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watakeet Oct 8th, 2003 11:47 PM

Khao Lak (Thailand) in early November
I'm planning a short trip to Khao Lak in early November. Has anybody been there and has some recommendations on hotels and sight-seeing/activities there?

JamesA Oct 9th, 2003 03:04 PM

Khao Lak has some good points in that it has nice beaches and some nice resorts, down side is that it's not easy to get to, you have to fly to Phuket and then take several hours on a loussy road to get there. The village area is now a mass of Scandinavtion restaurants, tailor shops and mini-marts. You can alos do diving.
The decision is 'What can Khao Lak provide that elsewhere cannot'?
I am not knocking it as it's a very nice area, if you have visited Thailand plenty of times then why not, nice for a change, however if it's a first visit I would suggest Krabi area which has the best of everything, easy to get to, easy to reach beaches and islands, scenary etc. This is purely personal opinion.

JamesA Oct 9th, 2003 03:10 PM

Sorry I did not mention about resorts, try this site and follow links to get Khao Lak and then check the latest reviews, they post reviews from customers, the good and the bad, also you can take a look at Koh Lanta which is really becomming popular now.
Remember, I am not knocking Khao Lak but just in case it's worth looking around the area.

melissadoc Oct 9th, 2003 11:18 PM

My husband and I went to Khao Lak last November and loved it. We visited a lot of places including Bangkok (3n)(loved it), Phuket (2n)(we have no plans to return) and Ao Nang (4n)- Krabi (4n) (loved it) so we had a reasonable variety in what we were able to do. Khao Lak is ideal if you want to get away from it all as it is no where near as touristy as Phuket or Krabi - so we enjoyed just lazying about on the beach. We stayed at Similana Resort ( which is a fair distance from any of the shops - but that suited us fine. It is built up the hill and has a great beach with no other resorts or development within sight which we thought was great. The food was exceptional & varied (about 300 items on the menu) and very reasonably priced (about $5 AUD a main dish) considering to eat anywhere else you'd have to either hire a car/bike or call a cab. The cabins and treehouses are comfortable but not luxurious, it's the location and food which sets it apart.
While there we went bamboo rafting, on a elephant ride and a hike (by no means difficult) through the rainforest, rubber plantations and coffee plantations. We booked this through Royal Orchid Holidays but the tour company was Phuket Union Travel who was great - the guide was terrific and a real laugh (
We met a couple of backpackers who found cheap bungalow accommodation (I can't remember where) when they got there and who went out to the Similian Islands which they raved about. The diving is apparently excellent and we now regret not making the trip.
If you really want to explore I recommend hiring a jeep and setting off - the roads are quiet and the scenery as you drive further north is lovely - you really get to see the 'real' thailand - people walking their elephants on the side of the road, monkeys in the trees, uncleared land....
It is a bit of a drive like JamesA mentioned, but we enjoyed it as the further you get from Phuket the better it gets. It's amazing what tourism does to a place. When we were there there seemed to be quite a bit of development - shops etc.. starting - so the quiet may not last much longer!
There are a heap of resorts south of where we stayed - but we enjoyed Similian because of the isolation.
Have a great time.

watakeet Oct 12th, 2003 06:30 PM

Thanks for the information provided.

We love Thailand and have been to a few places like BKK, Phuket, Koh Samui, Koh Samet, Hua Hin and Krabi in the past few years. We went to Krabi just this June and it was lovely. Surely we would go to Koh Lanta too next time.

As we have direct flight to Phuket here so we hope it's easy enough to go to Khao Lak (at least as compared with Hua Hin which has a 3-hr's road trip). Is it really 1-1.5 hours as stated on websites??

We are considering Similana Resort and Khaolak Laguna Hotel. Which is quiet and stylish? We are no divers nor ardent swimmers but love beaches and sunset. The tree houses of Similana Resort seem attractive (but are those beachfront ones really beachfront?) but the hotel seems to be a far too far?!

Any further information would be much appreciated.

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