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Published October 5th 2014
Peace-loving, hygiene-freak books into backpacking hostel
I wouldn't consider myself your average hostel dweller, being that I like my own space and a bit of peace, but thought I'd give this place a shot as it's the cheapest I could find - with air con - in the area I wanted to stay, namely Baan Tai with its lovely beaches and restaurants, halfway between Thong Sala, the main town in Koh Phangan, and Haad Rin, party central.
I thought, what the heck, I can always move if it doesn't meet my hygiene standards.
The average guest is your party-going 20-something here to experience the neon-paint-and-alco-bucket extravaganzas that are the Moon Parties. The hostel owners - a fun and friendly couple in their 30s whom I gather have done more than their fair share of partying over the years - ensure that the guests don't just stay at the hostel but are made to feel really welcome. Solo travelers are introduced to their roomies, and party nights kick off with fun drinking games that end with glitter, neon paint, dancing, and new friends piling into taxi buses together to head to the world famous all night beach and jungle parties.
You'd think with all this debauchery that there'd be trouble but I only met genuinely lovely and considerate people, some of whom I've stayed in touch with.
You can rent mopeds, book your onward travel, get party tickets and also advice about what to visit on the island from reception. If you just need some time out you can lounge around watching a DVD, use the free wifi, play the guitar (that I was pleased to see, as I didn't bring mine), or read one of the good selection of books. There's also a whole shelf of Lonely Planets you can use to plan your next move.
Cross the road and you're on the beach, and within a two minute walk there's a 7-eleven and several really good restaurants. Ten minutes by bike or taxi and you're in Thong Sala, 25 minutes and you're in the thick of it in Haad Rin.
There are 3 levels of accommodation - a basic fan dorm, air con dorms, or private rooms. I didn't like the look of the fan dorm, too cramped and not very well ventilated but it's a good budget option especially if you won't be spending much time in your bed! The air con dorm was more than acceptably clean, spacious and the beds are comfy with clean sheets and a blanket.
Air con dorm to sleep 6 backpackers
Prices start at THB100/night for a fan dorm, 300 for an air con dorm, but beware that these rates increase over peak periods.