Koh Pha Ngan, Thailand
After an epic journey via train, bus and boat we arrived at Koh Phanang, we hadn’t arranged anywhere to stay but were offered a good deal by a tout at the pier at See Through Bungalows on Haad Yao beach, only 600 baht for an aircon place with hot water so off we went. Turns out we got a decent deal as the air con bungalows should have been more expensive but they honoured the price and we had a decent sized place with a nice garden view and a 7/11 yards away for cheap booze and snacks.
We spent the first day there on the beach and had some beers and not much else(must mention the thunderstorm we had – caused a powercut from about 11pm til 7 am rendering the aircon and fan useless and causing us a great deal of sweating!), we spent day 2 exploring a little and headed to the local town of Thong Sala where the ferries all come in – we had a wander around, had some lunch and Sharlie managed to walk into a stationary motorbike and bruise her leg, oh and we also passed a pet shop that had a big pig tied up on a lead outside!
We arranged to spend the next day on a day trip snorkeling and seeing a bit of local sights, the trip was great and despite early worries when the guy who picked us up left us in the hand s of some extremely young looking guys we had a great time. We did some great snorkeling at 3 sights, Haad Salad, Koh Ma and Haad Khom beaches and also went to see the waterfall at Than Sadet – it was worth the 15 min walk in the searing heat as the water was icy cold and we got to get under the falls too – very refreshing!
We had lunch at Bottle Beach and had a swim there – one downer about our beach is that it’s low tide season now which makes it almost impossible to swim as the water is too shallow – before heading back knackered but happy – and not sunburned!
The day after our trip we spent the day at Koh Ma beach (I think) and enjoyed great snorkeling just off the beach and a good old lounge in the sun, the beach there is great and not too busy.
That evening after we’d eaten dinner we had the mother of all storms, we could see it coming for while – we’d seen lightning most nights so weren’t too concerned – but once it hit we knew about it! The wind picked up and the restaurant kicked everyone out and closed up just as the rain arrived – monsoon type rain! We headed back to our room a few minutes too late and got caught in it – we had to dive for cover on the veranda of an empty bungalow – we were sheltering from the rain when the power went off and we were left in the pitch black apart from the flashes of brighter lightning accompanied by some of the loudest thunder we’ve ever heard – it was exhilarating but a little scary too. We were expecting the power to be off all night again but it was back within an hour – looking back it was a great experience but at the time it wasn’t quite as much fun!
We arranged to leave the next day and had bought tickets from a local agent to get us from the island to Koh Phi Phi via Krabi, they were quite reasonable at 900 baht each and as it turns out, despite our reservations, the system worked and we managed to get a boat from Phangan to Surat Thani, a bus from there to Krabi and a ferry from Krabi to Koh Phi Phi without a hitch – it took 11 hours though!