Krabi, Koh Lanta and Hat Yai

Trip Start Apr 30, 2004
Trip End Jan 28, 2005

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Thursday, July 15, 2004

Day 69 - Fri 9th July
A last walk of the dogs, breakfast and goodbyes. Rene tried the intertnet again at 7.30am but still no joy.

A surprisingly straightforward minibus journey has un in Krabi by 10.30am. We haven't a clue where we're heading, which is quite nice for a change. After some decisive indecision we end up in Ao Nang, which is only half an hour on the local bus. I no like Ao Nong, but we stay a night anyway.

[Cathy's view - long sandy beach with beautiful views out to the Andaman Sea with various small islands of Limestone rock. I had a nice paddle and read my book on the beach. Touristy, busy promenade, and all a bit expensive for our budget.]

Highlight of the day was an Italian meal, Rene had veggy lasagne, I had Gnocci. Just like Mamma used to make. Decision of the day - Koh Lanta tomorrow.

Expenses: Bus 500B, Breakfast 100B, Bus 40B, Taxi 40B, Room 500B, Lunch 240B, Internet 10B, Books 335B.

Day 70 - Sat 10th July
Having left Ao Nang at 10am we arrive in Koh Lanta at about 1.30pm. It's shut and on first impressions it's a bit of a dump. We'd read it was a lovely peaceful little island with nice beaches and cheap accomodation. Maybe it was, but at the moment it's one huge continuous building site, interspersed with tired looking, weather worn, falling apart bungalows. It's low season so we are expecting it to be fairly quiet, we weren;t expecting nearly everywhere to be shut. After a big bucket of messing about, we arrive at a place ironically called Paradise Resort. It's a hundred moons from paradise. It's a tired, dirty, run down mess of a place. It reminds me of the Majestic Hotel just before it closed.

We have no real choice but to stay tonight, but we've already decided to leave in the morning. A walk on the beach, reveals washed up coconuts, litter and murky water (monsoon season). We have a quick swim in the Andaman ocean, have some food and a couple of beers, (Rene had a prawn curry and removed all the prawns and fed them to three of the skinnyest cats we'd ever seen) and watch a glorious sunset.

Expenses: Bus 400B, Internet 17, Breakfast 120B, Accom 200B, Food and drink 495B

Day 70 - Sun 11 July
Left Lanta in a rainstorm and 2 hours later arrived in sunny Trang. Leave sunny Trang and 3 hours later our minibus arrives in rainy Hat Yai. The 3pm minibus to Penang is full and the next one isn't until 9am tomorrow, so we book a room in the Montien Hotel. It's huge, built in the 70s and hasn't been touched since. We're in room 904 and appear to be the only guests they have, or have ever had. The room is all seventies original furnishings, right down to the light shades and chocolate brown bathroom suite.

Outside, Hat Yai appears to be the Bedford Rascal Pick-up Capital of the world. There's thousands, all converted to taxi people carriers, with bench seating in the back and ornately painted roofs. It seems like a nice place, lots of people about and plenty of good places to eat and drink.

Expenses: Bus to Trang 400B, Bus to Hat Yai 260B, Malaysia Lonely Planet 1095B, Fruit and water 28B, Accom 350B, Lunch 440B, Dinner 220B, snack 38B
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