Is it Safe to Swim on Koh Samet?
I am getting daily emails from people asking if it is safe to go to Koh Samet after the oil spill. Some even want to know if they should cancel their holiday in November! I took a holiday on Koh Samet at the beginning of August and had a great time on the beach and in the sea. I even went on a boat trip (see report here). The oil spill only affected ONE beach on the QUIET side of the island. The majority of the tourists go the east side which wasn’t effected at all by the oil spill. So, if you have booked a holiday then you shouldn’t be worried.
On Channel 3 this morning they showed some video of two politicians swimming in Phrao Bay which was hit by the oil spill. The beach itself is actually clean now. I was there the other week when they were coming to the end of the big clean up. The water looks clean too. However, the latest tests suggest that mercury levels found in the sea water are 29 times higher than safety standards. I personally wouldn’t want to swim in that water for a few more weeks. In addition to this, they also did other tests and all of them had results below normal (see here).
At the end of the day it is your choice if you go or not. If you are still worried that re-book for Samui or Phuket.