Cheers! Cocktails at sunset

The second leg of our Thailand trip was spent on Koh Lanta, the largest island in the region of Krabi . We spent the first five nights of our holiday at CoCo Cottages on Koh Ngai, which you can read about here. Initially our plan was to get the ferry from Koh Ngai to Koh Lanta, but because the ferry didn’t leave Koh Ngai until 3pm we took the expensive alternative of speedboat, which left at 11am and got us to Koh Lanta at midday. We organised this at CoCo Cottages and the boat picked us up from the resort.

Our resort on Koh Lanta, Twin Bay Resort, was less than ten minute drive from the ferry pier in the main town, Saladan, at the north of the island. This was handy as it was easy and cheap to get a ‘taxi’ into town to do a little browsing in the market and tourist shops.

We also had dinner at the excellent seafood restaurants on stilts over the water. This was a much cheaper and a more interesting option than eating at the resort every night (we didn’t actually eat at the resort at all for dinner, as the lunch we had on the first day was disappointing and there are so many other options, either in Saladan or along the beach). The food was half the price and delicious. We even found a restaurant with a proper pizza oven, which made a change for the children after Thai food two meals a day.

The pool with the ocean beyond, Twin Bay Resort

We chose Twin Bay Resort from their website and from reading reviews on which said it was a good place for children, with a good pool and friendly staff. It also had a large bungalow style room with a bunk bed for the kids, so we didn’t have to squeeze extra beds into a standard sized hotel room.

We were not disappointed, although the standard of service wasn’t up to the level we found at CoCo Cottages. The restaurant staff seemed to be going through the motions, or rather sleeping on the job most of the time.

Nevertheless, we enjoyed the lounge chairs under the shady trees on the lawn by the beach; the swimming pool was good to have when the tide was low, and the tropical gardens around the rooms were lovely. There is no coral for snorkelling here though, which does means that the beach is softer sand for walking on. You can’t have everything I guess.

The rooms were in lovely tropical gardens

Twin Bay Resort is tucked right up the north end of the Klong Dao Beach, with most of the other resorts being at least a ten minute walk down the beach. We quite liked this, as it was quiet where we were yet we had access to the little restaurants and bars on the beach after an evening stroll.

We enjoyed a cocktail while watching the sunset one evening, the kids play and lots of others still swimming or enjoying the beach. We were there during the annual Songkran Festival, so there were lots of holidaying Thais around, which gave it a festive feel. This is a good beach for kids and there were plenty around, both European (many Germans!) and Thai.

Beautiful sunset

There are about eight other beaches along the west side of Koh Lanta, with lots of accommodation, ranging from very basic to super swanky. We hired mopeds for a day (300THB/S$12 for one bike) and rode down the only main road on the island as far as Klong Nin Beach, which was gorgeous.

We also stopped at Pra Ae (Long) Beach and Klong khong Beach, but Klong Nin Beach was our favourite-a deep beach of beautiful white sand, little restaurants and small resorts tucked into the trees. We had lunch here at a restaurant which had rooms for rent at 350THB (S$14) per night, with share bathroom, and fan. Needless to say, this is more backpacker land than family accommodation, but would be fun anyway.

By now we were feeling very relaxed and so we didn’t feel a need to do any of the activities available on the island, like elephant trekking or visiting the monkey shows (yuk). We enjoyed exploring the island on the mopeds, visiting Lanta Old Town, the original Muslim fishing village, as well as Saladan, but this was enough activity for us.

Maya with her newly braided hair, at low tide

Maya had her hair braided at the hotel, and I had a Thai Massage which was a little disappointing after the excellent one at CoCo Cottages, but who can complain for S$10. Nevertheless, we slowed right down, and after five nights were ready for our next adventure; a ferry to Koh Jum, a small island which has only had electricity for six months. But that is another story...


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