Koh Phangan to Koh SamuiMarch 16, 2017 in Thailand
You would be forgiven for thinking from the last post that Koh Phangan is all party party party and whilst that is true in the concentrated south of the island - it does have some other calmer options.
When I finally stirred from my slumber after the full moon degeneracy, I thought I'd spend the last day having a look around the island. Before any of that, it was required that I feed myself in order to stay alive, after which I felt much better.
A few of my fellow party goers also decided to venture out to explore a bit, so we arranged moped rentals from the hostel and headed up to a waterfall. They dont seem to care if you can ride or not or if you even have a license! But they drive on the left in Thailand which was good for me and the moped was pretty easy to get used to.
Climbing the falls was a bit of a mission though and I felt slightly older as my younger companions breezed up the hill as if on speed! Knackered, we had a dip in some of the waterfall pools and took in the breathtaking scenery - there's something I love about water, it's calming, life-giving yet unstoppable and flows anywhere. Definitely my favourite natural element. As Bruce Lee said "be like water my friend" I concur. 🤓
After this, we jumped back on the bikes and headed off to see the sunset before going to a place called Amsterdam Bar on a remote hill. It was billed as a 'chill out bar' overlooking the sea (hmmm, based on the relaxed atmosphere and obvious waft in the air, I wonder what they sell here?! ... 🤔) It was good though and the views were amazing.
In the evening me and another guy went to watch a Muay Thai event that was being hosted on the island at a training camp - it was brilliant. There were two knockouts and a few westerners were fighting Thai guys (in the ring I might add) not just having a brawl! A Dutch guy and Candian won their matches so it was a good atmosphere all round.
After the madness of Koh Phangan I headed for Koh Samui, the largest of the three Gulf Islands known for its more relaxed vibe.
Here I rented another moped and cruised around the island. I went with a couple of guys I met in the hostel to another waterfall (more climbing!) The climb was supposed to only take about 1/2 hr or so, but we took considerably longer because we idiotically climbed directly up the waterfall rocks having missed the clear path! Duh. Still it was a good climb and I got a sense of achievement (even if it was avoidable). We wisely took the path on the way back down.
The following day I went to Anthong national park on a boat trip. It's a beautiful set of largely uninhabited islands with amazing views across Thailand's Gulf. We did some snorkelling and kayaking, at one stage we went under a cliff and you literally had to limbo in the kayak to get through. This was in pitch black too - I heard several people bump their heads ahead of me so at least I was forewarned.
The last day in Koh Samui I had the entire day to myself - a bit of rarity so far, no-one was in the hostel so I decided to rent a moped and drive around the island to see the sights. First I went over the top of a massive hill and through the jungle on to a place called Fisherman's Village for lunch (I didn't see any fisherman, mainly shops/restaurants, but still nice). Then I headed for Big Buddha, which as you can imagine is a large Buddha! Not much more to say... it was cool, but after 15 mins I'd exhausted all the angles you can look at it from so hopped back on my bike.
I stopped off at a place called Chewang which felt a bit tacky and had a bloke driving around announcing club nights and promoting events in the town. The van drove past at least eight times in just the hour or so I was there, blaring the speaker and stating the exact same garbled phrases over and over - I would have gone insane if I'd stayed here! The poor guy driving must hear it in his dreams! 😲
For the evening I headed to a hotel called The Jungle Cafe with an incredible view of the Koh Samui, before going to look at Hinyai and Hinta rocks - they look a bit like the nether regions of a man and a woman, and have been providing a source of mirth to tourists for ages - I didn't think they were all that to be honest, but a group of Chinese tourists were loving it. After that I popped into a bar and chatted to a fellow building a silly sounding website for a while before heading for dinner.
Next stop Cambodia...Read more