No, you cannot rent a motorcycle at the resort. There are some rental shops on the island but we STRONGLY recommend that you avoid this form of transport. The style and quality of driving skills as exhibited by the local population coupled with the state of some of the roads is the cause of many accidents. In the past we have had guests whose vacations have been ruined due to even minor motorcycle accidents. We are pleased to offer you cars to rent complete with a competent Thai driver.
More and more the tourist season in now lasts for 12 months of the year. The most popular time of the year to visit the kingdom, especially for guests living in cold northern climes, has traditionally been from about mid-November to April. Transportation and accommodation rates reflect the high demands during this period. However there are certain advantages for holidaying here in the “off/ summer” season and more people are selecting to visit at that time. This is especially true for those who wish to avoid the intense heat and burning sun and those who like a more peaceful and leisurely holiday without having to battle crowds of fellow tourists.
Yes, there is a greater chance of having rainy days in the so-called “green” season but on average, at the Pimalai location, these, only account for about 6/7 days per month. The resort is in the lee of both mainland and also of Koh Lanta’s spinal mountain range and is thus protected from much of the stormy weather that is experienced in central and northern . When it does rain it generally arrives in the form of short intense showers and an hour or two later the sky is clear again. And yes you may experience a full grey and rainy day.
It is recognized that, globally, climates are changing and wide variations from the normal conditions do at times occur. The fact that partly because of changing global weather patterns, the green summer season now means fewer rains and long periods of delightful sunny weather. Kantiang bay where is located the resort is sheltered allowing swimming almost all year around; in fact we probably raise the red flag about 20 times only throughout that season.
If you do elect to visit us during the “green” season, and we encourage you to do so, we have enough activities to keep you occupied indoors if it is raining and outdoors when conditions allow. ndoor activities include taking our ever popular Thai cooking lessons, experiencing the ultimate in rejuvenation at our spa, working-out in our gym and sports complex, borrowing reading materials, DVDs or games from the library, sending e-mails (by the way internet use is free here!), etc.…and nobody will object to you having a peaceful nap with the soothing sound of rain dancing on the roof. Outdoor activities include, playing tennis, body-surfing in the sea, swimming in the warm waters of our pools, visiting a nearby national marine park, elephant trekking, touring the island and visiting the markets. The beach is always popular with joggers, strollers and beachcombers. For photographers this is also a good time to take photographs of seascapes, brilliant sunsets, wonderful cloud effects, lush green flora, etc….And by the way the temperature never goes below 30 degrees Celsius!...
We wish to advise you: a) swimming pool on the hillside
At Pimalai we welcome a wide range of guests be they honeymooners, families, retired seniors, etc. In general we do not have too much kids at the resort apart specific times such as Christmas or Easter holidays. At times there may be perceived conflicts between those who come here for peace and relaxation and those who are interested in more boisterous pursuits. This is especially noticeable when younger children play near water when their vocal volumes tend to increase! We would therefore kindly ask that in the upper pool the very large pool on the hillside - the younger children, those under 10 years old, only use the small area of the pool; that is the area on the left side of the waterfall feature, when facing the bay. In both public pools and for the convenience of all guests, screaming & shouting should be avoided. Finally, we would also like to remind that parental supervision of children in any of the pools is essential at all times.
We wish to advise you: b) children in dining areas.
Parents, we ask you for your co-operation in safeguarding your children when in the restaurants. At times our waiters and waitresses are carrying trays laden with hot foodstuffs and beverages and may not see a toddler that is running around...accidents can be prevented. During breakfast buffets the restaurants are quite busy as the guests move to and from their tables to the serving displays so, again, we would appreciate that the children remain seated at the tables at this time.
We try to keep our signature restaurant "The Seven Seas on the hillside as a tranquil dining setting and wish to advise that, in order to preserve its peaceful atmosphere, parents who wish to use the facilities at diner time with their kids may do so; we would ask though that for the convenience of all guests kids remain seated and kept quiet at all times.
The resort has a qualified nurse on duty for 24 hours a day. More serious ailments may be treated at the Koh Lanta Hospital which has English speaking medical staff, a pharmacy and dental clinic. We will always be able to help with language via one of our Guest Services Officers.
There is a small but active market in the village of Baan Saladan at the northern tip of Koh Lanta. You can arrange for resort transportation to take you there. There are limited shopping available from May to October.
Our menus have been expanded to cater to the dietary requirements of vegetarians and vegans. Also, on occasion, we have managed to provide gluten-free bread and halal foods if so requested. The more lead time that you give to our kitchen staff the more readily we can cater to such requests. If you have special needs regarding food please inform our staff when you reserve your accommodation.
Things I should know about diving with ScubaFish @ Pimalai
1) Medical certificates and Diving
We recommend all customers to have a medical check before diving, and can email a diving medical form to you for your Doctor to sign before traveling. In some cases a diving medical certificate is mandatory, after an operation, or heart or lung problems, or previous serious injury or certain allergies etc. Please note this must be a medical certificate specifically allowing you to take part in recreational scuba diving without restrictions and dated within the last 30 days.
2) The changing seasons and Diving
At some time towards the end of April our season will normally change, with the wind direction moving from the South East to North West. This causes the sea conditions and wave movement to alter in the Andaman Sea, combined with higher and lower tides on the beaches of Koh Lanta. At some time during this period we will need to remove our eco friendly floating jetty in front of the resort, and make other arrangements for diving excursions, as it will not be possible to depart direct from the Pimalai floating jetty.............. All customers should be aware that it is not always possible to go diving during this period, or may involve car transfers and other delays due to logistical problems. The removal of the floating may happened end of April or early May but it is always difficult to predict. ScubaFish@Pimalai Dive Center is open all year. From May to October there are still plenty possibilities to scuba dive around Koh Lanta. The Scubafish @ Pimalai dive center offers very good trips, essentially to Koh Haa, Ko Rok, Hin Daeng & Hin Muang and also to the southern islands such as Koh Kradan, Koh Mook or Koh Ngai; the boats depart from the Old Town pier on the Lanta east coast where the boats are moored. Scuba diving is of course subject to sea/ weather conditions and this all year around; from May to October, please note that a minimum number of divers is usually required to operate the boat trip – eg; minimum 4 divers for a trip to Koh Haa, minimum 6 for a trip to Hin Daeng.
The resort can also offer transfers by helicopter both from Phuket and Krabi airports. Estimated flying time to/from Krabi airport is 31 minutes, and to/from Phuket airport 36 minutes. Price and availability upon request.
Yes, English is the common language of communication in Thailand’s tourist resorts. We require and try to employ staffs who have different levels of English proficiency depending on their positions. For example our Guest Service Officers and senior staff have usually graduated from university with a strong English component in their degree. The waiters and waitresses normally have had post-secondary training at a technical institute or vocational training school. Our policy is to hire local people as much as possible but unfortunately the educational opportunities are minimal on Koh Lanta so their English may be somewhat limited. They fill the positions as housekeepers, boat crews, laundry maids, etc. However, we do have regular professional English language instruction for all staff that interface with the guests.
This year, during the green season we have scheduled 4 months of intensive English instruction using a recently developed SHELL (Specific Hotel English Language Learning) program created by an Englishman who has had many years of teaching experience in Thai hotels. Pimalai’s guests come from many different countries and speak English with a variety of accents which may impede the understanding of questions the guests may ask. If this occurs we ask that the guest to please be patient, repeat the question and talk slowly. If a satisfactory answer is still not forthcoming then a supervisor should be called. Most of our guests understand how difficult it is for Thais to learn English, a language that is completely different in pronunciation, tone, structure and script from the Thai language.