If you’d thought I hit my exciting announcement quota on the first half of 2018 already, have you got another thing coming.
Koh Tao is a pretty small island — literally just eight square miles — so when the lightbulb first went on that I wanted to share my Koh Tao with the world in a more comprehensive way, I thought, this will be a breeze! Oh, how naive I was. But it was an incredible process. While most of the content was lurking somewhere in my mind, I also did an extensive amount of research, which was such a special way to get to know my island home even better than I ever have before. Writing this book brought me to tears at times — but it also brought me on so many adventures!
Once I’d condensed nine years of experience into thirty thousand words, I turned to Clare of Ink + Honey Design to bring it to life. After weeks of collaboration, my heart swelled when I opened the final draft. Now that it’s here — all 158 gorgeously designed pages — I can’t stop flipping through it, lovingly admiring every font, hand-illustrated map and graphic. Dare I say it must be among the most beautiful guidebooks on the planet? I’m so grateful to Clare for bringing my vision to life!
Why I Wrote This Guide
Koh Tao is one of the most unique and magnetic destinations in Southeast Asia — and after a decade of traveling around the region, I feel pretty qualified to say so! There are pristine beaches to lounge on, lush jungles to hike through, and most famously, rich coral reefs to explore. It is one of the most visited islands in Thailand, and those who do it right often leave ranking it as one of their favorite destinations. But not everyone does it right.
Those of you who have been following my story for a while know that I first visited the island during a summer abroad in college, and quickly returned post-graduation to work in the dive industry and make it my home. I’ve spent the majority of my twenties here — I kind of grew up on this island.
After years of randomly doling out advice, answering regular emails and social media messages, and crafting seasonal blog posts, I condensed everything I know and love about Koh Tao into this detailed and organized guide.
Most guidebooks give Koh Tao only a few outdated pages, and most bloggers only stop by for a few days. The result? The vast majority of travelers have no idea how magical this island can be!
I get so excited when I talk to those traveling to Koh Tao, I pretty much have to sit on my hands not to fly to my keyboard and plan their entire trip for them. I have a Koh Tao shaped imprint on my heart and I want everyone who comes here to love this island as much as I do — that’s why I wrote this guide!
Basically, the information you guys have been asking for for years. The Wanderland Guide to Koh Tao includes beautifully presented insights on Koh Tao you simply won’t find anywhere else, online or in print. This is the most comprehensive guide to Koh Tao anywhere.
Plus, it comes with a selection of exclusive coupons and offers from some of Koh Tao’s top hotels, restaurants, boutiques and tour operators. This guide can easily pay for itself in a single day on Koh Tao! Here’s what else is inside:
A guide to Koh Tao’s beaches and towns
A guide to diving on Koh Tao, including my favorite dive shops and dive sites
A breakdown of every activity available on Koh Tao (some will surprise you!)
A curated selection of my favorite places to stay, eat, go out, shop and spa
When to come and how long to stay, plus annual events not to miss
A guide to Koh Tao’s fitness scene, from yoga to Muay Thai to gyms and beyond
Volunteer and conservation opportunities on Koh Tao
The absolute best ways to get to and from the island – I’ve tried every method over the years, and include all my insider tips for each
A brief understanding of Koh Tao’s history and insight into island culture
Advice and insights on moving to Koh Tao
A breakdown of and brief advice for neighboring islands and destinations
A guide to sustainable and ethical travel on Koh Tao
Information on logistics like visas, health and safety, staying connected, managing money, and finding everything from the police to the post office to a print shop
Bonus details like alternative nightlife ideas, what to do when it rains, Koh Tao’s best vegan and vegetarian restaurants, and beyond
Custom hand-illustrated maps of Koh Tao and its three main villages
What This Guide Means to Me
As a blogger, this is an enormous year for me. For a long time, I’ve been wanting to shift away from depending on outside collaborations and towards creating my own products that are made with love and come straight from the heart. I still look forward to brand partnerships when they are the perfect fit, but making something entirely my own and sharing it with you guys is truly a dream come true for my creative soul.
When I announced my Wander Women Dive + Yoga Retreat here in Koh Tao, I wrote that I had been working on designing the trip for about two years. Well guys, I feel like I started researching this guidebook to Koh Tao NINE years ago! In reality, I hatched the idea for and started taking notes on this baby in 2014 and started seriously cranking it out in November of 2017. No matter how you shake it, I’ve been pouring heart and soul into this e-book for ages.
There are few things I’m prouder of than the finished product.
The Wanderland Guide to Koh Tao is available for just $15. This guide is available for instant download and can be read on your laptop, smart phone, or tablet – or, if you really want to, you can print the whole dang thing out. If you want to know more about the guide, including who it just might be perfect for, don’t hesitate to check out the full Wanderland Guide to Koh Tao sales page.
Put nine years of experience in your palm with this purchase!
I am literally tense with excitement over hearing what you guys think of this beautiful guide! And of course, I’m already dreaming of the next one…
Where would you like to see me create a Wanderland Guide for next?
Congratulations! Sounds great, I bet it’s packed with incredible tips!
Thank you so much for the support!
Congratulations on such a great accomplishment! I’m obsessed with the design of this book. It looks gorgeous and so perfectly islandy. Thailand is certainly on my horizon in the coming years and I will be sure to snag your guidebook beforehand!
Thank you so much Danielle! I’d love to hear your feedback when you do 🙂
Omg congratulations, that’s so exciting!! I bet that guide feels like your baby!! <3 And holy crap, 12 freaking dollars??? I will buy the heck out of that, just as soon as I complete the major move I'm in the process of and have time to actually read it!
Thank you so much! I definitely agonized over pricing… Koh Tao is a small island and usually not people’s only destination within Thailand, so I did try to keep that in mind. I wanted to make it accessible to everyone! <3
Congratulations! I’m so excited for you! I will definitely print this out, and you will be happy to hear I sent off for my passport Monday! Congratulations again!
Congratulations! And thank you so much for the kudos and support 🙂
Does the guide show all the places to avoid getting killed on this corrupt island? So, how many unsolved deaths so far on this island?
There is indeed a detailed section on island health and safety. However, it focuses on reality-based concerns to travelers, such as avoiding motorbike accidents and avoiding heat exhaustion.
Thank you so much Victoria! Bursting with excitement.
Just went to Koh Tao in March, this would have been useful to have! But no problem, I had a great time and I loved it there. Will need to go back with this book in hand!
Aw, I’m so sorry I just missed ya! I had NO IDEA how much work went into producing something like this until I was knee deep in it!
Wow congrats girl I’m proud of you! I hope to visit some day and will be reading your advice when I do. I almost want to buy it now just to see the hand illustrated maps lol. Great price point too btw!
They are soooo beautiful! And thank you! So hard to decide on pricing when creating a digital product!
Unfortunately places like Koh Tao represents everything that’s wrong with Thailand: a beautiful place that’s been ruined by tourism and consumism. Koh Tao doesn’t need any more publicity, it’s overrated and it doesn’t really have anything special compared to the rest of the Thai Islands, it’s just another backpacker paradise turned into a big business.
Fede, that’s your opinion. It is mine, after traveling Thailand for nine years and living on Koh Tao for many of them, that it’s one of the most unique and special destinations in Thailand. If you visited Koh Tao and didn’t feel the magic, then, well, I have the perfect guidebook to suggest for your next trip… 😛
Congratulations! I wouldn’t dream of using any other guide than yours if I ever plan a trip to Koh Tao!
You are the sweetest <3
Sadly, most of the Thai islands have become polluted, congested hellholes. I visited most islands 20 years ago and a revisit last year absolutely disgusted me. Paradise ruined. The proposed closing of Boracay in Philippines and Phi Phi is on the right track. I traveled 2 yrs thru SE Asia recently and just about all the beaches in the region have sadly been polluted. You want beaches, then go to Hawaii and Australia.
I think an island is more than the sum total of its beaches. You might be interested in the sustainability section of this guide, which outlines in detail some of the incredible projects locals are taking on to keep Koh Tao beautiful for generations to come. There is enormous progress being made in the nine years since I first visited Koh Tao.
Visiting Koh Tao looks so fun! I think I should add it to my bucket list and plan a visit soon! And I’ll surely go back to this post when that happens. Cheers to you! 🙂
Thank you Kyla! I hope you will — clearly I’m biased, but Koh Tao is my favorite!
Aw Alex well done! It looks like A WORK OF ART. In another life, in another body, I would jump at the chance to use it AND join your retreat which, to be fair is the best looking retreat I’ve ever seen. Alas, life has other plans for me but I am always rooting for you! ALWAYS!!
Thank you so much miss Becky! I really appreciate it! I have fingers crossed that I have another retreat in the pipeline that miiiight work for you… we will see 😉