Ko Lanta, Thailand

Trip Start Sep 23, 2005
Trip End Jul 31, 2006

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Friday, January 6, 2006

Happy 2006!!

Alright so while everyone has been getting adjusted back at work after the holidays Sue and I have been lounging on the beach in South West Thailand drinking fruity shakes. I know, I know it's a tough life but somebody has to do it and if not us who, and if not now when??

We have spent our last month in 3 places: Ton Sai Beach, which is the next beach up from Railay Beach; the island of Ko Phi Phi and the island of Ko Lanta.

Ton Sai Beach - This place is a climbers mecca. Sue and I may have been the only people staying there that weren't there exclusively to climb. We did manage to squeeze in some climbing and WOW it was amazing. Sick limestone cliffs on all sides of you sticking straight up out of the ground and basically you can climb all of it. What a blast!! We also managed to do some kayaking while where were there and paddling around these cliffs in the water is sweet! We spent Christmas and New Years on Ton Sai beach and partied with these 2 girls who rescued us when we first arrived. What happened was that we arrived on Ton Sai beach on Dec. 24th and every bungalow was full and we had no place to stay. On our second lap trying to find lodging these 2 girls ran down the beach after us and told us that we could share there bungalow with them if we couldn't find anything. We spent x-mas eve partying with them, crashed on their floor and then scored a bungalow of our own the next morning.......it was a christmas miracle! The weather was beautiful the whole time we were there and although the beach on Ton Sai is pretty muddy, the beach at Railay West (just a short 10 minute walk) is powdery white sand and crystal blue water. We stayed for 11 days and it was tough to leave.

Ko Phi Phi - When we first arrived to Ko Phi Phi it was the first time we could see any effect of the Tsunami. There were luxary hotels right on the beach that we were walking through that are basically ruins. People living in tents next to there still recovering businesses. Just walking along the main beach you can see that they got hit hard and still haven't rebuilt much. The other thing with Ko Phi Phi is that it was very busy when we got there. Tons of tourists all converging on the main town which is named "tourist village". We decided to stay the on a completely different beach called "long beach" which is away from all the riff raff and got super lucky and scored the last affordable bungalow on that beach. This beach was amazing, white powder sand, crystal blue water and even more so than the beach on Railay of the same description. We spent 5 days on Ko Phi Phi since it is the most expensive place in Thailand and although that is still dirt cheap it was cutting into the budget so we decided to move onto to Ko Lanta.

Ko Lanta - We got to Lanta, found the cool beach which was also named "long beach" and got what seemed like the last bungalow on this beach as well. This beach must be the most chill place in the world. Everyone is kicked back in hammocks drinking cheap cocktails enjoying the sunshine; we liked this place right away. We played a ton of frisbee on the beach, swam everyday and just mellowed out for 11 days!!! Unfortunately I managed to get food poisoning so I was down for 3 of those days but nevertheless it was pure heaven! We also went scuba diving at a dive site named Ko Ha and it was incredible!!! We have never seen water this clear in our lives, the colors of the coral were sick (yellows, oranges, reds, blues, purples, etc...), visibility of 25 meters and water temperature of 29 degrees celsius! This was by far the highlight of Ko Lanta for us!

Overall we both loved Thailand. The locals on the beach are the coolest people you have ever met in your life, they don't worry about a thing. Everyone is super friendly and I wouldn't hesitate for a second if I had the chance to come back.

We have one more night here in Bangkok and then it is off to Africa!

~Timbo & Sue
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