Steady sailing beach shacks
If you seek a basic wooden bungalow on a beautiful beach that doesn’t host thumping parties all night, KP Huts are a good bet.
Of all the resorts in Khlong Prao, KP is perhaps the one that stayed true to the older school of Thai island tourism. Yes, the place is old and some bungalows look like they might keel over, but none of that seems to matter when you’re sitting back on a wide private porch in a tall wooden bungalow just a few metres above the high-tide waves.
Dubbed “high houses”, these stilted bungalows remind us of weathered but trusty boats—year after year they keep on sailing steady. Making up about half of KP’s rooms, the large bungalows bag you enough space to juggle cats on both the furnished porch and inside on the varnished wood floor. They also have a bunch of windows allowing the sea breeze to spill inside.
The bungalows looked clean enough for us, though we do have a higher threshold for the grime found in KP’s hot-water wet bathrooms than others. Beds come with mosquito nets and are freaking hard—almost like sleeping on the floor. But if you’re really tired or used to crashing on tables, the restful atmosphere and rolling waves will lull you to sleep in no time.
Seafront bungalows may be slightly overpriced, but this is one of few budget places on Chang where you can jump straight from porch to sand and wake up to a sea view from bed. We appreciate how KP stuck to fan bungalows rather than join the air-con bandwagon. If beachfront high houses are too pricey, you can grab an identical bungalow set back beneath the branches for 300 baht less.
KP also has a bunch of old and not-well-maintained log cabins; these are set further back and come with choice of private bathroom or use of campground-style toilets and showers. They’re smaller than the high houses and not inviting, though probably no worse than nearby Tiger Huts. You’ll also find some family bungalows starting at just over 1,000 baht per night.
The older Thai woman who runs the place has been called rude, though she’s always been polite to us and we’ve never encountered impatience or frustration when being shown rooms. This is a long-running, low-budget beachfront bungalow operation and the owner has seen thousands of backpackers pass through. We salute her for keeping it steady sailing for so long.
KP’s rattan-draped restaurant serves decent Thai fare and basic Western bites. There’s also a massage pavilion, and WiFi that works only at the restaurant. Within walking distance you’ll find a few other beach restaurants and bars, but this is a sleepy area preferred by families and couples. From KP it’s a half-kilometre to the main drag on a once-rugged road that has since been paved. It does still take you past coconut farms.
Just north of KP Huts is Tiger Huts, another long-standing budget spot with old bunker-like concrete bungalows. Some had been demolished when we last passed through—the place looked a total mess—and we expect some sort of rebuild there in the future.
Address: Central Khlong Prao, Ko Chang
T: (084) 077 5995 ; (084) 133 5995;
Coordinates (for GPS): 102º17'33.15" E, 12º2'59.06" N
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Room rates: Under 600B
What we were quoted as a walk-in.
|Bungalow fan share bathroom|
600/800 baht for beachfront.
|400 baht||500 baht|
|Bungalow fan private bathroom||600 baht||800 baht|
|Superior double room|
Fan cooled bungalow. 1,000/1,300 baht for beachfront.
|800 baht||1,000 baht|
Sleeps four; two larger family bungalows sleep up to 8 and cost 2,200/2,600 baht.
|900 baht||1,100 baht|
David Luekens first came to Thailand in 2005 when Thai friends from his former home of Burlington, Vermont led him on a life-changing trip. Based in Thailand since 2011, he spends much of his time eating in Bangkok street markets and island hopping the Andaman Sea.
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