Considering the heat we have to endure every summer, the idea of cool sea breezes and a tropical villa stay has us yearning for an island getaway. If you’re already starting to make Songkran plans, here we’re zooming in on five lesser mainstream islands that are suited to five different types of people and activities. We’ve also included the best resorts for this next island hideout.
It’s no secret that Thailand has always been famous for its beautiful beaches and seaside retreats. Each of the islands have their own characteristics and attractions that are perfect for different purposes. Here are five of the most popular smaller islands and where to stay when you visit on your next summer trip.
[Hero and featured image credit: The Naka Island, a Luxury Collection Resort & Spa, Phuket]
Koh Phangan for party lovers
Overflowing with lights and music, Koh Phangan in Surat Thani is world-renowned for its nightlife and full-moon parties. Here are the best resorts for all the party lovers to rest their hangover, or for wellness lovers to fully unwind.
Anantara Rasananda Koh Phangan Villas
Anantara Rasananda will set the scene for the most romantic trip for you and your partner. Choose from over 8 types of pool suites and villas nestled underneath towering coconut palms, and soak in the views of the glistening sea at your front door. The resort integrates local culture with world-standard services in all of its settings, whether it’s the private pool suite and villa, the Japanese dining room, or the luxury spa.
Panviman Resort Koh Phangan
Situated on crescent moon beach, Panviman Resort Koh Phangan is one of the first resorts to open on the island back in 1987. Once inside, guests will be immersed into a whole new territory of lush hillsides, secluded beaches, and marvellous accommodation, where privacy is the key message. Dine with stunning views at three of the resort’s restaurants and bars, before enjoying the special facilities: spa and massage, jacuzzi pool, private candle-lit dinner, and lots of outdoor excursions.
Santhiya Koh Phangan Resort & Spa
At Santhiya Koh Phangan Resort & Spa, nature is fully embraced between the beautiful Thai-style architecture and the blue sea. Teakwood, tropical forests, and private beaches mark the main attributes of this luxurious resort, where each guest room sits on a cliff. The Ayurvana Spa, an exceptional gastronomic experience, recreational classes, and snorkelling tours are only a few the hotel’s many offerings.
Koh Lanta for scuba diving
One of Asia Pacific’s most popular diving spots, Koh Lanta is situated a little off from Krabi. Beautiful coral reefs and marine life is scattered richly among several diving spots around the island.
Pimalai Resort & Spa
Covering almost a kilometre of beachfront expanse, Pimalai Resort & Spa is a heaven for all nature enthusiasts and beach lovers. Sunbathe with the magnificent views of the boundless ocean or go for a refreshing dip in your villa’s private pool. After an energetic day, reward yourself with delectable food from the award-winning Seven Seas, where the freshest seafood is served overlooking the Andaman sea.
Layana Resort & Spa
Layana Resort & Spa could be the best place if you’re looking for a supreme hideout in Koh Lanta, for it flaunts comfortable and private accommodation, peaceful beaches, and unparalleled spa treatments at Linger Longer Spa. Six types of rooms, suites and villas are ready to house all types of guests; families with children, large groups of friends, and even lovers.
Rawi Warin Resort & Spa
The tropical jungle, a spacious stretch on Klong Toab beach, and the Southern Thai architecture altogether create a perfect blend of tranquil beach retreat at Rawi Warin Resort & Spa. Although the seven types of rooms, suites, and private villas are luring us to stay put all day, Rawi Warin Resort & Spa plenty of outdoor facilities to offer too: an infinity ozone pool, ocean pool, shooters club, yoga studio, and kayaking, to name a few.
Koh Yao Noi for a peaceful hideout
A little off from Phang Nga province lies the elegant island sanctuary of Koh Yao Noi. If peace and alone time are your thing, look nowhere else than this quiet island.
Six Senses Yao Noi
Six Senses Yao Noi is the perfect spot if you’re looking to explore the nature charms of Koh Yao Noi. Apart from the 12 options of rooms, suites, and villas, the resort also grants guests a chance to reconnect with nature through a guided kayak, an animal farm tour, a Hornbill’s nest building session, and more.
An ideal destination for large families and groups of friends has to be ÀNI Thailand. The elegant resort boasts 10 exceptional oceanfront suites and delicious gourmet meals. Known for its customised services, the staff will gladly plan in-hotel activities based completely on your preferences, whether it’s exploring the sea, kayaking, joining the Thai cooking classes or simply relaxing in the spa.
9 Hornbills Tented Camp
Glamping has never felt so good in these luxury safari tented villas at 9 Hornbills Tented Camp. Named after the Hornbill birds that inhabit the site, the resort offers a unique getaway in the air-conditioned tented villas with a separate open-air area. Each tented villa opens its doors to a 180-degree scenery of the sapphire blue sea, where guests can always jump in for an exotic sea excursion.
Koh Phi Phi for nature lovers
Koh Phi Phi is one of the few islands where you will be fully immersed in nature with minimal signs of urban living. As a home to several land and marine animals, Koh Phi Phi is really a heaven for all eco-activists.
SAii Phi Phi Island Village
The coconut palms and long, white sandy beach set a cinematic background for SAii Phi Phi Island Village. Outside of its tropical bungalows, guests will be presented with water activities like mangrove sea kayaking, shark seekers, a sustainable marine discovery centre tour, monthly coral reef activities and a lot more. For the culinary highlights, The Beach House Grill & Chill is serving succulent imported meats that cannot be missed.
PP Princess Resort
PP Princess Resort prides itself as a safe haven on the most beautiful beach on Phi Phi. Choose to stay in the deluxe room or the two-storey pool villa and taste the authentic Southern Thai cuisine at Rom Mai restaurant underneath the island’s oldest banyan tree. A cocktail by the pool at Lei Beach Club will keep you relaxed on the sun bed all afternoon, too.
Phi Phi CoCo Beach Resort
Encircled by the lush jungles, Phi Phi CoCo Beach Resort is an eco-friendly resort that soothes the eyes and soul with calming natural architectural design. This wonderland features five types of bungalows built and decorated with bamboo. The large dining venue – decorated with bamboo, of course – specialises in new Asian cuisine, a culinary experience combining eastern and western delicacies.
Private islands all for yourself
For the ultimate indulgence, these are the unique luxury hotels set out on a secluded island, for all those moments when you want to run away from the crowd as far as possible.
The Naka Island, a Luxury Collection Resort & Spa, Phuket
The Naka Island can be reached by a brief trip by speedboat from Phuket. Situated near the east coast of Phuket, The Naka Island is a secluded sanctuary equipped with all the services you’ll need; comfortable accommodation, an alfresco dining venue, a sunset bar, luxury spa and massages, an archipelago tour, fitness centre, swimming pool and a lot more.
Munnork Private Island
A three-hour drive from Bangkok can take you to a private island that really takes you away from the bustling outside world: Koh Munnork. Without any television, fridges, wi-fi, and limited network connection, guests are asked to leave their phones behind and engage in the outdoor activities prepared by the resort such as plogging, snorkelling, kayaking, fishing, and squidding, while an array of delicacies will be served at dinner time.
An ultra luxury resort on the northern tip of Koh Kood in Trad province, Soneva Kiri can be reached by a 90-minute flight from Bangkok straight to the resort’s own airport. Since sustainability is one of its main philosophies, all private villas adopt an eco-friendly design and are built out of sustainable materials. Experience the 6-star service in the hotel’s unique facilities, for instance the famous Treepod Dining, Yai Ki trek, sunrise breakfast cruise, private cinema paradiso and mushroom cave lunch.