Ko phayam- my own little slice of Paradise

Trip Start Jan 25, 2011
Trip End Feb 21, 2011

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Where I stayed
Mr. Gao

Flag of Thailand  , Ranong,
Friday, February 4, 2011

Excited about getting to discover another new island today, I was up early once again, even before the sunrise. I heard the monkeys this morning, playing in the trees close to my bungalow and I lay in bed wondering if I brought my sandals in last night? I basically only brought two pair with me, so losing one pair to a bunch of thieving monkeys was not going to happen. All was good, and I left with both pair for the ferry to Koh Phayam, my next island, which was about an hour ride away.

There was about 10 of us making the journey, a couple of men travelers on the boat reminded me a lot of a younger Ozzy Osborne, and Lynyrd Skynyrd   ( I took a picture, pretending to be taking  one of the boat) there are quite a few interesting folk that make the journey to these parts.

Other than that one day of rain on the bus ride up, the days have been sunny and beautiful with very little humidity and very few misquotes.  This time of year is perfect for travel in Thailand, pretty much anywhere you go, and you can expect really nice weather. Except from what I've been recently told, about one of the places that I was planning to visit on this trip…Koh Sok National Forest. Remember the story about the monkeys that got into the bungalow and ate the Malaria pills? Yeah, that’s the place. This park sounded so cool, you stay the first night at the entrance of the park in tree houses ( yes and trees full of monkeys,,,) then the next day you take a overnight boat ride into the park and stay in huts floating on the lake… do some caving and hiking and see lots of wildlife. The problem is that they have been getting a lot of rain, I have no rain gear with me, and the rain brings out the leeches, ugh. This couple that I met in Ko Chang had just come from there, they said on their hike the leeches were so bad they went thru their socks, into their shoes and it took hours to "peel" them off. Now remember, I don’t even have a pair of proper shoes with me, can you imagine what those leeches would do to me in flip-flops? I can see Sarah squirming as I’m telling this story,,,,lol, right honey? He, he,,,,okay so I’ve already come up with another rock-in idea of where to go instead,,, of course I have! I will share that with you all later.

So this island is a little bit smaller than Ko Chang, but just a tad more developed. They have motorcycles. The road thru the island is just a small path paved for motorcycles. It’s nice to think they built that path with no means to develop much, which seems great. My bungalow was recommended by word of mouth by some travelers, and I had my last bungalow call ahead for me,,, I’m learning it’s a must this time of year for the “cool” spots. I’m staying at Mr. Goa.  I got the last bungalow they had for 400 baht ($13) a night. It’s great for the price, and has a cool deck with mats and pillows instead of a hammock,,,(I can live without one for a couple days…) and a mattress that actually feels kind soft, I’m so excited! They have other bungalows here that go for 600 baht, they look super cool , with outdoor showers and nice decks with lounge pillows and lanterns…I would recommend those if you come here, I would of splurged if they had one available!

Internet has been tough to use on these last couple islands,,, it’s not free, and costs about 2 baht per minute, and if you all are wondering why I’m not writing emails too much. So basically in 3 hours I can spend the cost of what my bungalow is costing me a night,,, you get my point.

These small islands are great for exploring with a motorbike,,, and since I have never driven one in my life, learning for the first time in a foreign country is not such a great idea. . So for now, I will just flag down a motorbike taxi and hitch a ride to where I want to go driven by a professional.  My mom will be thrilled to know I won’t be renting one on my own. But in case you do want to come here and rent one, it will only cost you 150 baht a day ($4) and you don’t need a driver’s license or a deposit.. I guess it’s just on the trust factor, or the fact that it’s a small island,, and if you don’t bring it back they will know where to find you.  These places are so romantic that I’ve been staying at and there are a lot of couples here, so traveling alone can be tough at times, there’s so much that would be wonderful to share with someone else.  But when it comes down to not going because not everyone can just take off like I can, or going because I can, and not  wanting  to pass up the opportunity, then the choice is to go, and enjoy it alone.

The lights still only work from sunset to 10 pm; they give you a little flash before they’re getting ready to shut down the generator for the night so you can scramble for your flashlight and candles. The water in the showers is cold, which feels great after a long, hot day. So you usually take your showers in the afternoon or at night since the water tank has all day to warm up in the sun. if you do have to take one in the morning, it will be a quick one, I guarantee you that !  It doesn’t take long to settle into the island life and to see how it all works and how it will be impossible to think of going back to ever spending more than $100 a night for a hotel, when you can stay on the beach in paradise for at least 7 days ( or more!) for $100.

So my first full day here, I walked up to the road and flagged down a taxi bike and asked him for a ride to the other beach Aow Yai.  The beaches are even prettier over here, but I think the bungalows are better on my beach Aow Khao-Kwai.  The bungalows on Aow Yai, are a lot newer, more expensive, and concrete,,, I like the more natural wood bungalows better, and there so much more quaint. So I would recommend coming to this beach instead. I walked to the end, and had the whole beach to myself, it was incredible. Even though this is high season, the beaches are practically empty, and the resorts  are very spread out, and compared to so many other islands, this is still up and coming and not yet discovered in the main stream sense.

Tonight at dinner, there was a group of travelers that came off their yacht that was parked in the harbor to have dinner at the restaurant as well. They came in on Dingies and parked them on the shore,  and not one of them had a pair of shoes on.  I wonder if they even own any. And I thought I had a good life.

I head out tomorrow to take the ferry back to Land, and then a long bus ride to reach Krabi where I will spend the night, and venture to an island I’ve visited before, one of the more popular, but by far, one of the most breathtaking places I have ever been to. The reason I’m going back is because I have a unique excursion I’m planning to take from there. I will save it and tell you all about it when I arrive. I promise it will make a few of you Jealous.

Costs for today...

Boat ride over $4

Bungalow at Mr Goa $ 14
Motorbike ride to Bungalow $1.50

Meals including a large Chang Beer $10

Internet $4

 Total for the day...$33.50

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Johanna Foote on

If you go back next Jan, no construction project is going to get in my way.....I for sure will meet you for a taste of paradise. Im drinkng my german coffee, with my heat on high, but its not even close:(
temp in ord 0, and -20 with the wind chill
Enjoy the beaches....xoxo

Sarah Stone on

Mom - You are right the leeches make me squirm! I am glad that you did not rent a motorbike! Grandma and me would both agree that was a smart choice! I am also glad that even though it is "high season" you are still getting your beaches isolated. I miss you and love you!

christine on

i so look forward to your next blog! so exciting to read and i almost feel like im there. Next time take me please!!!! im waiting to here your new adventure coming up to suprise us. p.s. im in LA reassignment from frankfurt from snow storm u missed! 20 inches of snow. Miss u tons :)

maureen on

Good heavens! How many colors does paradise come in??????You must publish a book, Elizabeth and I mean coffee table size!!!! The weather has been crystal clear here so i have no complaints about living in my urban beach world.Love the blue dress in the boat pic. enjoy some crab in Krabi xoxoxo

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