Updated September 6th, 2018.
23-Day Full Moon Island Hopper – Itinerary
When you land, we pick you up at the airport and take you directly to your hotel. You have a free day to get to know your group and get settled and ready for probably the best group adventure in the world… TruTravels’ Full Moon Island Hopper. In the evening we hit the infamous Khao San Road for drinks.
See the capital by the water as we travel by longtail boat along the Chao Phraya River, you’ll explore Bangkok and experience some of Thailand’s heritage. We visit two prestigious temples – Wat Arun and Wat Pho, to see the very impressive giant, gold reclining Buddha statue. The rest of the day is free for exploring, you may want to try some of the famous shopping in Bangkok as its known for being notoriously cheap. Remember to always try and barter with the street vendors, you can sometimes get as much as 50% off the original price! Then in the evening, we meet again for dinner, drinks and more group bonding.
Try a traditional Thai massage before we travel overnight on the train down south, and swap the hustle and bustle of Bangkok for the tranquil lakes of Khao Sok National Park – situated in the Surat Thani province of Thailand.
KHAO SOK FLOATING BUNGALOWS
Head to our floating bungalows on a longtail boat whilst stopping along the way for a quick dip and dive. Try your hand at kayaking or simply relax with a beer in a tube in front of the stunning backdrop of Khao Sok‘s limestone mountain range. We’ll be staying in floating bungalows on a fresh-water lake surrounded by rainforest which looks like something out of Jurassic Park!
ARRIVE IN KOH PHANGAN, BOTTLE BEACH
Enjoy a spot of early breakfast on the lake before we head to Koh Phangan. On arrival, we head straight for a secluded paradise, Bottle Beach. Our favourite beach in the world. It is quiet, amazingly beautiful, only accessible by boat and to make it better, we pretty much get the whole place to ourselves and stay in beach huts overlooking the ocean. Relax here for the rest of the afternoon, enjoy a bit of volleyball, sunbathing or swimming. In the evening we’ll enjoy food and drinks on the beach around a campfire and entertained with our own private fire show.
MUAY THAI LESSON
Wake up to the sound of waves rolling on the beach. You will have the morning to make the most of your surroundings. You might fancy kayaking, volleyball, topping up your tan, going trekking to one of the great viewpoints or catching up on some sleep. In the early afternoon, we get picked up and taken to a local gym to try out a bit of Muay Thai boxing, Thailand’s national sport. Afterwards, we head over to our awesome accommodation, Echo Beach Backpackers, where we will spend the next two nights. We’ll agree a meeting time for dinner and jump in a taxi to Haad Rinn where plenty more beach bars await.
ISLAND BOAT TRIP
Today we set out for a voyage around Koh Phangan. We spend the day soaking up the amazing scenery on this tropical island paradise, stopping for some snorkelling and then visiting Than Sadet waterfall (depending on the season). You might think it couldn’t get any better but it does, we have free drinks and food throughout the day with music. At night we take you to the best restaurant in town for a slap up meal on us before we hit the beach bars for a boogie.
We swap our twin rooms for dorms and get closer to the action as we gear up for the full moon party. In the daytime, you’re free to make use of Echo Beach Backpacker’s facilities, play some volleyball, chill out on the day beds or go off and explore.
CHALLENGE LAKE & SUNSET POOL PARTY
We drive to Laem Som lake, to attempt the notorious “Phangan Challenge”. Chill by the lake or mess around on the inflatables. In the evening we will head up the hill that will probably be the best place you will ever watch a sunset from. It’s a super cool bar with music, cocktails, beer, viewing deck and swimming pool which we will make the most of as we watch the sun go down. Life doesn’t really get much better…
SLIP N FLY
Get ready for an epic day party! Slip n Fly is one of the latest attractions of Phangan. Featuring one of the biggest and craziest water slides in Southern Asia. with a mixture of adventure, games and artists to bring you the ultimate daytime tropical party. We spend the day here so you can choose between the slides or just relaxing.
FULL MOON PARTY
Today is a free day to recharge and prepare for the epic Full Moon Party. We will meet in our hostel late afternoon for a UV painting session to get us ready for the night’s antics. We will take you for pre-drinks at all the best spots before hitting up the full moon party in true TruTravels style! Those of you hardcore enough to make it to sunrise (the best bit) may even get to join us at the after party which starts at 6 am! No rest for the wicked.
WOOSA CHILL OUT
Depending on what time you stumbled in from the party, you will probably need some sleep and recovery time today so the only planned activity today is a refreshing Thai massage and possibly a film at a local bar. Unless you are one of those crazy party animals that decided to join us at the after party!
HEAD TO KOH TAO
On day 8 we will catch the ferry over to Koh Tao or ‘Turtle Island’ where we will spend the next 3 nights or 4 days (Recently voted ‘Best Island in S.E. Asia’ in a Trip Advisor survey). We stay in town, 5 mins from the beautiful Sairee beach.
KOH NANGYUAN DAY TRIP
Today we organise a boat round from Koh Tao to the adjoining and amazingly beautiful island of Koh Nang Yuan. Here we can snorkel in the Japanese gardens and trek up to the viewpoint to get some postcard pics of the adjoining beaches and bays. After we head back to Koh Tao we will have some free time before meeting for dinner and jumping on the famous Koh Tao Pub Crawl!
Today you have some free time to experience the bits of Koh Tao you most want to do. You can relax on the beach or go shopping in town, alternatively, you could try one of Koh Tao’s many activities like scuba diving, trapeze, rock climbing, water sports or free diving. Of course, any optional activities will come at an extra cost but if you would like us to arrange these or an open water dive course (which would take up all 3 days) we are happy to do so.
KOH TAO & NIGHT BOAT
Today we have another free day to soak up some rays or get active. We’ll grab a taxi to Tanote Bay, one of our favourite spots on the island for those who want to have a nice chilled beach day. In the evening we will jump on the night ferry over to the mainland where we are picked up by our private minibus (with tunes & DVD player) and taken over to the West coast and our next stop, the idyllic Railay Bay.
RAILAY BAY, KRABI
Railay Bay is a lovely spot on the West Coast which is technically part of the mainland but cut off by mountains meaning you can only get there by boat so it still has that ‘island feel’. When we arrive we will get checked in and have some free time to relax by the pool or explore the beaches and bays of the area. As with most of our destinations, Railay has a decent nightlife so those of you who want to check it out are able to do so.
SEA KAYAKING & VIEWPOINT
Today we will take some kayaks out from the beach and explore the area by sea! The limestone formations make for some great exploring and even better photos. We can also take a trek to the viewpoint and the lagoon today if you are feeling extra active. Those of you who want even more of an adrenaline rush can opt for some optional rock climbing which as with some of the activities in Koh Tao will cost extra but we are happy to arrange. In the evening we can again head out for some dinner and drinks and take a look at the famous Railay fire show at Last Bar.
PHI PHI ISLAND
In the morning we jump on the ferry over to Phi Phi Island, now famous due to it being where they filmed ‘The Beach’. It is a cool little island with beautiful surroundings and a buzzing backpacker scene. Today we will have some time after we check in to get settled and check out the town and the beach.
MAYA BAY BOAT TRIP
Today we take you on a sunset boat trip around the islands, we stop at Maya Bay (Where they actually filmed ‘The Beach’), Monkey Island and the Viking caves. On top of this, we fit in a bit of snorkelling in Phi Phi’s emerald waters. Lunch is included on the boat and after sunset, we go swimming with the phosphorescence (really cool glow in the dark plankton). Carry the party on through the night at some of Phi Phis lively beach bars if you wish but make sure you are up in time the next day for another boat to our final stop.
On day 16 we catch a ferry over to Phuket, the largest of the Thai islands where we finish the trip. In the evening we will explore the wonders of Phuket & Patong or take some party Tuk Tuks as we celebrate the final two nights of an awesome trip!
Today we will take you to a surf shack with a difference. This place has really cool indoor wave machines which even those who have never thought about surfing will find fun. If you’re already a good surfer you’ll be mixing it with the pros in no time.
Today we say goodbye but we can help you sort out all of your onward travel whether it’s back to Bangkok for a flight home or the next leg of your Thailand adventure!
Looking for a shorter Full Moon Island Hopping Experience? Check out a 13-day version of this trip here.