Visit this elegant pagoda and its nearby shrines, which make up a temple complex at the southernmost tip of Koh Samui.
Collect your thoughts while appreciating the serenity that envelops the Laem Sor Chedi (Laem Sor Pagoda). Admire the pagoda’s magnificent architecture and enjoy the spectacular coastal views. Laem Sor Chedi forms part of Wat Laem Sor, a complex of temples, pagodas and shrines tucked away in a quiet part of Koh Samui. While here, spot an antique boat and sit among pilgrims at a peaceful lake.
The pagoda features an ornate façade festooned with multiple spires and Buddha statues. The yellow-hued tiles give the pagoda a golden appearance when bathed in sunlight. Two colorful yak warrior statues, each wielding a sword, guard the entrance. Peek inside the doorway to see the main gilded Buddha statue.
Stand at the waterfront side of the surrounding courtyard, which offers uninterrupted views of beaches and forest-covered mountains. In front of the pagoda is a small edifice called the Boat Hall. It houses a boat and a statue of the monk who saved it from shipwreck. Note the collection of small model boats, which devotees leave as gratitude for their wishes being granted.
Walk a short distance south to a lagoon and mangrove forest, where you can often see pilgrims and monks sitting in meditation. Follow a forested trail to Wat Laem Sor, the complex’s eponymous temple. Be sure to climb the hill to the golden Khao Chedi Pagoda. It doubles as a superb lookout point with views of Bang Kao Bay, Koh Tean island and mainland Thailand.
The pagoda and temple complex are just a 10-minute drive west of Bang Kao Village. The busy resort of Lamai Beach is about 7.5 miles (12 kilometers) east. Get here via taxi, tuk tuk or rented scooter. Free parking is available on the street outside the entrance to the pagoda.
Laem Sor Chedi is open daily and admission is free. This is an active place of worship so dress appropriately and avoid wearing swimwear. Early mornings and religious days are interesting times to visit, when you can watch monks meditate and listen to their prayer chants.