Trip Start Aug 28, 2008
29Trip End Nov 11, 2008
Map your own trip!
Show trip route
Today we left Nakhon Si Thammarat on another local bus for the "beach" part of the trip in Ko Samuiwhich is an island off the eastern coast of southern Thailand. It took two hours by ferry to get to the island but first impressiohns of the resort are very positive. The hotel is really nice. The room is comfortable and the hotel has a swimming pool, hot tub and fronts onto a quiet beach. Upon arrival a few of us went for a swim in the sea, the water is really warm and the sea is really calm so its great for swimming.
Dinner was at a local restaurant and it was my first time having a Thai evening meal. I found the food is a little too spicy so I will have to get used to this during my time here. Finally back to the hotel for a couple of drinks on the beach. Alcohol is really cheap here, a large bottle of beer at a restaurant costs about 1.50 GBP and cocktails are around 2.00 GBP which makes a nice change from Malaysia
Woke up early because there was a group boat trip to another island, however half an hour before we were due to leave the group leader found out that it had been cancelled due to rough sea (the sealooked perfectly fine from the beach). having already got up and got ready it seemed silly to go back to bed so I joined a few of the lads for Kayaking. We tried to paddle to a small island about 1km off the shore but it was sorounded by shallow rocks and we got a little stuck. As we were heading back the wind changed direction (to off shore) and it was hard work fighting against wind, by the time we got back to the beach I was soaked by the waves and exhasted but it was great fun.
In the afternoon a few of the others and I arranged to go on an "ecotour". The highlight of the trip was definitely elephant trekking. At first it is quite scary because you are balanced on this little seat high, which I shared with Ollie, above the ground on the back of this poor elephant. The track also got fairly steep at some points, although the lovely elephant tried to keep us as balanced as possible. For the elephants hard work we rewarded it with bananas which it seemed to enjoy! The other activities included a Thai cooking lesson (not very exciting), a demonstration of a monkey collecting coconuts from trees and a short trek to a waterfall.
Dinner was at a restaurant in a local village. The restaurant was decorated in moroccan theme and our table overlooked the sea. Also the meal was probably the nicest so far (although there has been so many great meals).
Its been two weeks already - the time has gone so quick
The three hour journey across to Koh Tao was incredibly rough and a number of people on the boat felt really ill. Although the sea sickness didnt effect me I was glad to arrive at the other island. There was lunch served on the boat and a couple of opportunities to go snorkelling although I wasnt really in the mood so didnt bother. The journey back was incredibly rough and there was a few occassions where it seemd that the boat would capsize! I was sitting outside on deck and I had to hold on tightly to my seat to avoid been thrown across the deck. By the time we reached land i was soaked by the waves that came over the side of the boat but it was still a fun experience.
After a refreshing shower I took a short nap. I was woken from my sleep by Stephen announcing that our taxi was here to take us to the main town on the island. Ooops I'd overslept. I really didnt like the town. Although it has some great restaurants I got really annoyed by the constant harrassment on the street and in some of the bars by Thai women and street sellers trying to persuade you to have a massage, buy them a drink etc.. and I was constantly worried about getting pick pocketed. Until this evening every Thai person I had come across seemed really nice. The funniest moment of the night was when a monkey escaped from its handler and went on a rampage around the bar, the man did get it back eventually.
It took me forever to repack my things in preparation for the long day of travel ahead
After lunch our long journey to Bangkok began. Today was the hotest day so far so its a shame that most of it was spent travelling. It started with a journey by ferry back to the mainland. Strangely today the water was incredibly calm so the passage was uneventful. After a bus and another bus we had lunch in preparation for our night bus. We were supposed to be catching a night train but due to the protests the railway line had been closed which was a little disapointing. When the bus pulled up, from the outside, it looked like something out of pimp my ride. The front was covered in flashing lights. Inside it was okay but I was expecting something a little better. I thought a night bus was a bus designed for people to sleep on but the reality was that it was just a bus that travelled through the night. The only added extra was a little more leg room and seats that reclined further.
You probably wont be surprised to know that I didnt get a very great nights sleep. Firstly just as I began to nod off we made our midnight stop at some random service station, instead of subtly waking everyone up they switched all the lights on and played loud Thai music (that pissed me off). In addition to the rough journey we arrrived in bangkok at 5am where we were kicked off the bus and sent on our way. Fortunately the hotel had our rooms available so I could get an hour before the sightseeing in Bangkok began.