After a night ‘sleeping’ in Bangkok Airport, which was hilarious and seemed a very common thing to do here. Stu woke up to another mans toes gently touching his own, I got to test out my new eye mask.
We decided to stay out of Krabi Town and at Ao Nang beach instead. We’re really glad we did. It was a quieter than our friends had said Krabi Town was and more like a chilled out seaside town. The hotel was really lovely and felt massive after the Air BnB in Hong Kong so our first day we napped and went to find a good restaurant with beer.
Unfortunately Emma got a really bad cold and ended up not being able to hear out of one ear, so island hopping and snorkeling were off the table. It’s frustrating being poorly when you get to a new place, but we’re flexible and booked a couple of extra nights in Ao Nang at another great hotel. We also took a trip to the medical centre which Stu did great research and got to a really good facility. The Doctor was kind and wearing a Hawaiian shirt, the whole process took about 15 minutes. Not as bad as some make out.
Even though we missed out of day trips, we happened to be here for Songkran. This is Thailand’s New Year! They celebrate a transformation or change by using water to wash away the previous years sins, including misfortunes. A lot of families come to the streets to have huge celebrations with buckets of water, some ice cold some warm, some have hose pipes and a lot of people have water guns. Every single person is soaked through. As if you had jumped into the sea fully clothed. It was so much fun and even though Emma still couldn’t hear half of what was going on, it didn’t matter when a bucket of water is thrown over your head. The atmosphere was lively and fun, though a lot of people were drinking rum from the bottle so it was going to get messy later on. We had so much fun especially with all the families that were out.
There is a darker side to Songkran like most things, there’s a big increase in car and motorbike accidents with alcohol being reported as the cause. No one stops for motorbikes too, they get soaked and there’s many people riding while having a super soaker in one hand going down the street. There’s also been increasing numbers of reported sexual assault. It’s frustrating to think this festival is to wash away sins, when there’s still men out there who think it’s absolutely fine to corner women and sexually assault them.
Phi Phi Island
With Emma starting to feel a bit less of a zombie we decided to get over to Phi Phi Island for 2 nights. First feelings weren’t too great about this place. It’s definitely just geared up to get drunk and party. When you get off the boat there’s a small town that has little streets with bars, restaurants and a plethora of tattoo shops. When someone was trying to sell us a boat tour, the highlight was the fact of how many drugs you could buy in the bar afterwards. We smiled politely but clearly she did not understand her target audience. It wasn’t really what we wanted but we made the most of it and decided to explore around. We hiked to the view point which was tough in the heat, we went early morning to avoid the crowds and tried to keep out of the heat but still sweated ridiculously. Thanks to Alicia who told us to take water up!! The view really is beautiful. We also tried to get to a hidden secret beach and hiked for about 2 hours but we didn’t make it and instead chilled out on a different beach. It was hilarious walking up the steep hills realising there were even steeper ones to conquer.
Luckily we timed it perfectly to see our old uni friend Parsons! We had a great night out catching up on lost time and meeting her awesome husband, Olly and two friends that were travelling as well, Rachel and Matt. It was such a pleasure hanging out with them all, ending up in the weird Thai boxing bar with VIP seats. Many Boomerangs were created, also lots of shouting at the tourists attempts at fighting. We love to see friendly faces on our travels, it was a night in Phi Phi with P!
Phuket – Kata Beach
Phucket is bigger than we initially thought, so when we looked for places to stay we chose Kuta Beach further away and quieter than Phucket town which people had warned us from staying there. We’re so glad we stayed in this seaside town. There was a lovely white sand beach, a busy side with parasailing and a walk up the hill to a smaller quieter beach. We had a day of chilling out swimming in the sea and sun bathing then the next day we rented paddle boards and went really far out. It was hard work but so much fun being back on a paddle board after Two Seasons in the Philippines. We also chased after plastics we found on our way around, there’s always something floating by that really doesn’t look like a fish. Always pick up after yourself and others!
It was also our 10 year anniversary in Kuta. 10 whole years! We decided to treat ourselves to a bottle of wine and a good fancy meal. This was our last evening in Thailand so we said goodbye and set off in the morning to Kuala Lumpur.