Thongsala in Koh Phangan
Thongsala (or Thong Sala, as it is also written) is the main town of Koh Phangan. This is where you are mostly likely to arrive on the island or leave the island. The Songserm, Lomprayah, Seatran and Raja Car Ferry services all run from the piers in Thongsala. For a list of boat timetables click here. Pick-up truck taxis meet the boats and take visitors to their desired destinations. It costs 300 thb to get to Thong Nai Pan and 200 thb to get a shared taxi to Haad Rin. The prices are fixed but only if the transport is full. Otherwise, it is necessary to negotiate a price for a private taxi. The most expensive private taxi is probably 800 thb from Thongsala to Thong Nai Pan.
The great thing about Thongsala is that it has the best amenities and shopping on the island, and yet it remains a very sleepy, laid back town. The best stocked shop in Thongsala is the Tesco Lotus where you can find a great selection of food, drink and other products at cheap prices.
In the evening there is a popular night market which sells cheap plates of food. Thongsala has several supermarkets, bookshops, internet cafes, ATMs, motorbike and jeep hire places, restaurants and bars. There's also a post office, a private health clinic and a government hospital (a few kms outside of Thongsala in Wok Tum). There's even a small cinema (see the nightlife section).
Parallel to the main road in Thongsala is 'walking street' where you can still see the remains of a small China town. It is a great street for shopping and finding cheap eats.
Just outside of Thongsala is the oldest temple on the island - Wat Phu Khao Noi. It was the first permanently inhabited place on the island and has some interesting chedis.
Many visitors prefer to stay in one of the many reasonably priced places in Thongsala because it is centrally located. It is only a short motorbike ride from the beaches of Bantai and Bankai in the south and Srithanu and Hin Kong in the west. And Haad Rin is only 20 minutes away by bike.
Please explore the accommodation options in Thongsala by clicking the links below. All prices are inclusive of tax.
(Updated January 2013)
Starting under 1,000 Thai Baht
Buakao Inn 650 thb - 1,500 thb (low season)
Golden Hill Resort 800 thb - 1,100 thb (low season); 1,200 thb - 1,500 (high season)
Baan Busaba Hotel 950 thb -1,200 thb (low / high season) - Breakfast included
Starting over 1,000 Thai Baht
Pha Ngang Chai Hotel 1,000 thb - 2,000 thb (low season); 1,500 thb - 3,000 thb (high season) - Breakfast included
Grand Sea Resort 1,100 thb - 9,000 thb (low season); 1,320 thb - 10,350 thb (high season) - Breakfast included
A's Beach Place 1,700 thb - 2,500 thb (low season) - Breakfast included