Danok is a Thai border town with Malaysia. (Bukit Kayu Hitam is on the Malaysian side). It's convenient to cross here if you're arriving from Hat Yai. Minibuses leave about every 40 minutes between the 2 towns and cost about 50 baht one way. If you're heading to Penang, Malaysia, it makes sense to get a direct minibus from Hat Yai to Penang (about 300 baht), rather than just get to the border, as you may have to wait a while on the Malaysia side to get a bus/minibus - There's nothing much on the Malaysian side, - try to do the crossing into Malaysia during the day if you do decide to break up the journey so you can make sure you get onto a bus. It's about a 700 meter walk between the 2 countries - motorbike taxis offer their services in both directions.
Danok could be called, 'seedy' and if you're arriving to Thailand for the first time, try not to get the impression that this is what the rest of Thailand is like. It's absolutely full of massage parlors and karaoke bars, many attached to the plentiful number of hotels here. Danok isn't big - there are only a few streets - most of these streets are jam-packed with bars and parlors.
You may want to stay the night here, especially if you arrive late (the minibus drivers told me they finish around 8pm for journeys to/from Hat Yai).
I visited 4 hotels and have details below the map:
1) River Grand Palace - Very good security here (which might be a concern in Danok) with video cameras. Rooms were quite nice for 650 baht per night. Air-con, attached bathroom, TV.
Tel: +66 074 557318 / +66 074 557318 / +66 (0)74 557319
Address: 4/3 Moo 7, Soi 4 Thai-Changlone Road.
2) Queen Park Hotel - Rooms for 550 baht / 650 baht / 750 baht per night. The room for 650 baht a night had a nice sofa in it. Air-con, attached bathroom, TV.
Tel: +66 (0)74 301277 / +66 (0)74 301278
Address: 6/99 Kanchanawanich Rd, Soi 6 Thai-Changlone.
3) Marina Inn - OK rooms for 400 baht per night.
Tel: +66 (0)74 434031 / +66 (0)74 434032
Address: 10 Soi 6 Thai-Changlone Road.
4) S.P Palace Hotel - Ok rooms for 420 baht per night.
Tel: +66 (0)74 301051 / +66 (0)74 301052
Address: 88 Moo 7, Soi 4 Thai-Changlone.
Return from Danok to Hat Yai Transport