Surin Islands

The entire Surin archipelago covers a very large area with the two large islands Koh Surin Nua and Koh Surin Tai. Also, Richelieu Rock lies within the borders of the Surin National Park. These 3 areas in particular offer, undoubtedly, the most spectacular scuba diving in Thailand as this is where the large pelagic favorites, Manta Rays and Whale Sharks, are often sighted.

This is also a far-less frequented area than the Similan Islands. The snorkeling is far better and the encounters with marine life are far more frequent. Our on unique overnight snorkeling tours we take you in our own longtail boat to the secret spots. You camp on the beaches (operated by the government) and swim right in front of your tents…under the stars maybe?

Best Time to Visit

The smoothest seas and calmest weather is from Mid-January to late March


Surin Nuea is also home to a community of around 150 Moken, or “sea gypsies”, who have settled there on a semi-permanent basis for several decades. The Moken spend much of their lives on their boats, called “kabang”. They survive mainly through the gathering of shellfish and other marine life from the reefs and mudflats rather than fishing – their practice of collecting shells, snails and other marine resources for sale is technically illegal due to Surin’s national park status, but according to a UNESCO report, “The Moken [of the Surin islands] tend to escape the attention of both the Local Administration and the central government since their population size is considered negligible and their situation too complicated.”


The monsoon play an important role in all aspects of life on the Surin Islands. The monsoons always head in from the South West over the Andaman Sea. So The east coast is protected from the monsoons features powdery coral beaches, coral gardens of hard and soft corals which slope dramatically from the surface down to approximately 30-40 meters. Whereas the West coast is generally made up of the large boulders dropping into the depths. The flora is very much affected by the constant winds and have very dramatic scenery with only a few beaches

The weather on  the Surin Islands could be classified into 2 seasons consisting of hot seasons starting from mid of February – May, while the raining season begins in mid- May and lasts until October which has a highest level of rainfall. The yearly average rainfall is more than 3,000 milimeters and the average of related humidity is 83 percent. .

Monsoons are the major factor in the weather conditions. When they are gone, the Surin Islands National Park is open! Even the occasional thunderstorm presents more opportunity than harm – we just consider it air-conditioning.

There are seasonal variations in currents – as the prevailing winds that bring the monsoons also bring in colder waters from the open ocean we tend to have even clearer water. Tidal currents are strong at the narrow points in the islands – be wary of trying to swim between the islands!

What to do in Surin Islands


Where to Stay

The National Park Authority of Thailand run all the accommodation on the Surin Islands giving only a few options to visitors.

There are two main campgrounds where you can erect your own tent for 80thb. Alternatively, you can rent a large good quality tent from Surin Marine Park Authority for 400 Thb. Bedding is available for about 80thb per person.

Surin National ParkAll accommodation is taken care of by the Surin National Park allowing the region to retain its natural splendour
Koh Surin BungalowThere are a number of bungalows available. These are in high demand and booking is recommended.
Koh Surin CampingCamping in the Surin Islands is fun and great value. Even budget travelers can enjoy the best snorkeling in Thailand

There are a number of fan bungalows for rent. They house 2 people and cost 2,000thb a night. Surin bungalows are basic but a definite step up in standard from the camping option. Independent bungalow booking over the internet can be notoriously difficult, especially during high season. Some local operators often reserve all the bungalow accommodation in advance and then roll it over into a new booking date once the payment becomes due. Book one of our overnight snorkel & dive packages will save you the hassle as we go into the Surin National Park headquarters in person to reserve & pay for bungalows.

If you stay in Khao Lak before or after the trips, one of the best options for accommodation – which we recommend – is the Baan Khao Lak

Getting There

By bus: The government buses run from both Krabi and Phuket to Khuraburi from the respective government bus stations.There are two direct buses a day from Krabi. These are the 8 am and 12 pm services to Ranong. The journey takes 4 hours and the price is around 160 Bt. It is also possible to leave at other times of the day but this will require a change of bus at Phang Nga.

There are many more services from Phuket as Khuraburi is on the main route from Phuket to Bangkok. As such, you can turn up at Phuket government bus station at any time before 6pm to find a bus leaving within the hour. The journey time is 3 hours and the ticket price around 140 Bt .

By car: Private cars can be hired for this journey. If you would like us to help you find a car at an excellent price then please contact us for further details.