Koh Phi Phi (guest entry from Mel)

Trip Start Feb 01, 2006
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18
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Trip End May 04, 2006


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Flag of Thailand  ,
Wednesday, March 8, 2006

So, after spending another night on the far side of the beach in
Krabi, Dan and I got up early (well in Thailand, 8:00 IS early!)
to grab some food and head to the island of Koh Phi Phi
(pronounced koh pee pee). This trip was the beginning of my
first experience with a little phenomenon called "Thai time" aka.
nothing EVER happens on schedule. For example, our ride to the
larger ferry consisted of a longboat that picked us up 20 minutes
late, took us 5 minutes away to our original beach on Krabi, let
us out for 25 minutes, then loaded us BACK on, this time for a 30
secound journey 100 yards out to the main (and by then, fully
packed) ferry. Ridiculous - an hour and a half for 100 yards we
could have swum if not for the bags! But hey, not the worst thing
in the world to be stuck on a beautiful beach!

Anyway, it was all worth it since Koh Phi Phi was a gorgeous
island with a lot of energy. We got dropped off in the hectic
center of town at the pier and after some food got a longboat to
a bungalow that had an incredible view from the porch of the
ocean and the limestone cliffs across the bay. We went for a walk
on the "path" (across the rocks nezt to the ocean, obvi) back
towards town. There you see stalls and vendors with everything
you can imagine --- a wide array of jewerly, dive trips, fresh
fish, internet cafe's, pancakes, flipflops, anything you can
think of. The Thai people have tvs outside and you can walk by
and hear the soap that EVERYONE watches every night or the latest
British football match. On a sad note, the main area of the town
actually got damaged in the tsunami and you can see destroyed
trees and open gressy areas which used to be hotels that were
wiped out. Despite the horrible destruction there (800 dead, 1200
missing) people are still friendly and welcome toursists, and you
would likely not even notice the effect of the tsunami since
everything has been spruced up to the best of their ability with
no government funding.

ANYWAY, did I mention that Koh Phi Phi Don is the island next to
Koh Phi Phi Lei, which is where the movie "The Beach" was filmed.
Pretty cool! Be jealous. Because THEN the second day on the
island, Dan and I went down to our beachfront restaurant (all
bamboo and such) to have fresh fruit-juice shakes and pancakes,
and got roped into renting our own longboat for the day. Twist my
arm, really! We had the longboat owner take us around Koh Phi Phi
Lei and some other spots for the whole day!!! Just Dan and I and
Ta!!! (Well, I think his name was Ta, but I'm not sure becuase we
had a major language barrier going on and even though I kept
asking him questions hoping that he would understand me at some
point, I got no love. But TA(?) was so smiley and friendly and
sang "Ole, Ole" with us and yelped every time we went over a huge
wave :)

Anyway, first we went to the "Viking Cave" which was on PP Don.
People actually live there on the side of a limestone rock in the
cave. Amazing. Then we went into a massive lagoon area (PP Lei),
an inlet on the side of the island, with gorgous blue water and
high walls. We snorkeled there, then moved on to a small secluded
beach which Dan and Ta and I were the only people on. This place
was amazing with white sand and palm trees and high walls
enclosing the beach. It was even better than when we next stopped
in the cove where they filmed "The Beach." That looks similar to
the movie but with more brush and people (obvi!), boats and
snorkelers. The only issue with the secluded beach was that it
was so nice that we stayed a BIT too long and the boat started to
get run up on the shore --- after a frantic few pushes, though,
we were on our way... We then went to another cove to snorkel
(amazing fish) and then drove the boat back all the way up the
main island and out to sea.

On the way to our next stop, Bamboo Island, Ta even let Dan
drive the boat for a few minutes and he was a pro at it! I also
tried and managed to set the boat on completely the wrong course
in the 30 seconds that I was at it, so Ta ran back and set us
straight, WHOOPS! Anyway, we got off at Bamboo Island, and this
was THE nicest beach I have ever seen in my life. White sand,
blue blue water and basically no one on the beach. It was
incredible in it's own right but also had amazing views of the
other island. We went for a swim and took some pictures, but let
me tell you, this place was idyllic. Only thing that struck me
as straange was that there were some pine trees on the island,
but we did not see bamboo, so not sure how it got it's name! The
whole boat trip lasted about 7/8 hours and ended with a leisurely
ride right back to the beach our bungalo overlooked, so nice!

Back at the bungalow, we got showered and headed out to a
beachside dinner then continued into the main part of town. There
we plonked ourselves down at the Reggae bar --- again, not sure
of the name since I did not hear a single reggae song the whole
night. But they were playing hip hop --- hip hop in Thailand?
Works for me --- and we had some buckets (See Dan's previous
entry) and then were entertained by, get this, Thai boxing.
There was a huge ring set up in the middle of this bar and they
convinced various backpacker guys to put on boxing shorts,
helemets, gloves and shoes - the whole kit - and to fight each
other, three rounds, for 2 buckets as a reward. Not for me, but
it sure was amazing and ridiculous to watch! After several
vicious encounters (although they are also allowed to kick, and
in doing so can look a little bit ridiculous), we moved on. We
wandered into a place featuring Thai guys covering Rolling Stones
songs (and sounding quite accurate, although it might have been
the beers and buckets!). So random, but good times and we did
make it back on the "path" over the beach!!

That is all for now. We will write a bit more about Koh Phi Phi
in the next entry and are trying to upload all the good pictures
we have where I don't look like a moron (not easy, according to
Dan!)
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Comments

scotishpwr
scotishpwr on

Whats up Kids
Hey guys...Mel I am glad to hear that you had a safe trip half way around the world. Thats cool that you were able to meet up with dan and make sure he is not falling into any more holes. I hope dan is displaying the sick dance on a regular basis. Maybe it will become a world wide phenomenon! Both of you take care, remember to stay warm, wear layers to prevent frost bite.

Scott

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