There is always a reason to party! So why not celebrate the full moon? On a small Island by the beach in the Gulf of Thailand? With 40000 people from all over the world? Ko Pangan is definitely the best place to celebrate the full moon. Every month on the day of full moon about 40000 people from all over the world gather on the south coast of Ko Pangan. Most of the party people stay at accommodations on this island but I recommend to overnight on Ko Samui's northern or western coast due to lower prices and more peaceful people. The party begins at about 6 pm and lasts until early in the morning. When entering Hat Rin Nai (the village where the party is) you have to pay 100 THB for the entrance and have to walk through the streets to get to the beach where the actual party takes place. All the streets are covered with stands and shops selling neon colored shirts, body paint, hats, flower necklaces, well anything which is wearable. The village seems to have been busy with the preperations for days. But for sure they are already routined in this after celebrating full moon every month. This is the crazy thing about it. It's such a huge event but still it takes place every month. It's the biggest party I have ever seen.
The special thing about it is the gathering of so many cultures (mostly backpackers, tourists but also many locals) who dance to the same music at the same time at the same place.The idea and specially the location of this event is amazing and it's an unbelievable experience! You notice how music can influence our mood and how easily it connects people. Just by playing "YMCA" e.g. everyone automatically sings the same lyrics and dances the same choreography although everyone has a different ethical background. Everyone is covered in neon colored body paint and wears neon colored clothes and accessories.
Now I understand why backpackers in Thailand want to go there and always talk about it.
If you choose to stay at Ko Samui the best way to go there is by speed boat (20 min) from Bo Phut to Hat Rin Nai. The earliest boat going back home after the party departures at 1 am and the last one departures at 7 am the following morning (so there is enough time to dance all night). But riding the speed boat at night can be a bit scary because it's dark and you can't see where you are going. My way back to Ko Samui after the party was so wavy and horrible and made me feel like in a movie of backpackers captured by pirates at night. But the ride is safe and really fast. It only takes 20 min from one island to the other.
It's definitely worth it to plan your trip to Ko Pangan during the time of the Full Moon Party.
I promise you will never forget this night!