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JBR... best holiday in years April 18 - 10 May

Level Contributor
937 posts
1 review
JBR... best holiday in years April 18 - 10 May

Hi all, just a short JBR...

Arrived at the Deevana Patong Resort on April 18 for our first 6 nights. Stayed in a deluxe spa room with private jacuzzi/spa a nice bonus, lovely resort, good location, friendly staff and great breakfasts included... how people could complain about not being enough variety at breakfast (read in some reviews) is beyond me, everything you could possibly want unless you were expecting a 'pig on a spit' perhaps lol

Another lovely resort to the many we have stayed at in Patong over the years...

Visited all our favourite restaurants, hubby had a deluxe spa/massage at Burasari, he still maintains they are one of the best!

Have done most of the tours previously but decided to do the "Phi Phi Sunrise Tour" with Simba. 5.30am pickup to Royal Phuket Marina... 12 guests plus staff. Absolutely beautiful going out thru the channel watching the sun rise :) a light breakfast was served (and also Jenny's famous banana bread) at Maya Bay and being that we were the only ones there which is near on impossible these days, was fantastic. Good snorkelling, then a beautiful spread was laid out on another gorgeous island (sorry, forgotten the name) more snorkeliing... definately a tour worth thinking of doing, safety of the highest level. This is a tour that can only be booked via their website and you must book well in advance as tours full up quickly... that alone speaks for itself!!

We had beautiful sunny hot days apart from one evening with the usual storms for this time of the year... but over as quick as it came... had to pull out the ole poncho's I'd been carrying around for the last 5 years lol.

April 24 great excitement - Boss arrived for our transfer to 'The Sands' Khaolak for 7 nights... Wow, what a gorgeous resort, absolutely massive. Our room room which over looked the lagoon and down as far towards the beach was beautiful, loved the colour scheme and decor and all the gorgeous chrome fixtures in the bathroom, shower etc; all so tastefully done... felt posh lol.

We celebrate our anniversary in Thailand every year, and this year had our 37th here... they decorated the bed with the traditional love swans and petals and filled the bath with rose petals - very romantic :)

The breakfast room with seating inside & out was lovely as was the breakfasts... best we've had in any of the resorts so far.

The grounds are immaculate, and everywhere you look is so beautiful... all ground staff continually working hard to keep it this way. All the palms, frangipanis etc; are coming along nicely and in another couple of years will be stunning!

There's everything at this resort you could imagine... suitable for all ages,also equipped with pools and amenities for young families. The adults only pool is lovely with swim up bar and a cafe to the side for light meals. Just a shame the water was so warm, many people griping about that saying "they need to do something about it) but hey give them a break, the weather was hot, hot, hot, of course the weather is going to heat the water and besides the beach was only about 150M away so why not swim there...

Certainly no shortage of sun lounges and umbrellas around the pools and along the beach front... and I did witness what I'd read in reviews of some people paying the chair boys to reserve lounges at 6.30am... the Thai guys looked a bit shady when they realised I had seen. Funny when they say the hotel enforces that towels will be removed if lounges are unattended for 1 hour.

Did the early morning beach walk daily... best time of the day, high tide mid morning and best swimmimg spot was just in front of the Talay restaurant.

Two restaurants at the resort although we opted to eat at the many local restaurants up the street. Found the Orchid the first night, had read a lot about it so went there, food delicious. Ate at many others all delicious as one another IMO

This resort is a real credit to them... from warm welcoming reception staff and all staff so happy and helpful,room was serviced early every day :) Thoroughly enjoyed our stay!!!

Had Boss pick us up again for a day at 'White Sand Beach' the drive there and back was nice in the open beach taxi. Had sooo looked forward to going there and drooled over so many photos before hand lol. Omg more beautiful than any photos can capture... the weather was stunning, swimming was beaut and I reckon we got the best sun lounges :) Didn't eat there as not long had brekkie but did see meals coming out and looked utterly delish... will next time tho! Of course had to sample a cocktail, yummy pina coladas so had 4 hehehe. Would love to stay in one of the beach front bungalows sometime... Awesome day, breath taking!!!

May 1 Boss arrives for our long transfer lol to 'Nang Thong Bay Resort 1' for 5 nights.Settled into our beach front bungalow a mere 50M from the sea... what a little paradise it is, doesn't get much better than this! To look out at the sea and the sounds of the waves. The room is gorgeous and clean and the out door shower is kinda cool :) Certainly a smaller resort from the last, but it's just magic.. we're in love!

The row of beach front bungalows look so gorgeous each with their garden fronts,verandahs and roll down awnings if needed. The garden cottages 1 row behind were just as nice. Room serviced early every day... standard and cleanliness would far exceeded most 3* resorts and certainly value plus for a small 1500 baht per night.

A great pool, refreshing temperature with views to the sea also... plenty of sun lounges & umbrellas, altho the pool bar was not operational staff were happy to bring drinks and snacks to the poolside.

The restaurant was inside or outside ocean side... but how can you beat dining next to the ocean. Had and evening meal here, was nice as was one of the lunches... certainly better than the lunch we had at the first beach restaurant from the right of the resort! Did a good cappuccino and great cocktails.

Again up early each morning... couldn't wait to pull back the curtains to soak up the views! Off for our morning beach walks... loved the walk to the left of the resort down to the rocks past 'Sensimar Resort' spent hours exploring around here, so beautiful and peaceful... alot of these rock formations reminded me of the Similan rocks only Similan's more greyish. Popped into a few of the other resorts a long the way also NTBR2 (equally as lovely IMO)

Had the perfect weather and sea conditions for swimming during our stay, every day just got better & better :)

Ventured up the street again for evening meals, again trying various restaurants... enjoyed 'Ga Restaurant' and what do you know, while having a walk around passed another 'Orchid Restaurant' which was buzzing... laughed and thought this must be the one the TA's talk about (after having been to the Orchid to the right outside of 'The Sands' driveway :) Made a point of going there on our last night there and it truly was delicious!!!

Hubby fancied a massage and spotted a place on the way up to the main street on the left (sorry can't remember the name) nail place next door... looked to be both family run, nice and clean and the massage beds looked lovely. I go in and have my nails painted (good job, not shellac but still not chipped yet) and he in for massage.... LOL he said worse massage ever, picture this he said "lights blazing, kids running in and out slamming doors, the woman was rather elderly and had hands like fish scales" hahaha sorry guys, pity I can't give you the name so you massage lovers don't end up there :)

Spent every evening on our veranda with the candles burning, nice music, plenty of bourbon and of course the ole mozzie coils.... not far to fall into bed lol.

Captured the most stunning sunsets... paradise!!!

May 6 we're off again... got this packing thing down pat lol. Boss arrives and we're off to 'Merlin Khaolak' for 4 nights. Booked into a 'Deluxe Room' and surprise surprise we've been given a complimentary upgrade to a 'Deluxe Pool Room' :) :) Open the doors to the room and we're totally blown away... absolutely stunning, the room, the view, the pool with the water cascading over the rocks... added bonus, no neighbours so we really did have the entire pool to ourselves :)

You can't put into words or capture with photos how beautiful this resort is... I guess you would say it's in a rain forest type setting, with cascading pools, rocks and waterfalls. Winding pathways and little bridges everywhere... beauty every where you look :)

Ate at the 'Verandah Restaurant' the first night, the meal was delicious and the night lighting through out the resort is gorgeous... also a little beach bar right on the beach front for drinks while taking in the sea views.

The main pool down on the ground level has a swim up bar again with beautiful rocks to the left with the water cascading over. Lost count of how many pools in total. The beach frontage has plenty of lounges and umbrellas and big trees if you want the shade.

Yip, did the morning beach walks again, and the sea conditions were just perfect with high tide around 1pm... best swim beach IMO. Swam heaps, then grabbed a lounger, nice catching the sea breeze... like I said it was hot hot hot, but no complaints from us! Such a shame, the thought of maybe losing some of the beautiful big trees that line the beach front with the beach erosion in a few years to come :(

Again this resort has everything you need from massage huts, spa, gym, lounge bar with free wifi (or cost per hour for room) and more... Breakfast setting inside and out was beautiful as was the breakfasts.

Once again ate just down the street at the many local restaurants... all delicious meals, can't pick a favourite.

Couldn't wait to get back to our room in the evenings to light candles and tealights... so pretty, nothing like a little romance lol. Bonus with pool access is you could swim at night... well we did anyway :)

May 10... time to go home :( :( :(


If we had known what was waiting for us in Khaolak we would have bypassed Patong and gone straight from airport...

I feel we couldn't have picked 3 very different Resorts any better, for our first visit to Khaolak.

The Sands: Would we go back again, probably not (but maybe if we got a good deal) Nice to experience once but way too big... not for any other reason, it was beautiful - just our personal choice.

NTBR1: Would we go back again, you betcha!! More personal, small, warm & cosy - this is what I call a beach holiday!!

Merlin Khaolak: Would we go back again, yes if they could guarantee us a complimentary 'Pool Access' upgrade LOL after all how could you setttle for any other room type when you've experienced the best.

Absolutely loved Khaolak, we'll be back next year definately!!! Want to do Kao Sok, Tsunami Memorial, Markets and much more....

Pulled back the curtains this morning "where's the beautiful views gone, can't hear the waves rolling in" :(

Jan & Warwick :)

Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
5,819 posts
67 reviews
1. Re: JBR... best holiday in years April 18 - 10 May

Hi Jan & Wick

Thanks for sharing your fantastic review with us you took me right back there with you, I can picture every where you mentioned :)

So glad that you enjoyed khao lak....but who wouldn't ? It's paradise

So much more for you to experience in this beautiful area of Thsiland you have to return :)

Welcome to another Khao Lak Lover

Cheers and thanks again for your lovely JBR

Mossy :)

Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
736 posts
62 reviews
2. Re: JBR... best holiday in years April 18 - 10 May

Thanks for the JBR Jan, Khao Lak has grabbed your heart as well i see.

Thanks for sharing all your pics as well.

Cant wait for our return trip in 140 daysish.

Keep well.


Cairns, Australia
Level Contributor
577 posts
88 reviews
3. Re: JBR... best holiday in years April 18 - 10 May

Thanks so much for sharing, what a fantastic and detailed JBR. So glad you guys enjoyed your stay and you will be returning. I will be back there myself in Aug and so looking forward to my stay again at NTBR1.


Poulton Le Fylde...
Destination Expert
for Khao Lak, Khao Sok National Park
Level Contributor
45,458 posts
107 reviews
4. Re: JBR... best holiday in years April 18 - 10 May

If people, including me, question why others like moving to different resorts in such a relatively small resort area I think Jan & Warwick's terrific JBR says it all - three completely different resorts in three completely different locations. It also explains why Khao Lak has such a wide appeal wherever you stay.

Sydney, Australia
Destination Expert
for Patong
Level Contributor
4,430 posts
39 reviews
5. Re: JBR... best holiday in years April 18 - 10 May

Great JBR Jan and Wick, so much info well done. I could never be bothered moving that much. I loved seeing all your photos

Cant wait to be back in Khao Lak with BOM JD soon.


Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
1,277 posts
545 reviews
6. Re: JBR... best holiday in years April 18 - 10 May

Great report ... but please stop telling people about the NTBR1 ... I couldn't get a beachfront bungalow on my visit to KL in Sept last year, they were all booked out :-)

Glad you found both Orchids ... many people seem to confuse them.

The small one (my favourite) is The Orchid Cafe near the entrance to The Sands.

The other one opposite McDonald's is The Orchid Restaurant.

Nakhon Si...
Level Contributor
971 posts
8 reviews
7. Re: JBR... best holiday in years April 18 - 10 May

Was that NTBR1, I must have a look!

South Australia...
Destination Expert
for Phuket, Ko Lanta
Level Contributor
8,988 posts
450 reviews
8. Re: JBR... best holiday in years April 18 - 10 May

Fantastic report Jan, enjoyed every word, it seemed like you were there for ages :)

Thanks for sharing


Phuket, Thailand
Destination Expert
for Phuket, Kata Beach, Karon
Level Contributor
4,060 posts
15 reviews
9. Re: JBR... best holiday in years April 18 - 10 May

Great trip report Jan and Warwick - enjoyed reading it. I like the sounds of the Nang Thong Bay Resort..

Port Stephens...
Level Contributor
654 posts
14 reviews
10. Re: JBR... best holiday in years April 18 - 10 May

wonderful report!! i can't wait to get there. fabulous, fabulous read - thank you :-)

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