Going to Koh Phagnan? Are you going to party, get spiritual, sexual, or detoxify yourself?
Before you go, you may wish to bring your intention into the trip. Why is it that you are going to Koh Phagnan, and do you intend to just visit, or do you intend to stay long-term or even move there? It is, afterall, a paradise and you can have everything you desire.
Koh Phagnan is the island of everything, including gluttony, so beware of what you ask for, as it may come in spades, leaving you feeling slightly dazed and confused when you don’t need to be. You can have a great time, meet great people and not add to the tourist ignorance that comes with alcohol use and irresponsibility, simply because you are not in your home country.
I remember my first visit to Koh Phangan, I was in a dream as I had landed at the Sanctuary on the southwest side, after many boats. I wanted to be in a community of like-minded spiritually cool people and so with the three bays and beach all around, no cars, and a bunch of beautiful people looking like they were enjoying themselves in the midst of yoga classes, parties and good food, I had arrived in “heaven.”
Tip # 1: Visit the Sanctuary. Great food, great, eclectic people (a bit less now than before) and a party every Friday night at Guy’s Bar and Saturday night at Eden. There is yoga in about four places, and you can stay in anything from a “luxury” bungalow at the Sanctuary or anywhere around there at various places like Beam, Why Nam, Haad Tien, Haad Yao. Nothing is luxurious really, quite basic in fact, but you will like the friendly vibe of the “family,” those who hang out there a lot, and those who are passing through and stay much longer than expected. My first year I stayed 6 months., weeding through the centred people, the off-the face folk, the acting cool to be cool hippies and the real macoys who have done inner work. Good luck.
Tip #2 Do a detox. The island is a great place for people to get healthy and healed if this is the goal. Centres such as Orion, Ananda, the Sanctuary and others coming will be happy to provide you with the tools to not eat for 3, 5, 11 days, provide bentonite clay shakes, colonics and other therapies, including Chi Nei Tsang to help with your fasting and purification of your system. If its time, do it, you will want to look and feel good on this island.
Tip #3 Take a Yoga Teacher Training. Why not? It’s the biggest business on the island and there are about six Yoga Teacher Trainings happening at any one time on KPG. The world does not really need more yoga teachers by now but it an be a life-changing experience for many. You can try such venues as Open to Bliss, One Yoga, Sunny Yoga, Akasha, Orion, Shambala, the list goes on. Again, you need to search through the various styles and teachers as there are no “regulations” on Koh Phagnan. It’s a mis-mash of many beings from all over the world converging into whatever experience you are seeking
Tip # 4 Get a massage. Its always cheap, this is the great thing. Available anywhere in Koh Phagnan. Its just the quality, if the therapist is present, it may be ok, but so often its simply a person who is working for a massage place, and they are trained by the owner to give thai massage all day long, its not likely to impress you. If you wish to learn massage, its great to learn by a western person who is a meditator for example, then there is presence in the touch. Try Alchemy of Touch, C & M Learning Centre or Open to Bliss. If you are lucky, you can learn tantra massage (proper) from someone on the island who is properly trained. Just ask people either at the Sanctuary or in Sri Thanu. Sometimes it is done in a group setting but sometimes you can learn privately or semi-privately.
Tip # 5 Learn Tantra. This island has become full of tantra, and many opportunities to learn how to get more sex, learn about sex, meditate on sex, meditate on yantras, do ceremonies, be a more satisfied couple, or bring sex to a spiritual practice. Tao Tantra for Women http://www.taotantricarts.com/sacred-femininity-womens-training.html, Tantra Movement https://tantramovement.com/ Open to Bliss, http://www.opentobliss.com/Tantra Heart, etc. Look for the posts.
Tip # 6 Go to the Full Moon Party. Its an experience for sure. Many young people, many drunk or high people flock every full moon to Haad Rin Beach for a very large party with buckets of alchohol for sale, yippee, if you like drinking! A big business for the island where you can stay up all night and dance. Many taxis going there and back. Have fun and be responsible, it’s a huge amount of people, many stages and shenanigans.
Tip # 7 Take a Sauna. It sounds a bit odd for an island where its so hot, but it’s a popular thing! The dome will serve you tea and goodies, plus a fire to dry out and from time to time some singing bowls to add to your experience. You can also enjoy a great music extravaganza at Gaia Spa on certain evenings (check Koh Phagnan conscious community FB page) or the sauna at Orion Healing or Ananda during the day. Check times.
Tip # 8 Visit a waterfall 1. Visit nature by scootering yourself to Phaeng Waterfall., Wang Sai Waterfall on the north west of the island or Than Sadet Waterfall. You can either drive there or access it from Haad Tien by boat. Water collected from here is used in some sacred Royal Ceremonies. The waterfall is made up of huge granite boulders and some freshwater pools where you can take a dip, and it has been visited may times by the Royal Thai family.
Tip # 8 Go for a hike. Bottle Beach is also called Haad Kuad which is the Thai name. The hike leaves from around Haad Khom which is near Chaloklum. Look carefully for the trail head and don’t lose it. The other, more intense hike with a great view is Khao Ra. Look for the trail head at Khao Ra Terrace and be sure to bring water. Its about 3 hours.
Tip # 9 Take Muay Thai Lessons. Diamond Muay Thai is a well-known business where you can learn the art of protection and attacking as well as Chorenrit Gym in Thong Sala. You can also watch fight night regularly as there are places in Thong Sala and in Haad Rin. http://diamondmuaythai.com/
Tip # 10 Give something back to Koh Phagnan. If you are going to be there for a while, have a look at Trash Hero water bottles as an example of something that locals have brought to Koh Phagnan. See https://trashhero.org/network/kohphangan/.
Put on a concert if you are musical, paint something, beautify the island. Thais are not really known for their artistic flare, but Koh Phagnan attracts creative and conscious people that want to stay in paradise. Another example of giving back, as well as something to invest time into is Indriya Meditation Centre, a new centre hosting silent meditation retreats beginning in December, 2019 in Sri Thanu, recently begun by ex-monk Anthony Markwell.