As it happens that some of us here at Fleewinter have recently become parents, we have realized even more how difficult it can be to find accommodation that caters to families: some only accept adults, some are ok only with teenagers, some do accept children but those would just be bored for days, rooms accommodating families are hard to find, parents are unsure about location… the list goes on. And this is where we step in: your Travel Specialists that have spent months in their respective destinations researching the best hotels that countries have to offer (not the toughest job in the world admittedly).
And this is what this blog post is all about: We talk about Asia’s best hotels for family holidays in the Asian destinations we cover. And since each family is different, we have divided this post into several sections, we hope you enjoy the read.
Best hotels for a family beach holiday
Philippines: Amorita Resort, Bohol
Afternoon ice cream by the pool, daily children’s activities, bicycles and kayaks, a spa and adults-only restaurant while the kids are distracted, babysitters available, a dive centre, and beach access in a stellar location make Amorita our favourite family hotel in the Philippines for a beach holiday. With 1 and 2-bedroom suites and villas, families can stay together without worrying about interconnecting rooms. If staring at the ocean gets tiresome, it’s easy to explore the island and see one of the world’s smallest primates, weird mounds of earth called the Chocolate Hills, float or kayak down an emerald green river, or zipline above the trees.
Thailand: Aava Resort, Khanom
We were hesitant to post this on here as Khanom actually is still a slice of paradise, off the tourist radar – still (so hurry up)! The Aava Resort is run by Finnish management and perfect for a family getaway. Especially the Family Villas are great as they feature two bedrooms, two bathrooms, a living room, as well as a private sun terrace with Jacuzzi. There is plenty to do in the surroundings: Take a boat to meet the “Pink Dolphins” colony which patrols the cost every day, or put your hiking boots on and explore the mountains which guard the beach at both ends are covered in pristine jungle, full of colorful birds.
Bali & Lombok: Tugu Lombok
Tugu does not have a kids club, but its prime location on Sire Beach overlooking the Gili Islands is perfect for families who need pampering. The stay in this amazing hotel is like a journey in time to the ancient Hindu times. The hotel can arrange tours and amazing excursions and trips on dragon boats, so your children will be entertained by the local culture.
Sri Lanka: Uga Bay by Uga Escapes, Pasikuda
Uga Bay is located on one of Sri Lanka’s best beaches, Pasikuda on the east coast. This outstanding family-friendly hotel is known for its luxury, tropical-paradise charm and fantastic facilities, including the spa and its tantalising menu. The hotel’s gorgeous infinity pool stretches right onto the beachfront so you can look out onto the calm ocean waters from the pool or sun lounger. The coral reef is perfect for snorkelling and you can dive WW2 wrecks or go dolphin watching, on a cycling nature tour or learn to cook a Sri Lankan curry or two.
Malaysia: The Datai, Langkawi
After a recent renovation, The Datai has reopened with updated rooms, gorgeous villas, and plenty of ways to keep everyone happy. There are three swimming pools, walking trails through ancient rainforests where dusky monkeys peer from the trees, bicycles to hop on, sailing, snorkeling, diving, golf, tennis, a plush spa, epic beach, and they’ll even arrange a cookery class for you.
Best family hotels for toddlers & young children
Vietnam: Sunrise Hotel, Hoi An
With a fantastic kids club, kids pool and a great variety of food and restaurants on site this is one of our favourite kid-friendly beach hotels in Vietnam. What’s more they even throw ice into the swimming pool at 1pm! If you’re looking for a place that does not scrape on luxury but will also have other families around so your little ones can play with other children while you sit back with your favourite book, this is the perfect getaway. Located on the beach in Hoi An, just three miles from the pretty UNESCO town itself (which is home to some of the best tailors in the region), it’s a great base for enjoying the area and there are plenty of day trips you can do from here too. It’s the ideal spot for those who don’t want to spend hours travelling through the country with small children and prefer to be in one place instead.
Malaysia: Tiger Rock, Pangkor
Once the home of an artist and her young family, Tiger Rock is an island escape ideal for families with young children and toddlers. The small island offers a bit of jungle with monkeys and wild pigs, a calm beach safe for swimming, the culture of a traditional fishing village, and a few historical sights to see. The caretakers cook all meals using local produce and fresh seafood and they have years of experience catering to young palates. The property is divided into different areas so a family can use the two bedrooms in the main house which the owner built for her family when the children were quite young. This is a true home-from-home holiday experience.
Bali & Lombok: Fairmont Sanur, Bali
Located right by the lovely beach of Sanur, which is ideal for families travelling with small children. The sea is calm and right by the beach there is a lovely promenade for easy use of pushchairs. For kids the the kid’s club is every child’s dream come true. Featuring an arts & arts area, Lego station, min-cinema, playground and Sony PlayStation, the club promises to keep children of all ages entertained. Two children’s pools, measuring 49sqm each are specially catered for junior guests. Well-positioned pool umbrellas offer shade from the tropical sun.
Thailand: Tong Sai Bay, Koh Samui
The Tong Sai Bay on Koh Samui offers a beach holiday which the whole family will enjoy, one actually doesn’t even need to leave the resort. The separate villas (we especially recommend the View Point Family Cottage) offer privacy for your family and you won’t have to remind your child to stay quiet all the time. While adults can indulge in spa treatments or yoga classes, there is a separate paddling pool for children, or they can enjoy the calm ocean and the private bay the hotel is located in.
Sri Lanka: Anantara, Tangalle
Renowned for its luxurious hotels in beautiful locations, Anantara Peace Haven Resort, Tangalle is the perfect choice when you’re travelling with toddlers and young children. The rooms are perfect for you and your little ones, the children’s swimming pool and kids club alongside activities such as surfing, SUP, sunrise yoga on the beach, cookery classes, spa treatments, cultural and tea plantation visits, nature walks and safari and whale watching trips nearby will leave you wanting to stay for longer.
Best for Teenagers
Bali & Lombok: Uma Sapna, Bali
Great value villas located in the centre of the popular Seminyak. Area known with great restaurants, bars and shops. It’s also a highly popular spot for surfing.
Thailand: Soneva Kiri, Koh Kood
Admittedly, this hotel on Koh Kood comes with a price tag, but if you have a bit to spend on your holiday, and are looking for the ultimate getaway, then Soneva Kiri is what dreams are made of. The resort offers 36 unique villas, from one (482 sqm) to six (2928 sqm) bedrooms – so much space for children to explore. Most villas have direct ocean access and come with all amenities one could think of, e.g. some villas have their own waterslides. The room rates include access to the resort’s various facilities like kid’s club, water sports equipment, overwater cinema, ice cream parlour as well as activities like Yoga and Meditation, an introduction to astronomy in the resort’s Observatory, a tour of the resort’s Eco centre Waste-to-Wealth centre and organic vegetable garden to just name a few. They also offer a special programme aimed specifically at one to five year-olds in the Eco Den. Here the children get to play with toys and take part in activities, that meet Soneva’s stringent standards of social and environmental responsibility. All children are looked after by qualified childcare experts, supported by local child carers.
Sri Lanka: Wattura Resort & Spa, Waikkal
Wattura Resort & Spa, new for December 2018 and nestled between Waikkal beach and the Gin Oya estuary, is Sri Lanka’s first wellness and family- oriented luxury boutique hotel. It will be perfectly suited for families with children of any age as the facilities are absolutely superb with an emphasis on privacy, wellness, architecture, spectacular views and ‘Wattura’ or water in Sinhalese. Adults and teenagers will feel right at home with striking rooms and villas, ocean and river views and excursions such as kayaking, snorkelling, deep sea fishing, boat cruises, kite surfing, hiking and whale and dolphin watching.
Philippines: Apulit Island Resort, Palawan
Off the east coast of Palawan with its towering limestone cliffs jutting from clear aquamarine waters, Apulit Island is our top pick for teenagers. The resort offers snorkeling and diving trips, island hopping, rappelling, spelunking, kayaks, paddleboards, hobie cats, windsurfing, volleyball, darts, table tennis, badminton, and more so there’s a range of options for anyone who wants to meet other guests and keep busy. There are plenty of beach and pool chairs for those who’d rather curl up with a book and a spa for a bit of indulgence. Loft Water Cottages can sleep 4 people across two floors, giving you a bit of space to spread out while staying together under one roof. Full board is included in all stays (handy for teenage boys with insatiable appetites!).
Best for Family Adventure Holidays
Borneo: Sukau Rainforest Lodge
Spotting crocodiles in the river, orangutans and monkeys in the trees, and walking through the jungle to a cave where bats swarm out at dusk makes for incredible memories. Sukau Rainforest Lodge in Borneo has beautiful villas with two bedrooms, a swimming pool for cooling off between river safaris, and air conditioning – an absolute luxury in the rainforest! Full board is included with a variety of familiar dishes and local fare on offer at each meal and if anyone’s looking for a bit of tranquility, a variety of massages are offered at the lodge’s spa.
Philippines: Sta Monica Beach Club, Dumaguete
Only just beginning to appear on the tourist radar, the area around Dumaguete still allows for an authentic adventure in the Philippines. Travel inland to the crater lakes of Balinsasayao where the jungle is thick, you can kayak, swim, look for tropical birds, and if you’re really lucky, spot a warty pig or spotted deer. There’s also an amazing waterfall you can trek to. For snorkelling and diving, a day trip to Apo Island will take you to one of the healthiest coral reefs in the country and more turtles than you can shake a stick at. The boutique Sta Monica Beach Club has family lofts that sleep two downstairs and two up while a larger family can snag the 3-bedroom Beach House.
Indonesia: Nihi Sumba, Sumba Island
One of the best hotels in the world. Sumba is a magical Island, a landscape filled with natural wonderment and geographical opulence. Guests have the opportunity to partake in a daily excursion with the Land & Activities team who takes guests to experience some of the island’s most spectacular and scenic excursions by hiking, mountain biking, horse riding or open-air Land Rover Safari.Nihi offers some of the most breath-taking, diverse hiking Indonesia has to offer. Along white sandy beaches, mountains, rice paddies, ancient villages, fully guided walks are all within an hour from the resort and cater for families or the avid hiker.
Thailand: Elephant Hills Tented Camp & Rainforest Camp, Khao Sok National Park
Elephant Hills offers amazing packages for families, operating in the often overseen Khao Sok National Park. From feeding and washing elephants, canoeing through lush rainforests to jumping into the emerald green waters of Cheow Lan Lake, your whole family will love it, guaranteed.
Sri Lanka: Ahas Pokuna, Uva Province
‘In a Jeep you may see Sri Lankan wilderness…. On foot you feel, hear and smell it….’ If you’re looking for adventure and getting off the beaten track then Ahas Pokuna is for you. Bushwalks with professional naturalists and expert bushmen allow you to explore the Sri Lankan wilderness until your heart’s content. Admire the wildlife from your private deck, sleep indoors or in your very own four poster ‘star bed’. With just 3 cabins and no direct access by foot, it’s the perfect adventurous yet relaxing ‘get away’.
Best for Cultural Experiences
Java: Plataran Borobudur
Plataran Heritage Borobudur is immersed in a tranquil village atmosphere surrounded by the most picturesque vistas of paddy fields, tropical gardens and the lush Menoreh Hillis. This is ideal place to explore Central java’s numerous natural, cultural and spiritual wonders, including its most magnificent monument, the Unesco World Heritage -listed Borobudur Temple, a few minutes drive from the hotel.
Sri Lanka: Jim’s Farm Villas, Matale
Jim’s Farm Villas is perfectly situated for easy access to the cultural city of Kandy as well as The Cultural Triangle. You can explore the spectacular Sigiriya Lion Rock Fortress, that towers high above the jungle canopy, visit Dambulla Cave Temples, Minneriya National Park as well as the ancient city of Polonnaruwa. The villas have fantastic large family rooms with stunning views of the jungle, outdoor baths and the complimentary tour of the plantation/farm is lovely for children and adults alike.
Vietnam: Boh Hoong Bungalows, Central Vietnam
Stay in a traditional woven stilt house in a remote village in central Vietnam for an authentic ethnic minority experience. We find that teenagers especially love this off-the-beaten track rural destination as they can run freely around the small village, get chatting to the other children (or even help out in the school) and even try their hand at archery with the village pros! The whole village takes turns in looking after the guests, with the help of an English-speaking guide and as there are only 5 bungalows with no other tourism projects around it’s a great opportunity to avoid the crowds whilst supporting a local and sustainable project. Your teenagers will even love the travelling there and back (normally from Hoi An) because it’s all done in an old American jeep from the days of the Vietnam war – expect fantastic scenery with plenty of interesting stops en-route.
India: Dewalokam Homestay, Kerala
Dewalokam is an idyllic homestay and organic farm located in rural Kerala between Cochin and the tea plantations of Munnar. Your hosts will be Jose, Sinta and their two children, who welcome you into their home as family and offer a fantastic experience and insight into local life here. Time is spent learning about the spices, fruits and vegetables on their farm, and how they are used in Indian cooking, exploring the neaby village by bike or foot, sharing experiences with the family and other guests or just relaxing in a hammock by the river and swimming in the natural pool. There are few properties that offer so much for everyone and it will surely be a highlight of any holiday to India!
Borneo: The Fig Tree, Kiulu Valley
A community-based ecotourism farmstay, the Fig Tree offers a chance to experience contemporary village life in rural Borneo. Meals are prepared with local ingredients, your Dusun guide will share legends of headhunters, and take you on walks through the valley. Your guide may take you past a school, stop by a rubber tree (and give you a chance to try rubber tapping), visit a home where you can learn how to sift rice the traditional way, show you how to use a blowpipe, or perhaps you’ll plant rice or pick a pineapple. It all depends on who’s home and what’s happening when you turn up. Accommodation is basic with mosquito nets and fans and shared facilities but if you’re a family, you may have the entire farmstay to yourselves.
Best for Multi-Generational Families
Philippines: Atmosphere Resort , Negros Oriental
With a kids club and babysitting available, an award-winning spa, wellness programs that can focus on yoga, fitness, or a detox regimen, a top notch dive centre, balconies with hammocks and chairs ideal for relaxing with a good book, room choices that range from suites with a private pocket garden to two-bedroom penthouse suites with kitchens and ample lounge area for entertaining, Atmosphere Resort offers an ideal option for a multi-generational family. With only 30 rooms, this luxurious boutique resort offers world-class service in a part of the Philippines where there’s plenty to keep busy but it’s also easy to do absolutely nothing.
Bali & Lombok: Ayana Resort, Bali
Ayana Resort has simply everything you can only dream about for your perfect holidays. Ayana facilities cater to guests of all ages and interests. Sip a tropical drink beside 12 magnificent swimming pools; play a friendly round of golf on the 18-hole putting course; engage the little ones with cultural activities at the Kid’s Club; or treat yourself to traditional Balinese cuisine and a Kecak Dance performance beneath the stars at Kampoeng Bali in its sister Rimba resort.
Phew, this was a long post… I guess, we just know a lot of great places for your next family holiday 🙂
Thanks for reading and have a wonderful day!
Eva & the Fleewinter Asia team