Thursday March 11
It’s been awhile since I’ve found time/energy to write. The days are flying by and everything is just happening so quickly. Hopefully I can do my best to recap it all.
We arrived in Phuket last Saturday in the late evening. From the airport we took a taxi to Patong Beach area (one of the funnier taxi rides I’ve ever been in) where we spent the night at the Sweet Home Guest House. The owners of the guest house were ridiculously cute and gave us great travel advice — mind your wallets; the location of the “discotech” and of course, the big local shopping mall. All of this being irrelevent – minus the mind your wallets – as we were only in town for approximately 12 hours. Once settled we went on the search for an internet cafe and some dinner. We decided to try a street side tent restaurant. It proved to be delicious and the workers were beyond entertaining. We also med a 5 year odl local girl, Mina, who coerced us with her kisses and cuteness to sell her flower necklaces. When we tossed her a couple coins, she looked at us like we were insane and said “No Money, No Honey!” — what a sass! We also met some casanovas from Italy whome we made speak to us in Italian which was absolutely beautiful.
The next morning we caught the ferry to Ko Phi Phi. It took about an hour by boat. We arrived the port with no accommodations books, so we trekked around the island looking for decent budget places. Budget accom is virtually impossible to find, but we settled for a place for 900 baht per night – roughyl $27 USD split 3 ways – so about $9 bucks each. We quickly dropped our bags and hit the beach. The view was incredible but the beach itself was covered with garbage and the water was literally as warm as bath water so it definitely didnt make for a refreshing dip. After a few hours on the beach, we went back to our room for a nap. When we woke up, we found ourselves, the bed and our bags covered with bugs. We tried to cope with it, buty the fact that our door was incorrectuly cut and not properly sitting in the frame only made the bug matters worse. We asked if we could change rooms, but were told they were full for the night, then after a bit of an attitude from the owner we decided to cut our losses – despite the fact they wouldnt offer any sort of refund – and went on a frantic hunt for another place to stay. After literally seraching the entire island, we found a place in a good location with a clean, big room with the biggest bed I have ever seen. It was honestly bigger than a King. The 3 of us slept perfectly comfortable without bothering each other. We had planned to only stay there for one night, but our backup plan hotel was booked up when we went to check in, so we stayed at K’s House all 3 nights. The girl working the desk was so sweet and what whould have been a 1500 Baht room a night, she gave to us for 1200 Baht – so roughly $11-12 bucks a night each.
Once settled in our new digs we decided to embrace Phi Phi night life – and it more than made up for the not so fantastic beach. All the bars along the beach turn the beach into a big outdoor discotech – music, dancing and fireshows – the whole 9 yeards. We strapped on our dancing shoes, grabbed a bucket and danced the night away – or until 1 AM when the music stops and the beach party ends. — This is MUCH different from Korea where the bars basically don’t close until the last person leaves.
We met some fellow Canadian travellers, which was actually really refreshing. It was nice to be able to have a full conversation in regular English with people who understand and relate fully to you. It was a nice dose of the homeland – Canadians rock!
Our last full day on Phi Phi island was spetn on a 6 hour sailing trip of the islands. It was a bit pricier than regular trips as we decided to go with a fellow Canadian – Captain Bob – who has been living in Thailand for 3 years after making a 9 year trip from Vancouver to Thailand by boat. The trip included a visit to monkey beach where we fed the monkeys; kayaking; snorkeling; swimming; fishing; lunch; an hour at the infamous Maya Bay where the movie The Beach was filmed; cliff jumping; watching the sunset; and of course, unlimited drinks. The tours usually hold about 12-14 people, but when we went it was just us 3 and a couple, so it was a more intimate experience. I think the best part was hooking up our ipods and jamming to sweet tunes while touring the islands around Ko Phi Phi. Overall I’d say it was worth the extra money and I’d definitely recommend it to others.
After 3 nights in Phi Phi, we caught the 1.5 hour ferry to Ko Lanta. We booked a room prior to boarding the ferry so we had transportation arranged for when we arrived. We arrived at what was basically a mini-resort – yet, still within our budget. However, the beach itself wasn’t nice infront of our resort, but the onsite pool made up for it. We made friends with some young travellers from Sweden, so after dinner Maria and I spent the night playing cards & jenga with them and some local Thai employees of the resort. It was pretty neat hearing Maria speak in Swedish and help translate things into English – but overall their English was bomb. They even knew all the slang, swear words and sarcasm!
This morning we checked out of the resort and went on a hunt for a bigger and better beach. With the help of our driver, we ended up on Long Beach where the name basically speaks for itself. The room itself is definitely nothing to write home about as we were without running water for a majority of the day, but the location is ideal and again, it’s within our budget. Today we spent the afternoon soaking up the rays, but it’s almost too hot to sit out for longer than a couple hours. At least the water here is more refreshing, but we found each time we went in we were being stung by something. Oh, and I witnesses someone pull a sting ray from the water with a fishing net – so needless to say, I didn’t stray far from the edge.
Tonight we are going to catch the sunset and take an easy night as we have an early morning and a long day of traveling. From here we will take the 2 hour ferry to Krabit; a 5 hour bus ride and another ferry to Kho Samiu. The next week we will spend exploring the islands of Kho Samui, Kho Phangnan and Kho Tao. We plan to be in Kho Phangnan for the Black Moon Party on the 15th, then fly back to Bangkok by the 18th. From there we plan to visit the infamous floating market and a tiger temple. Then on the 19th we will see Caitlin off to the airport, then Maria and I will head north for some elephant trekking and boarding crossing to the nearby countries.
Everything is going really well right now and I’m loving being a world nomad!
(sorry for no pictures! It’s too much hassle to upload them up on a public computer).