Sep 09 2012

Review: Fisherman’s Reggae Bar, Bang Rak, Ko Samui

Published by at 1:32 am under Bars & nightlife

Located at the far eastern end of Bang Rak, 100 metres before the entrance to Big Buddha, one will find one of the most character-laden little beach bars that Ko Samui has to offer: Fisherman’s Reggae Bar.

Those are not cocktail mixes out front. You can fill your scooter with fuel too.

A simple wooden structure perches on stilts at the water’s edge. Inside, every available spot of wall space has been filled with reggae paraphernalia, be it the signed photos by well-known Thai reggae band, Job2Do or Bob Marley memorabilia in every form from posters to flags. Hundreds of postcards sent by past customers depict scenes from around the world and represent the diverse people who pass through here – owners Ruay and Chai don’t see them as customers but as new or old friends and the feeling is clearly reciprocated.

Pretty as a picture.

Enter the bar at street level, and enjoy an elevated view of the working fishing village below, where fisherpeople come and go in longtail boats, untangle fishing nets and sort the day’s catch; the Seatran ferry comes and goes too. Don’t expect a peaceful afternoon read – longtails are noisy, as is the traffic. Walk down a few rickety wooden steps to the beach below, where a couple of salas have been strategically placed to watch the activity and chill over a cocktail (or few) while soaking up a bit of ‘Buffalo Soldier’ or ‘Three Little Birds’ and feeding nuts and fruit to the tame resident squirrel.

Be sure to visit the bar around 20:00, when every evening Ruay and Chai’s son Champ and his trainer perform a poi, or fire dancing, show. This form of entertainment is popular on Samui, and Champ, who is only 13 years old, recently earned the title of ‘Number Two’ on the island, with his trainer taking first place. His parents’ bar is his practice ground, to the benefit of their customers. Sunset is another choice time to chillax at the bar, as Bang Rak offers some of Samui’s best sunsets.

Little boys who play with fire …

Those that get a little peckish while enjoying their cheap beer (50 baht) and cocktails (120 baht) need not worry. Ruay works magic from a kitchen smaller than most bathrooms. Here she whips up Thai classics (be sure to try the no name, here it’s excellent) or an evening barbecue on the beach.

What a way to end a good day. Can you hear Bob singing?

The only let down (and we would be nitpicking really) are the toilet facilities, which consist of a primitive wooden structure a few metres away. The fussy can walk 100 metres to the new Green Plaza which houses the Green Bay Hotel, and use their bathrooms.

Now for lunch I think a pineapple shake, some no name and a little Bob are in order…

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5 Responses to “Review: Fisherman’s Reggae Bar, Bang Rak, Ko Samui” ...

  1. Richieon 06 Oct 2012 at 2:47 am

    Look’s awesome. Can’t wait to get over there and check it out soon. Gutted I ran out of time on the last trip!!!!

  2. Williamon 02 Jan 2013 at 1:29 pm

    It is a really nice place – friendly owners,nice food and beverages,great place to chill and relax while watching the sea,fishermen and listening to cool reggae music.
    I have been there in june/july 2012 several times.

  3. fifion 08 Feb 2013 at 2:51 pm

    we were just there tonight. ruay and chia are some of the nicest people you will ever meet. they sit and chat with you, offer you tips and suggestions, and ruay cooks up the best plates of food that we have eaten on koh samui. the atmosphere is so charming, the place feels more like a treehouse than an actual room, and the coloured lights and home made decorations with every square inch of the walls covered in pictures or other fun things, create a sense of magic and whimsy that is hard to find. but what makes the place so special is the kindness and warmth of the owners. this is one of those special gems that makes you feel like you have stumbled upon a happy secret.

  4. Mark Reedon 15 Feb 2013 at 1:59 pm

    I recently left ruay and chai and have lost the photo they gave me with their email addresses. If anyone has their deets can they forward then to I am back in Ox and would love to talk to them.

  5. Rosanne Turneron 16 Feb 2013 at 1:40 am

    Hi Mark
    You can reach Ruay and Chai on Facebook as ‘Reggae Fisherman Samui’. They have so many visitors staying in touch with them, which shows what an effect they, and their bar have on people. Regards, Rosanne

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