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Near the Anantara is Pakmeng Resort (60/1 Moo 4, Tambol Maifad, Trang; tel. 07527-4112; www.pakmengresort.com), rustic but cozy and quiet in a mangrove plantation near the sea wall. Rooms range from 900B to 1,200B. Southern Thailand Botanical Gardens (tel. 07521-8435) also has basic accommodations available for around 200B.

Where To Stay On The Islands

If you prebook a stay on the nearby islands, the resorts will help with transfers; otherwise, head for the ferries that leave frequently from Pak Meng Pier. Ko Ngai (aka Ko Hai) is the most developed island, with half a dozen smart places, including the quaint CoCo Cottages (tel. 07522-4387; www.coco-cottage.com), an environmentally friendly cluster run by a cheerful Thai family; beach cottages range from 1,750B to 4,900B. Another good bet is right next door, where the Thapwarin Resort (tel. 081894-3585, mobile; www.thapwarin.com) has big, comfy bamboo and rattan cottages for similar rates. On Ko Mook, go for Sivalai Resort (tel. 086479-6780, mobile; www.komooksivalai.com), which stands on a dramatic spur of land with a beach on both sides; rooms start at 4,000B. Finally, on gorgeous Ko Kradan, the best place to stay is the new Seven Seas Resort (tel. 07520-3389; www.sevenseasresort.com), where rooms and villas go for 6,600B to 12,000B.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.