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THE BEST RESTAURANTS ON KOH SAMUI
Koh Samui is Thailand’s third largest island and attracts a lot of visitors every month. Especially in the months of July and August, because of the beautiful weather, it can be very crowded and cozy. Not surprisingly, there are thousands of restaurants you can choose from on the island. To make it a bit easier for you, we have compiled this list below. Here you will find the very best restaurants on Koh Samui. From east to west, from authentic to modern and from luxury to budget.
Click on the names to navigate through our list of Koh Samui’s best restaurants.
Saffron Koh Samui
Since we were guests at the famous five-star Banyan Tree in Bangkok, we became familiar with the restaurant brand called “Saffron.” Saffron is a Thai restaurant known not only in Thailand, but also in other countries over planet earth. Because there is a Banyan Tree on Samui. It’s not surprising to find a Saffron there as well as it is part of the hotel chain.
At Saffron, guests enjoy superb, pure, creative and, above all, authentic Thai cuisine. Saffron Samui is decorated with traditional Thai artwork and décor and can be called intimate with about thirty seats. A feast for the eyes. Speaking of works of art, a high tea at the Banyan Tree Samui at Saffron Restaurant is out of the ordinary!
Unfortunately, we didn’t have the time to visit this Saffron restaurant on Koh Samui. Even so, we are 100% sure that dining here is an extraordinarily tasty experience. Why do we know so sure? Well, in July 2022 we dined insanely good on the unique Saffron Cruise. A gruesomely beautiful ship sailing down Bangkok’s Chao Phraya River. Since that culinary journey we knew, Saffron stands for high quality good eats! We can’t wait to dine at a Saffron restaurant again, not only on Samui but anywhere in the world.
Pepenero Koh Samui
What do you get when you combine two inspired Italians with an unbridled passion for good food, service-oriented staff, the very best ingredients from la bella Italia and a pleasant location where it stays welcoming until late? Exactly Pepenero!
In August 2022, two days before our wedding, we treated ourselves to the best Italian restaurant on Koh Samui. If only we had discovered this amazing restaurant near Meanam Beach earlier…Don’t expect pizza at Pepenero, you can get that at Da Bardo, but a good pasta they will serve you with love. What did we order? We left it up to Paulo, Alain (the amazing chef) and their super team.
Curious about the tasty goodies they served us? Then read our extensive review of Pepenero, an ode to my Italian family and especially to my late Italian grandfather and grandmother.
Krua Bophut (ร้านอาหารครัวบ่อผุด, เกาะสมุย)
You will find Krua Bophut in the famous Fisherman Village, which is part of Bophut (Beach). Krua Bophut represents the total Thai package. You not only enjoy many delicious Thai dishes, but also the Thai atmosphere, hospitality, music and the beautiful restaurant itself. Krua Bophut resembles an antique Thai house, very atmospheric thanks to the beautifully decorated teak wood and classic Thai elements.
At Krua Bophut, guests also can choose to sit outside. There are even some places where you dine with your feet in the soft sand of Bophut Beach. What an amazing place to dine! Needless to say, the Thai food here is exceptionally good, otherwise we wouldn’t have mentioned this restaurant in our list of Koh Samui’s best restaurants. If you are or are staying in Bophut, be sure to have lunch or dinner at Krua Bophut in Fisherman Village.
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As some of you know by now, there are a few types of international cuisines you can wake us up for at any hour of the night. Italian, Japanese, of course Thai food and the varied Indian cuisine. The best Indian restaurant on Koh Samui is Noori India located in Chaweng. It’s run by two Indian brothers and together with the professional Noori team, they ensure that their guests are not short of anything. At Noori India you will feast on countless Indian classics. Bestsellers are the delicious Samosas, or the buttery Butter Chicken, but also the fragrant Chicken Biryani or for example the perfectly cooked lamb is so tasty.
Halal and vegetarian dishes can also be ordered at Noori India. Noori is there for everyone. Samui’s first Indian restaurant, has been a true household name on the island of Koh Samui since it opened in 1998. Once you have eaten here, you are sure to return sooner or later. Noori India is a true Indian melting pot, where excellent service, good value for money and fragrant Indian dishes make this restaurant one of the best restaurants on Samui.
DID YOU KNOW?
Noori also offers cooking classes. So you can learn to cook your own Indian dishes. Highly recommended on a rainy day on Koh Samui. More information can be found on their website.
The Fish Restaurant
Sometimes, by accident, you come across a small but oh so nice restaurant on the road where everything feels just right. In our case, this was The Fish Restaurant. Despite the name, neither of us ordered a fish dish here. Those do seem to be grandiose delicious here, but we were craving a “simple” Pad Krapow and Fried Rice. In the two weeks we were on Samui, the Pad Krapow at The Fish was the tastiest we ate on the island.
The Fish Restaurant on Koh Samui has limited seating, both indoors and outdoors, but you can also take out. The friendly Thai family that runs the restaurant is very welcoming and mom is in the kitchen herself. If we are near Maenam again, we will definitely come back here for another one of those delicious Pad Krapow.
Haad Bang Po Seafood (ร้านหาดบางปอ)
According to many visitors to Samui, Haad Bang Po Seafood is the very best seafood restaurant on the island. In late July 2022 we were sleeping at Villa Chi and as we drove from Nathon pier to our villa, our driver slowed down and while pointing to a roadside restaurant said “You like fish? This is the best of Koh Samui, very good food, aroy mak maaaak”. A clear sign that even Samui residents can greatly appreciate Haad Bang Po Seafood.
Despite Haad Ban Po’s unprecedented popularity, prices have remained fairly inexpensive. Are you crazy about fried, grilled or steamed fish? Or do you prefer a plate full of seafood? Then book a table at this restaurant in the northwestern part of Koh Samui.
Benzo Sushi Bar & Grill
As we wrote before, we love Japanese cuisine! Therefore, Samui’s best Japanese restaurant should not be missing from this list of Samui’s best restaurants. Benzo not only serves great food, but also has a great atmosphere! The owner and his team make sure that a visit to Benzo Sushi Bar & Grill is a real celebration.
At Benzo, obviously, guests can choose from numerous sushi dishes. Inside out rolls, Maki, Nigiri, and even Fusion sushi. Also order a serving of brand new Sashimi, delicious paired with a good Sake (rice wine). For a complete dinner set, you pay less than THB 400. For this you will be served a selection of small Japanese dishes. We are fans of Benzo Sushi Bar & Grill and can’t wait to visit here again!
One way to recognize a renowned restaurant is by the consistency and quality of its dishes. Chef Francois is lord and master at this. At Chez Francois , French cuisine triumphs, how could it not with such a name. Speaking of names, if perfection had a name, it would have been called Francois Porte! Francois has long earned his tokens in the Middle East where he is known for his haute cuisine. In Samui, they also appreciate Monsieur Porte’s cooking skills; with hundreds of online reviews, Chez Francois scores an average of just under ten. That says how qualitative the dishes are and how good the ambiance at Chez Francois is.
Got something special to celebrate or want to treat yourself to a hi-so dinner at one of Samui’s best restaurants? Then visit Bophut’s famous Fisherman Village where the restaurant is located. Little tip, don’t forget to reserve a table in advance.
Tree Tops Sky Dining & Bar
The most exclusive restaurant in our list is Tree Tops Sky Dining & Bar. This special restaurant is part of the beautiful Anantara Resort, located all the way in the northern area of Chaweng. An enchanting place where you and your partner can dine high and luxurious or enjoy a delicious drink. The menu (Nov 2022) features unusual dishes such as a Tom Yum with watermelon or a dessert with fermented pineapple. A “regular” green curry or piece of meat or fish can also be ordered here.
What caught our eye is Tree Tops Sky Dining & Bar extensive wine list. They have more than 100 different wines from as many as 13 countries. So romantic to be up so high, at treetop level, overlooking the azure sea and drinking a good glass of wine together! This one is already in our planning for our next visit to Samui, we’re having a blast….
Sabienglae Restaurant (เสบียงเล)
Okay, one more seafood restaurant then… Way down south in Lamai is Sabienglae Restaurant. A household name in Lamai and Samui. Known for its phenomenal seafood, Sabienglae Restaurant is located near the touristy Grandmother & Grandfather Rock. You’re there with a five-minute walk. Lobster, crab, seafood and super-fresh fish prepared or processed in countless ways, at Sabienglae you can (almost) have it all. Should you not be a seafood lover, order a tasty curry with chicken or beef, but vegetarian is of course also possible. The location alone, right on Lamai Beach, is worth a visit to this restaurant!
Pizzeria Da Bardo
Koh Samui’s best Italian restaurant is, without a doubt, Pepenero, but the best pizza on the island is Bardo’s. The cute Italian Restaurant & Pizzeria Da Bardo is located in Mae Nam and has only a few seats. The attentive Alan, owner of this gem on Samui, prepares the pizzas himself and whichever of the more than twenty varieties of pizza you choose, they all taste heavenly! We ourselves went for the Margherita, the simplest, but best pizza of all pizzas. The pizza Margherita costs 290 THB, but it comes with a return ticket to Napoli. Figuratively speaking, because with every bite you imagine yourself in la bella Italia. At Bardo, by the way, you can also order delicious starters such as bruschetta or a salad, great for sharing!
The Coffee Club (Chaweng)
Even though The Coffee Club doesn’t really belong in this list of the very best restaurants on Koh Samui, we decided to add it anyway. Wherever The Coffee Club is, we always go for coffee and breakfast or lunch. After all, The Coffee Club always stands for consistent quality. The same goes for the branch found in the Central Samui shopping center in Chaweng. This is where we had breakfast and lunch once when we stayed at The Stay a short 15-minute walk away.
Image: Thailand Magazine
We even returned twice for a coffee 2go, both hot and iced. By the way, at The Coffee Club they make great kinds of coffee shakes, not cheap but tremendously delicious. Thailand is now home to more than a hundred of The Coffee Clubs. This coffee chain originates from Australia and is worth so many bucks more for your money than that coffee joint that came over from America, you know which one we mean….
Image: Thailand Magazine
Image: Thailand Magazine
Image: Thailand Magazine