We visited Thailand a few years ago, where we had a great time in Bangkok and Koh Samui. This time we thought we’d try somewhere different, so we missed out Bangkok and had two weeks on the island of Koh Lanta.
We flew with Emirates from Manchester, via Dubai to Bangkok, and then caught an onward flight to Krabi with Bangkok Airways. We were met at the airport by representatives from the Layana Resort, where we were staying, and were whisked away for a 50 minute journey by private car to the pier, and then a 20 minute speedboat transfer to the resort. It was a great way to arrive, and it was lovely to be greeted by the staff as we stepped onto the beach.
We stayed in a Garden Pavilion room, which was spacious, and had everything you could ask for, and more. There are 51 rooms altogether, so it has a small hotel feel. There are plans to add a handful of rooms in the summer as well as an additional pool, but I don’t think this will affect the ambience too much.
It’s such a relaxing place to stay, quiet, adult only and set on a beautiful 3km beach, which tempted many people, including myself to walk along the water’s edge. The sea was lovely and warm too. For spectacular sunsets, Happy Hour at the bar was a great place to be, especially with the colours reflecting in the pool.
I managed to tear myself away from the sun lounger a couple of times, once to have a Thai cooking lesson, and another time to have a massage in the Spa. As I say, it’s very relaxing. If you are looking to do more, there are activities/excursions organised by the hotel, with the main focus being on boat trips, including a sundowner cruise where you can see the monkeys in the mangrove forests, as well as snorkelling trips and visiting other islands, such as Ko Phi Phi. If you are feeling even more energetic, you can cycle on one of the bikes provided by the hotel.
Each year, in March, there is a 3 day festival in Lanta Old Town, which our visit coincided with. It was set out with stalls, offering mainly food, including crickets and cockroaches! I had chicken on a skewer though, which was very tasty. I’m not that brave! There were a couple of stages where they had traditional live music and all in all there was a great atmosphere.
The service and attention to detail at the hotel is second to none. They brought out complimentary iced water throughout the day, cold towels and fresh fruit each morning, and there was always somebody on hand if you needed them.
There are restaurants within walking distance, offering Thai and some Western food, all very reasonably priced. On average we were paying about £10 for two of us, including a couple of drinks. For a further selection, there is the small town of Saladan, which is about 10 minutes away by taxi. I say taxi, it’s more like a pick-up truck! It costs about £2, and once in Saladan, there are shops and stalls, selling ‘designer’ sunglasses, bags, and clothes etc. for you to peruse or purchase.
After 2 weeks of bliss, it was time to come home. If you are looking for somewhere to unwind with a great beach, excellent service, close to restaurants, then I can thoroughly recommend the Layana Resort in Koh Lanta.
If you would like any more information, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.