Accessed by walkways that reach alongside an estuary and into the mangroves, Tree House Cottages is probably the most atmospheric of the many small, cheap and very laid-back bungalow spots found in Khlong Kloi village.
Designers tipped their hats to the original Treehouse Bungalows, which drew hippie types to Lonely Beach way back when it was still kind of lonely. The same chilled-out scene that will remind old-timers of Lonely Beach now has firm footing in Khlong Kloi, and this fresh take on “Treehouse” is no exception. Expect plenty of dreadlocks swaying to the beats of roots reggae here.
Relying on shared cold-water bathrooms, the cheaper metal-roofed wood shacks sit alongside a walkway running far back into some orchid-dotted trees. Inside you get little more than a fan, table, mosquito net and hard bed with blankets provided. Though none of the trees are strong enough to support an actual treehouse, you can lie back in a hammock on your porch amid the trees.
Tree House also has similarly designed bungalows with air-con, private hot-water bathrooms, TVs and porches overlooking the estuary that gives Khlong Kloi Beach its name. While not bad, these are not as inviting as the bungalows at Indie Beach, which cost 200 baht more but are better equipped and within steps of the beach.
For now Tree House lacks fan-cooled bungalows with private bathrooms, but it’s a newish place at research time and we won’t be surprised to see that category filled by the time we return for the next spin through Chang.
Anchored at a wide lagoon-side deck with floor cushions, billiards table, restaurant, bar and WiFi, we like the reggae-inspired hostel vibe and we arrived to a young group of backpackers chatting with the Thai owner.
For a more straightforward setup and the option of private bathrooms in fan-cooled rooms, nearby Lakchai, Santisook, T Garden and Yak all offer cheap bungalows set closer to the main lane running behind Khlong Kloi. If you’re looking for even cheaper digs with the reggae-fied vibes, check out nearby Freedom House or Rasta Home and Hippy Hut on the way back to Bang Bao.
These are all small businesses in an evolving scene that old-school backpackers will love. Forget advanced bookings; just take a stroll around Khlong Kloi village and you’ll probably find a bungalow for you.
Address: Khlong Kloi village, Bang Bao, Ko Chang
T: (061) 770 5569;
Coordinates (for GPS): 102º19'27.14" E, 11º58'33.21" N
See position in Apple or Google Maps: Apple Maps | Google Maps
Room rates: Under 600B
What we were quoted as a walk-in.
|Bungalow fan share bathroom||450 baht||450 baht|
|Bungalow air-con private bathroom||1,200 baht||1,200 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.
Our top 10 places to stay in and around Ko Chang