Whether it’s the soothing sound of cascading water or the chance to take a refreshing dip in a secluded jungle rock pool; waterfalls are always a popular attraction with visitors to Koh Samui. Those who are not shy of a little exploration will certainly enjoy making a trip into the abundant flora and fauna that blankets the island’s hilly inland areas in search of a natural thrill.
Namuang 1 & 2
Namuang Falls are undoubtedly among Samui’s most famous natural wonders and take their name (which translates to Purple Falls) from the striking hue of the violet rock faces that the water pours over. Nestled in the dense tropical forest some 12km inland southeast of Nathon Bay, they are widely considered to be two of the island's most scenic spots. Namuang 1 and 2 can both be reached on foot via a path from the main park entrance. The journey is relatively straightforward for those with a reasonable level of fitness, and visitors who bring their swimming gear to the falls often cool off at Namuang 1 before hiking for a further 30 minutes uphill to take a dip in the rock pools at the foot of Namuang 2. Hard wearing, comfortable footwear is recommended for hikers that plan on walking to the top of either of the falls. Many visitors also take the time to visit the Namuang Safari Park, which is positioned between the two torrents. Elephant rides and monkey shows are among the featured attractions, and prove particularly popular with children as a side attraction to the waterfalls themselves. Thailand’s green season between September and November is the best time to visit, when the extra burst of rainwater means the falls gush down onto the rocks below in all their might.
Hin Lad Waterfall
To the locals, this most sacred of waterfalls in Koh Samui is known as Namtok Hin Lad. Situated a few kilometres south of Nathon Town, the site is also popular with visitors seeking to explore Thailand’s spiritual side with a trip to the Hin Lad Waterfall temple. Tucked away in the forest, both the temple and the waterfall offer a quiet sanctuary for relaxation and spiritual contemplation. A walking path winds its way through the temple gardens, with religious sculptures and quotes from the Lord Buddha scattered along the way. Generally, the temple doesn’t tend to attract many visitors except on the weekends, so it's an ideal destination for visitors seeking somewhere to unwind from the hustle and bustle of the island's tourist hotspots. The temple and waterfall are open all year round, however once again, the optimum time to visit is during the green season when the fall can be seen in its full glory. Hiking to the top of the fall stakes approximately 30 minutes, and many visitors opt to cool off with a dip in one of the refreshing rock pools along the way.
Aptly named, this powerful cascade of water is generally only seen by visitors that take on Samui’s biggest canopy zip-line adventure. The Secret Falls Canopy
Adventure centre provides visitors with the chance to marvel at the jungle surroundings from a new perspective as they glide between the treetops harnessed to a cable that extends from platform to platform. The Secret Falls are at the end of the zip-line course, and therefore have become a popular spot for many visitors to stop and take photographs of the secluded, dazzling view. The true beauty of this hidden torrent of water is the fact that it is tucked away much deeper within Samui’s enchanting abundance of trees than the other waterfalls, offering visitors the chance to marvel at part of the island that has been left almost untouched. Once visitors complete the canopy ride, a quick swim in the fresh water rock pools presents a fine opportunity to cool off.
Koh Phangan Waterfalls
For those that just can't get enough falling water; Samui's sister island of Koh Phangan boasts no less than seven waterfalls, each with its own dramatic, remote natural appeal. Phaeng Waterfall is one of the most popular spots thanks to its impressive size and elevation, as well as the fact that there's a stunning viewpoint to visit a few hundred metres past the falls themselves. Than Sadet waterfall is another well known natural attraction on Koh Phangan, especially for Thai visitors because it was visited by revered King Rama V on several occasions and even bears his inscription in one of the rocks at the base. Other falls to visit on the island are Sramanora waterfall, Haad Prapaad, Wangsai, Thaan Prawet and Paradise waterfall.
Posted by Max Vee