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If you plan on staying in Koh Tao for an extended period of time, you will almost certainly need to purchase supplies. You'll want to get to know businesses selling different things, whether it's food and groceries, cleaning supplies, or dog food. Even if you're just visiting for a short time, you might run out of toothpaste or want to stock up on breakfast supplies to save money, so let's get acquainted with some island shopping.
People who make meals at home on a regular basis consume fewer calories than those who do not, and cooking also enhances your intake of nutritional components. If you are health aware, cooking yourself allows you to know exactly what is going into your food, and depending on the ingredients you use on the island, you may be able to save money. Although eating out in Thai style is economical, you may wish to have some items in your kitchen in case you don't want to go out and acquire food. Most rental homes have basic kitchen appliances such as pots & pans, silverware, and a gas stove.
There are a lot of these little businesses scattered over the island, similar to Mama Restaurants where you can eat delicious Thai food made by Mama, selling vegetables, fruits, meat, seafood, and other local ingredients. To assist families in your neighbourhood, familiarize yourself with your local ones.
If you want to support more local businesses, there are markets on the island where you can buy fresh products.
Fresh markets may be found all across the island's west coast settlements, and they are the lifeline of many Thai households and small enterprises. Fresh fish, various cuts and offcuts of meat, local fruit and vegetables, and all of the other ingredients needed to prepare ‘Thai style' meals can be found here.
Smile Mart is Sairee's grocery store, and it's on the Hin Wong Bay road, right near to Gym & Fitness, one of the island's most popular gyms. It carries a wide variety of western and Asian cuisine, as well as dairy, bread, cosmetics, homeware, and cigarettes. Smile Mart does not sell fresh fruits or vegetables, but it does have an entire aisle dedicated to booze, which, along with its 24-hour service, makes it a popular place to acquire supplies.
Pen Wholesale, which is virtually right across the street from Pods on Mae Haad's main road, caters to most shopping lists without the need to visit another store. Fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as hygiene, beauty items, homeware, hardware, pet food, tobacco, and alcohol, are all available.
Pods, which bills itself as a "freshmart," is located on the main road in Mae Haad, between the "up road" and "down road," and is the only Koh Tao supermarket that provides butcher services. It solely sells food and stocks a large range of speciality and regional items, as well as fresh meat, fruit, vegetables, freshly baked bread, and dairy. For individuals who want to self-cater, Pods is a popular one-stop-shop.
ChaiWat, a traditional Thai supermarket on Mae Haad's main road is a veritable Aladdin's cave of homeware, hardware, furniture, stationery, toiletries, consumables, cigarettes, and alcohol. This grocery in Koh Tao is quite different from its western-style equivalents, and it's well worth a look.
Aukotan is the only Koh Tao supermarket in Chalok Baan Kao and it houses a fantastical array of products. Anything and everything you can imagine is hiding somewhere in its aisles. Food, tobacco, and alcohol are a given, although there is little in the way of fresh fruit and vegetables. You’ll also find toiletries, homeware, medical supplies, and an extensive hardware section.