Koh Samui’s beaches may be beautiful, but venture inland to discover some of the area’s other delights, such as the Na Muang waterfalls and Na Muang Safari Park. The scenic cascades are set in lush jungle surrounds and offer just the place to cool off with a swim, while the safari park offers adventures of a different kind.
Nam Tok Na Muang is the highest waterfall on the island and is worth visiting as much for its natural beauty as for the great swimming opportunity it affords in the rock pool at its base. Also known as Na Muang 1, this waterfall is only 100 metres from the car park along a well-marked path, but wear sturdy shoes because it can be slippery in places. Na Muang 2, a smaller waterfall, requires a 30-minute walk uphill from the first, but it’s just as inviting and well worth the necessary exertion. The waterfalls cascade over purple-shaded rock faces so the pair has been nicknamed ‘The Purple Waterfalls’.
The waterfalls lie off the main ring road, about 12 kilometres inland from Nathon Bay. They’re popular stopping-off points on day tours or on a tour from Na Muang Safari Park. In the safari park, you can ride elephants around the coconut plantations and watch baby elephants, monkeys, birds, crocodiles and snakes in entertaining shows. Watching the baby elephants bathing is a real treat, and the 4WD mountain and sightseeing tour is a fun way to get to know the area. Adrenaline-charged adventures are also on offer, such as zip-lines through the jungle and quad-bike rides.
Whether you’re just visiting the waterfalls or making a day of it with the wildlife and sightseeing opportunities on offer at the safari park, refuel at the park’s Thai buffet lunch or buy snacks at one of the stalls selling food and souvenirs on the walk to the waterfalls. The falls are popular with all ages, including families, and the best time to go is during the wetter months from September to November, when they’re flowing at full capacity.