General Information and FAQs
Visas to Thailand
Visa and other entry and exit conditions (such as currency, customs and quarantine regulations) change regularly in Thailand. We highly recommend consulting your nearest Embassy or Consulate of Thailand for the most up-to-date information available.
We suggest going through these websites (but keep in mind there is no way we can guarantee any of this information):
As most people coming to Pyramid will be looking to stay either 5 weeks or 8 weeks for the 300HR or 500HR courses, visas are of particular importance to 'get the timing right'. Before entering Thailand, the best advice is to seek the maximum 60 day tourist visa from your home country Embassy or Consulate to Thailand. These visas will state a month of entry, and you should then aim to come to Koh Phangan and Pyramid as close to the start of the course as possible.
If students wish to stay over 2 months they will have to do a half-day visa extension trip at some point before the end of their initial 60 days - to the the immigration office on our neighbouring island, Koh Samui. At the office, tourists are able to apply for and gain on the spot a 30 (extra) day extension to their visa (up to the maximum 90 days). You will need to fill in a visa extension form when you arrive, submitting it along with a photocopy of your passport, a passport photo and between 1000-2000 baht (it regularly changes) and wait a few minutes for it to be processed. This extension process is simple, and you wont be alone as there are many other people on the island making the same trip. There is a small office next door to the immigration office where you can cheaply get a passport picture taken and your passport photocopied (including the visa page that includes your customs entry stamp).
Note: Although the Thai Department of Immigration do offer special Student/Study Visas to those those enrolled in or intending to study in Thailand, Pyramid Yoga remains registered in Canada due to the myriad of complications associated becoming registered in Thailand. Thus, the Student/Study Visas are not obtainable through our Center.
Getting to Koh Phangan
The closest airport to Koh Phangan is Koh Samui. There are flights from Bangkok, Phuket and Singapore daily. As a general rule, Air Asia is an acceptable and affordable option flying between Bangkok and Ko Samui but the flight is relatively short so it wouldn't hurt to take a less expensive plane to save on some spending money. Also: flights from Bangkok to Surat Thani are cheap, and then its just a ferry ride over to Koh Phangan.
If you arrive in Bangkok and need to organise a ticket down to Koh Phangan, all you need do is take a stroll along the street to find a deal that suits you from any of the seemingly infinite hostels/travel agents/corner stalls. The trip is always the same and comprises of either an overnight bus or train followed by a ferry ride across the Gulf of Thailand to get you to Koh Phangan.
Sometimes you get to chose which port you arrive at on Koh Phangan in which case the closet port to Pyramid Yoga Centre is Thong Sala. However, if you don't have the option to choose, once you arrive on the island it is very easy to get to Haad Salad from wherever you land by taxi or moto-taxi.
Check out the contact page for the address details:
Thailand can be a bugger when it come to spending - you can do it on a shoestring or really spend big only to look into your wallet later and wonder what happened. Accommodation ranges greatly from backpacker hostels through to luxurious Health Resorts, so when considering your budget for Koh Phangan you will need to decide in advance what kind of experience you're looking to have.
As a rule of thumb, a meal in most restaurants is around 120-180 baht with shakes and coffees half that. Of course there are also plenty of street stalls and markets if you'd prefer to keep an eye on your spending. These days there is a fairly broad selection of places to shop on the island, including a few places to stock up on imported organic foods and supplements, a handful of supermarkets, a German bakery for when rice gets old, countless local produce stalls and a weekend market full of delicious treats and beautiful artesanal pieces.
As meals aren't included with your course fees, you would be best to additionally factor in meals, transport and entertainment costs as a bare minimum for the duration of your stay with us. The only occasions you're likely to be handing over larger sums of baht will be if you choose to Scuba Dive, take an organised tour, rid yourself of toxins at one numerous detoxification centres on the island or treat yourself to any of the alternative therapies or short courses on offer.
For the most current conversion rates use XE Online Currency Converter.
Bikes can be rented for 250 baht a day, and can become cheaper depending on the length of time you intend to keep it. Most of our students rent by the month as the mountainous island doesn't lend itself to faint hearted cyclists. That's not an invitation to rule them out, hiring bicycles are an affordable option actually - it may just make the first week of yoga sessions pretty strenuous on the quads! The cost of fuel is approximately 150 baht per tank which should clear you for a week. A lot of students choose to share a bike, what ever works for you.
According to availability, at Pyramid we often will have some scooters available for you to rent at a really reasonable price. If however we don't have any when you arrive, we have many trusted business friends that we can take you to to make sure that you are finding a fair deal. Many people are a little fearful of 'shady' business practises and don't want to hand over large deposits or their passports to the bike rental businesses. Whilst this is more of a rarity in practise, by coming to us first we will be able to direct you towards businesses we have a lot of experience with and trust.
Otherwise, you are free to get around on foot or by hitchhiking. It's a really safe island and people are trustworthy in general, and many past students have been very content without ever hiring a scooter. A few restaurants (if you are looking to eat away from our own restaurant occasionally) are within walking distance. We have a bit of a climb to reach our special perk on top of the mountain of course, but it certainly is another possibility for you. In the training time, you probably wont need a whole lot that we don't have available for you already.