Ping Pong Patong!

Trip Start Nov 30, 2012
Trip End Jan 14, 2013

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Flag of Thailand  , Phuket,
Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Day 1

We were up for about 10:00. Our room was really nice & the guy who owned it was a chemist. He was an absolute clean freak which was good to know after some of the experiences we had had up to this point.

As we were going to be here for 5 days we decided to rent out a bike, especially as Martyn had said we were quite a way from town. We finally found somewhere that would do for 180baht (€4.50) a day & set off in search of the hotel Martyn works at. It didn't take us long to find & we soon realised that we were a lot closer to town that Martyn had thought. We met up with him & headed off for some lunch in one of the local markets.

After a good catch up we sorted out our plans for the evening & headed off around Patong to see what was happening. Lisa was engulfed in the shopping so eventually I left her to it & headed to a gym whilst she shopped until she dropped. We didn't sleep too well the night before so we headed off for a power nap before heading off to meet up at the bar.

Martyn had asked Lisa earlier in the day if she was open minded enough to see what Patong was really all about. It's difficult to come to a place like this & avoid what Really goes on. At least that's what we thought. He went on to take us to places he didn't even take me the last time I came. There was a go go bar, a spanking bar, a dart-firing-from-where-you-give-birth-bar & countless lady boy bars. We stayed out for a few hours before making our way home.

Day 2

We woke up around 10:00 but didn't actually emerge from our room until 13:00. Paul & Lisa were getting here today so we grabbed a quick McDonalds to help with the hangover & headed to The Expat Hotel, where Martyn worked, & waited for them to arrive.

We crashed by the pool & Lisa had a quick dip before we both started falling asleep. Suddenly, all I heard was Rodge behind us giving it his stupid pirate impression. I hadn't seen him since we met up with him at the ski centre in Manchester at the beginning of the year. Him & Lisa had been travelling for 4 months from Moscow right the way through to China then across to Nepal & India. His thing when travelling is not to shave so you can imagine my surprise when I saw him with his new hobo look.

After a good catch up we said to Martyn that we would save our next night out for the following night as we were still feeling a bit fragile whilst Paul & Lisa were shattered from their travelling. We took them back to where we were staying & were lucky enough to get them a room at the same place.

We spent the next couple of hours chilling out before going to grab some food across from where we were staying where we swapped stories from our travels. Eventually we decided that we'd go to the cinema that was at the big shopping centre in town to watch The Hobbit. This part of town is so westernised. In fact, most of Patong is westernised. We were told that Patong City generates the largest amount of cash compared to any other tourist destination in Thailand.

Anyway, with the film out of the way it was close to midnight so we headed off back to our hotel for a good nights sleep.

Day 3

We decided over food the night before that we'd do a tour of the south of the island today, which meant Paul & Lisa needed a bike. I took them to where we got ours & after the lady laughed at the difference between his passport photo & his hobo look she gave him a bike & we were on our way.

On our way out of Patong we stopped for some breakfast & planned our route properly. It was pretty much a case of following the coast line which is exactly what we did until we came to Kata Beach. We stopped there for about an hour before heading off in search of the next beach further along the coast. On the way we found a view point that overlooked the beach we just been to plus 2 others. We stopped to take some photos before we realised that there were also 2 giant sea eagles on the back of a truck. We had a quick photo with them before setting off again.

The next beach we were looking for was Nai Harn. It was meant to be the nicest beach on the island. On our way down a dirt track to find it I could feel what I thought was a flat tyre. I asked Paul to check & sure enough it was. Lisa jumped off & got on with Paul & Lisa whilst I took it slow down the next road until we came to a village. I don't think we could have been any more fortunate as we came across a bike garage no more than 100 metres after we had turned onto the road. It took 10 minutes & 150baht to fix before we were back on the road again & heading towards the beach.

When we got there the first thing we noticed was just how big this beach was. It was huge. The second thing was that it had been taken over by the Russians. They were absolutely everywhere. The men in their speedos & the women in their high heels is what gave them away. We stayed on the beach for a couple of hours just to make sure we were completely burnt before heading back to Patong.

The plan for the evening was to go out along Banglaar Road again. Paul had seen it all before but Lisa hadn't. We went in the same first couple of bars that we had been in the first night before we went & sat on the corner of an ally that led to a side street full of lady boys. We were sat having a drink when one suspicious looking woman with high check bones, large feet, an adams apple & stubble came over & gave us a flash of what clearly wasn't money well spent.

We went to a few more bars before Martyn left us to it. One thing that really stood out about Patong is the amount of old, white, western men with young Thai girls. Everyone knows it's all to do with money but they all walk around with no shame as they are all doing the same thing. You tend to hear about this kind of thing going on before you get to somewhere that has a reputation for it but when you see it in person it's still quite shocking to see.

We finished the night at about 04:00 in a club called Tai Pan. It wasn't far from where we were staying so we headed back to our hotel on foot to sleep it off but not before a cheeky slice of pizze from the local 7eleven!

Day 4

As far as hangovers go this one was up there. Neither of us had really had a good night of drinking since we came away.

I think I was worse off than Lisa as we all met up with Martyn & his girlfriend, Meow (yes, like a cat). They had planned to take us to a restaurant out at sea but the weather had changed & we had a bit of rain so they took us to a fish restaurant over in Phuket town. It was almost like a fish meze as we had curried crab, deep fried white snapper, a spicy fish soup & something in coconut milk. Probably best that we didn't know everything we were eating with the way we were feeling.

With our stomaches full we headed back to The Expat before going back to get a good couple of hours sleep before meeting up with Paul & Lisa in the evening.

We woke up feeling a lot better than we did in the morning. We had already told the others we weren't going out drinking because of new years eve the following night.

Paul had arranged to meet Martyns sister, Nikki, for some drinks before we went out for food so when we got there they had already been at the bar for about an hour. Nikki had her children with her so we wanted to go somewhere family friendly. We headed off towards the shopping mall where we found a restaurant called Urban Food. The main draw was the buffet salad that came with most meals. The food was delicious.

With a big night out planned for tomorrow we decided to just take in the sights of Banglaar road & do a bit of shopping in the process. As we were near the beach we checked out the concert that was starting. It went on for 2 nights & had Akon & Basement Jaxx performing. The tickets were 5000baht (£100) & they let everyone know on entry that there would be no alcohol on sale. We managed to get a look at the stage out at sea from the beach next to the venue. It did look pretty awesome but there was still no chance we were going to it.

Day 5

Paul & Lisa needed to go to Phuket Town to book their bus to Malaysia for the following day. We still had the bikes so headed off in search of the bus station. Phuket is quite mountainous when you get inland so to get from coast to coast you often have to go up & down really steep roads. With the way they drive over here it can get quite dangerous at times.

We stopped for some food in town before Paul took us round to On On Hotel. It's the scene from The Beach where Robert Carlisle pops his head over to speak to Leonardo DiCaprio at the beginning. It was a bit of an anti-climax to be honest because they had torn the inside down to start refurbishment.

The weather was a bit better today so drove around to see a bit more of the island. We managed to find an outlet centre that we had seen on the way into Phuket when we arrived. Now, everyone knows Lisa loves to shop. She practically pulled the breaks herself as we turned around & headed back to have a look.

The outlet centre was identical to the one we had been to in Orlando. The only difference is that everything you see in Orlando is real. There were a few genuine shops but there was so many bad copies you had to laugh. We got a few bits before jumping back on the bikes & heading back to our Hotel.

For food we went to Martyn's hotel where he had put on a buffet for his guests. We thought we were in for a good nights drinking so we'd fill our stomachs beforehand. We had a few drinks before heading into town so we could try to get on the beach for the firework display. Everyone seemed to have the same idea & it became pretty obvious at about 23:15 we weren't going to make it down there. We decided to go into an Irish bar called Scruffy Murphys. It had a live band playing & they were pretty good to be fair. We saw the new year in there before heading back to Rock City for a few more to getting some food & heading home. We have an early boat trip to catch in the morning to get to Phi Phi.
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