Perhaps you have just learned about Koh Samui and are eager to book a holiday in this utterly fascinating destination. Maybe you have yet to discover why so many people describe it as one of the best travel secrets? Either way, once you know even a little bit about Koh Samui, you are sure to yearn for a visit.

The second largest island in the Gulf of Thailand, it is a place of unimaginable natural beauty. Remaining pristine for centuries, and only modernizing at the very end of the 20th century, it remains a perfect destination for those who love the beach, virgin rainforests, sparkling clear sea water, and utter peace. With a granite massive at the heart of the island and charming towns dotting the lowland areas, it offers everything from night markets and delicious foods to authentic massage experiences and much more.

Just that brief explanation probably makes you eager to experience this locale for yourself, and when you do visit, you can ensure your stay is as luxurious and relaxing as possible by booking a stunning villa.

Designed to offer every possible comfort, they are a destination in their own right, but as they are also located in irresistible Koh Samui, it makes them even more appealing. Let’s just look at three of the main reasons you will definitely want to complete your unforgettable visit to this fabulous island by booking a stay in a villa:


While you might be used to a holiday in which housekeeping appeared once or twice each day, and perhaps a cheerful member of the staff delivered a breakfast tray to your room, a visit to a Koh Samui villa is entirely different. Here, the entire property is yours to use, and the staff is going to include your full housekeeping team – including a laundress, but also a butler and host, a chef or cook, your private pool person, a concierge, and a private driver.

Imagine the delights of your daily a la carte breakfast, fresh baked goods waiting each day, fresh smoothies and cocktails, evening meals and more. You can count on regular yoga sessions, Thai cooking lessons, and even massages!


While a chef to prepare your meals is lovely, and a host to whip up fresh fruit cocktails or smoothies is a wonderful treat, the cuisine that your private villa includes cannot be discounted. After all, it can be wonderful to pay a visit to a tropical destination and savor its best four-star establishments. But, most travelers admit to growing weary of endless meals out and the formalities this requires or creates. Imagine the joys of staying at your private paradise and enjoying authentic regional specialties prepared by your private chef, and made with the best local ingredients. Served to you by your butler wherever you would like – the verandah, the formal dining area, in the garden or wherever you choose, it is the ultimate in gourmet dining.


While a Koh Samui villa is meant to be a destination in its own right, with a pool, yoga classes, cooking classes and so much more, you can also book a variety of activities outside of the property, too. Perhaps you are eager to have a jungle trek with a knowledgeable guide? That is part of your stay. Maybe you want to sail the gorgeous waters? Your concierge can make it happen. Perhaps you wish to stay at your luxurious little home and enjoy such unique activities as releasing lanterns or watching fire dancing? That is all possible, too.

As you can see, there are many reasons to choose a Koh Samui villa and now is the perfect time to book your escape.

Lear more about Koh Samui:
Experience Koh Samui
5 Things to Know about Koh Samui, Thailand
The Best Koh Samui Beaches

The pristine island destination of Koh Samui remained nearly untouched by the modern world well into the 20th centuries, and it didn’t even start to feature modern paved roads until the 1970s! Ringed by stunning beaches and featuring rainforests and jungle at its center, it is a nature lover’s true paradise. Most travelers intend to spend many hours on the different Koh Samui beaches that surround most of the island. However, as is so often the case, not all the beaches are identical, and if you want the best experiences it pays to learn which of the beaches are a good fit to your desires.

While most feature flawless golden sands and pristine, turquoise waters into which swaying and nodding coconuts and palms seem to gaze at their reflections, there are some ideal for those who like privacy and others for those who adore nightlife. Let’s take some time to discover the very best of the Koh Samui beaches and help you determine which should be on your “must visit” list for an upcoming holiday.

Maenam Beach

Far removed from the busier northeast area, this is a “backpacker’s beach” for its quiet, few amenities and pristine conditions. Stretching for more than seven kilometers it is a good spot for surfing, too.

Chaweng Beach

Commonly described as the best beach on the island, it sits along the northeastern edge and is also part of the busiest town. If you want a beach for both daytime and nighttime fun, this is the one to choose.

Choeng Mon Beach

This is a more secluded destination on the northeastern most area of the island. You reach it by taking quiet little country roads and it could be the right beach for you to visit when you also head out to one of the island’s most well known temples – the Big Buddha. Close to Chaweng, it is a nice respite and ideal as a picnic spot.

Lamai Beach

In the southern area of the island, south of Chaweng and Choeng Mon beaches is the appealing little village and beach of the same name. Though it is a popular resort area, with the many premium amenities, the beach is actually extremely peaceful and quiet. You can enjoy all of the best amenities (food and services) but the beach remains low-key, beautiful and relaxing.

Silver Beach or Thongtakian Beach

This is one and the same and is noted for its smallness and its idyllic beauty. It is actually between Lamai and Chaweng and is popular for snorkeling as well as swimming and sunbathing. It has a small, friendly beach bar and is consistently ranked as a secret spot for those in the know.

Anthong Marine National Park

This is not a beach but a collection of 42 gorgeous islands that include some of the best destinations for day trippers. If you want total isolation, flawless natural beauty and some of the most impressive scenery – plus the promises of protected waters – this is a way to enjoy it. Book a tour or private charter and spend a day on these tiny, mysterious and endlessly appealing islands.

There are many other beaches you can enjoy during a visit to Koh Samui, and we looked at only a few here. However, you can see that the busier beaches will be closer to the largest towns. Even then, they are still well preserved, clean and appealing. Because there are so many options, you definitely want to dedicate more than a day to finding your favorite ones.

Imagine a vast expanse of coconut and fruit groves spreading out over a lowland area of a gorgeous, tropical island. White sands fringe the edges and a turquoise sea surrounds it all. Rising up from the center is a granite massive with a virgin rainforest framing its base. If you automatically wish to head to such an idyllic setting, you can. The island of Koh Samui in the Chumphon Archipelago is the island described above. It is a stunningly beautiful part of Thailand, and the country’s second largest island.

Part of the Ang Thong National Marine Park

Part of a national marine park (the Ang Thong National Marine Park) it is perfectly sized for exploration and a completely leisurely holiday. It is large enough for you to spend a day or two exploring its beaches, trails, forests and towns. However, it can be easily driven in just a few hours’ time, too.

Its name is somewhat mysterious as it was not originally called Koh Samui. It is believed that it was taken from the Chinese words for safe haven, as it was popular for fishing fleets to take shelter in Koh Samui during long voyages.

Because it remained somewhat isolated until the later days of the 20th century; not even having paved roads until the 1980s, it is a pristine place ideal for those who love outdoor living. It is home to thousands of Buddhists and features some gorgeous Buddhist temples, too. It is also famed for its lovely markets, and it is slowly emerging as a must see for those who wish to experience something utterly unique during a holiday to Thailand.

If this initial introduction to Koh Samui appeals to you, it is important that you enjoy some of the finest experiences Koh Samui has to offer. They include:

Scenic views

With its hills, the island offers you many opportunities to enjoy gentle hiking that rewards you with stunning scenery and views. The nicer choices include Samui Viewpoint (between Lamai and Chaweng), Wat Rattanakosin, the Khao Hua Jook pagoda and more. If you are eager to see something unforgettable, make a point of visiting the Secret Buddha Garden on Khun Nim Peak.

Days at the beach

Ringed almost entirely with beaches, you will have plenty of settings from which to choose. Whether you want a quiet spot for sunrise or sunset, a busier place with families and kids, or an entirely empty place to savor the views, you are going to find options here.

Markets in Koh Samui

The island is a pedestrian paradise and nowhere is this more obvious than in the amazing markets. They are in almost every town. They are perfect for grabbing a delicious bite to eat, a quick cocktail or doing some fun shopping. The best time to head to the markets is Friday night – particularly to Bophut with its walking market from the Wharf Samui to the fisherman’s village. Lamai has a Sunday evening market, too, and the Chaweng Night Market is famed for its foods.

Buddhist temples

The island is quite famous for its amazing temples and its prevalent Buddhist culture. There are very familiar destinations, including the Big Buddha, but experts point to the smaller temples in the south, such as Wat Rattanakosin or Laem Sor Pagoda, both surrounded by nature. Don’t miss the Elephant Gate and Wat Kiri Wonkaram, too.


Natural pools and amazing waterfalls are a perfect way to experience the island. Namuang falls are fantastic, but so too are Hin Lad and Wanorn.

How else can you experience the island? Visit the Ang Thong Marine National Park by boat, head into town for some of the wonderful nightlife, be sure to get authentic Thai massage, pay a visit to Grandmother and Grandfather Rock at Lamai Beach, and participate in one of the 4×4 or bike tours that let you see the most natural parts of the island. There is much to see and do, so make certain to book a visit to Kah Samui soon.

The charming village of Klosters in Switzerland is often mistaken as a ski resort and not an actual village. This is due to many reasons. For one thing, it was back in the 1950s when movie legend Paul Newman began to refer to Klosters as Hollywood on the Rocks, describing how it lured so many celebrities to its premium ski slopes. The slopes are frequented by the world’s most glittering “glitterati”, including royalty, heads of states and entertainment stars.  It has much to do in both summer and winter, and is perfect for visitors of all ages.

Winter in Klosters

Of course, a huge majority of visitors come for the annual skiing. A basic piste guide would tell you that most of the resort’s slopes are above the steeper woodlands of the region. The well-known Gotschnabahn cable car takes travelers up to the Davos area and beginners often head to the Madrisa slopes. There is also “off piste” skiing, cross country options, and even some snowboarding near Davos.

And the non-skiers? First and foremost, the region is replete with on slope and off slope luxury villas. Many of these properties offer such a long list of amenities that they, on their own, could prove excellent destinations. Many have saunas, indoor pools, gyms, media rooms, spa treatments, gourmet kitchens and settings straight out of a painting or film. There are also walking trails, horse-drawn wagon rides, snowshoe trails, shopping, dining, après ski and more.

Summer in Klosters

Don’t ignore the stunning Alpine beauty of Klosters. All of those same opulent villas remain available, and can provide you with a stunning base (not to mention breathtaking views) throughout the warmer months. The area is enormous and has many hundreds of miles of trails suitable to experienced hikers and climbers and even families with younger children. There are options for mountain biking, a mountain coaster that traverses the entire Freeride Piste, and even Madrisa Land, an adventure park ideal for families.

There are also lakes nearby and such perennial appealing destinations as the Davos Kirchner Museum in Klosters, dedicated to the German expressionist painter, Ernst Kirchner. The Salginatobel bridge is nearby too, and as the county’s only world-famous feat of engineering, it is worth a visit.

Dining in Klosters

Of course, many visitors come to savor après ski experiences in the areas fantastic eateries – and just as many look forward to dining all day! There is a great array of affordable to four star and Michelin rated options, and these include:

Chesa Grischuna
Glow by Armin Amrein

More affordable and low-key dining can be enjoyed at Gaudy’s famous umbrella bar as well as a Bar’s at Piz Buin. Many love Chesa Grischuna and its constant live piano music and the tiny disco at Casa Antica makes a visit a lot of fun. Madrisa is a popular area for restaurants, and one of the most frequently recommended is Erika at Schlappin. If you want the finest pizza in the region, Al Berto at Klosters Dorf is noted for this dish.

Many of the upscale hotels have fantastic restaurants, too with the dining room at Hotel Walserhof one of the most famous. The Alpina and Hotel Wynegg are also always popular for their local specialties and fine ingredients.

Whether you go in the winter or summer, to ski or not, a visit to Klosters is one rich in experiences and delights.

Ranked in the top five resorts throughout the Alps, St Anton in Austria is an gem. It is part of the famed Arlberg region, which receives some of the highest snow fall every year, and features a charming town full of luxury shops, restaurants and accommodations. Reaching St Anton is remarkably easy as it is served by a railway that deposits guests in the town center.

A pedestrian friendly location, it also has free public transportation. Of course, many are eager to visit for the town’s association with the creation of modern skiing. As the birthplace of Johan Schneider, it is at the epicenter today’s ski world.

Not a place to just sit and let time pass by, St Anton has been continually expanding and improving over the decades, while somehow managing to preserve its mountain village tone. It focuses around a central street, the pedestrian-only Dorfstrasse. Lined with excellent cafes, bars, shops and restaurants, it is also home to many authentic and original structures.

Today’s travelers can stay in any number of premium hotels or large and private villas. Most of them can provide the perfect accommodation during the winter ski season or the summer hiking and outdoor season.

What to Do in St Anton

The skiing is an essential activity, but there are also hiking, biking, snowshoeing, cross country skiing, and other options. However, you might never get past the “cult status” of St Anton in Austria as the skiers’ paradise. It has more than 300km of pistes and another 200+ km of off pistes options. There are more than 85 lifts and a nice blend of easy to extreme routes and options. Yet, as one expert cautions, “However, even the ‘normal’ routes, such as those down from Schindlerspitze and Kapall, should be approached with caution by all, including advanced skiers. “Extreme routes”, like the 52 down the Kandahar-Galzip piste are best tackled with a ski guide. In fact, with so much terrain to explore, and so many people competing for fresh tracks on it, hiring a guide is the best way of maximizing St Anton’s potential.”

Though the mountain has been equipped with truly pioneering lifts, including the Galzig gondola build as a Ferris wheel system, a guide is often the best way to get the very most out a first-time visit to the region.

Après Ski in St Anton

When you are not skiing, hiking or perusing the shops, you will want to dig into the amazing domestic food. The area is noted for its après ski and nightlife options thanks to those two early post-ski bars. The Mooserwirt is a most as it is a place famous for being the “world’s baddest bar”. The Krazy Kanguruh has been refurbished since the 1960s but still retains its unusual and hip vibe.

If you want a quieter après ski experience, the Underground is just off the Galzig piste. It has been a popular spot for more than two decades. Lastly, Anton Bar is where the locals go, including the ski guides and instructors, making it perfect for picking up some tips after your time on the slopes.

Dining in St Anton

Dining here is an adventure and you can enjoy affordable treats at spots like the Ulmer Hutte with its lovely scenery. The pricier Alber’s Rodelalm and Robi’s Rodelstall are actually mountain huts that offer outdoor lunches and great vintages. Yet, it is the Hospiz Alm with its stunning cellars and local specialties or the Verwallstube with its amazing gourmet dishes that will put the perfect touch on your ski holiday.

Whether you are booked into a luxurious ski holiday in the Alps or planning to hit some iconic destinations during the colder winter months, it does not mean that bringing along the baby will cause all kinds of challenges.  While there is little that can be done for the usual traveler’s woes, such as lines at airports or a fussy baby during a flight, there are many tips we can offer to make packing for and traveling with a baby in the winter season a bit easier and more enjoyable.

Think About Getting Out

When you are traveling with a baby, especially in the winter season, it can become difficult to see the sights if you are also worried about taking a baby into the cold. The good news is that there are many simple solutions that can ensure you and the baby get outside to see the sights, take in the scenery and enjoy all the things you hoped to see.

One of the smartest investments is a rain cover stroller. Not as large as the average stroller, it will ensure that the baby remains dry and warm at all times, and fold up and pack so much easier than you might have yet to experience where strollers are concerned.

When planning to be out and about, keep in mind that parents, adults and older kids get to stay warm by moving about. Little ones may struggle with the cold, so invest in a footed snowsuit that ensures they have plenty of cozy warmth that is without any drafty breezes or areas that get cold, such as gaps between boots and the cuffs of their pants.

With that in mind, also consider investing in a “puffer” jacket. Typically very light in weight, they allow kids to move easily while offering amazing warmth thanks to the high-tech filling. A great idea is to find one with a fleece lining that will only enhance the child’s level of optimal coziness. If your little one is very young, there are sleeping-bag styled baby bags that work like puffer coats, but with a sealed bottom for guaranteed warmth. These fit beautifully inside a stroller and can keep an infant warm even if the outdoor temperatures are extremely cold.

A good hat and set of mittens are imperative for winter travel, and you may want to bring spare mittens as kids are great at taking them off and “depositing” them without parents noticing.

As for the clothing a child will need when traveling in the winter season, consider the infant versions of long johns made with high tech materials that keep their little legs warm and yet allow them freedom of movement. Worn beneath pants or even skirts or dresses, they ensure a child’s comfort. Long sleeved “onesies” are ideal for the winter traveling baby as well. They work as the best layering pieces but can also be part of the outfit when inside. They wash easily and don’t break the bank if they need to be discarded after the oh-so-common traveling accidents.

Beyond the Gear

Another important thing to keep in mind when traveling with a baby during the winter months is the simple fact that dehydration happens. Just as adults and older kids get dry skin and suffer chapping and chafing. Bring your baby’s best lotion, and be sure that it is one that they have used in the past. You don’t want adverse reactions or irritated skin while on holiday.

Keep in mind that everyone – including kids become much hungrier as they fight the cold weather and that they will need more fluid. Be sure to have an ample supply of drinks and snacks, including warm bottles or thermoses of formulas or milk and your child’s favorite snacks and finger foods to keep them happy and content in even the coldest weather.

Lech (also known as Lech am Arlberg) is a mountain village in the far western region of Austria. It is home to one of the world’s most exclusive ski resorts and resides tranquilly along the shores of the Lech River. Though many might point to locations like Klosters as the celebrity capital of the skiing season, it is actually Lech that ranks as the most elite of them all. As one expert has said of it, “Princess Diana was its most famous patron and other past visitors include the Jordanian royal family, the Dutch royal family and Monaco’s Princess Caroline.”

Yet, many note that although it has some of the most “blue blooded” visitors imaginable, the area manages to retain its farming and shepherding roots. The area has a history closely related to farming, with many of the villages once serving as homes to cowherds and shepherds. Today, though, it is home to a vast network of underground tunnels used to maintain and meet the needs of the many who travel to the villages for the winter season.

Summer in Lech

Though famed for its pistes and slopes, it is also a popular summer destination for its hiking trails and its evolution into a “wellness destination” with yoga retreats, spa experiences and more. It also has quite a fascinating natural history and offers a rare hiking experience through the area known as the Sea of Stone. Here visitors can find any number of fossils as they pass over ancient, prehistoric coral reefs.

Extreme hikers can savor extended hikes which take travelers from one hut to the next along the uppermost ridges of the mountains. Also, many who enjoy mountain biking, repelling, and rock climbing will find endless days of summer fun in Lech.

The spring and autumn seasons allow visitors to enjoy the outdoor activities, and it is in the fall when things take a more philosophical turn as the annual gathering of the world’s scholars and philosopher’s meet for Philosophicum Lech every September.


Of course, the typical clientele of Lech means that many premium villas and luxury accommodations are available. This allows even the non-skier to enjoy the winter season. Packed with world class amenities, these properties often have indoor pools. There are also fitness centers, spa treatments, luxurious décor, full staff, media rooms and more. Paired with the luxury shopping and dining of the area, such accommodations might also become a destination for some!

The town itself is home to some of the most elite shops imaginable, including Stroltz Department Store, Huber and Sagmeister, all options for those eager to find the finest jewelry, clothing and accessories. Dining is also a delight. There are more than 100 different restaurants, with more than 12 of them having been recognized with Toque Awards. Among the finest are Gasthof Post, Picea, Die Stube and Fux. For authentic local cuisine, Hagen’s, Rud-Alpe Gastro and Kriegeralpe are favorites. You can also find many modestly priced options, including Balmalp, Der Wolf and Café Frtiz, among others.

The Skiing

Of course, it helps to know a bit about the skiing. Most experts agree that the majority of the pistes are best suited to intermediate skiers and up. Because the resort caps the number of day passes offered, it prevents overcrowding or declining conditions on the slopes. The Arlberg ski pass allows visitors access to neighboring St. Anton with more than 150km of additional pistes. With a modest altitude, Lech gets around twice the snowfall as its French neighbors.

If you are ready to rub elbows with the world’s most famous, and enjoy amazing skiing and scenery, a visit to Lech is just for you.