Whether you are looking to get back to nature or want to pamper yourself at a spa, there are plenty of reasons to make your holiday to Koh Phangan a healthy one. Travelers normally associate their backpacking adventure with long nights, loads of booze, and hardly any exercise: that is about to change as Mad Monkey reveals 11 ways to be more health-conscious on your next holiday to Koh Phangan, Thailand!
Visit a Spa & Wellness Center
Kick-start your vacation to Koh Phangan at a spa and wellness center. After a long red-eye, night bus, or train ride, any R & R time will be much need. The Sanctuary Thailand is one of the best places to detox on the island. It is found on Haad Tien Beach and is a short boat taxi ride from Haad Rin, the beach known for the infamous Full Moon parties. You can also do yoga here. Other spa and wellness centers worth visiting include the Siam Healing Centre, Kamala Healing Centre, Ananda Yoga and Detox Centre, Orion Healing Centre, and Siam Healing Centre. Some offer accommodation on site, so you do not need to venture far to pamper yourself. Our Mad Monkey Koh Phangan location is near a lot of places in Thongsala!
Get a Thai Massage
In addition to wellness center and spas, there are loads of massage parlors around the island, many of which are found right along the coast. Visitors can receive one of the best massages they have ever had while listening to the waves crash along the shoreline. Massages normally start at about ฿150 (about $4.60) for an hour of kneading, pressing, pulling, and stretching. The price will vary depending on the location and furnishings of the spa. The less lavish a place looks, the more affordable it will be.
Try Your Hand at Muay Thai
Muay Thai is the national sport of Thailand, and partaking in a round or two of this epic style of fighting is an absolute must. The sport of Muay Thai dates back hundreds of years. Western countries saw how popular it was and soon began holding fights of their own around the world, though Thailand is still the king in regards to this particular fighting style. Thongsala, Baan Tai, and Haad Rin all have Muay Thai stadiums or gyms in the area worth checking out while visiting Koh Phangan. If you don’t feel like exercising, be sure to at least watch one fight before leaving Thailand.
Go to the Gym
There are a few accommodation options with gyms around the island. Slumber Party on Koh Phangan has a small yet workable fitness area that has enough equipment to work up a good sweat. The gym is free for guests. Jungle Gym & Eco Lodge is another accommodation option that caters to its fitness-loving guests with its fully equipped gym. It is conveniently found on Haad Rin, making it the perfect place to sweat out that hangover after a Full Moon Party. Lastly, be sure to check out Podium Gym. A one-day pass is ฿300 (about $9.20) and a week-long pass is ฿1,000 (about $31).
The island of Koh Phangan is one of the largest in Thailand. For this reason, many visitors opt to rent a vehicle or motorbike in hopes of exploring. Instead, ditch that motorbike and cycle the island. There are plenty of hills to get your inner thighs burning, but fret not, as it is well worth the calories burned! In addition, cycling the island is much safer than renting a motorbike and it is more affordable. Bicycles can be rented on the island for as little as ฿100 (about $3) a day. Be sure to rent a helmet and ask around for nearby trails that may be worth visiting. If you are planning on staying on the island long-term, it is more affordable to purchase a bicycle and sell it before heading elsewhere.
Take a Yoga Class
Get to stretching at one of the many yoga studios found scattered throughout the island. Some of the top yoga studios on the island include Orion Healing Centre, Siam Healing Centre, and Agama Yoga. Siam Healing Centre has classes every day but Sunday from 4-5:30 p.m., and classes are ฿300. Agama Yoga is a retreat and offers teacher training courses, though there are daily drop-in classes available, as well. If you are tight on baht and don’t want to spend money on a class, head to the beach and do yoga solo. No one will judge you for doing a downward dog on the coast!
Partake in Some Water Sports
Jet skis or boating the beautiful Gulf may sound like a dream but partaking in any one of the many water sports around the island can be just as rewarding. Strapping on a pair of flippers and snorkeling Koh Phangan’s beautiful shores is worth the workout. Some water sports that the island is renowned for include parasailing, kitesurfing, wakeboarding, and kayaking. Many of these activities can be done on your own; simply venture to the nearest and most popular beach and rent the equipment needed on arrival. You can also book proper classes at schools and agencies with instructors, should you need a hand or two to get started.
Take Many Long Walks on the Beach
Who else enjoys long walks on the beach? Many visitors will want to do nothing more than sunbathe and lounge on Koh Phangan’s white sand beaches. With that being said, visitors will be surprised at how good a long walk on these stretches of sand can be for the body. With plenty of coastline and beaches to choose from, there’s no reason that visitors can’t be up on their feet exploring.
Strap on your best boots and take to one of the many hiking trails on Koh Phangan. Even the trek from the main road to the stunning island of Koh Mah is long enough to work up a sweat, though more adventurous types will want to venture to one of the hiking trails found sprinkled around the island. One of the best places to do so is at Phaeng Waterfall National Park. Entrance to the waterfall is free and there are several hiking trails surrounding it. Once at the top, you will have plenty of picturesque views of the stunning island below.
The hike up Khao Rao is also a challenging one, which makes sense considering it is the tallest point on the island. Be sure to wear good shoes, sunscreen, and bring water with you. Thailand’s heat can be unforgiving, especially when surrounded by the island’s thick jungle. The trails and directions on them can be confusing, so unless you are an experienced hiker, do not take to these trails alone. Instead, venture with a few friends or hire a tour guide of some sort to escort you in the jungle.
Choose Healthier Restaurants on the Island
There are loads of restaurants in every region of the island serving up some of the healthiest meals in the Land of Smiles, so there’s no excuse for visitors not to be health-conscious while they eat. In addition, Koh Phangan is king of the vegan scene, with plenty of meat-free venues serving up enticingly delicious and healthy items. Some of the top vegan-friendly restaurants include Karma Kafe, Chana Masala, and Capana Vegan.
Koh Phangan may be known for its epic parties but abstaining from indulging in all of those liquor-ridden buckets is certainly one way to make your holiday a healthier one. Instead, delight your palette with some of the renowned teas Thailand is known for. Find something else to do at night, such as stargazing on the many beaches around the island. Maybe call it an early night and get a good night’s rest so that you can be prepared for a day of island exploration. The possibilities are endless! In doing so, you will be able to take on the island without having to worry about a massive hangover of lack or sleep.
More Information About How to be Health-Conscious on your Holiday to Koh Phangan
Do you want even more information about how to be health-conscious on your holiday to Koh Phangan? Then be sure to check out these articles we have rounded up that will help you stay in shape and be healthy while traveling!
- Vegan Guide to Koh Phangan for The Tasty K
- The Ultimate Guide for Yoga in Koh Phangan for Happy Yoga Travels
- 21 Things to do in Koh Phangan, Thailand for Goats on the Road
- Koh Pha Ngan Travel Guide by Nomadic Matt