We find the next best thing to being on holiday is planning one. We asked our General Manager Maeve to reveal her favorite uncharted islands as inspiration for anyone looking for tips to plan the best possible way to spend valuable vacation time.
When I’m asked for genuine ‘Robinson Crusoe’ style destinations, two that immediately spring to mind are islands that few may have heard of: Koh Phayam in Thailand and Macleod Island in Myanmar which can both be found in a the Andaman Sea.
Natural. Simple. Beautiful. Those are three words I’d use to sum up Macleod Island in the Mergui Archipelago off the coast of Myanmar.
With limited lodgings available (Myanmar Andaman Resort is the only resort, which has just 22 rooms) this island is ideal for those seeking serenity, simplistic beauty and a natural paradise to relax in. The island also has a PADI dive center which offers an opportunity to train and become certified as a qualified diver.
While the resort on Macleod may be considered ‘rustic’, the experience of staying on the unspoiled archipelago is purely 5-star.
Located just south of Myanmar’s Mergui Archipelago, Koh Phayam is still relatively underdeveloped and is one of Thailand’s most closely guarded secrets. The island has a population of only a few hundred locals, one village and only a handful of restaurants so if you’re seeking serenity, then this is the paradise destination for you.
Con Dao itself is not a secret to travelers of course, and is gaining in popularity (Con Dao was recently featured in The Telegraph Travel)…but for now the beaches are still serene and sparsely attended, making it an ideal place to end any Vietnam vacation.
Resting just off the coast of Java, Indonesia, the Karimunjawa Islands are also (amazingly) still relatively unknown – a blessing if you’re looking for an isolated island to enjoy. Accommodation options are limited to only one five-star resort (which offers private flight transfers), and a sprinkling of lower category hotels.
Our Indonesian Travel Specialist Anhika recently advised me that he expects numbers to this stunning archipelago to rise sharply as people become more aware of this Indonesian gem, which offers some stunning scuba and snorkeling sites.
With 23 white sand beaches, minimal development and untouched jungle, Cambodia’s Koh Rong is one of Southeast Asia’s most divine island escapes. Found just an hour from Sihanoukville, Koh Rong is blissfully devoid of roads and is surrounded by beautiful coral and schools of exotic fish.
At night the limited lighting on the island (the local generator is turned off at night) means that conditions are superb for spotting phosphorescent plankton in the waters under the starlit sky – a more than adequate substitution for modern amenities.
While Koh Rong’s accommodation options could be considered ‘rustic’ (yet comfortable), if you’re looking for luxury as well as isolation, nearby Song Saa Private Island Resort is the epitome of opulent tranquility. Harmoniously blended into its surroundings, the private resort offers 27 lavish villas from which to explore the exclusive island, and is one of our favorite places to feel special.
If you’d like to plan a vacation to one of our favorite lesser-known paradise isles, be sure to contact us for some expert advice and to tailor a personalized trip that will enliven your imagination. Simply send our Travel Specialists an inquiry today and begin planning your dream vacation in Asia.