In the mid-1980s, a group of tourists found that the best place to enjoy the full moon was a crescent-shaped beach on a small island off the coast of Thailand – Haad Rin Beach on Koh Phangan. They held the first all-night party to appreciate the bright full moon. Since then the island has become one of South East Asia’s biggest beach party spots. Haad Rin beach at the south coast of Koh Phangan Island is home to the Full Moon Party and also houses about 3-5000 rather mad people; it is the island’s nightlife capital and has Koh Phangan’s biggest concentration of beach clubs.
The fun begins as the moon makes its first appearance over the sea. Small tables are lined up in front of the bars on the beach, lit by lamps and burning torches. Many of the sound systems that have been setting up in the preceding days turn on their power and before long the beach has exploded into a dancing frenzy, with visiting international DJs taking their turn on the decks. Full Moon Party Koh Phangan in Thailand is far more than a party. There are over 12 major sound systems running the length of Had Rin beach, catering for 3.000 to 5.000 punters in low season, 5.000 to 7.000 in high season and up to 10.000 at New Years Eve. Within this transient crowd of party animals some highly talented DJ’s pass through, banging out their wares to the raging lunar explorers that have landed on planet party.
Participating in the Full Moon Party as part of visiting Koh Phangan is one of the ‘musts’. During the last decade the infamous Full Moon Party has gained notoriety due to the growing amount of drug users. Basically, if you are looking to have a great time, meet new people from every corner of the world, and drink and dance till dawn or after, then Koh Phangan’s Fullmoon Party is the place to be. International DJs spin the disks and you can listen to everything from drum and bass to full-on psychedelic-trance. The energy is hard to describe and Koh Phangan Island has a special atmosphere about it which sets it apart from the rest. Many people use drugs but most people simple get ‘off their faces’ on the infamous buckets, small plastic buckets filled with 500 ml of Thai Sangsom or Mekong with coke and redbull.
The infamous Koh Phangan Full Moon Warm Up Parties happen a few days before or after the full moon itself, so get there early and be part of the build-up. It’s also worth noting that Haad Rin gets really packed in the run-up to the Full Moon Party, so unless you’re planning to stay up all night you might need to look for somewhere to stay elsewhere on the island. There are plenty of choices.