The Islands of Phi Phi and Krabi

Because there are so many islands in the Krabi/ Phi Phi area, we have decided only to show a few pictures and give a short description of the ones we thought was worth mentioning.
Maya Bay was probably the beach we had been looking forward to the most, as it is famous from the movie “The Beach” with Leonardo Di Caprio. The beach itself was not less magnificent than in the movies, but it was the circumstances made the visit disappointing. The beach was overcrowded with boats carrying over eager tourists running around with cameras, just like us.
P1060043
An island the Thai people seemed very proud of was their chicken island. When we passed this island, we were told a few chicken jokes while we got to snap a couple of photos of this funny shaped island.
P1050611

Poda island got a full score from us, as the beach was much less crowded, with pearl white sand and a huge rock standing in the middle of the water in front of it. Here there was only one hotel, and a a small beach restaurant. At the beach you could also buy freshly grilled corn on the cob with ice cold beverages of your choice.

P1050809

Coming from what we thought was the land of the most beautiful fjords (Norway) we were proven otherwise when entering the Blue Lagoon, part of the Phi Phi Leh. Here the green covered mountain walls went straight into the clear turquoise water, with small steams of fish following every move of the boat.

P1050968

Tup Island (we just called them the twin islands) are two small islands connected to each other with a small sand bar. The path between the two, seems almost invisible, as it is covered with only 2-3 centimeters of water.

P1050649

Phi Phi and Krabi, on the West coast, have some of the most beautiful beaches in Thailand, so if this is what you are looking for, you can be sure to find something you will like.

Railay Beach in Krabi

From the mainland in Krabi we took a longtail boat over to Railay, famous for it’s beaches, caves, rock climbing in the limestone mountains. All in all this is backpackers paradise, with a variety of cheap backpacker bungalows and fancy five star hotels. We found a really cheap and good place to stay, but to get there we had to climb to climb a huge, steep flight of stairs and then hike to get to our cabin. The hike was well worth the view we had from there, over the mountains and the crystal clear ocean.

Every evening, there was a free thai- boxing and flame show, and food such as shark and crocodile (tasted like chicken) was served fresh along the beach promenade. But we had to watch out for the thunderstorms that were brewing as the darkness had approached. We soon learned that one drop of rain meant that a storm was coming, and that it was coming fast. By knowing this, we could easily find a good table at the restaurants, before the rest of the tourists came sprinting for shelter. Railay was a quick trip with longtail boat from the mainland. Many backpackers came for the Bob Marley vibe, something we soon learned to love.
P1050527
P1050534

Victoria Point (Kawthaung), Burma

Since we had entered Thailand through overland borders, we only got a 15 day visa, instead of the 30 days you would get from entering by air. 14 of these, we had already spent on the East- Coast of Thailand, so we had to make a quick trip to the neighbor country Burma.
Since travelling in Thailand is so convenient, we could easily book a visa run package that would take us from Koh Pangan to a Burmese border, and on to Krabi, where we had planned to spend the next few days. The trip went hassle free, even though we had to change from boat to bus, to boat, to bus, to boat, to bus, to boat before we reached our goal. All this in one day! Overland travels in Thailand can sometimes be the easiest thing in the world.
Here is a guide that helped us a lot to plan our visa run step-by-step.
P1050507
P1050512

Diving at Koh Tao

P1050474
If there is one thing Koh Tao is famous for, it is for its diving conditions. Even though there are thousands of people getting their diving license there every year, the underwater scene is absolutely stunning. 
I booked my PADI Open Water course with Crystal Dive, and got my accommodation for five days, two free barbecue buffets, one free t-shirt and got free rent of books and equipment included in the course package. Koh Tao is also known for being one of the cheapest places in the world to do the Open Water course.

The price is also not the only reason why Koh Tao is a good place to take the diving license, but because of the fact that everything and everyone on the island are there because of the diving possibilities. People come from all over the world to work as instructors, or just to make their hobby into a fulltime lifestyle.

For those who are not interested in scuba diving, there are also some quality beaches, and good restaurants that would work for a quiet vacation, but I would mainly recommend the place for people who are interested in seeing the underwater wildlife, either fully equipped with scuba gear or just with a snorkel and a mask.
P1050481
P3140015

Full Moon Celebration in Koh Pangan

After the lazy days at Langkawi, it was time for an event that we had been looking forward to for a long time. Our goal was to reach Koh Pangan in time for the famous Full Moon Party, which is held monthly in the southern part of the island, on a beach called Hat Rin. From our guidebooks we had been advised to book accommodation at least a week in advance, but when we showed up the day before the party, we had no problem finding a good value room that was centrally located, clean and decent. Here we also met up with our Norwegian friends Hanne, Ingeborg and Greta, who were also there for the upcoming beach party.

Already a day before full moon, people were working up their mood by arranging beach parties and a massive pool party at Coral Bungalows that we attended. Here laughing gas was sold freely, and there was a rumor spread that it was possible for girls to get pregnant, just by taking a dip in the overcrowded pool.

Finally the day had come, where 40 000 people were gathered up at the beach covered in neon paint, raving to loud music, showing off alternative skills like flameblowing, limbo and bottle juggling. To be part of this raging athmosphere was something we had not been a part of before, and after sharing a couple of buckets, we must say that we enjoyed it to its fullest. If you are traveling through South- East Asia, spending a day or two at this massive event is worth it’s while.

P1050119

P1050168

koh pangan

P1050191

P1050456

The northern part of Koh Pangan is completely different from the crowded beaches and noisy streets in the South. We took a taxi boat to an almost desolate part of the island called Bottle Beach, where party tourists were non-existent. There were only a handful of restaurants, hammocks and beach bungalows in sight, and the few tourist that lived there were more of the quiet type.

P1050143

When looking back on our memories from Bottle Beach, we have both agreed that this has been the most peaceful place we visited in Thailand.