The Koh Tao Festival is an amazing event put on each year by the Save Koh Tao group and the local community. For almost a decade, this festival has been the highlight of the year’s activities and party’s. With two nights of international live music and DJ’s (on two stages), food, performances, dancing, and much more. The last few year’s the festival has drawn a crowd of over 3,000 people, and raised about 2 million baht per year for local social and environmental projects.
The festival is a great party, but it is much more than just that. It is a way to raise the awareness of locals and visitors as to problems on our island, increase participation in conservation projects, and raise necessary funds for the three branches of the Save Koh Tao Group: Land, Marine, and Education. In addition to all the fun activities, we also release about 150 juvenile or rehabilitated sea turtles into the sea, put 1,000 baby giant clams into nurseries under the sea, clean beaches and roads, conduct underwater clean-ups, host lectures by well known researchers, and much more. For two days and two nights, this environmental festival literally takes over the island, with the whole community coming out to get involved in what’s going on.
The festival in 2013, and all subsequent years, will be held on June 18th and 19th. These dates are significant because that is also the date when his majesty King Ramma IV first visited Koh Tao and signed his name in the rocks at Sairee, over 114 years ago. The festival is free, and additionally there will be discounts available around the island (food, accommodation, travel, diving, etc) for the first 1,000 people that sign up and also help on environmental projects (must be on Koh Tao to sign-up).
So if you are planning to come back to Koh Tao, or coming for the first time, try to plan your trip to coincide with these dates. The local festival is rich in local island culture, and is a unique experience that you will not find anywhere else but Koh Tao. Hope to see you there!