Koh Tao To Bangkok: Ultimate Guide (2024)

I had to get from Koh Tao to Bangkok for my flight home from Thailand, and I didn’t really know how to go about it since it’s not as easy as hopping on a bus.

As an island in the Gulf of Thailand, Koh Tao is a fair distance from Bangkok, but luckily, it was easy to get back to the capital from the island.

So I thought I would put together this complete guide on how to get to Bangkok from Koh Tao, so it’s just as easy for you as it was for me.

Koh Tao to Bangkok Distance

The distance from Koh Tao to Bangkok is 413 kilometres (257 miles) as the bird flies, but in reality, it is further than this when you travel.

When you add the actual distance of the journey it’s 97km (60 miles) for the ferry and 460km for the drive (286 miles), so it adds up to 557 kilometres (346 miles) of actual travel.

This usually takes just over 10 hours as there are a few comfort stops along the way, and naturally a bus will go slower than a car would, which is what Google Maps uses to time it.

Honestly, it’s not really a journey which anyone wants to make, even those backpacking in Thailand, but if you’re like me, you need to be back in Bangkok for a flight.

How to get from Koh Tao to Bangkok

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I had an amazing 2 months in Thailand which came to an end in Koh Tao, and I did so many incredible things such as getting my diving certificate on the island. But one thing I didn’t love doing, was figuring out how to get back to Bangkok for the airport.

There is only really one worthwhile option of getting from Koh Tao to Bangkok and this is by taking a ferry to the mainland and then getting a bus or a van to Bangkok.

A bustling pier scene with passengers and crew around the Lomprayah high-speed catamaran ferry, with the sun casting bright rays in the background, signifying an imminent sea voyage. It's the ferry for Koh Tao to Bangkok.

The ferry from Koh Tao to the mainland (Chumphon) is about 3 and a half hours usually, but it can depend on the sea conditions. Then it’s about a 6-hour drive to Bangkok.

You can book online and I would recommend booking in advance because there are only so many spots, and it’s a more popular route than I first assumed.

There are a few different companies to choose from but I would recommend Lomprayah.

Book your tickets for Lomprayah ⛴🚎

I used Lomprayah a good few times while I was island hopping in the south of Thailand and they never let me down. They are always reliable and efficient – I was always on time.

Plus, all the connections are guaranteed as it’s all through Lomprayah rather than having a separate ferry and van.

A group of tourists approaching a welcome sign for Chumphon at a ferry terminal, with clear blue skies overhead, indicative of the start or end of an island adventure. It's where the ferry for Koh Tao to Bangkok takes you to get the bus.
Chumphon is where the ferry takes you to and you get on the bus.

While Thailand is cheap to visit, the journey from Koh Tao to Bangkok is somewhat expensive (relatively speaking) but that’s because of how long it is. It takes 10 hours to get from A to B, so it’s not too bad when you break it down.

I was kind of dreading making the journey cause of the time it took but it went quicker than I thought it would. One of my top backpacking tips is to keep Netflix and download things offline – it really helped this journey go quickly for me as I binge-watched Suits.

And that’s considering it was to go home. If you’re not going to Bangkok to go home, I imagine the journey will go even quicker!

Both the ferry and the bus had comfortable seats too which helped. But if you want even more comfort, you can upgrade to the VIP bus option – I didn’t as I was travelling on a budget, but I’ve heard it’s worth the extra money.

A serene sunset view from a moving vehicle, showcasing the pastel-hued sky blending with the soft silhouettes of the countryside, capturing the tranquility of a journey through Thailand.
I caught a nice sunset on the journey

If you want a quicker way, you could get a ferry from Koh Tao to Surat Thani and fly from Surat Thani to Bangkok but you wouldn’t be saving that much time, but you would be spending a lot more.

When you consider how long you need to be at the airport before a flight, and the logistics of what time to get the ferry and stuff, it’s almost just as quick to get the ferry and drive to Bangkok.

It does basically take a full day off your trip, but it’s a small price to pay when you visit the islands in Thailand which are in the middle of the sea. Koh Tao is worth the journey though, even if you pay the price for the journey away from the island.

So to summarise, the best way to get from Koh Tao to Bangkok is to get the ferry and then a bus. Lomprayah sells it as a package deal which includes both, with guaranteed connections. You can book your tickets online too which is really convenient.

Travelers with bags walking down a long, wooden pier extending into tranquil waters with lush hills in the background, under a clear blue sky, possibly waiting to board a ferry at a tropical location.


Below are some commonly asked questions about getting from Koh Tao to Bangkok, along with my answers to each question.

How long is the boat from Koh Tao to Bangkok?

The boat from Koh Tao to Bangkok is about 3 and a half hours from Koh Tao to the mainland (Chumphon) and from there, it is about a 6-and-a-half-hour drive to Bangkok.

How many hours is Koh Tao from Bangkok?

Koh Tao is about 10 hours from Bangkok and the journey consists of a ferry and a bus. The ferry takes about 3 and a half hours, and the drive takes about 6 and a half hours.

How do you get from Koh Tao to Bangkok?

The best way to get from Koh Tao to Bangkok is by booking the Lomprayah ferry which includes a bus to Bangkok once you get to the mainland. It’s so convenient and they are a very reliable company. It takes about 10 hours in total.

Final Thoughts

And there you have it, a complete guide on getting from Koh Tao to Bangkok.

The best way is by getting a ferry to Chumphon and getting a bus to Bangkok. Lomprayah is the best company to book with, and the journey takes about 10 hours in total.

Make sure to book your tickets in advance as it’s a popular route and it does often sell out. Hopefully, your journey goes as smoothly as mine did.

And if you aren’t going to Bangkok to fly somewhere, make sure to read my Bangkok travel guide to make the most of your visit.