Practical information about Surat Thani
If the city itself is not that interesting, many travelers come back from Thailand with a bad image of Surat Thani because they got scammed by a local travel agency. When you buy a bus + ferry formula from Koh Samui, Koh Phangan or Koh Tao, you first have a big risk to have some valuable things stolen from your luggage in the bus during the ferry trip and then to get scammed by the travel agency during your transit time in Surat Thani. Most of agencies in Surat Thani are dishonest and will try to make you pay more by inventing any false reason (the bus does not go where you want or is not circuilating today or is very late but you can take another one if you pay off course...).
A interesting way to come to Surat Thani from Bangkok is to take the night train. It is quite a advendture but book your sleeper in advance to be sure to get one. You can book online on this website