Border Run

Trip Start Sep 19, 2012
Trip End Jul 22, 2014

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Flag of Thailand  , Krabi Province,
Wednesday, July 3, 2013

I have been out of communications for a while so I am trying to catch up to tell you what has been happening over the last few months. 

3 July 2013

My Malaysian visa expires tomorrow so I have to leave my little turtle island and have a quick trip into Thailand to renew my visa. I decided to spend a few days at Ao Nang just to have a break and experience some comfort before I return to watching the turtles. 

A took the local bus to the border and had to walk across the border which was a strange experience. After passing through emigrations I had then had to walk for about 15 minutes of no mans land until I get to the Thai immigration. All went smoothly. Walked for a few kilometers until I found the bus stop and then had about an 7 hour wait till my bus arrived. Apparently there is still a lot of political unrest in this part of southern Thailand and travelers are warned about not traveling through this area. I had no choice but all went fine even though there were plenty of road blocks and military about.The bus was supposed to arrive in Krabi at about 1.30 in the morning but eventually arrived about 3 am. From Krabi to Ao Nang, where I had booked my hotel, was still a 40 minute drive away. The town was deserted but I luckily found a motorbike taxi and eventually checked into my hotel at about 4 am. What luxury. After roughing it in the jungle I couldn't believe I had a huge double bed, fluffy towels, comfy duvet and even a bath with plenty of hot water.

Ao Nang was made famous when one of the early James Bond movies was filmed here and is now a typical beach tourist resort. Lots of cheap restaurants, bars and tourist shop selling the usual stuff. The weather was not so good so most of the days were spent walking around and eating some great food. One of the things that I really missed on Turtle Island was cheese. I found this restaurant that did pizzas and devoured one of the best pizzas ever. Covered in 3 different cheeses and salami. Forced myself to eat this huge monster and felt completely bloated afterwards. It was worth it!!!!! Found a restaurant selling Nederberg Cabernet for over R400.00 per bottle.

Have not been that impressed with Ao Nang but it has been a nice break. I have booked a mini van taxi that will take all the way back to Malaysia or so they told me!. Got picked up in this very fancy air conditioned mini van and after a few delays waiting for people we were on our way. Three or 4 hours later we arrived at Hat Yai and every got off. I think the driver decided that he didnt want to drive just me so he took me to the local mini van station, gave me some money to buy a ticket and directed me to a different van going to the border. I asked the driver when the van was leaving and he said when it was full which would be in about 40 minutes. He told me to put my backpack on the seat. I sat on a bench a few meters away to have a cigarette and 2 minutes later when I looked up, the van, with my bag had disappeared. In a mad panic I eventually found the ticket seller who phoned the driver and it was agreed that he would leave my bag at the border. I now had to wait for the next van and eventually arrived at the border and found my bag all intact. It was now 8.45pm and the border closes at 9pm. I literally had to run from the Thai side to Malaysia otherwise I would have been locked in the middle for the night. Some times this traveling can be rather stressful.... but always an adventure
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GabonPhil on

Good to hear from you Gus, Lu and I were starting to think you'd gone native and forgotten about us all :-). Pleased you trip is going well and that you are enjoying yourself. Cheers, Phil.

Angel Delgado on

Hi Gus, gretings from Tokyo. Yes, you read well, I have been in Japan for some time, in Kyoto first attending a conference and then travelling through the mystical countryside full of beauty, tradition, history, nature and Art. I am so glad you, my true fellow nomad, reappeared in the world map. Enjoy your wanderings and drop a line from tiem to time. A big hug.

Lu on

What an amazing work you've done with the turtles!
Where too next?

So did you buy the wine? :)

gianpaolo -langkawi on

hey Gus!!!
good to hear from you and good to hear you are still having a great time on the road!
all the best!

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