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“Caters to divers but great stay nonetheless”

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Ban's Diving Resort
Ranked #5 of 49 Hotels in Koh Tao
Certificate of Excellence
Clarksville, Tennessee
Level Contributor
55 reviews
26 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
“Caters to divers but great stay nonetheless”
Reviewed 26 March 2014

My husband and I stayed here for 4 nights after switching hotels from a cheaper bungalow up North. We were given a deluxe garden view room, which was across the main road and up a fairly steep hill from the main hotel area, which we actually preferred since it was quieter and more private feeling. The pools did not seem to be available for swimming as they are constantly being used for the divers, but we weren't interested in using the pools as we were diving at a separate resort anyway. Similarly, we walked on the beach once or twice and enjoyed what beach they did have, though it was always busy with a 'younger' crowd of drinking backpackers.

Our room had a tv with only a few channels and a Thai-style-hard bed. The bathroom was really pretty and very clean, but the nice shower ended up soaking our floor every day. I also noticed the bottom of the shower curtain was a little moldy. The maids came regularly and kept the room clean, and we used the safe in the room every day which was a nice little perk. They also kept our room stocked with bottled water when they came by. We also had a nice little patio to sit out on.

The location is pretty ideal. It is on Sairee beach, which is fairly close (walking distance) to the main town by the Lompraya pier. If you don't want to walk to town, Ban's has it's own little walking street with lots of different restaurants and some shops.

We had free breakfast vouchers with our room and so we ate at their little breakfast restaurant across the street from our room. The food was decent, but choices were limited. I think every day buffet was: eggs made by choice (but beware all semi-hard eggs are very runny), muffins sometimes, pad thai, fried rice, fruit, granola, coffee, orange juice (it's like Tang), toast, and little mini sandwiches. I would've liked a little more variety, like some kind of meat, pastries, etc., but it did the job for the few days we were there.

Overall we really liked the place but we were happy we chose a separate dive shop as Ban's is ridiculously overcrowded (I think there were 14 people diving in the pool one day). It's not luxury, but it has a/c and it's clean, so I think it was worth the money on Koh Tao.

Room Tip: If you're looking for an area closer to the main part, choose one of the rooms close to the offi...
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Brittanie G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (158)
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English first
Portsmouth, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 23 March 2014 via mobile

Hotel mainly caters for divers looking to take the PADI course but also a lot of back packers / holiday makers stay here as there's lots of rooms available. Pools were in use by divers most of the day but it's only a couple of meters from the beach so you can enjoy the white sands & sea of Sairee Beach. We stayed over the road in the quieter part and up the hill a bit, great views from our balcony. Rooms were spacious and clean, myself and my girlfriend really enjoyed our 4 night stay at the tail end of our 2 week holiday. We'd recommend this hotel to people who are looking to stay in decent accommodation near to all the bars/shops and beach at a resonance price.

Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Magpie1608
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
143 reviews
62 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 March 2014

We stayed here on our first night to the island. The rooms were beautiful and had nice decks. The grounds are very nice and well maintained. The two pools were being used for diver training so it was not meant to be for your average Joe to sit around and swim. The ocean beach is across the little walk/road. There is no private beach as such and no lounge chairs, umbrellas or shade. On the bright side there are a lot of restaurants and shopping around. Staff was ok. This is a very hilly resort, so use your own judgement.

  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Gerry S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
227 reviews
65 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 March 2014

Ban's Diving Resort is a fantastic place to learn to dive. I booked the diving course before I got there and got the accommodation for free. The rooms are small but clean and are only a short distance from the beach and learner pools.

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled as a couple
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1 Thank Niamh M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Madrid, Spain
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 March 2014

Ban's is reasonably good at churning through an enormous amount of diving students very quickly. The emphasis is on cheap PADI with backpacker bar fun, so if you're 20, it's gold. You can start any day in any language and the classes are taught well, but there's no hiding that you are one of thousands each year. The beginners pools are revolting with virtually no visibility. The equipment is safe but a little dodgy-looking at times. We went out on 4 dives with roughly 30-40 other dive students on our boat, which had a definitive rush-hour feel. When I saw all the human fins and the hung-over students I hoped the sea life had made an escape to a more private shelter, which I guess was the case at the shallower sites we visited.

The teachers are lovely though (Taina is fantastic!) and added a personal touch to the dive machine resort. The rooms are low-end backpacker. Mine was one of few that didn't have a toilet, and the communal one never once had toilet paper but was reasonably clean. Bring ear plugs, where my room was situated I may as well have slept in the karaoke.

  • Stayed February 2014, travelled solo
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank TinaWa019
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 March 2014

Ban's diving resort was fantastic in every way. The main/older part of the resort is just OK by my standards, but the new addition to it (up on the hill overlooking the beach) is outstanding. It's all new, beautiful rooms with hard wood floors, great balconies overlooking the sea, living rooms and bedroom/bath. The price was under $100 and well worth it. In fact, it exceeded all of my expectations.

Not only that, but the staff was really friendly too. Khun Wan is the owner/manager at reception. She rocks. Also the Thai girl who runs the dive shop. I'm forgetting her name but she was super helpful and super friendly. If I was going back to Koh Tao (and I definitely will), I would stay there again 100%. So should you. I booked through Agoda and selected the Hill Top Sea View room.

Room Tip: Hill Top Sea View is all you need.
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank daniel s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Malmo, Sweden
Level Contributor
233 reviews
61 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 102 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 March 2014

Ban's of course first and foremost is a resort for people who will participate in the resort's diving courses. It is very obvious when arriving to the hotel. The general atmosphere is the one from a hostel rather than a hotel. We stayed in a "Garden View Suite", which was a relatively spacious room with a large bathroom and a nice balcony. The beds were comfortable, but the WiFi did not work well in the room. The hotel is located just right by the beach and has a restaurant with sea view which has OK food for a reasonably low price. I can however recommend to walk along the small street towards the northern part of Sairee beach where there are a lot of nice restaurants and bars on the beach.

Within the hotel complex there is a very popular bar, the Fishbowl. There is live music until 2am so do not expect any sleep before that time. The two pools are not possible to use for swimming since they are occupied by diving classes most of the time. The breakfast served in the Darawan was the poorest I have encountered during my four trips to Thailand. Skip it and go for breakfast somewhere else.

One of the mornings we discovered that we had shared our bedroom with a big spider... I guess this just means that the hotel is not using a lot of pesticides.

  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Swede1979
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Ban's Diving Resort

Property: Ban's Diving Resort
Address: Haad Sairee, Koh Tao, Koh Tao 84360, Thailand
Region: Thailand > Surat Thani Province > Koh Tao
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Koh Tao
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Koh Tao
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — Ban's Diving Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 38
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Ban's Technical Diving is operated out of Ban's Diving, Koh Tao, Thailand. Ban's Technical Diving is an award winning DSAT, BSAC, ANDI Technical Instructor Diving Facility. The only Tech Center on Koh Tao (and one of few in the world) that offers DSAT Technical Diving Intructor Courses. Deep Wreck Diving, Cave Expeditions.-Nitrox, Deep, Wreck, Gas Blender, Compressor Operator, Rebreather, Equipment, Emergency Oxygen, Technical Decompression Diving, Cave, Cavern......... ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Ban`s Diving Hotel Koh Tao
Bans Diving Hotel
Bans Diving Ko Tao

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