Bars and Restaurants in Thong Nai Pan Noi

Bars and Restaurants in Noi

Key

1: Karaoke
2: Thai Restaurant
3: Shop and ATM
4: Sand Bar
5: Better Than Sex
6: Easy Corner
7: Luna Lounge
8: Saloon Steakhouse
9: Saloon Coffee Shop

10: Siam Tattoo
11: Rimtara
12: Rasta Baby
13: H20 Scuba
14: Baan Muay Thai
15: Jip's Restaurant
16: Handsome Sandwich
17: Som Tam
18: Country E-Saan
19: Happy Mon Massage
20: La Hacienda
21: Shop
22: Supermarket
23: Again and Again
24: Thai Restaurant
25: Tanaporn Massage
26: Star Huts Restaurant
27: Noppond Pharmacy
28: Chat Shop and ATM
29: Aow Noi Shop
30: Chompoo Travel
31: Chompoo Minimart
32: Brats and Brews
33: Shop
34: Smile Travel
35: Beach Club - Buri Rasa
36: Pansea Restaurant
37: Stonebeach Restaurant
38: Cool Sands Pub
39: Bistro@ the Beach & The Lounge - Rasananda
40: Sand in Your Toes
41: Phuwadee Resort
42: I Sea Bar
43: Krua Tapan Noi
44: Chantara - Santhiya

 
Things to try Beachfront Dining

Beachfront:

  • Grill at the The Bistro@the Beach
  • Pizza at Phuwadee
  • BBQ duck and mango at Tapan Noi
  • Draught beer at I Sea Bar
  • Sunset cocktails at Beach Club

Seaview:

  • Fresh fish at Chantara
  • Lunch at Panviman pool bar

In the Village:

  • Burmese food at Better Than Sex
  • Thai food at Muay Thai
  • Cocktails sitting on Luna's sofa
  • Bucket at Rasta Baby
  • Burger at Handsome Sandwich
  • Crispy pork at Baan Muay Thai
  • Steak at Saloon Steakhouse

Cooking lessons:

  • Again and Again

Since Rasananda took over a large piece of the beach the number of places on the sand to get food and drink has shrunk. There are now 6 beachfront dining locations on Thong Nai Pan Noi. They are: Stone Beach Restaurant, Buri Rasa Beach Club, Rasananda, Phuwadee, Sand in Your Toes and Tapan Noi.

 

Stone Beach Restaurant & Cool Sands Pub

 

Stone Beach Restaurant is tucked away at the southern end of the beach. This is supposedly the Panviman part of the beach but since they finally put up a bridge to cross the small stream the beach is open to everyone. Stone Beach Restaurant has an a la carte menu as well as a buffet and BBQ option. The food is generally good. You can also get wine with your meal.

 

The food at Panviman costs a bit more than in the village, but is still affordable. Next door to the Stone Beach Restaurant is the Cool Sands Pub that has live music, karaoke and serves snacks as well as drinks. It is a venue mostly used by Panviman guests. It hasn't really been a big hit with the evening beach crowd.

 

The Bistro @ the Beach

 

The Bistro at the Beach is next to the Rasananda reception building. It offers grilled seafood, Thai dishes and Western cuisine. The food is described as a 'blend of local techniques and Michelin trends'. The restaurant is next to the pool and looks out over the beach. The kitchen is partially open to view and has impressive modern design. For guests there is the option of on-the-beach dining with your own personal table, low seating and red umbrella.

 

The 'lounge' holds a large selection of wines as well as champagne and cigars. Rasananda organize tasting sessions and cocktail parties in the Lounge for its guests.

 

It is debatable whether you really get 'Michelin trends' when you dine at The Bistro@ the beach. The food at Rasananda as with Panviman and Santhiya restaurants is of a high standard and generally affordable; it is only if you order wine, champagne or cigars that your bill will become comparable with a European restaurant bill.

 

Beach Club at Buri Rasa

 

Buri Rasa's showpiece restaurant with plenty of on-the-beach tables and chairs as well as under cover. There is an extensive menu that takes in Thai food, seafood and International dishes. This is a great place to go for sunset as they have cocktail and beer happy hour prices. There is also a few surprise items on the menu such as Japanese pickles.

 

Phuwdee Restaurant

 

The cheaper beachfront dining options are Phuwadee Resort and Tapan Noi. Phuwadee is a rented business and so the staff, menu and service tends to change with each new tenant. At present the food is not bad. You can get the usual selection of Thai dishes as well as burgers, sandwiches etc. They also have a wood chip oven for pizzas.

 

Sand in Your Toes

 

Sand in Your Toes is the latest beachfront restaurant in Thong Nai Pan Noi. It is located between Rasananda and Phuwadee Resorts on the spot where Flip Flop and Pong's Restaurant once stood. It opened in September 2015 and serves Thai and Western food. Since it is such a new restaurant the jury is out as to whether the food and service is any good.

 

Tapan Noi and I Sea Bar

 

The most popular place to eat on the beach is the Tapan Noi restaurant. It is an open style restaurant with plenty of beach seating. The menu has full and half portion prices. As with the Phuwadee you can get a large selection of Thai curries and soups as well as Western standards such as burgers and American fried rice. Most evenings during the high seasons they have a BBQ offering locally caught fish and steaks. The food is delicious and good value.

 

Next door to Tapan Noi restaurant is the I Sea Bar. It is a small bar with seating around the bar as well as on the beach. They have draught Singha as well as bottled beers, cocktails and spirits. It is a great spot for a night cap as well as an afternoon cold beer.

Dining with a view

Chantara Restaurant - Santhiya

 

The only two restaurants in Thong Nai Pan that can claim to have seaview dining are the Pan Sea Restaurant and the Santhiya restaurant called Chantara. It is worth visiting these restaurants just to take in the view of both beaches in Thong Nai Pan bay.

 

Chantara restaurant is beautifully decorated in teakwood with traditional lanna style architectural features. There is a large balcony as well as indoor seating. The menu includes fresh fish, beef steaks, sushi as well as Thai food. The food is well prepared and the service is usually good. It is, however, the view that makes eating at Chantara Restaurant a memorable experience.

 

Pan View Restaurant and Panviman Pool Deck Bar

 

Pan View Restaurant is the low circular building you can see on the headland between Noi and Yai beaches. It is mostly used for the breakfast buffet for the Panviman guests. It is sometimes open in the evening and for events such as Christmas dinner.

 

There is an impressive view over the bay from the windows. You need to be sitting at the edge of the restaurant by the windows to enjoy the view. The Panviman Pool Deck Bar is next to the swimming pool and has great views. It closes at 5pm. You can sometimes see large monitor lizards on the rocks when sitting at this lunch spot.

 

Although the Pool Deck Bar is mostly patronized by Panviman guests there is nothing stopping you from having a swim and a bite of lunch here. The staff are normally relaxed about these things.

In the Village Dining

Thong Nai Pan Noi village stretches back from the beach all the way to the road entrance of Panviman. The businesses tend to change every few years. At present along this road you will find a Mexican restaurant, 2 boutique dining spots as well as plenty of cheap Thai style restaurants. Eating in the village is a good way to save money, meet the locals and soak up the laid back atmosphere of Thong Nai Pan Noi that made it a favorite backpacker destination.

 

While prices do go up every year, Thong Nai Pan Noi still offers some good value eating spots for those on a budget. The village also offers a nightlife that is largely lacking at the hotels and along the beach.

 

Brats and Brews

 

Brats and Brews is a smart bar in the Village Square. It used to be called Don's Cafe. The decor is similar to before but the concept behind the bar is very different - rather than expensive glasses of wine, it now offers draught Chang beer by the glass or the litre. To accompany the brew customers can watch live sports on TV. To keep the 'brats' happy there is some good quality ice cream for sale.

 

The wine barrels and stylish surroundings make this a pleasant place for a drink, however it's not beachfront and it's not cheap.

 

Better Than Sex

 

When Pong's restaurant on the beach was turned into resort space, he reopened at the back of the village in an impressive glass and steel structure that had previously been a nightclub . Pong understands the restaurant business and food; consequently his new restaurant is a great hit. The branding and the sex theme might seem bizarre but it works.

 

Better Than Sex has a menu that offers Italian, Thai and Burmese food. There is also a wood chip pizza oven. The prices are more than the Thai restaurants in the village but cheaper than eating at the hotels.

 

If you have never eaten Burmese food then here is your chance. It is one of the best dining options in Thong Nai Pan.

 

Luna Lounge

 

Opposite Better Than Sex is Luna Lounge. It is a circular thatched building. Inside there is table seating as well as comfortable sofas. Luna Lounge is in the same price bracket as Better Than Sex.

 

Luna Lounge was taken over in 2012. The new owners have changed the menu. There is a selection of Thai classics as well as Western dishes such as burgers, kebabs and steaks. The website claims there is 'fusion' food on offer.

 

Luna Lounge is rated as one of the best places to eat on the island according to Trip Advisor. This is more to do with the networking skills of the last tenants than any superlative culinary excellence. Still Luna Lounge is a cool spot for a drink and snack and fills a flashbacker gap in the market.

 

La Hacienda

 

La Hacienda is the restaurant on the corner just after you cross the bridge as you are walking away from the beach. You can't miss the place as it has sand and parasols outside.

 

Ironically enough this spot was once a Mexican restaurant called Que Pasa. After a failed incarnation as a party spot it is again a Mexican place. It has the usual Tex-Mex dishes on offer. The food is good, and the Long Island Ice Teas are also worth a try.

 

Rasta Baby

 

Opposite La Hacienda, set back from the road is Rasta Baby. This is one of the longest running restaurants in Thong Nai Pan Noi and still one of the coolest places to hang out. It is an upstairs open plan restaurant with comfortable seating on raised platforms.

 

Rasta Baby has some good Western food on its menu as well as Thai curries. It is also a good place for a few drinks late at night. Rasta Baby is run by a local family. They have stuck to a winning formula. And yes, they do play reggae music, but not exclusively so.

 

Baan Muay Thai

 

Baan Muay Thai is a popular Thai restaurant. It is an unpretentious spot that does great Thai food at reasonable prices. Many hotel guests make their way down to Baan Muay Thai at least once to soak up the village atmosphere and try the delicious Thai food. The owner is not surprisingly a former professional Muay Thai boxer.

 

Rimtara

 

This is a place that opened in 2014. It is slightly off the main village road. The path to Rimtara starts opposite Rasta Baby. Rimtara is a bamboo styled restaurant selling Thai and Western food.

 

Again and Again

 

Again and Again is perhaps the only restaurant in Thong Nai Pan to mention the fact that they don't use MSG. They do Western and Thai food. It is a nice little restaurant. The dry curries are very good.

 

Star Huts

 

Star Huts is next to Tanaporn Massage House. The owners have many years experience catering for tourists and have set up a pleasant little restaurant offering Thai and Western dishes. They also have free wifi.

 

Saloon Steakhouse

 

Saloon Steak House is an Americana themed restaurant serving steaks, pizza, pasta, salads, burgers and Thai food. Saloon Coffee Shop (next door) sells coffee (obviously), tea, other drinks and light snacks. Saloon Steak House does a good steak. For 450 THB you get a large tasty sirloin steak with sides. They also have rack of lamb for 350 THB.

 

Country E-Saan

 

This restaurant has moved from near the Buri Rasa Village Square to further back in the village. It is now next to La Hacienda. They serve BBQ and other Isaan dishes from north-east Thailand. They are reasonably priced and still popular despite being 'shunted' farther away from the beach.

 

Shops

 

There are a few shops in Thong Nai Pan where you can buy snacks, food and drink. Chat Shop near the beach has cold drinks and snacks and is the most expensive shop in the village. Next to Baan Muay Thai is Snoop Shop which has a better selection of food including fresh vegetables and meat. If you are self-catering the best shop is the big shop near the road entrance to Panviman. They have a fairly good selection of fresh produce as well as dried foods and tin food.

 

 

Bars

Nearly all establishments sell both food and alcoholic drinks. There are very few spots that can be described as a bar. The exceptions are I Sea Bar on the beach next to Tapan Noi Restaurant and Sand Bar in the village. This section will focus on those places where people go to drink, not just eat.

 

I Sea Bar

 

I Sea Bar is a small bar on the beach. It is a relaxed spot and nice for a few drinks in the evening. They have draught beer and do various mixed drinks. You can either sit around the bar or on the beach.

 

Better Than Sex

 

Better Than Sex is one of the best restaurants in Thong Nai Pan. It is also a popular drinking spot. People tend to stay after their meal for a few drinks. There is plenty of seating both at tables and chairs as well as on raised platforms. They play cool music and the place has a relaxed ambience.

 

Luna Lounge

 

The old owners of Luna Lounge encouraged a night time drinking crowd with parties and other promotions. At the moment Luna Lounge appears to be more restaurant than bar. Good place for a relaxed drink after dinner.

 

Village Square - Pan Cafe and Oleang Cafe

 

The Village Square is a cobbled area of the original village next to the beach that has been turned into a shopping, restaurant and cafe area. Buri Rasa has two cafes called Pan and Oleang with seating inside and outside. These cafes serve a full range of drinks and snacks.

 

Jip Shop

 

Jip Shop is a bar / restaurant with two seating areas. The staff are friendly and keen on football. They have a big TV and know when all the games are on. This is the place to go to have a few beers and cheer on your team.

 

Sand Bar

 

Sand Bar has gone from big covered area to a small circular bar with a thatched roof. They have an impressive cocktail menu - all drinks are 100 Thai Baht. They also sell small Chang beers and small Singha beers.

 

Karaoke

 

Thai people love karaoke. There has been a karaoke place somewhere in Thong Nai Pan Noi village for several years. Now it is at the start of the village road. This is a good location as it gets noisy late at night. The karaoke equipment is basic and the English song selection is limited. Nevertheless, it can be fun to head down the karaoke place for a couple of beers.