Photo: Your only escape route.

Eat and meet

With no standalone restaurants on Ko Kradan, everything you eat and drink will come from a resort. Expect much higher prices than you'll pay on the mainland. Most of the resort restaurants are not worth mentioning; thankfully the few that are go beyond what we'd expect.

Paradise Lost had its humble beginnings not as a resort but a restaurant, and it continues to satiate its own guests and a constant stream of guests from other resorts and day tours. Nok and her team do an excellent job with Thai stir-fries, noodles and curries served in massive portions for between 120 and 200 baht. The bowl of green curry that we ordered seemed to be bottomless and the Jasmine rice served here is of a particularly fine variety. The som tam (papaya salad) is also perfectly balanced -- and they'll make it extra fiery if you ask. Many of the dishes incorporate fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs grown on site.

In addition to the great Thai food, Paradise Lost's other owner, Wally, has taught his staff to churn out real-deal American grub as well. Prepared on delicious white rolls that are shuttled here from an Italian bakery on Phuket, the burgers and bacon sandwiches are among the best we've found in Southern Thailand. You'll also find chicken, steak and whole fish barbecues served with baked potatoes, bread, salad and rice; the 500 baht price tags seem high until you see that a single order is more than enough to fill up two hungry travellers. Hearty breakfasts, fresh coffee, cold beer and basic cocktails are also served. A Phuket Italian also makes the exceptional gelato from scratch. While it doesn't have a sea view, Paradise Lost's restaurant is a great place to meet other travellers.

If you're in the mood for pizza, head down to Italian-owned Kalume Village. Though pricey (300 baht at a minimum), their dozen varieties of flatbread come out crispy and oozing with quality mozzarella. Standard pasta dishes are also available along with a long list of Thai options, though the Thai chef wasn't around when we stopped in. We were also disappointed that they were all out of chocolate mousse cake. Even so, the excellent espresso and Italian aperitifs like limoncello make a nice addition to the direct sea views.

Seven Seas' atmospheric restaurant overlooking the beach is probably the best choice on Kradan for a romantic dinner splurge. Dishes start at 300 baht and include a number of Thai, international and barbecue options, with wines and cocktails also available. If you're just after a sundowner cocktail to go with fast WiFi, Kradan Beach Resort has the liveliest beach bar, though it's by no means a wild party.

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Where to next?

Where are you planning on heading to after Ko Kradan? Here are some spots commonly visited from here, or click here to see a full destination list for Thailand.

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