Friday, April 11, 2008

Island Hopping Beach Bum

The ferry was a really early morning but I made it without a problem. There is a lot to be said for buying the tours for transport from the hotel. They pick you up from your hotel and in most cases make sure you get to where you are going. The only down sides is you pay a little bit more and you lose all of the real contact with locals and of course the travel stories that go along with it.

I tried to stay awake to watch the ocean go by on the ferry but with the early morning and trying to stay awake I was asleep within 5 minutes of leaving the dock. Sleeping made the boat ride to the island go by really fast.

I ask at a number of hotels but the prices at least at the main beach area in Ko Tao were higher than anywhere I stayed in Thailand and this includes Bangkok. I ended up paying 600 Bhat for a room with a fan where in some small towns in Thailand I was getting a room with AC for 350 Bhat. The price at the place I stayed for an AC room was 1,200 Bhat and at some of the places I asked it was 2,500. This would be within my daily budget but as you can tell by my entries I have become really cheap.

Koh Tao reminded me of Vang Vieng in Laos in the fact that most of the people here seemed to be under 30 and I stood out like a sore thumb. Koh Tao is a pretty island but most people come here for scuba diving. It is one of if not the cheapest place to get certified or at least that was what I overheard one of the instructors telling someone signing up for a course. I did not have any interest in diving but was planning on doing some snorkeling.

The day that I arrived I went out and just played in the ocean in front of the place that I was staying at. I must have stayed out longer than I thought because when I got back to the room I noticed that my shoulders were a nice rosy red color. Even though there was not much pain I decided spending a day snorkeling was not a good idea since I was already a little toasted. I bought some sunscreen and have tried to remember to use it ever time now before going topless.

I took a ferry from Koh Tao to Koh Samui. I again did not do much on Koh Samui other than enjoy playing in the beach at day and the bars at night. I found the beach that I stayed at on Koh Samui a bit more to my liking. The beach drops down a lot faster and I didn’t have to wade out 200 meters to be in water over waste deep.

I finally took a couple pictures of a beach that I visited.

I got my first taste of Songkran (Thai New Year) in Koh Samui. I was in an outdoor bar one evening and one of the bar staff was not going to stay in Koh Samui for Songkran. Me and one other person were the only customers and the boss was away for a couple of days so they decided to celebrate Songkran a few days early.

Songkran is also known as the water festival and it is basically a big water fight. Once they saw I was not upset when I got wet them seemed to really enjoy throwing water on me and I was soaked through and through by the time I let the bar. I thought it was a lot of fun but got a lot of strange looks on my walk back to the hotel.

Here is a picture from the ferry when I was leaving Koh Samui.

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