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Final Thoughts: Thailand (Bangkok and Islands)

 

The Royal Palace Complex

Thailand was to be a crown jewel in my round the world adventures.  Coming off three months in Nepal and India, and four months since leaving the beaches of Bali, I longed for a tropical paradise where the food was divine, the people friendly, the transportation easy, and the views perfect.  I experienced all I'd hoped for and more, as has often been the case in the past 10 months.

 

Beautiful Chaweng Beach, Koh Samui

Highlights –

  • Comfortable, cool deluxe airport bus
  • Walking down Th Kho San Road for the first time, fresh off the plane
  • The Royal Palace complex
  • Completing the motorbike dare
  • Eating amazing Thai food – wherever, whenever, and often!
  • Stepping onto beautiful Chaweng Beach, Koh Samui for the first time (and my bungalow)

Beach Daze - free food and a good book
  • Chilling on Chaweng Beach:  reading “Scar Tissue” and “Do Travel Writers Go To Hell,” listening to Ark Bar's music at sunset, dining on the beach, lighting a traditional lantern, watching fireworks go off
  • Sea kayaking Ang Thong National Marine Park (and jumping off the big boat)

My mountain bungalow - Haad Rin, Koh Phangan
  • My bungalow's porch view of the action on Koh Phangan's full moon beach
  • Partying every night on Haad Rin – fire dancers, watching fire jump rope
  • Meeting new people including Warren from Cape Town, and an old friend (Steve –  our third time in three separate countries)
  • Watching Family Guy at the restaurant that played it 24×7
  • Dancing and staying up all night for July's Full Moon Party
  • Getting fluorescent flames painted on my head

 

Thong Nai Pan Noi, Koh Phangan
  • Escaping to the solitude of Thong Nai Pan Noi
  • Thai massages
  • Completing the unsettling ladyboy dare
  • Watching a few hours of Muay Thai kickboxing

Christine and Diana after a night of Muay Thai
  • Meeting Nienke and Elizabeth (Holland) and Christine and Diana (Germany)
  • The boat ride to and from Burma to extend my Thai visa
  • The boat ride to and from Koh Phayam, and being willing to follow a lead to an undeveloped island even if it was a ghost town upon arrival

Steve at Half Moon Party - Koh Phangan
  • Staying at the On On Hotel in Phuket Town for a few nights
  • Patong Beach at sunset
  • Firing my first gun, a 9mm
  • Speedboat ride to James Bond Island, and other spots of interest

Maya Bay (
  • The rooftop ferry ride to Koh Phi Phi Don
  • Getting to know Josi and Catharine (Canada) over dinner on Long Beach and a stunning sunset
  • Taking an early morning longboat to the Koh Phi Phi Leh, landing on an empty Maya Bay (“the beach”), and swimming in the beautiful surroundings
  • My air-conditioned, ultra-comfortable room in the village of Koh Phi Phi Don
  • Hanging out with Josi and Catharine on the Phi Phi's main beach
  • Meeting laid back, uber-friendly, fellow travel blogger Nate
  • Getting a bird's eye view of the island from a scenic viewpoint at sunset
  • Sleeping on the roof of the decrepit overnight ferry to Koh Tao
  • Full day snorkel and island tour of Koh Tao
  • A confident and comfortable return to Bangkok and Th Kho San Road
  • Getting a new AC adapter from the ASUS service center
  • Listening to music with Josi and Catharine on our last night together (it helped that it was all *awesome* music from my MP3 player of course)
  • The fast connection speeds and big monitors at internet cafes
  • And lastly…a few other experiences I'm not going to share!

Happy hour at Mountain Bar - Haad Rin, Koh Phangan

Lowlights –

  • Feeling lonely during my first week in the country (I know it comes with the territory, but it still doesn't feel good at the time!)
  • My laptop's AC adapter breaking on Koh Phangan
  • Accidentally breaking my second camera of the trip
  • The late July Half Moon Party
  • Getting sick on Phuket, not fully trusting the first doctor I saw, feeling fatigued and anxious

BBQ Pork nightly on Koh Samui (I never did try it)

Eating –

Red/green/yellow/panang curry with chicken and steamed rice (medium spicy), chicken vindaloo, prawns, fresh whole snapper, pineapple, watermelon, mango, bananas, cheeseburgers, Hawaiian pizzas, fresh orange or coconut juice, coconut shakes (to die for), ice coffees (got hooked on them thanks to Steve), Cornetto's chocolate and brownie ice cream cones, lots and lots of SINGHA beer.  :)

Fire dancer on Haad Rin, Koh Phangan

# of Days Couchsurfing – 

0

Gorgeous weather - Haad Rin, Koh Phangan

Average Cost Per Day –

$52

Catharine and I at sunset - Long Beach, Koh Phi Phi Don

Planning a trip? Go Backpacking recommends:

ที่พักกรุงเทพ

Monday 2nd of August 2010

hello admin, I found your blog from yahoo and read a few of your other posts.They are awesome. Please keep it up!!

Dan

Tuesday 16th of September 2008

Sounds like I shared a few of those experiences with you Dave and those sweetheart brownie ice creams, yum. Got to admit I'd never seen a swensen's before and I did frequent them a bit.

Dan

Tuesday 16th of September 2008

Sounds like I shared a few of those experiences with you Dave and those sweetheart brownie ice creams, yum. Got to admit I'd never seen a swensen's before and I did frequent them a bit.

Dan

Monday 15th of September 2008

Sounds like I shared a few of those experiences with you Dave and those sweetheart brownie ice creams, yum. Got to admit I'd never seen a swensen's before and I did frequent them a bit.

Nomadic Matt

Saturday 13th of September 2008

You spend 50 dollars a day in Thailand!!! jesus christ man! That's a lot!

Dave

Monday 15th of September 2008

Yea, but I eat and drink well, and stay wherever I want, rarely sharing accommodation. I didn't normally get air-con, but I wasn't staying in the cheapest bungalows either. Oh, and I tend to snack a lot and use the internet a lot (so you can read about my adventures!).

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