For many visitors to the island of Koh Samui, Lipa Noi Pier will be the first thing they see, although truth be told, most visitors will be admiring the surroundings rather than the pier itself! Arriving by ferry, most visitors are struck by the island’s beauty as Lipa Noi Pier comes into view – golden sand beaches, swaying coconut palms, and the crystal blue Gulf of Thailand. For many, Lipa Noi Pier is their first glimpse of Koh Samui, one of Thailand’s most popular tropical island destinations.
Lipa Noi is one of two main piers on Koh Samui, one of the best-known island destinations in Thailand, which is situated in the Gulf of Thailand and is the country’s second-largest island after the equally famous Phuket. Situated on Koh Samui’s serene west coast, Lipa Noi Pier provides a laidback gateway to the island and its famous beaches compared to the bustle of Koh Samui’s other main pier, Nathon.
Location of Lipa Noi Pier
Lipa Noi Pier is also known as Raja Ferry Pier because Raja Ferry is the main company to use this pier. It is located on the western coast of Koh Samui, about halfway down the coastline as you travel south.
As mentioned, Lipa Noi is one of two main piers on the island, the other being Nathon Pier which is located several kilometers further north along the west coast. Nathon is a busier pier, as it’s used by several different ferry and boat companies, and the area around Nathon Pier is also busier with a lot more shops, restaurants and services available. This isn’t to say there is nothing at all at Lipa Noi Pier, it’s just quite a bit quieter. This makes it a very nice arrival point because, rather than seeing a bunch of buildings when you arrive at Koh Samui, you will get to immediately see some of the island’s natural beauty and appreciate just how scenic and relaxing it can be.
If you wanted to stay in this part of the island there are lovely beaches to enjoy, and there is a good selection of places to stay as well as restaurants and small grocery stores. Many visitors will head over to the east side of the island, which is more urbanized and busy, but if you’re looking for the quieter side of Koh Samui, stay in the area around Lipa Noi Pier.
If you are staying on the other side of the island, the main development is in the north east tip, close to Samui International Airport. From this area you can take a taxi to Lipa Noi Pier and the drive should take around an hour. This is because the interior of Koh Samui is mountainous rainforests, so the roads on the island tend to hug the coastline meaning you cannot drive straight across the island!
Lipa Noi Pier Ferry Services
Raja Ferry are the main users of Lipa Noi Pier, and they provide a great service to get you from the mainland. Ferries depart from Donsak Pier near Surat Thani, and because Koh Samui is the major island in the Gulf of Thailand, there are multiple services every day sailing direct from Donsak to Lipa Noi Pier.
Key routes and sample fares include:
- Koh Samui – 90-minute journey, 220 THB fare, 600 THB with a car
- Donsak Pier – 90-minute journey, 300 THB fare
Raja Ferry Schedule between Lipa Noi Pier and Donsak Pier, Surat Thani
The first ferry of the day departs from Donsak Pier at 05:00, then after this there are almost hourly departures: 06:00, 07:00, 09:00, 10:00, 11:00, 13:00, 14:00, 15:00, 16:00 and the final ferry of the day is at 18:00. Going back to the mainland, there are 10 ferries per day from Lipa Noi Pier to Donsak, departing at 05:00, 07:00, 09:00, 10:00, 11:00, 13:00, 14:00, 15:00, 17:00 and 19:00.
Traveling by Raja Ferry is a popular way to get to Koh Samui because they have those regular sailings and because their tickets are very affordably priced. Another advantage is that Raja Ferry boats are larger than most of the other ferry companies, and they can actually accommodate vehicles – great if you rented a car and want to use it to explore Koh Samui. A big advantage to sailing on a larger boat is that the ride is usually more stable than the smaller, faster boats, so this is good if you are prone to getting sea sick.
Whether you are going from Lipa Noi to Donsak or the other way around, you can buy tickets at the pier before the sailing you want, or you can buy them online in advance. If you are happy navigating the Raja Ferry website there is a booking page there, or you could use the reputable travel booking website, 12Go. Booking through them you get instant confirmation and are able to board with an e-ticket presented on your mobile device.
Raja Ferry Schedule between Lipa Noi Pier and Thong Sala Pier, Koh Phangan
Raja Ferry also has two ferries per day from Lipa Noi to Koh Phangan, if you wanted to travel over to Koh Samui’s sister island and see its amazing scenery or experience the Full Moon Party! These ferries depart from Lipa Noi Pier at 07:00 and 16:30 and the sailing time is 90 minutes, and you can come back this way too, leaving Koh Phangan at 09:30 or 18:30, arriving at Lipa Noi 90 minutes later.
Facilities at Lipa Noi Pier
Stepping off the ferry, you find yourself at Lipa Noi Pier, where amenities are sparse yet practical. A modest waiting area offers respite from the tropical climate. Inside, rows of seats invite passengers to rest awhile, as cool air circulates thanks to a rattling AC unit.
You spot a small counter manned by staff selling tickets for upcoming Raja Ferry departures. When hunger strikes, a compact food court provides refreshment. Vendors whip up snacks and drinks to satisfy rumbling stomachs before the journey ahead.
Nearby restrooms stay tidy thanks to the janitor’s careful attention. You delight at the free WiFi as you video call loved ones to pass the time. Beyond these basic offerings, Lipa Noi town is a short jaunt away, where more extensive facilities can be found.
In summary, the simple yet functional amenities supply the essentials for short stays pre- or post-ferry ride. The facilities may be limited, but provide what’s needed as a gateway to Koh Samui and beyond.
Getting to Lipa Noi Pier
Several transportation options are available for arriving at Lipa Noi Pier upon landing on Koh Samui:
- Taxis from the airport take around 1 hour and cost approximately 1000-1500 THB depending on your hotel location
- Shared songthaew minibuses run from nearby Lipa Noi Beach to the pier for about 150 THB per person
- Many hotels and resorts offer convenient shuttle service to Lipa Noi Pier for a small added fee
- Combined van and taxi transfers can also be booked from around Koh Samui to Lipa Noi Pier for around 150 THB per person
It’s advisable to give yourself at least 60-90 minutes to comfortably arrive at the pier to purchase your onward ferry tickets. Traffic conditions on Koh Samui can be unpredictable at times.
Advance booking of roundtrip transportation is recommended to take the guesswork out of getting to and from Lipa Noi Pier. Companies like 12Go allow you to book ferry, taxi, van, or combined tickets online ahead of time.
How many Ferry terminals are there on Koh Samui?
Koh Samui has two main piers on the island Lipa Noi Pier is one and the other being Nathon Pier which is located several kilometers further north along the west coast.
How much does a Ferry cost from Lipa Noi Pier to Koh Phangan?
The average price is around 300 THB to go from Lipa Noi Pier to Koh Phangan by Raja Ferry.
How much does a Ferry cost from Lipa Noi Pier to Surat Thani?
The ferry price is 300-500 THB to go from Lipa Noi Pier to Surat Thani by Raja Ferry and it includes a bus to the end station of your choice: Surat Thani Airport, Surat Thani Train Station, Surat Thani Town.
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