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The Young You and the Older You on Koh Phangan

11 Jul 2019

Many of us will visit Koh Phangan over the period of a good few years, it is sticky island after all and you will find yourself coming back again and again from the age of 20 or so onwards and upwards into your later years. You’ll experience first hand how your view of the island changes over the years and how you treat certain things differently, your outlook and priorities change the more you get to know yourself and the island of Koh Phangan over the years.

What are the main differences of the younger generation and the older generation here? In no way is this meant to represent everyone of course, yet let’s take a somewhat stereotypical view on the younger and older visions of Koh Phangan…

Things you do when you’re younger and the things you do when you’re older…

The Full Moon Party Vs Backyard and Loi Lay
It is the first thing that many people know about Phangan, the Full Moon Party. Many people will come just solely to experience this and leave straight after but it may be the reason for you coming the next year, the year after and then staying a while longer to really feel the ‘other’ magic of the island. The Full Moon Party is pretty full on, perfect for sprightly 20 something year olds who haven’t quite developed a particular ‘taste’ in music and are open for all and the opportunity to be amongst other energetic young people for the night, packed onto Haad Rin beach in neon colours until dawn.

The more grown up you will start to prefer the smaller parties, the intimate ones where either you already know people or it is easy to actually talk and meet new people. You’ll pass on the Full Moon and instead get up the next day early in the morning and head to Backyard (the after party) for a daylight rave with lots of locals and long termers. Sunday is the new Saturday and you’ll head to Loi Lay where you know the music will be top quality and you’ll also know to go later when the youngsters have started to trickle out.

Being Drunk Vs Being Healthy
The sunshine has a habit of making it OK to have a beer for lunch and there’s so many beer pong tournaments going on and hostel parties getting you totally smashed that when you’re young and fresh you find yourself being more drunk than you’ve ever been! Plus it’s an icebreaker when you are with lots of strangers and helps bring down barriers when you are trying to make friends…

However, as you grow you realise the health benefits of only occasional drinking, there’s so much fruit here, so much yoga, such a healthy fun way of life on Koh Phangan that you don’t need to be drunk all the time. Yes it’s still enjoyable every now and again but you’ve made friends over the years and hangovers are a bit more rough as the years go on.

Making loads of New Friends Vs Having Lifelong Friends & Thai Friends
You’re going to make a lot of friends when you’re younger here on Koh Phangan, sharing dorm rooms will make sure of this. It’s a great benefit though as it make take you on to travel new places with these companions and bring an extra elements into your life, some will stay and keep in touch, others will fade away over the years or even days but cherish your time with them.

Over the years the ones that stick may end up being on the island with you every year, these will become your ‘Phangan buddies’ and you will spend great experiences with them. You notice, the longer you spend here though that you have to be more careful, you’re heart can be broken as you realise that people leave very often so you start to be more careful when making friends. As you grow up you put more effort into making friends with local Thai people that live here, it is important of course because they are why you can be here and they can be the best friends you ever have.

7/11 Toasties Vs Fisherman’s
Oh how we all love a 7/11 toastie! Ha-ha not really but most people have tried one at some point, admit it! It’s your go-to after party snack, your on the road stomach filler and you opt for street food and the food market all the time!

As you get older though it’s not backpacking time anymore, you may find yourself with a bit more disposable income and you start to discover the wonderful high quality restaurants on the island. You can chose from cuisine from around the world, European standards at Thai prices and you start to appreciate a more clean dinner and fresher ingredients.

Buckets Vs Glasses
Koh Phangan is famous for its alcoholic buckets, they go hand in hand with Full Moon and you can share them with your friends whilst still getting extremely drunk!

They’re cheap and sometimes tasty if you mix the right stuff plus you get the novelty of drinking through straws from a mini plastic bucket!

The novelty wears off after a good few years of heavy hangovers and you begin to prefer a ‘normal’ drink from a normal glass, it’s much more refined and mature don’t ya know…

Not to say that the older generation don’t indulge in a bucket or two every now and then though!

Secret Beach Vs Your Own Spot
It is one of the best things to do on the island, discover all of the beautiful beaches! Haad Rin beach is gorgeous in the daytime and full of youngsters around Full Moon, you can sunbathe and chat to friends. You’ll also be told about ‘Secret Beach’ a lovely paradise little spot to the West of the island that actually is not so ‘secret’ but still not too touristy. Youngsters will go in search of many many beaches and secluded spots during their trip and why wouldn’t you?!

As you become more familiar with the island over the years, maybe you even live here now, you will start to find out your favourite little chilling spots, your local beach, one that no one else goes to will become your sunset spot every day or on the days when you feel like chilling on the sand. It gets less and less often that you go to Haad Rin Beach or any other well known ones or you drive all the way to Thong Nai Pan for a bit of ‘grown up’ beach time nowadays.

Have you read yourself growing up here? As we said it cannot be true of all of us to the exact detail but watch yourself, you’ll notice yourself change habits over the years, or, maybe you’ll stay the same...Have fun!

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