Early 40ties male and two children (11 y.o. Girl, 8 y.o. Boy)
From Bangkok to koh tao by second class sleeper train.
Then by lomprey bus/boat to ko tao.
The aim/hope was to find a nice, beautiful not to fancy beach with some nice snorkling like Gili (indnosia) or Perentiens (malaysia)
Because i was traveling with my kids i had prebooked 5 nights (of a total 11) at Bamboo huts / Charm Churee. Even though it is markedet as two separate hotels, they share all facilities and are basically one unit.
Check in was slow, tedious by poor english by the burmeese staff.
As mentioned before, very steep terrain. Ok for us but impossible if you need a baby trolly or if you are the least physically unfit. We quickly got fed up with the very long walk from our hut (bb 13, see map in photo) to the breakfast.
Very worn, old-dish. Trying to sell this as and ecco resort is just sad. The concrete pathways are very uneven, bamboo rails worn with missing parts. Grounds littered with old leaves (and garbage). The general feeling is more one of lack of upkeep than ecco-untouch-ness.
The Jansombay is a nice small beach with ok snorkling, esp to the left side and out around the 3 rocks. However, not good enough to warrent the cost of the hut/bungalow.
Hut/bungalow (BB 13)
Simple bamboohut, ok interior, not charming or memorable. Moskito net had holes. Aircon ok, quiet and effective. Attached, outside bath (2), again nothing special. Robes and slippers provided, again non impresive quality. View was nice esp for sunset, the sound of the ocean, else very quiet.
Cost around 6500 B/night but we were charged additional 2500B/night for an extra bed for one of the kids!
After complaining price was lowered to 1500B .
A total of 8000 B/night.
This is soo overpriced considering the quality of the place.
Breakfast was included and was a sad affair.
General poor quality of everything from the "pancakes" and so called croisants (unedible), to the pot cofee and cheep youghurt.
Slices of watermellon and pinaple and a mix of less know fruits.
This is served in the quite dilapidated eating area, so at least the food match the exteriors.
Service is confused, mostly due to poor language skills however in some odd ways they try to behave like it was a five star resort.
During dinner they unfurl the napkin and place it in your lap!?
A gesture SO out of touch with the rest of the experience.
This is a very basic, but massively overpriced, thaibeach restaurent with the odd illusion of grandour. A 30-40% price reduction and a 50% increase in quality would make things acceptable.
So, in short:
Overpriced, poor service and food however Jansom bay is nice.
Solution: stay in the MUCH nicer, and cheeper, Sensi located next door (see my separate review) or at the more primitive but very nice and basic place (no AC) over at the next beach. You can then walk to jansom bay for the snorkling.
Would i recomend or return?
Sadly ko tao is now so developed the it has lost its charm, it is like koh samuii was 10 years ago.
I shall not ever return to Bamboo huts/Charm chuu village nor is it likely that i will visit koh tao again. For unspoilt paradise you need to go elsewhere
A note on diving
Koh tao is a nice place to learn to dive, if you are allready an experienced diver, i would recommend going elsewhere as most of the dive sites are very easy and, in my view, not too interesting.
Try to go to Sail rock and the two sites named chimneys, all 3 quite far from the island.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- A low-impact, eco-friendly, natural-oriented resort right on the cliff. All rooms are sunset unobstructed seaview. Some of the rooms come with private pool. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Koh Tao Bamboo Huts Hotel Koh Tao