Chaweng Beach Nightlife
What to Do at Night in Chaweng Beach
Chaweng is Koh Samui's Party Central. All along the Beach Road you will see sois (streets) leading off into warrens of bars and pubs of varying appeal and popularity. The epicentre of all this hedonism and fun is undoubtedly Soi Green Mango in Central Chaweng, with Soi Reggae, by the lake, coming in a close second.
Before we get too hyperbolic about Chaweng's nightlife it's best to remember that bars close at 02:00 by order of the police so the party curve zooms upward past midnight and peaks a little earlier than some would prefer. And yes, some bars stay open later – those whose owners have friends in high places. Here are some Chaweng night areas to check out.
Chaweng Beach Road
Another Samui institution, the Ark Bar has been at it for quite a few years. Even though it's changed hands several times the bar/restaurant still uses the same methods to draw people in with fire dancers, ambient music, dining and dancing on the beach and a relaxed atmosphere that extends to a child-friendly vibe, even late at night. Read More...
- Location: Ark Bar Beach Club, Chaweng Central Beach Road
Bar @ C
Part of the Amari Palm Reef Resort, Bar @ C has obviously had no expense spared in its creation and has a fashionable appeal more readily associated with Bangkok bars than other hotel bars on Samui. There's a variety of seating areas including large day beds and giant sofas. In the evening discreet spot lighting is to the fore and a long wall shelf light slowly pulsates different hues, to add to the lounge-style ambience. As the name suggests, the bar is also only a few metres from the sea.
- Opening Hours: 08:00 - 01:00
- Location: Amari Palm Reef Resort, Chaweng Beach Road
Cha Cha Moon Beach Club
Opened in 2013, Cha Cha Moon Beach Club is a stylish bar/night club located right on the beach of Chaweng between Ark Bar Beach Club and Montien House. The access to Cha Cha Moon from Chaweng Beach Road is a journey in itself: punters have to walk through a long sandy path flanked by an abandoned resort under construction before to reach the vivid colourful light of the beach club entrance. Wide open on the beach and built mostly with natural materials, Cha Cha boasts a modern architecture which successfully integrated the existing coconut and palm trees fringing Chaweng Beach.
Cha Cha Beach Club is only a bar/disco for now (August 2014); a restaurant is planned to open toward the end of 2014. Punters can find here the usual suspects in matter of alcoholic or not beverages at prices slightly superior than in standard bars - all beers at 140 baht, and cocktails at 250 baht. Full & Black Moon Parties are the climax of Cha Cha: national (Nakadia, Mung Kunt, Bata Live percussion) and international (Joe Rickard, DJ A, Darragh Casey) DJs set the beat and entertain a crowd of dancers on the beach. Special events at Cha Cha are wildly advertised on large posters displayed all around Chaweng.
- Opening Hours: daily from 18:00 – 02:00
- Location: on Chaweng Beach 50m North of Ark Bar Beach Club
- Tel: 086 007 8850
Chaweng Stadium – The Event Center
Chaweng Stadium – The Event Center is the latest addition to Chaweng’s Thai Boxing scene. Located at the back of Soi Solo Bar off Chaweng Beach Road, this stadium (slightly smaller than Phatchabuncha Stadium) organises major Muay Thai events with local and foreign fighters twice a week on Tuesdays and Fridays from 21:00 until midnight (or earlier if fast knock-outs occur).
Paradoxically at the same time gracious and brutal, Thai Boxing is the promise of an evening filled up with adrenalin and emotion. The throbbing and acute Sarama music that accompanies Muay Thai matches has a hypnotic effect on the audience as it increases in speed and volume according to the intensity of the boxers’ engagement.
- Opening Hours: 21:00 – midnight on Tuesdays and Fridays
- Location: off Chaweng Beach Road at the back of Soi Solo Bar
Chaweng Walk is a recent addition to Chaweng’s shopping/dining/nightlife scene; opened in 2013 on a large empty plot linking Chaweng Beach Road to the beach located between Banana Fan Sea Samui and Tradewinds by Lawana, Chaweng Walk is a daily market in the same vein as Chaweng Walking Street (their rather similar names can be slightly confusing).
One side of Chaweng Walk is open-air while the other is covered with a corrugated iron roof; the open-air area has a paved trail flanked by something like 30 stalls selling an eclectic choice of beach wear, handcrafted souvenirs, spa oils, cheap jewellery, and souvenirs while the covered area features a food court (tables and chairs) with a dozen stalls selling Thai snacks and street food from chicken satay to grilled sausages and squid to smoothies, and more. Live Thai music is performed on a small stage set towards the beach. Chaweng Walk is Thainess at its best as it offers a good way to mingle with locals in a friendly atmosphere, and to sample local delicacies at rock-bottom prices.
- Opening Hours: daily from 16:30 – 22:00
- Location: off Chaweng Beach Road in the central area of the beach
Legends Bar is a long-established water hole on Chaweng Beach Road; located in the heart of Koh Samui’s prime resort town, in proximity with Soi Green Mango, this cool bar has for motto: "no techno, no Spice Girls, no boy bands!” The music played at Legends Bar includes all the classics from the ‘60s to the ‘90s: rock, pop, hard, blues, Legends is the right place for those who love original music played with real instruments.
The atmosphere is relaxed and friendly, and the décor of the bar features vintage memorabilia hanged on the walls around the bar. An outdoor terrace at front of the venue offers a great people watching spot on the constant hustle and bustle of Chaweng’s main street. Cool place indeed to step back in the past, chill-out, and enjoy the all-day & all-night happy hour (all cocktails at 100 baht!).
- Opening Hours: daily from 14:00 – 02:00
- Location: on Chaweng Beach Road, right next to The Islander
- Tel: 081 747 0937
Monkey Bay - Beachfront Bistro & Bar is a cool and unpretentious venue located right on Chaweng Beach at the end of Chaweng Walk (between Banana Fan Sea Samui and Tradewinds by Lawana). Featuring a small open-sided one storey building, the central attraction of this bar is the pleasure of having a drink with your toes in the sand under the cooling shade of tall, tropical almond trees.
The drink-list hosts all the usual suspects regarding soft drinks and beers (Singha, Tiger, and Leo are at 90 baht for a small bottle), and also features a long list of classic and long drink cocktails (180 to 200 baht), and ‘detox healthy drinks’ (for instance, the Strawberry Mojito – strawberry, pineapple, lime, mint leaf, and ginger – is rich in antioxidant, enzymes, and vitamin C). Monkey Bay is indeed a great spot to chill-out before or after dinner, and in case you would like something to sample while drinking, Chaweng Walk’s food court is just a few metres away.
- Opening Hours: 16:00 – late
- Location: Right on Chaweng Beach at the level of Chaweng Walk
- Tel: 077 422 777
On Street Bar
On Street Bar is certainly the most original venue in Chaweng’s tremendous nightlife scene; this tiny venue set on a small piece of waste ground right next to the entrance of KC Beach Club Hotel is made of corrugated iron and recycled wood painted in bright colours – without them, its one metre wide façade would be totally unnoticed as the stall/shop next door sells vivid paper chandeliers. Made with any old things and featuring recovered furnishing and décor set on the open ground, On Street Bar is a very popular water hole, a proof that the trendiness of a venue is not always related to the amount of money invested to make it shiny and attractive.
Run by a charming Thai couple, this place is perfect to spend a relaxing evening chatting and drinking with friends, while listening to the acoustic live music performed by a talented guitarist/vocalist. Affordable prices, good vibe, unpretentious friendly atmosphere and good music, On Street Bar is an arty place at which punters are sure to spend a great evening in Chaweng.
- Opening Hours: daily from 19:00 – late
- Location: on Chaweng Beach Road at the entrance of KC Beach Club & Pool Villas
If you’ve ever been to Bangkok’s Q Bar then you’ll know of its groovy, chic, hi-so reputation. Samui’s Q Bar may have the same name but most similarities abruptly end there. Set on a hillside above Chaweng with views out over the lake and town, the place is perfect for sunset, even if it is facing the wrong way. Read More...
- Opening Hours: 17:00 - 02:00
- Location: Above north Chaweng – look out for the huge ‘Q’ sign on the hillside
- Remarks: Live Percussion everyday
- Tel: 086 940 8667 or 077 962 420
With a big screen and a nightly live band you'd think that Red Snapper wouldn't exactly be totally be focused in on its food but you'd be wrong. Part of Chaweng Regent Beach Resort, Red Snapper fronts onto the Beach Road and is great for that laid-back meal, while watching the passing throngs. Modern fusion and healthy dishes prevail with more of a leaning towards cocktails than wine on the drinks list, the décor is pleasant and this is definitely a happening place to be.
- Opening Hours: 17:00 – 01:00
- Location: Chaweng Regent Beach Resort, North Chaweng
Bar Solo has a cool, sleek interior and a great music policy as well as a pool table and six plasma screens showing major sporting events. Solo Bar is a good option to start a night out, when you can take advantage of their 1/2price cocktails from 14:00 – 20:00. Later in the evening, the bar gets lively with DJ's spinning funky, uplifting house and chilled lounge tunes.
- Opening Hours: 14:00 - 02:00
- Location: Central Chaweng Beach Road, next to Starbucks
The Islander doesn’t do things by halves. It can handle 200 covers, has an incredible 22 large-screen TVs, the cheapest Guinness on Samui, free Wi-Fi and free pool tables upstairs. Here, you can get all-day breakfasts (the ‘Full Monty’), pub grub, and even Mexican food on its predominantly British menu. Read More...
- Opening Hours: 08:00 – 02:00
- Location: Opposite Pizza Hut central Chaweng
If you're looking for a happy-go-lucky evening with lots of beer choices, good food, great music, pool, quizzes and an Irish ambience look no further than Tropical Murphy's. Owner Paul Watson takes no prisoners in his quest to be the top pub in town and he ensures that everything runs smoothly. Murphy's Thai staff members speak good English and the extensive choice of seating means that you can take in the live music upstairs in the air-con, watch sports downstairs or enjoy the night air and the street sights on the outside terrace.
- Location: Opposite McDonald's Central Chaweng
One of the most spectacular dining options in the south of Thailand, the Brazilian-themed Zico's is an on-fire mixture of entertainment, glam cocktails and skewer after skewer of freshly prepared meat served from sword-like serving knives by strolling waiters. To the side lies a salad bar to balance the all-you-can-eat fixed price meats. Entertainment takes place on a central stage and consists of bottom-wiggling sexy samba dancing girls in outfits that leave little to the imagination, live percussion and sax players. Read more about Zico's Diner & Show...
- Opening Hours: Restaurant 18:30 – 22:30 Bar 17:00 – 01:00
- Location: Opposite Centara Grand Beach Resort
- Tel: 077 231 560-3
One of the coolest places in town – in more ways than one: The walls, bar, sculptures and seats are made from Canadian ice and are permanent fixtures. And no, it's not the usual tiny, fridge-like arrangement that many ice bars go for; Bar Ice is big enough to hold elephant and tuk tuk sculptures and has separate rooms.
The chilliest is kept at -7 degrees, lit by an atmospheric LED lighting system with a full colour spectrum. You can chill in the pub-like part and even sit outside in a beer garden if you wish to smoke. A unique and worthwhile experience.
- Opening Hours: 16:00 – 21:30 Happy Hour with two-for-one cocktails.
- Location: On the road heading out of northern Chaweng to the Ring Road. A ten-minute walk from Central Chaweng
Black Moon & Escape Parties
Three huge rave-like parties are held in a similar spirit as the world-famous Koh Phangan Full Moon Party every month in Koh Samui: the Black Moon and two Escape (Half Moon) Parties. Some of the world’s leading DJs have played at the Black Moon Party, including Brandon Block, Judge Jules and Timo Maas. The parties start as soon as the night falls and last until the wee hours.
Originally organized at Phru Chaweng (aka Chaweng Lake View, a park in the northeastern corner of Chaweng Lake which has a capacity for approximately 4,000 people), the location changes from one event to the other; these parties are sometimes held at Samrong Bay (aka ‘Secret Beach’ near the northern tip of Koh Samui, near Plai Laem) but this location is not very popular due to the difficulty and cost of getting there, and lately it was held at Chaweng Event Centre. Precise information about dates and locations can be obtained at most travel agencies and night clubs in Chaweng.
- Opening Hours: Black Moon and Half Moon nights every month
Unusual, eclectic or just plain wacky? Springer Pub is based in a garage outlet and has auto parts strewn around in places where there shouldn't be places. With a funky interior sporting seats made out of car parts, a bonnet and headlamps emerging from the wall above the stage, live music past 22:30 and a loosely fitting biker's atmosphere Springer Pub is a welcome relief from the highly charged and sometimes mercenary atmosphere of Central Chaweng.
- Location: Beach Road heading south out of Chaweng towards the Ring Road.