as you sip on your favourite drink. It’s possible to chill out at one of the many beach front bars listening to acoustic music, or spend an evening under the stars sampling some of the finest cocktails ever made.
The North West coast of Koh Phangan has long been an area of the island where reggae music has influenced many locals and become a large part of their evening entertainment. Many less formal bars, offering a chilled lounge area for customers to relax and unwind, are tucked away from the main streets and can often go unnoticed by those visiting Koh Phangan. In and around Haad Salad and Haad Yao, more bars like these are now being recognised. As a result, once a week many bars host an evening of either open mic or live jamming sessions, which the public are welcome to participate in.
In Chaloklum, Sri Thanu and Haad Chao Phao you can’t help but notice a strong community spirit between everyone who have clearly lived on the island for a long time and have become accustomed to catching up over a drink at their local bar. It’s places like this that always make you feel very welcome – whether you want to enjoy a game of pool or simply just sit quietly on a comfy corner sofa reading a book.
Haad Rin on Koh Phangan is where the world famous Full Moon Party takes place and as expected has a buzzing night life to accompany the monthly event. You’ll find bars and clubs not only along the beach front in Haad Rin, but also along the main streets as you drive into the town. Popular music can be heard blasting out from some beach bars and R’n’B from others. The town comes to life every evening with fire shows, dancing and street stalls – great for anyone looking for a night of intense entertainment and fun.
With Haad Rin being the exception, the east coast of Koh Phangan has fewer resorts lining its beautiful coast line, allowing you to experience a more peaceful and picturesque location, alone or with friends. Places such as Haad Yuan, Haad Tien and Haad Sadet all have bars with breath taking views out to sea, fringed only by the lush green jungle and the perfectly formed giant boulders.
A motorbike is not necessary here as all the bars can be reached either by foot or by a short boat ride from a neighbouring beach. It is no secret that the bars in this area have always attracted the ‘old school hippies’ and those staying on the island long term. Many bar owners pledge to continue this tradition for as long as possible and refuse to be influenced by the more cosmopolitan places on the island.
Travellers from all around the world know the east for being a truly magical escape, providing an environment where strangers can come together and feel part of an extended family. It is evident from the moment you enter any bar here that time really can stand still, all your troubles can disappear and the island will surround you with unconditional love and happiness.
When it comes to night clubs, bars and all night raves on Koh Phangan, the central party areas are Baan Tai and Baan Kai. Local resident DJs will surround you with some of the best deep house, funky minimal tech and progressive techno that can be heard playing until the early hours, allowing you to party with friends all night long.
You’ll also find a number of sports bars in this area, allowing you to keep up to speed with every important game as it happens around the globe. Many of the venues have pool tables, dart boards and football tables which can be enjoyed by all over a few drinks. Trendy lounge bars are scattered between restaurants and offer a much more laid back atmosphere for people looking to simply spend their day lazing with friends, working on their laptop or reflecting on what has been – an ideal venue to meet new friends.