If you’re looking for reliable information in regards to the Samet Nangshe Viewpoint, you’ve come to the right place. We recently travelled to Samet Nangshe from Phuket, camped overnight and woke to a remarkable sunrise view. In this guide, I’ll provide all the information you need to plan your own trip to Samet Nangshe Sunrise Viewpoint, including how to get there, camping information, what to bring and more.
In ever-popular Thailand, hidden gems can be hard to come by. However, that doesn’t mean that they don’t exist. It may mean you have to work a little bit harder to escape the crowds, but that only makes the discoveries all the more worthwhile. Samet Nangshe Viewpoint is a prime example. From here, you can look out over a jaw-dropping panoramic view of Phang Nga Bay, camp beneath the milky way, and enjoy a truly unique experience.
I believe we owe thanks for the obscurity of the viewpoint to its location. Not quite in Phang Nga, not quite in Phuket, it takes some effort to reach it. But believe me, the extra effort is worth it, to witness one of the best viewpoints in all of South East Asia. So if you’re planning a trip to Thailand, I encourage you to save this article and add Samet Nangshe Viewpoint to your list of things to do.
But for now, read on for everything you need to know to plan your trip to Samet Nangshe Viewpoint – The Best Phang Nga Bay Viewpoint.
Samet Nangshe Viewpoint – The Best Phang Nga Bay Viewpoint
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Samet Nangshe Viewpoint Map
Getting to Samet Nangshe Viewpoint
We travelled to Samet Nangshe Viewpoint from Phuket; therefore, we will share our experience of this journey with you below. If you plan to visit the Phang Nga province, it would be quicker to travel from there. However, generally, most people make the journey from Phuket as it’s the closest ‘touristy’ location.
Phuket to Samet Nangshe
The total distance from Patong Beach in Phuket to Samet Nangshe is approximately 75km. You can rent a motorcycle, as we did. Or you can organise a private car or taxi.
To rent a motorcycle in Phuket can cost as little as 200 baht ($6) per day for a basic scooter, so this is by far the cheaper option. Taxis and private cars in Phuket are known to charge extortionate rates.
If you have little to no experience riding a motorcycle, I would strongly advise that you don’t attempt this drive. For one, Phuket is busy and congested, which can be intimidating for inexperienced drivers. And for two, it’s easy to get lost amidst the deserted roads leading to Samet Nangshe.
If you’re good to go on a motorcycle, you’re in for an interesting ride. In hindsight, the journey should take no longer than 2hrs. However, with the crazy traffic on the road that connects Phuket to the mainland, it took us almost 4. Still, the palm-fringed country roads once you are off of Phuket Island are gorgeous.
If for whatever reason you are unable to travel by motorcycle, you may wish to check out this deal for a Private Car or Minibus Rental with Driver. Of course, compare the price with other local drivers in the area, but in my experience, this is a highly competitive rate.
Getting Up to the Viewpoint
Once you arrive at the car park at the foot of Samet Nangshe, you’ll have to leave your scooter or disembark the vehicle. From this point, you can walk for 15-20 minutes up to the viewpoint, or pay 90 Baht (3$) for a truck to take you. There’s also a mandatory 30 Baht ($1) entrance fee for all visitors.
The walk is not all that long, but the road is steep, and it didn’t take long at all for us to work up a sweat. So long as you are in decent shape though, you will make it up easily enough. Besides, you can always take a break and use the view as an excuse.
Camping at Samet Nangshe Viewpoint
In my humble opinion, the best way to experience the Samet Nangshe Viewpoint is to arrive in the afternoon and camp overnight. The viewpoint faces East, so on a clear morning, you’re in for a spectacular sunrise view.
*Please note that you should reserve your accommodation when you pay the entrance fee. There is a small bamboo hut in the car park at the foot of the viewpoint.
Option 1: Tent
Price: 130 Baht ($4) / Sleeps: 2 People
We opted for a tent, which comfortably fit both of us in as well as our luggage. Included were some cushioned mats, two blankets and two pillows. While the bedding wasn’t entirely disgusting, it didn’t look as if it had seen a wash recently either. We were grateful that we had brought along our lightweight sleeping bag to use over the top.
Option 2: Wooden Bungalow
Price: 500 Baht ($16) / Sleeps: 2 People
The other camping option is a basic wooden bungalow, which includes a double sleeping pad, pillows & blankets, a mosquito net, and a fan. There aren’t many bungalows available though, and by the time we arrived, they were already allocated. If you have your heart set on a bungalow, you should arrive as early as possible. There doesn’t seem to be any way to book in advance.
Option 3: Samet Nangshe Boutique
If you’d prefer a more luxurious experience, Samet Nangshe Boutique Hotel is located slightly down the hill from the viewpoint. They offer a range of accommodation options from luxury tents through to grand suites – all with the same awe-inspiring view over Phang Nga Bay. You can check rates and availability for Samet Nangshe Boutique Hotel here.
Toilets – Your standard Thai style toilets. Not the cleanest, but certainly not the worst standard I’ve seen in Thailand in either.
Showers – Again, your standard Thai shower. A huge bucket of cold water and a pan to throw water over yourself.
Restaurant – There is a small restaurant selling basic Thai meals, snacks, and drinks. Options are limited, however, so I’d bring supplies with you as there are no shops nearby either.
And on that note, the restaurant doesn’t serve alcohol, so I definitely recommend bringing along your own. After all, no camping trip is complete without beers!
What to Bring
If you can, leave your main luggage at your hotel in Phuket or Phang Nga, and pack a small overnight bag for the trip. It will be far less hassle, and it means you won’t need to spoon your backpack all night long. Here is a list of items you’ll need to bring:
- Camera Gear – Check out what camera gear we use here.
- Lightweight Sleeping Bag
- Warm Jumper & Pants
- Ear Plugs
- Power Bank
- Mosquito Spray
- Beers & Snacks
- Enough Cash – There are no ATMs
Our Experience Camping at Samet Nangshe Viewpoint
After an arduous journey from Phuket and the steep climb up to the viewpoint, we were grateful to finally dump our stuff in our tent and appreciate the view. It was late afternoon, and there seemed to be very few people around at this point. We enjoyed a peaceful couple of hours taking photos and playing with the cute puppies who appeared to live at the campsite.
The view over Phang Nga Bay is out of this world. Sweeping jungle leads out to the bay, where several limestone karsts and islets create a dramatic scene. We agree to this day that it’s one of the best viewpoints in all of South East Asia.
As time went on, gradually, more and more people started to arrive at the viewpoint. There were very few tourists though it seemed, mostly it was local families. By the time it was dark, the campsite was pretty full. They pitch the tents rather close together, but thankfully we’d arrived early, so we still had an unobstructed view.
As night fell, the vibe at the campsite wasn’t as we expected. What we imagined to be a peaceful experience, camping out in nature beneath the stars, was in fact, anything but peaceful. Groups of campers played loud music, while others were still arriving come 11 pm and noisily setting up camp.
Thankfully we had our earplugs to drown out the noise somewhat; however, I would have hoped for more regulations by the staff considering most people want to be up for sunrise. There are also huge floodlights that beam down on the campsite, so to properly stargaze, you have to venture away from camp.
Sunrise at Samet Nangshe
Anyhow, we didn’t allow the minor annoyances to jade our experience, and after a few hours of broken sleep, it was time to wake up for sunrise. Upon opening our tent door, any irritability we had from lack of sleep swiftly melted away. A layer of fog cloaked the bay, as pink and orange hues illuminated the sky.
We set up the camera to take some shots on a timer, while we sat back and enjoyed the view over a coffee. We could see that another camper must have got tired of the noise or the floodlights or both, and moved their tent down the hill. So that’s not a bad shout if you end up in a noisy campsite as we did.
Despite the few minor issues, our experience camping at Samet Nangshe Viewpoint is one of the highlights of our Thailand travels. So if you’re planning a trip to Thailand, I encourage you to save this article and add Samet Nangshe Viewpoint to your list of things to do.
Did you enjoy our Guide to Samet Nangshe Viewpoint?
Let us know! That concludes our Samet Nangshe Viewpoint – The Best Phang Nga Bay Viewpoint. We hope you enjoy this hidden gem in Thailand just as much we did.. If you have any questions or feel we have missed anything, please reach out to us in the comment section below, or through our contact us page. Don’t forget to follow us on Instagram here, where we share further travel advice & inspiration.
Stay adventurous and Happy travels.
Charlotte & Natalie x
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