Lonely Planet Writer

Treepod dining in Thailand is the latest bucket list experience

Treetop dining options have historically included birds nests and childhood tree forts, but a resort in Thailand is adding one more to the list — except this one has world class views and gourmet cuisine that might even make the birds jealous. On the Thai Island of Koh Kood, the Soneva Kiri resort is home to Treepod Dining, where guests can savor a meal while ensconced in a pod, suspended amid the leafy rainforest canopy.

A view of the sea from a pod high in the trees.
Fancy dinner with a view? Image by Paul Raeside

The private bamboo pod hangs about twenty feet off the ground and holds up to four guests, who enter at ground level and are hoisted up with cables. Once in position among the native massang trees, a dedicated waiter delivers freshly prepared fare, from a peaceful breakfast to a candlelit dinner, via zip line. Sourced from the resort’s organic garden or from local markets, the menu includes the playfully-named ‘canapés in the canopy’ with Crispy Sweet potato, Banana and Taro chips, or “woodland offerings,’ including a Galangal (a Thai spice) baked white fish in banana leaves with lime and Soneva garden salsa verde.

A waiter serves a couple in a dining pod at Soneva Kiri.
Magnificent views from the dining pods at Soneva Kiri. Image by Cat Vinton

“It has taken two and a half years from design to final realisation; it is great to see it so appreciated by guests,” said said Graham Grant, the resort’s general manager. “Even people without a head for heights are thoroughly enjoying it!” The treepod’s design was inspired by the weaver bird’s creations, and it was made from locally-sourced rattan woven by a resident craftsman.

Situated in the jungle on the fourth largest (but least populated) island off the coast of Thailand, the Soneva Kiri is a remote eco-resort, home to private luxury villas. Guests come to snorkel in the island’s reefs, explore the jungle, or stargaze in the property’s observatory. The resort is also home to Benz, a restaurant that notably has no menu, rather Chef Khun Benz prepares authentic Thai meals based on the freshest catch of the day and whatever is available in the local markets.

Between the view, the gourmet meal, and the sheer novelty of it all, treepod dining makes a strong case for eating like a bird.