Hua Thanon, which starts just beyond Hin Ta & Hin Yai, is similarly quiet and is home to a few long-stay backpacker resorts as well as one of Samui's last remaining traditional fishing fleets. The Muslim village has a charming atmosphere and is well worth a visit for a glimpse into island life before mass tourism.
The fishermen's elegantly painted kor lae boats are very photogenic, as is the village's fish market. There are a few decent seafood restaurants by the side of the sea, which give you a taste of true Samui cuisine at bargain basement prices.
Bang Kao is home to Centara Villas Samui which offers upscale accommodation that stretches down a steep hillside to the beach below. There are also a couple of older mid-range bungalow operations and a few independent restaurants but little else in the area apart from the Samui Aquarium & Tiger Zoo, which is fine as long as you don't mind your baby tigers drugged and compliant for photo ops. A much kinder option is the nearby Butterfly Garden, which showcases indigenous varieties in a well-managed environment.