Quite definitely, the island of Koh Samui is stunning. And it appears we have lucked out as we staying in the sunny village of called Chaweng. Although officially known as a island's 'party town', the relatively quiet beach can also be a quiet haven away from the noise and lads and lasses on tour. Chaweng also boasts the "nicest" beach of the whole island - which appears to stand up based on what we saw, and the number of 5-star on-beach resorts farther up the coast. Judge for yourself:
While the town and nightlife is certainly geared towards the partygoer where anything goes, and there is of course the obligatory Irish Bar (and German Schnitzel House - @Roy: be proud!), there are still some very good places to eat and some great local bars. A few nightlife shots below of Chaweng High Street:
One of the best bars wasn't really a bar at all: called "On Street Bar" it only appears a few evenings a week and is actually on a construction site. The people who run it are charming and very friendly, the drinks cheap - and the fact it's a popup bar is fantastic, if not a little surreal.
Also, the food here is fantastic. In fact, some of the best Thai food we've tasted to date (anywhere). Especially good is La Brasserie in the Beachcomber resort - so good we went there twice. Everything is made freshly to order (ie no seafood for me) and the staff are incredibly friendly. Because visited again, the chef even came out to say hello! We can whole-heartedly recommend the Red Curry, Massamun Curry and Sweet & Sour Chicken.
Finally (apart from it's ghastly logo), The Loft Samui hotel was very pretty, clean, friendly and secure. We recommend it and will stay here again quite happily.
So... we shall be sorry to leave Chaweng / Koh Samui, but the next island of Koh Phangan beckons. Off to pack now before we catch our coach to the pier at 11am tomorrow...