Kid Crazy in Khao Lak
Updated: Sep 15, 2020
A bed with a slide. . can we stay in the room and play mum?
This was my 2nd trip to The Sands Khao Lak by Katathani, so I was prepared for the extremely kid friendly environment this time around. However I had also made a mental note to visit the quieter areas of the hotel near the beach again.
We took advantage of their special re-opening rates in July 2020 (4,000 bht including breakfast in a Family Slide Room located in the Aqua Wing area of the resort - AKA the kid friendly bit). My special deal roomies for the 2 night stay were my fab girlfriend, her 4 year old son and my 5 year old little boy.
After just over 1 hours drive from Phuket, we checked in (a slightly over complicated process once again), and were then shown to our Family Slide Room. This proved an instant hit with the 2 little boys, so much so that they actually wanted to stay and play in the room. The kids shared the bunk bed with slide and the mummies had the huge double bed. No complaints here, the room was clean, bright, spacious, comfortable. The only slight negative with the room was that there was no bath which would have been nice for us with the kids. We had an ample sized terrace overlooking the main Aqua Wing pool, with chairs and a small table which was the perfect size for our wine glasses in the evening once the kids were settled playing - we could see them at all times so no judging please!
A water wonderland for kids with a lazy river, water slides, kids club, outdoor castle playground, fire shows, fish feeding and more
When we finally got the kids out of the room, we headed for the main kids pool which had enough to keep them busy until the lazy river came to life at lunch time. The resort was quiet on day 1 (Friday), so there were literally no queues for the larger slides or lazy river (which open at different times during the day). However it got busier as the weekend progressed, and then there were some queues before the lazy river opened, but without an actual queuing system this made little impact and the kids and adults floated around and around for quite some time.
The Sands Castle Kids club was open from 9am and although they tried their best to adhere to their own specified social distancing rules (15 people max inside at any time), this didn't happen in reality. However, I must say that this kids club was really well done, always spotlessly clean, staff were friendly and the facilities inside were good although a little sparse. There were some paid for activities such as fan and batik painting, as well as some free ones like painting bottles and movie nights; but we just used it to get the kids out of the midday heat and cool down a bit. Inside there is an art room, a TV area, climbing soft play with slide and younger kids separate bit also.
What about the adults?
OK, let's be honest I really wouldn't go here solo or as a couple for a relaxing break. Yes, it is kid friendly - yes, it does get noisy - yes, it can be a bit hectic with all the slides and lazy river rushes. However, there was enough to make it bearable for us mums too. During the day there is a decent sized swim up bar in the main pool and they were serving discounted cocktails and beer bucket deals.
In the afternoons, we made our way down to the other pool nearer the beach. The adults only pool was shut when we went, but there is another pool further on (with bar area that was closed) which is perfectly chilled and quiet, providing a wonderful relief from the mayhem of the kids pool area.
On the Saturday night we joined the Thai / International buffet at the main restaurant, Floating Market, which was extremely reasonable, (under 5 years were free / adults 339 bht). The food was varied if slightly basic, but there was a wide enough choice for everyone to find a few things they likes (pizza, pasta, Thai salads, curry, desserts and ice cream) plus it was great value. During the meal there was a live singer set up outside the open air restaurant, and this was followed by an impressive fire show at 8pm which everyone enjoyed, and the kids were screaming with delight (or terror) at times. Mother Nature treated us to a spectacular sunset too, which you can't actually see from the buffet restaurant but we popped to the beach area to catch it thankfully.
Breakfast each morning is served in the same main restaurant, Floating Market. Again it had enough choice, but slightly cheaply done I personally felt with no fresh juices, eggs pre-cooked and left out, poor quality jams and spreads, make your own coffee, etc. That said, it was adequate for our needs. This was followed by fish feeding at 8am right beside the breakfast restaurant which was fund for kids and adults alike, and surprising to see the sheer volume of fish in the lake.
Lunch times were spent at Manta Ray restaurant which was right beside the main swimming pool area. The pizzas were pretty good and decent value for money (140 bht for a kids Margherita pizza). The kids menu contained the usual suspects of burgers, spaghetti, satay, pizzas, chicken nuggets, etc. Adults menu was pretty similar with some salad options and more sandwiches and Thai dishes.
There was a private function at the other main restaurant there, Talay Thai so we didn't get to try this out. However, it is located near the beach and has a more upmarket vibe vs The Floating Market. The menu was Thai classics, not too expensive considering the location and picturesque outlook.
Would I return - well yes I would, for a few days of kid friendly fun, but maybe next time I will make use of the spa for some mummy time out!
The Bottom Line:
+ Fantastic for kids / Great kids club / Saturday buffet night with fire show / Large rooms and beds
- Check in duration at front reception / Not following their own social distancing rules / You might feel like you need a holiday after going!
The Deal - 4,000 bht per night for up to 2 adults and 2 children in the Family Slide Room, (July 2020 deal rate)
The Sands Resort, Khao Lak
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