Backpackers look no further
After passing through a bamboo gate, we arrived at Moonhut to find a staffer chasing a beach dog and a giggling toddler beneath the venerable banyan tree that anchors the property. With a choice of fan or air-con, this is one of the last old-style beach bungalow spots left on Samui – and it’s a good one.
Set in a semi-circle rimming a sandy and shaded central area, backpacker-style concrete bungalows are painted orange and set on stilts. A couple of plastic chairs are placed on wood porches, almost within arm’s length of reaching rattan palms.
Inside, these rooms are small and simple, with paper lanterns and fans mounted on pink walls directly over the firm beds. They also come with tile floors and cold-water showers in wet bathrooms that appeared clean.
Air-con bungalows are similar but slightly larger, painted white, and fronted by tinted glass windows. These have hardwood floors to go with fridges, hot-water bathrooms and fans in addition to air-con. The one that we inspected featured elephants painted on a Chinese-style fan and a painting of the Buddha’s face placed over a bed with three pillows. A few larger beachfront air-con bungalows are built directly over the sand within steps of the water – reserve in advance if you hope to score one of these.
The Thai/European-run resort offers free WiFi, a large restaurant under an open-sided pavilion with sea views, and a beachside bar with a billiards table and soccer matches shown on a big screen. You’ll also find Thai massage and an impressive range of watersports, including kayaking, SUP and wakeboarding or waterskiing from January to October. The resort’s own little speedboat can be arranged for day trips to the Ang Thong Islands and beyond.
The tranquil location is within walking distance of Mae Nam village with its array of restaurants and bars. Travellers seeking backpacker-style accommodation along Samui’s north coast could also consider Tree House Silent Beach for more of a hippie vibe, or King Busch Reggae Beach over in Bang Po if you’re a Bob Marley enthusiast. There’s also Shangrilah, offering rundown fan bungalows and newer air-con rooms at the west end of Mae Nam. But out of all of these, we liked Moonhut the best.
By David Luekens
Last updated on 17th September, 2016.