Want to head to the beach from Bangkok but don’t fancy an over populated, busy and touristy beach resort full of loud music? We did, so we headed to Koh Kood dreaming of blue skies, pristine rainforest, crystal clear waters and lots of mouth watering vegan food.
Here’s our vegan guide to Koh Kood to help you with your own Thai vegan travel adventure.
What to expect:
The one thing you can expect when you get to Koh Kood is peace and quiet. Resorts and homestays are fairly spread out from each other, so once you are checked in to wherever you are staying, there won’t be much to disturb you. If you want to venture out, then rent a scooter and explore the island; you can walk between some places but if you really want to explore any distance then you’ll need wheels. The pace of life is slow, there are still traditional working fishing villages and the vibe is laid back and friendly.
Expect beaches, white sand, opportunities to dive, wild jungle and rainforest and fresh coconuts at every turn.
How to get there:
The main transport hub for Koh Kood is the nearby town of Trat but it’s common to head there from Bangkok as the travel can be done in approximately 7 hours (or less). After much research we decided to use Boonsiri High Speed Ferries as not only did their boat look the best but they offered a service that picked us up in Bangkok and delivered us to our chosen hotel once on Koh Kood. From pre-trip communication to arrival on Koh Kood the service was first rate and we’d happily recommend them.
Where to stay (and what to eat):
Most people eat in their resort or homestay although there are a few shops and small restaurants around the island. We visited in low season meaning some of these were closed but it’s unlikely you’ll struggle to find food whenever you visit. There are numerous accommodation options ranging from budget homestays to über luxury-best-place-you’ll-ever-stay-in-your-life.
Accommodation books up in the high season, but was plentiful and cheaper in the low season, so no need to book ahead if this is when you travel.
SeaFar Resort Koh Kood
Our first stay was at SeaFar Resort on the West coast of the island where we were staying in converted shipping containers placed right next to the beach. Our home town of Southampton in England has a huge container port, so we’re used to seeing these big metal boxes all the time but have never slept in one!
They were simply decorated, with air con and an en-suite bathroom but the best part of staying in them was definitely their location overlooking a deserted and beautiful beach, fully equipped with sun loungers, swings and warm turquoise sea (perfect for swimming).
We had no problem with vegan food at SeaFar as the manager spoke good English and made the waiting staff aware of our dietary needs meaning we enjoyed tasty vegan food every day.
No idea why it is called SeaFar resort as we couldn’t possibly have been any closer to the sea but, strange name aside, it’s a lovely family run option if you are planning a trip to Koh Kood.
The Beach Bungalow we stayed in is priced from £70 / $110 per night (May 2015).
We were really, really excited that we were going to stay at Soneva Kiri as it is widely recognised as one of the finest resorts in the world. Well, you only live once right?
There was no doubt in our mind that this stay would be good, but little did we know quite how good it would be; from our incredible ‘playground by the sea’ (complete with giant pool, it’s very own private beach and golf buggy) to the superb vegan food (including vegan afternoon tea high suspended high above the rainforest in a giant woven basket) we will never forget our stay at Soneva Kiri.
Wanna read more about our stay at Soneva Kiri? Click here but be prepared for serious amounts of vegan luxury!
We sampled so much delicious vegan food it is hard to know where to start but perhaps the complimentary chocolate room filled with handmade vegan chocolates and the ice cream parlour with a long list of vegan sorbets to choose from, would be as good a place as any.
Everywhere we looked there were vegan options (or vegetarian options that could be easily veganised) including this tasty pad thai enjoyed whilst taking in the most awesome view.
Whilst at Soneva Kiri you must head to ‘Benz’, their signature Thai restaurant for dinner.
Situated up river, nestled amongst the mangroves, and run by the talented Khun Benz, we were presented us with one of the best vegan Thai meals we’ve ever experienced.
Don’t believe us? Look here to see what we ate.
The Junior Beach Pool Retreat we stayed in is priced from £1300 / $1950 per night (May 2015).
Koh Kood Beach Resort
We loved our relaxing stay at Koh Kood Beach Resort which offers a choice of accommodation that all have far reaching views of the ocean. We stayed in one of the ‘Bali Bungalows’ which had a large decking area at the front and an open air bathroom at the back
One of the best things about this resort are the amazing views from the salt water pool, where you can soak up the beautiful sunset whilst enjoying a cold beer or a glass of something chilled.
The staff were more than happy to adapt the existing menu for vegan guests like us and we got to enjoy flavour packed curries, various noodle dishes and some nice vegetable tempura.
For breakfast they prepared rice, tofu and vegetables which although not on the menu they were happy to arrange; we also enjoyed the tropical fresh fruit platter which was prepared daily with love.
Now that’s our kinda fruit plate…
This family run resort which is owned and managed by Go Beyond Asia provides a great mid range option on the island; Our vegan requests were no problem at all meaning we certainly didn’t go without; we also liked the fact that a 5 minute walk took you to a small fishing village complete with small cafes, shops and a way to experience real life on a Thai island.
The Bali Bungalow we stayed in is priced from £60 / $90 per night (May 2015).
Our final stop on Koh Kood was at Chams House set in tropical gardens overlooking another beautiful beach (the beaches on Koh Kood really are very good). With a number of accommodation types, all affording ocean views and some with private plunge pool there is something for everyone.
Our ‘Deluxe Ocean View Room was modern and welcoming with simple but stylish furnishings; we were impressed with the ‘Thann’ amenities which were free from animal products and also not tested on animals. Hooray!
We enjoyed a number of walks along the deserted beach but most of our relaxing was done next to the pool on giant orange beanbags.
The Chef and his team at Chams House went out of their way to make us amazing vegan food and we enjoyed a couple of tasty vegan items from the existing menu on our first day. On the second day of our stay they prepared the most delicious vegan tasting menu for us to showcase just how well they could look after their vegan guests (more devious details about what we ate here).
Every dish was expertly presented and we were overwhelmed by the variety of flavours and textures that our plant based dining extravaganza offered; we love it when vegan food is this exciting.
The Deluxe Ocean View Room we stayed in is priced from £80 / $120 per night (May 2015).
Have you ever been to Koh Kood or are you looking for your own slice of island paradise in Thailand? Leave us a comment below and tell us about your vegan travel plans and adventures…
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Or why don’t you come and stay with us in our very own Vegan Villa in Siem Reap, Cambodia where we can treat you to the best of vegan hospitality and share with you our favourite vegan spots in Temple Town; check out our listing on Airbnb and come and stay if you’re in the area!