The best hotel accommodation near the Similan Islands, or Mu Ko Similan as it is officially known, is at Khao Lak near Phuket and Ko Khao island north of Khao Lak. Diving the Similan Islands in the tourist season from November to Songkran water festival in mid April is famous for some of the best tropical water SCUBA diving in the world. Accommodation on Similan islands is limited to tents and bungalows
Boat tours to Similan Islands are for snorkeling, SCUBA diving, beach swimming or photography of these paradise chain of islands in the Andaman Sea, near the west coast of Thailand and south coast of Burma. Live aboard boats is another accommodation option near Similan Island beaches.
Hotel accommodation near Khao Lak beaches varies in price from high and low season and quality. In 2011 we stayed at the Khao Lak Lagoona Resort beachfront villas near Khao Lak beach. Khao Lak beach is a beautiful beach which has a mix of basalt boulders and long stretches of beaches fringed with casurina and palm trees. Most of the businesses in Khao Lak, be they restaurants or laundaries, offer or know of dive boat tours to the nearby Similan Islands. The main street through Khao Lak is part of the coastal highway from Phuket to Ranong where many tourists go for visa runs into Mayanma (Burma). There are many hotels and villas on side streets near the main street in the centre of Khao Lak.
Prices in Khao Lak depend a lot
on low or high season. Accommodation at the Suwan Plam beachfront
hotel Khao Lak was slashed to $20 per night for low season beachfront accommodation
with a pool near the Khao Lak beach. Hotel breakfast 200b per person.
The room is large but as all too common with accommodation in Thailand,
there is no exhaust fan in the bathroom meaning the room smelled of mould.
In the wet low season there are too many mosquitoes to vent rooms by openning
doors and windows. The Grand City Hotel has balcony rooms
near the street and friendly staff. It is near the main road of Kho Lak
so if you want quiet hotel rooms, ask for a bed room away from the street.
ATTRACTIONS NEAR KHAO LAK
Similan Island diving is the main attraction near Khao Lak but not to be overlooked are elephant rides, local markets, water falls and river canoeing in the Ko Sok national park. Highly recommend the 1,500b half day Ko Sok tour near Khao Lak including local market near Takua Pua for the best mountain elephant riding and best river rapids canoeing in Thailand if not THE WORLD. YouTube video of River Canoeing. As with all river rapids, rainfall information up stream is important for your safety.
KHO KHAO ISLAND
The nearest hotel accommodation to the Similan islands is at Kho Khao island north of Khao Lak. We stayed at the KIB beach resort on Kho Khao island in the low season. This beautiful resort has private villa access to the long swimming pool all the way to the beach. The sunset coast is 17 kilometres of cream coloured beach sand. Unfortunately the Anadman sea is turbid in the low monsoon season. We hired a motor bike and drove to Ha Pla Beach in the north of Kho Khao island near Phangna airport where we enjoyed lunch at a beachfront restaurant after a swim. Tasai island and Ko Surin Nua group are visiable from Ha Pla Beach. At a Ha Pla beachfront restaurant, I met Poon a Thai property developer (ThaiRus), who has designed and developed new, beautifull beachfront villas and condos at Sunset Beach Ko Khao in partnership with Rusian property developers. He says a planned bridge to Kho Khao island will bring tourists, motor bikes and SCUBA DIVE gear from Phanga airport to Kho Khao island. I thought about the ferry boat operators whom with their long tail boat bring tourists for the 1km boat ride to Kho Khao island as seen in the video of Kho Khao Island.
Hotel Prices Kho Khao Island
WiFi internet is 150b for 90 minutes. Unfortunately the KIB beach resort had a direct lightening strike which destroyed their phone, internet and TV systems. The hospitality and service at the KIB was good but don't get your laundary done at the KIB because for 2 small lauandary bags we were charged about $50 which is about what a night of accommodation costs. The KIB were kind enough to move us to Suwan Palm hotel near Khao Lak beach with free breakfast included, free internet, a working phone and TV. Low season online accommodation price is cheap @ $20 without breakfast. The owner Sam is very hospitable and vice president of the Phangan Tourism Association.
Similan Islands Summary
The Similan Island are closed in non-tourist season. Month dates Similan Islands open in tourist season November to May. SCUBA diving at the Similan Islands in the clear waters of the Andaman Sea is spectacular. Accommodation on the Similan islands is limited. Accommodation near the Similan Islands is at Khao Lak, Khao Kao Island, live aboard boat charters and Phuket.
Accommodation Near Similan Islands: Ko Khao Island, and
Best Similan beach / dive holiday Thai travel destinations are written by dedicated photo journalists, published and edited by the Best Beach Holidays Travel writer. Contact Best Beach Holidays to submit your Similan Islands beach holiday articles.