Where to Stay?
There are dozens of places from 8,000 baht/night 5* hotels to 100 baht/night wooden huts all vying for your business.
Putting ourselves in your shoes we’ve selected a handful of budget to mid-price resorts which we’d stay in if we were visiting Koh Chang.
The real top-end luxury hotels were ruled out because this site is more for visitors planning their own holiday rather than heading to Koh Chang as a package tourist. Also out were any resorts that offered accommodation in soulless concrete boxes. So, the criteria were quite simple: value for money, friendly staff, style of resort and overall vibe/ambience.
Remember that dive schools always provide free transport to & from the boat, so basing yourself within walking distance of a pier or dive school isn’t necessary.
Our ‘Six of the best’ are . . . .
Backpacking beach party animal.
Nature Beach Resort, Lonely Beach. 200 – 300 baht/night. Backpacker resort at the centre of the white, powder sand, Lonely Beach. The beachfront restaurant serves good, but not great Thai & Western food. The beach bar ensures that it’s never too late to get a beer or cocktail in a bucket. (If you need your 8 hours sleep a night get a room away from the bar.)
Budget ‘old skool’ Lonely beach vibe.
Thalé Bungalows, Klong Prao Beach. 200 – 250 baht/night) The beach is split in two by a river estuary. At the very northern tip of the southern section you’ll find this small (12 bungalows) resort which is run by two friendly Thai guys – Pui & Pom. Definitely nothing fancy, the rooms are small, showing their age and none are ensuite. However, the laid back atmosphere, excellent restaurant, and peace and quiet this resort offers ensures they receive a steady stream of visitors. These comprise mainly of more adventurous backpackers looking for an alternative to the now commercialised Lonely Beach, young bohemian Bangkokians and Thai students..
Comfort , convenience, cold beer & live football.
15 Palms, Whitesands. 700 – 1400 Baht/night. You want a western run establishment, aircon bungalows a stones throw from a busy beach, a large beachfront bar showing live Premier League action then 15 Palms is for you. Everything you need is within 5 minutes walk away: a choice of good restaurants, live music bars, ATMs, a 7-11, there’s even a dive shop and tour agency next to the roadside entrance. A place social animals who want some home comforts will enjoy.
Unique location and views.
Bang Bao Sea Huts, Bangbao. 2,000 – 2,500 Baht/night. Bangbao is a small fishing village at the southern tip of Koh Chang. It’s also home to several dive schools and some great seafood restaurants. At the southern tip of the pier that runs through the centre of this stilt village are Bang Bao Sea Huts. Don’t let the word ‘hut’ fool you. These are extremely comfortable airconditioned, ensuite bungalows. Inside the furnishings are made entirely from wood. When you step out of your front door you have the sea beneath you and in front of you. The views over the bay and out to the southern islands are pretty spectacular. The lack of nightlife in Bangbao means you’re far more likely to be woken up by the sound of a fishing boat returning from a night of squid fishing than you are by your neighbours returning from a night of non-stop partying.
The compact & bijou boutique hotel.
Keereeta, Pearl Beach. 1,500 – 2,000 baht/night. A small Mediterranean styled (with a few Thai twists) hotel which has some of the nicest hotel architecture to be found on Koh Chang. The rooms are all individually furnished so you I can guarantee you won’t feel as though you’re staying in a Holiday Inn. The rooftop offers great sunset views to the rear of the hotel and of the mountainous inland to the front. Keereeta is located roadside and the nearby shoreline is stony. There are a handful of restaurants and other small resorts nearby but that’s it – except a large Thai orientated pub – as far as nightlife goes. Therefore this isn’t a place for beach lovers or party animals. But if you want quiet sophistication with a personalised touch when you return from a day out at sea then this is for you.
Got a spouse & kids? Need a family hotel?
Tropicana Resort, Klong Prao Beach. 2,500 – 3500 baht/night. The mid-sized, Balinese influenced Tropicana is at the southern tip of Klong Prao beach and is a great place to stay if you plan on taking a family holiday on Koh Chang. The beach outside isn’t the best on the island but it is quiet and safe. Kayaks can be hired and 30 minute paddle over the flat bay will bring to to the first of four small uninhabited islands which offer good snorkelling. The beach itself is more suited to early morning jogging than sunbathing as the sand is compact, rather than powdery. Near the hotel you’ll find loads of rockpools at low tide – which are fun to explore with young kids. The rooms are huge and many of them have both indoor and outdoor bathrooms. There are all the expected comforts – satellite TV, aircon, minibar, pool, open air beachfront restaurant etc etc.