Koh Tao, a popular tourist destination, is situated just a short distance of less than 70 km north of Koh Samui. The duration of the ferry ride between these two islands can vary, with the quickest option taking approximately one and a half hours. This will depend on the ferry company you choose, as there are three major operators providing ferry services between Koh Samui and Koh Tao, including Lomprayah, Seatran Discovery, and Songserm Express.
These ferry services run several times a day, providing you with multiple options for your travel. You have the flexibility to book your ferry trip in advance, either online or with a local travel agent, most prefer the online way because its the same price and isntantly guarantees a you your space on the ferry of your choosing. If you prefer a more spontaneous visit to Koh Tao, you can also book your ferry on the same day from the ferry terminal but be careful not to get there for them to of sold out for that particular ferry (more likely during high season).
It’s important to note that all of the ferry operators make a stop at Koh Phangan, so you have the option to visit this island as well if you choose. The ease and convenience of the ferry services make it easy to plan your trip and experience the beauty of Koh Tao and the surrounding islands.
Lomprayah High Speed Ferry from Samui to Koh Tao
Lomprayah, a provider of fast and efficient passenger ferry services, was established in 1996 and operates a fleet of high-speed catamaran ferries. The company offers a quick and convenient mode of transportation for passengers traveling between the islands. With the use of their high-speed catamaran ferries, Lomprayah is the fastest way to get from Koh Samui to Koh Tao.
Lomprayah operates from two locations on Koh Samui, Maenam Pralan Pier and Nathon Pier. The Maenam Pralan Pier is located on the north coast of Koh Samui and is about a 15-minute drive from Bophut beach. On the other hand, Nathon Pier is located on the west coast of Koh Samui near Nathon Town. Passengers coming from the airport are more likely to use the ferries departing from Maenam Pralan Pier due to its proximity to the airport and shorter journey time compared to ferries departing from Nathon Pier.
Lomprayah ferries depart from Maenam pier at 08:00am and 12:30pm and the journey takes 1h30-1h45.
Lomprayah departs from Nathon Pier at 11:15am and later on at 5:30pm.
The 11:15am ferry from Nathon pier to Koh Tao takes roughly 3 hours but this is a better option if you would prefer to start your journey later in the day than the 8am ferry from Maenam. The reason this journey takes longer is due to a boat change at Koh Phangan, so you get off the first boat at Koh Phangan and catch the next Lomprayah ferry at 1pm then straight to Koh Tao.
The 5:30pm departure takes 1h45, the same amount of time as the departures from Maenam Pier.
Lomprayah Hotel And Ferry Transfer Service on Koh Samui
Lomprayah offers a transfer service from the airport or hotels on Koh Samui for an extra fee of 150 THB per person, regardless of the pier you choose to depart from. Upon arrival at the pier, you must go to the ticket office to receive a sticker for yourself and one for your luggage indicating that Koh Tao is your final destination. The staff aboard the Lomprayah ferry will assist with your luggage, storing large cases together. You can keep your hand luggage with you in the seating area, while larger cases cannot be brought there
Seatran Discovery Ferry from Koh Samui to Koh Tao
Seatran Discovery was created in 2002 and provides three daily departures to Koh Tao from Bangrak Pier on Koh Samui.
Bangrak Pier sits in the north east of Koh Samui, roughly 25 minutes from Bophut Beach and a quick 10 minute drive from Koh Samui airport. It’s ideal for those flying in to Koh Samui from Bangkok.
Seatran vessels are traditional one-hulled vessels, and should be more stable if the waves are choppy since they cut through them instead of surfing over them.
Seatran Koh Samui to Koh Tao services leave from Bangrak pier at 8am, 1pm, and 4:30pm, with the journey taking roughly two hours.
Songserm Express Ferries from Koh Samui to Koh Tao
As the first ferry company in the Gulf of Thailand, Songserm offers a daily departure at 11:30am from Koh Samui’s Nathon Pier to Koh Tao.
Because the ferries are older than the other ferry operators, the journey takes a little longer. You will find seating inside and outside the ferries, as well as a small shop selling drinks and snacks.
With a capacity of 600 passengers, the Songserm ferry can be much busier than the Lomprayah or Seatran.