Places to eat in Koh Lanta
She sells seafood by the seashore… that’s not quite how it goes, but it’s fitting in Koh Lanta. Blessed with its endless coastline it’s no surprise that there is plenty of seafood to be had on the island – and freshly caught that day, too.
If you have a scooter, you’re best placed to be able to trawl the island for the best bites to suit your mood, with restaurants scattered from north to south, east to west. True to its roots, Koh Lanta also offers Thai classics like mouth-watering curries as well as its fair share (or more) of Western menus to please those with picky palettes.
Some say the first stop the fishermen make when they have their fresh catch is Lanta Seafood, 73 Moo 1, Saladan Village. So that’s where we started! You can order whatever they’ve caught that day, from tiger prawns, to squid, fresh fish, and crab and it’ll be flame grilled for you on the BBQ. Paired with a delicious sauce and some steamed rice, you’ll be smacking your lips in delight.
At the opposite end of the island, in Lanta Old Town (south east), we recommend Fresh. Not only will its rustic romantic charm win you over, but the kaeng som (hot and sour fish curry) is the best. And you won’t break the bank either at local prices meaning you’ll be hard pushed to spend more than THB400 for dinner for two.
If you want to taste authentic Thai food, we suggest making a beeline to the south-western part of the island, past the exclusive Pimalai Resort, to Same-Same-But-Different with its beachy driftwood-style décor and unbeatable sea views. If you’re veggie, the spicy wing bean salad (yam tua plu) is a must and any of the curries will have you begging the chef for the recipe. As it’s a bit further south, it can be lacking in atmosphere but makes it good for a quiet date night.
Diamond Cliff Restaurant is another of our favourites offering panoramic views over the Andaman Sea and wonderful sunsets over happy hour. For food, we would recommend the soft-shell crab red curry bowl and if you’re looking some simple but delicious, the tofu vegetable fried rice is the answer. With a few Changs to the order, you can look at spending around THB600 for a dinner for two.
If you’ve been enjoying the fine sands of Klong Nin beach, many of its seafront restaurants are worthy of a visit, but Blue Moon in particular offers organic brown rice with all its meals, a great option for the health conscious, and an additional flavour when you add a hearty coconut-based curry to it. Dishes average THB200.
Western and International Food
There’s nothing wrong with craving a bit of western food, we all do sometimes! So if you want that bit of nostalgia, but without the effort, Mr Wee’s Pizza is the ultimate lazy answer for a lazy hammock day – of which there are many on Koh Lanta. If you can’t make it to his chilled vibe seafront restaurant, his delivery service will literally deliver anywhere.
If you fancy getting out of your swimsuit and into your smarts, then you can’t beat Tides for a dressy dinner in the upmarket Layana Resort in Long Beach, whose menu nods to a French influence (with excellent French wines to match!)
Red Snapper is another great option for those with a more European palette. Tucked away in a cosy garden, just away from Phra Ae (Long) beach, you can choose from a wide selection of tapas, as well as western to middle eastern dishes with a twist. We definitely recommend this one, and prices are low for what you get.