Royal Thai Air Force Residence (Ao-Manao)
Tambon ko Lak, Prachuap Khiri Khan, Thailand
www.aomanao.com - 03266 1088-90
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Royal Thai Air Force Residence (Ao-Manao) Prachuap Khiri Khan Reviews
Secret hide away for the serious traveler in Thailand May 30, 2011
This hotel is probably one of the most exciting finds I have ever made in Thailand. You will not find this hotel in any travel agent or hotel website search, yet it is the best find ever.
OK, some advice. This hotel is really for the serious traveler in Thailand (but that's why we are on this site, right?)This hotel is on a Thai air force base, and is used to house military personal when necessary, but it is also a public hotel when there is space. This hotel is virtually unknown to westerners and the guests are almost entirely Thai or westerners with Thai wife's/partners.
However, it is in a beautiful part of Thailand, approx 80km south of the more popular Hua Hin. To even get to this place will take all of your traveling expertise and your best Thai language skills. If you do not speak any Thai, maybe give this one a miss. The staff speak very little English and you may find the experience unfulfilling and frustrating.
To get here, you first need to find your way to Muang Prachuap Khiri Khan (you can get a mini bus from Hua Hin) You then need to find a motorcycle taxi and ask to be taken to Ao Manao which is 6km away. I was sat with suitcase between me and rider, and another bag on my back. (the crazy experience itself is worth the trip) You will be driven across the military runway and will eventually come to the hotel on your left. Sometimes, you may have to stop and sign in at the military station. I have read they may want to see your passport, but this never happened in my case.
I tried my luck on two occasions, and just rolled up and managed to get a room. At the time, they only had twin rooms. There seem to be many of these and I think that's because its used for military personal mainly.
The hotel itself is slightly dated, but this hotel is like 50yds from the sea. The rooms were huge, wi-fi included in the 800 - 900BHT price. Sadly the restaurant was not in operation at the time of my visit and my Thai was not good enough to find out why.
However, either 2 mins on the moped or a very pleasant 10-15 minute walk along the sea front takes you to a big food centre where they have all manner of THAI food on offer. Thai breakfast can be had for 30 - 60 bht!
The staff were very friendly, I virtually had the pool to myself, the beach in front of the hotel rarely had people on it, but you could walk towards the food centre and find more people there. I loved it here, the setting is fantastic and it was such great value for money. I spent two weeks here and barely spent any money at all. There was also a huge selection of restaurants 6km away at Prachuap. For nature lovers, I discovered you can watch bats emerge from a nearby cave every evening. (approx 300yds back down the road to Prachuap)
For me, this place was a magical experience, it was safe, beautiful and totally submerged in Thai life. Just look at the photos, they speak for themselves......
2 / 2 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
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