For our weekend family getaway, we decided on a stay on Koh Lanta Yai in Krabi, a small southern island on the Andaman Sea, under the protection of the Natural Marine Park Authority. We wanted to be somewhere quiet, secluded, as close to nature as possible without the disturbance of noisy tourists drug-fueled parties, which posed quite a challenge during high season. After much searching, we settled on Costa Lanta, a low key 12 acre haven set along a three kilometres edge of white sandy beach.
Unlike other beach resorts on the island, Costa Lanta epitomised the simplicity of island life by its discreet scattering of the 22 wooden cabanas amongst the coconut palm trees linked together by wooden walkways over a small stream of water. This was something that I really liked when I first arrived at the resort because it felt very simple and natural. It was very well designed and well executed because it showcased the natural beauty of the island with the least intrusion from the modern way of life. All of the built structures, except the clubhouse, were single storey and very simply built into a neat minimal boxes from polished concrete and wood.
The open box style Cabana rooms maximised exposure to light by featuring fully openable wooden walls offering guests the luxury of capturing the sea breeze and the warmth of tropical sun. Each bedroom was equipped with white mosquitoes net which allowed us to be able to sleep with the wooden walls fully opened and without air-conditioning, which was exactly what I did. My mother and brother did not do so though. They said it was too hot for them because they used to sleeping with air-conditioning, but I actually enjoyed the light sea breeze and warm salty air, rather than the stale air from air-conditioning system. Ironic isn’t it given the fact that I live in a cold country and they live in a hot country?!?
Although Costa Lanta seemed rather bare and minimal at first glance, it actually offered all the services available in most beach resorts, such as all-day dining restaurant and bar; a swimming pool with uninterrupted view of the beach set back behind a row of coconut palms for guests privacy; a spa facility offering services such as traditional thai massage, facial, body treatments from natural ingredients all made in-house; a pool table; concierge service for boat trips to other islands, scuba diving and other water sports etc. There was much to explore on the island itself as well as those nearby such as Phi Phi Island, Khao Mai Kaew Caves to name a few, but because we were only here for a weekend, we decided to relax in the resort and explore just Koh Lanta Yai instead, which in itself already offered plenty for us to do.
As for me, I chose to hang out by the pool most of the time, swam in the sea, walked bare foot on the white sandy beach and generally taking in all that nature had to offer because tropical beach life was something I did not get to experience much at all. My mother enjoyed her body massage and reading books by the pool with me, whilst my brother went out on romantic dates with his girlfriend…
If you are interested in traveling to experience the culture and how people actually live in each country, I highly recommend a stay in Costa Lanta. True that the design of the resort is not in traditional style, but modern minimalist, it is a very eco-friendly and much more respectful to its natural surrounding than several other beach resorts in the south of Thailand. It is also secluded and is far from noisy drunken tourists areas, so you get to meet the locals and experience their daily life.
For more information, please visit http://costalanta.com