Expand your mind
For the right sort of traveller, The Laughing Gecko is exactly where you want to be.
At first glance it looks like an old-style bungalow joint past its prime, but take a seat with owner Nui to see why open-minded, creative, spiritually inclined backpackers return year after year. With long hair and a calming voice, he’s an almost Yoda-type figure—a master of profound Buddhist philosophy disguised as an old Thai hippie. His stories and similes have taken our breath away. He spent years in Germany, Canada and the jungle of Ko Yao Noi before opening the Gecko in the early 2000s.
The spartan bamboo huts have mosquito nets draped over double mattresses, cooled by fans with cold-water bathrooms attached. They put you close to nature, including the namesake geckos. Just remember, they eat the bugs! That’s why they’re laughing, maybe. There’s also a pro-size billiards table and, according to Nui, playing with awareness helps to shed light on subconscious craving and selfishness. He’s now in his late 60s and the place is not as busy as it once was, but as of mid 2018 he plans to stay put.
The Gecko is open in high season only; neighbouring Cashew Nut Bungalows and Lazy Bar and Guesthouse are both worth a look should you visit in the rainy months.
Address: Noppharat Thara Soi 13, Haad Noppharat Thara
T: (081) 270 5028;
Coordinates (for GPS): 98º48'38.15" E, 8º2'41.6" 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 private bathroom||closed or n/a||500 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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