What is the perfect formula for a family-friendly holiday? First, you need to choose the destination - Thailand is perfect. Secondly, you need to choose resorts that offer something for mum, dad and the kids, whether they are toddlers or teenagers. We look at five resorts that tick all the family holiday boxes.
Sunwing Kamala Beach Resort is just a short 40-minute drive from the airport. The 317-room hotel is a traditional Thai hotel with white-washed walls and overhanging roofs that help keep the heat out. The hotel has just had an amazing renovation and the kids will love the water slides and the kids’ club activities. Mum will feel very comfortable having a midday nap in one of the luxurious beach cabanas and Dad will enjoy a round of golf at the nearby challenging 6756-yard 18-hole Laguna Golf Phuket course.
Centara Karon Resort is perfect for those holiday-makers who crave lots of space to spread out and relax. The hotel is 15 kilometres from Phuket town located at Karon Beach, famous for its stunning long stretch of sand. Take the kids to the nearby Dino Park Mini Golf course to test their skills. There are different dinosaurs on every hole so they will learn something new while playing. Karon Beach is home to many great spas, none better than the hotel’s Spa Cenvaree. We are sure Mum will enjoy a Thai Body Balance – especially when a two-and-a-half-hour treatment costs just $114. Dad can join a cooking class in the hotel’s kitchen and master the art of creating a green curry or Pad Thai.
What’s not to love about the white sandy private beach at the Phuket Marriott Resort and Spa, Merlin Beach. Located an 8-minute tuk-tuk ride from Patong, this hotel close to the entertainment district, but far enough away for peace and quiet. Mum is going to love the food and with six restaurants to choose from, she will be spoilt for choice. Food reviewers rave about the Thai Pantry, but the Beach Grill is the pick for seafood lovers. Kids will be saying yabba dabba doo about the Bam Bam kids clubs and daily pool basketball competitions. And for Dad, well there’s the award-winning day spa or the swim-up pool bar. Take your pick. Both are good.
The Sunwing Bangtao hotel has recently had a full makeover. If you have a newborn you will certainly appreciate the Happy Baby studios on the ground level. The rooms come with everything you could possibly need if you are travelling with a baby. The teen lounge is the place to hang out if you want to listen to some music and share a few pizzas with your holiday mates. Dad can join in the water aerobics led by the hotel’s professional instructors while Mum takes a stroll down to Phuket town for a bit of retail therapy. The perfect hotel – something for everyone.
Khao Lak sits on the Andaman Sea about a one-hour drive north of Phuket Island. Think cool tropical forest, beautiful beaches and a pace of life that’s a little bit slower than most other Thai tourist destinations. The kids will love you forever if you take them to the Royal Thai Navy Third Fleet turtle nursery. Some of the turtles here are just one week old. Watch your fingers though, they love to bite. The Samet Nangshe Viewpoint in Phang Nga has become one of Thailand’s most photographed spots – for good reason. Take Mum there at sunrise to hone her photographic skills and grab the best pictures. Dad can lead the family on a kayak trip to the limestone rocks rising from the sea around Phang Nga Bay. All of these places are within reach of The Sands Khao Lak – a hotel with three unique wings. The Aqua Wing, with its water park, will appeal most to families, especially the teenagers.