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Ban's Diving Resort
Ranked #7 of 50 Hotels in Koh Tao
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 26 July 2014 via mobile

I was recommended Ban's because it was the best known diving center in Koh Tao. However, my experience was not the best... my husband and I checked in and asked for the room with air-con for £12, the room was alright but the loo was with the sewage open! It smelled horrible! The huts in just 3 mins walk, in front of the beach, for less, are much better than this.

Anyway, we thought I'll be doing my Open Water course therefore we won't be spending much time in these rooms. I was in shock, I asked my course to be in Spanish because it's my mother tongue AND I didn't want to be part of those 18 people group for English Open Water course with just one instructor in charge...(that's right...I counted 18 people and 1 instructor doing the pool work...)
Nonetheless, being handed between 4 different Spanish instructors is not great either, luckily (I think) one apprentice (dive master) decided to teach me, he was good in the sense he taught me every single detail about my course. Although, impersonal and unfriendly did not make the diving an joyable experience. Additionally, I could be wrong, but I didn't think a Dive Master was allowed to teach without an Instructor present (?).

Fortunaly, I did my advanced open water course in an amazing diving center on the same island just a couple minute walk North up the beach, Scuba Junction, which compensated this bad experience. If you want to learn PLEASE go there instead. Not the factory that is Ban's diving.

Stayed: July 2014, travelled with friends
1  Thank Medusina
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 18 July 2014

Overall I had a brilliant stay in Ban's. I did the open water diving course and got free accommodation with the package.

The accommodation is very basic which is fair enough considering it is free, but I had to ask staff to clean the room and change the bed sheets, etc (in which they were a bit hesitant to do so). The basic accommodation has no air con (just a fan) , so I recommend to upgrade just for comfort!

The complex has two really nice pool areas. It is very clean and well kept. The diving course is well run and has brilliant instructors. The open water course is 4 days long. The first two days of the course you get most of the theory out of the way and learn the basics of diving in one of the two pools. The final two days you dive out into the sea - it is spectacular!!

The resorts bar and restaurant is superb. Great food, great atmosphere and the bar (called the fishbowl) is full to the brim most nights.

Room Tip: Make sure you get a room with air con.
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  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Sean M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 July 2014

This is spectacular and I am needing to go back there again.

Aircon was a little dodgy but everything else was great.

I love this place and will definitely come back to stay and especially the diving.

Room Tip: Make sure you check the Aircon
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  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank Richardwbakker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 July 2014

My stay at Ban's was amazing, I didn't do all my courses there but I came back to do more, I was already advanced when i came to Ban's. I did my Rescue, DiveMaster and instructor course there and I loved it. The hotel is really nice, i didn't get to stay in the fency rooms but the basic accomodation was enough. It's spacious and comfortable, and you are litteraly 1 min away from the beach. Thanks to all the people there, it was simply amazing. A special thanks to Nathaniel, Lee, Guillaume and Nathalie who conducted the courses that brought me where i am today.

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled solo
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1  Thank thai_alex64
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 July 2014

In catering to our diving adventures and comfortable accommodations, Ban's Diving Resort was excellent. Depending on if you are a student or just bunking down, costs can vary quite a bit due to the included accommodations and breakfast for diving students. This was definitely one of the more expensive places we stayed during our whole south east Asia trip but as it was the end of our trip and Koh Tao was the paradise that it was, we were happy to splurge a bit and enjoy the extra luxury of the deluxe Garden Room. The overall atmosphere of the restaurant and diving area and Fishbowl bar makes for an active and fun environment to hang out in and meet people. The instructors were enthusiastic and fun-loving and diving programs were outstanding and very well structured. The pools tend to have a lot of divers in it for courses so be aware of pool necessities if that's what your looking for... the food here and all over the island is slightly more expensive than other Thai regions but above average in deliciousness and variety. Ban's is central to the walking road between the two main beaches and villages where most of the night life occurs so it makes for easy access and great partying. Ban's is one of the larger diving centres on the island and there is a larger diving centre feel to it so if you are a diver, just be aware that there are many ways to enjoy diving here (small and private catered experience, middle of the road classes and small boat journeys or the large groups and consistent continuous diving site journeys). I was very pleased with the facilities and large groups and boats for doing my Advanced Diver here, but in wanting to more one-on-one dives with somebody to further out remote locations, hunting down the schedules of other dive centres is worth while.

Since there really is a huge variety in accommodations on the island, each catering to their own travelling breed, i would suggest that if you are not interested in diving and just looking for island-like accommodations, that there are many other options for you, like beach bungalows, hill-top private bungalows and infinity pools and even the tucked away boutique rooms near or just outside the villages.

We enjoyed our island stay and since we also love to dive we would definitely come back to Ban's for more courses. However, due to the beautiful resorts located all around the island, we would definitely consider other options for varying atmosphere and cost reduced accommodations for a couples vacation or travel juncture...

Cheers,
Kayle&Madison

  • Stayed: July 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank kaylemather
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 July 2014

Our stay was amazing! As a family of four we were very comfortable in the upper villas. The location was easy walking access to all shopping & food. Gary Kent was an amazing instructor who took us from beginning to advanced! He was patient with our kids & made us feel confident in our newly learned skill.

  • Stayed: May 2014
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1  Thank NomadNicole
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 July 2014 via mobile

We booked a discovery dive with bans and got discounted accommodation. We got upgraded to a lovely room with a view of the ocean. Bans is located right in the centre of sairee beach which means you have the freedom to explore on foot. This was important to us as taxis in Koh Tao are more expensive than other areas of Thailand (the first hotel we stayed in then moved as it was too remote, told us a return taxi journey would be 1000 baht, around £20!) the roads are too bad to get a moped and we had read all about the Koh Tao scams! The diving experience was great, wonderful, well trained staff! All in all, great value for money!

  • Stayed: July 2014
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1  Thank Hayleylp19
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

Address: | Sairee Beach, 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:
#2 Best Value Hotel in Koh Tao
#3 Top resorts Hotel in Koh Tao
#5 On the Beach Hotel in Koh Tao
Price Range: £31 - £56 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Ban's Diving Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 250
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Owned and operated by a local family Ban’s Diving Resort has a very special family oriented hospitality that keeps customers coming back year after year. Within our resort are all the amenities needed to make your holiday on Koh Tao both comfortable and fun. Our facilities include a dive center, beach front restaurant, Darawan Restaurant, spa and hair salon, 24 hour mini mart, 4 swimming pools, and the Fish Bowl bar. ... 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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