Go to Krabi and Trang. The later having a fine night market Frid-Sun nights. Bus from Krabi to Trang is only 2 hours or less. Trang has a train station so you can train it to Malaysia from there. Krabi Town has nice food, Ao Nang you can book a day tour to Phi Phi or Koh Hong.
#2 longbeach has been a member since 28/3/2012. Posts: 307
Trang is definitely worth a night or two. Last time I was there I rented a motorbike and enjoyed the area. Nice waterfalls nearby and there is great food at the night market.
I like Krabi town as well - again, great food at the night market and easy access to nearby islands and other day trips.
You can also get to Langkawi by boat going in this direction but that depends on the weather.
The main waterfalls at Trang were closed recently. Think it was storm damage along the path. You can visit Pak Meng beach to eat right on the beach or do an island tour.
#4 longbeach has been a member since 28/3/2012. Posts: 307
As the others mention, Krabi and Trang are good choices, both the towns and the nearby beaches and islands. Plus it will be relatively easy to continue south to Malaysia from there. Also, while there is a train station in Trang, to the best of my knowledge it only heads north. Because of that, you might be better off taking a bus from Trang to Hat Yai or Phatalung so you can catch the train to Malaysia.
Another option might be staying on the gulf coast and visiting Nakon Si Thammarat and Songkhla. Unfortunately, I haven't visited either in quite a while so can't offer any specifics other than I liked them last time I visited.
You could always stay where you are too, if you are enjoying Samui. There is a lot of variety there. If Cranky Carrot were still around, he might recommend heading over to Phuket for the week and could suggest exactly where to stay/eat/shop/relax while you were there. You could always stop off at Phangaa Bay on the way to Phuket too. Regards.
You could also hop on a Surat Thani to Takua Pa bus and hop off at Khao Sok National Park. Some good hiking and waterfalls there, and a longtail ride around the stunning Chiew Lan Lake was one of my all time favorites in Thailand.
Then (or), from Takua Pa you could head down to Phang Nga, enjoy the quiet little town with some good food, check out Manora Waterfall and Phang Nga Bay, which is also worth the trip although the limestone karst scenery is similar in many ways to Chiew Lan Lake.
Then you could head down to Krabi and on to Trang if you wanted. If you skipped all or most of the above you could even hit one of the small islands out of Trang like Ko Muk, Ko Kradan, Ko Ngai or Ko Libong. Buses go from Trang to Hat Yai every hour throughout the day from near the big clock tower intersection and where the night market sets up, and it's only about a two hour ride.
Come back and tell us what happened. I hate how people ask for advice then never return
#8 longbeach has been a member since 28/3/2012. Posts: 307