Oh man, what a day. My manly legs are still giving out an occasional shudder. We climbed up the steep slopes of the Phi Phi island to the viewpoint and then down the other side to the Rantee beach. And vice versa. Felt like quite an accomplishment, really, by the time we came back to our new hotel room with its AC, WiFi, and hot water shower.
But yeah, it seems I’ve skipped a few entries here, eh? Last time we just arrived at Koh Lanta, I think. Koh Lanta was great. Especially compared to Phi Phi. Ok that was a little unfair, but we’ll get to that. Lanta was all long blonde beaches and gentle seas, not too touristy, kinda underdeveloped, with a certain 3rd world vibe about her. We took a Four Island Tour (700 Bhat), snorkeling around Koh Chuek, Koh Mook, Koh Wan and Koh Ngai. All gorgeous places, but the snorkeling was a tad sub par after Cuba, because the coral reefs were mostly dead… We also got fed local grub, which was nice. All in all, a great day out on a long tail. Got pretty burned, of course. Even though I “don’t burn”™.
Afterwards we got a slow boat to Koh Phi Phi Don. It is (was?) supposedly one of the most awesome islands of the east Thai archipelago. Now it is a fairly raped piece of real estate. The swarms of tourists have to be seen to be believed. The Brits are sending all their chavs here, too, apparently, probably because it is cheaper than incarcerating them and less scandalous than forced euthanasia. The island is home to some horribly loud and garish bars, completely out of place in these surroundings. Go to fucking Ibiza if you want to get fucked up and get a tattoo of the Union Jack on your ass. We stayed at three places while here, first at Phuphaya resort at a bungalow, but that was throbbing with the base beat skipping across the bay from a multitude of trashy bars. We then got a “rape room” from some Pong place (cheap dinky room that looks like someone might use it on an hourly basis, if you get my drift), but there were Brits across the hall so only got two hours of sleep. Now we’re at Tapear resort, it’s 22:30 and there are some worrisome developments in progress upstairs. Fuck this island, it is ruined.
Or is it? Because if you can find a quiet (and cheap) enough place to sleep the place does have some fairly nice restaurants that won’t rob you blind, some nice day tours to take, and cheap scuba diving courses. As well as some rather good diving (and of course snorkeling). As I mentioned earlier, we climbed the hill up to the viewpoint (I forgot my camera back at the hotel, of course) and down the other side, a steep jungle path complete with snakes and monkeys, and were rewarded with a gorgeous beach and some of the best snorkeling I’ve ever had. I drifted with a huge school of fish, was circled by barracudas and dove down to the cold cold darkness 15 meters beyond, barely making it back to the surface. You will just have to try it yourself, words do it no justice.
Sigh. This night it seems that Swedes will be our scourge. We’ve got to wake up at 7am to go shark-diving (ourselves, not as a part of any tour), so will be mighty pissed off if can’t get no sleep for the third night running.