Exploring Ko Lanta and Ko Rok
Trip Start Jan 26, 2008
12Trip End Feb 09, 2008
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After leaving there I stopped at Old Lanta Town and had a fabulous meal at Fresh Restaurant, fried prawns in basil leaf. Prawns are shrimp and they were delicious. While there I noticed these beautiful hand made delicately woven elephant mats. I bought one and plan to frame it and hang it in my office. On the way back to the car a fruit vendor stopped me and handed me a peeled fruit that I had never seen before. It was about the size of those big globe grapes. Inside it has five sections like a tangerine but is translucent white. It was as sweet as honey. They told me the name but I forget. something like "klung deng". Thai is phonetic so the spelling is never the same in 2 places. They told me the name for tangerines and I taught them the English name. We all laughed. The Thai people are so warm and welcoming. Jack gave me his phone number and email before I left and told me to call him anytime if I have any trouble or problems in Thailand.
Koh Lanta reminds me more of the Caribbean. The people seem desperately poor here. Many living in shacks with no running water. I watched a woman wash her dishes in a bucket with water from the rain spout. There is more trash here too. The customer service is still good but not quite what it was in other places.
Today I went on a snorkeling trip to Koh Rok Noi and Koi Rok Nok. http://www.thaiwaysmagazine.com/krabi/krabi_attraction_ko_la nta_county.html#ko_rok_nok
The fish were gorgeous bright colors of every hue. Absolutely the best snorkeling I have ever done. They come right up to you. At one point when they fed them bread I was swimming in a whole school of them and they were swimming into me and brushing against me. Now I regret not bringing my PADI card and going diving. The diving is supposed to be fabulous here but I didn't want to go alone.
This place is filled with Swedes. Swedish families to be exact, which does not make it the best place for a single female. They are pretty insular and not very friendly. However, as luck would have it, I met a single Swedish woman traveling alone with her 6 year old son who was also desperate for another adult to talk to
Ko Rok is uninhabited but there is a ranger station and you can rent bungalows there. I am disappointed that I could not do the longtail 4 island tour. I especially wanted to see Koh Radan. Maybe next time. Koh Lanta is beautiful but I would not come here again as a solo traveler.
There are more Muslims in this part of Thailand; you see less spirit shrines and I have not seen one Wat. I intentionally did not go further south due to the unrest there from the Muslims. They want to be independent because they feel discriminated against. This coming weekend is Chinese New Year. I heard on the radio that planned insurgent activity to disrupt the celebrations had been planned in Bangkok but was uncovered.
I think next trip I will go to Chiang Rai, Laos, and Cambodia. I want to see Angkor Wat. Thailand is the only Asian country never colonized. That is because the 5th King Rama gave Laos and Cambodia to the foreigners to keep them out. Thus Thailand lost Angkor Wat.