Apart from the many different types of massage available, discussed further on, there is a whole host of other treatments to spoil and pamper your body. From body scrubs to milk baths, and hot stone treatments to a herbal steam, an hour or two in a spa is a very relaxing way to spend some time. If you have had a bit too much sun, try a cooling body wrap with aloe vera and Thai herbs, and if you don’t have time for a full body treatment, book a rejuvenating facial, or a reviving foot soak, scrub and massage to soothe those tired, sore feet. The choices are endless.
Massage is very much a part of Thai culture and places offering massage are everywhere. Traditional Thai massage has been practiced and taught for centuries and it seems most Thais know at least a little of this ancient art. Thai massage focuses on pressure applied to points on the body in order to release tension as the body is stretched and flexed. It is a ‘dry’ massage, although herbal balms may be used. Various options are available from full body, head and shoulders, or just for the feet and lower legs. Oil massage using mineral oil (baby oil) or sometimes coconut oil, is also popular, and is often a combination of Swedish and Thai techniques as well as the masseuse’s own style. Aromatherapy massage with pure essential oils can also be found in a few spas on Koh Tao. Massage with aloe vera is also available.
For those of you wanting to keep in shape while here and need a place to work out, there are western style gyms, Muay Thai (Thai boxing) venues and Crossfit available. You can train with friendly English speaking instructors and staff, some also offering nutritional advice and healthy meals at their restaurants. All gyms offer memberships with daily and monthly rates.