Tong Sala is the principal town and administrative centre of Ko Pha Ngan, an island in the Gulf of Thailand. While Haad Rin hosts the Full Moon Party and attracts many of the island’s visitors, Thong Sala is mostly used by tourists as a ferry terminal and jumping off point.
The port area has three main piers, one of which is able to handle medium- to large-sized container and passenger craft. The others accommodate smaller passenger and dive boats that serve the islands of Ko Pha Ngan, Ko Samui, and Ko Tao, and the mainland ports of Surat Thani and Chumphon.
Thong Sala has long played second fiddle to Koh Phangan Party Central, Haad Rin. Many people regard this port town as a mere disembarkation destination before heading on to another beach. But over the years Thong Sala has developed and is now an excellent shopping destination with an admirable choice of restaurants along with a daily colourful food market.
The town is the island’s administrative and financial centre and is where the island’s main post office is located. Several bars have sprung up that show Premier League football and there’s even a fully fledged English pub, serving all-day breakfasts. It’s certainly preferable to take a ferry to Thong Sala rather than Haad Rin if you’re heading to any other beach on the island in order to avoid the seriously tortuous roads just outside Haad Rin.