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Photographer's Note

The Ko Samui of today is changing however, and the cheap fan bungalows are increasingly hard to come by. Most accommodation is either mid-range or top-end, beachfront properties boasting beautifully decorated rooms, crisp white sheets, lush gardens and lavish pools.

Despite its upmarket trend, Ko Samui still offers something for everyone. There are crowded beaches where young boys peddle coconuts and mangoes to oil-slicked, bikini-clad tourists, and jet skis churn up whitewash on clear seas. There are isolated spots where serenity and seclusion are the name of the game and you can escape the sun in simple air-con cottages and check out the latest MTV video. There are cheap food stalls and top-class restaurants, crowded modern shopping strips with Starbucks, McDonald’s and store after store featuring knock-off Von Dutch T-shirts and Gucci sunglasses; as well as stretches of rough dirt roads and ramshackle huts. Western bars dish up burgers and chips and pump classic tunes from giant speakers late into the night. Lady-boys and beautiful girls in strappy sandals and tight skirts seek out customers in side alleys, while drunken Westerners pound the keyboards at late-night internet cafιs.

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Additional Photos by Assi Dvilanski (asival) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 293 W: 109 N: 750] (5307)
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