Sunday, June 24, 2012

Ko Samoi

After 1 full day in Bangkok, Caitlin and I had decided to go south to the beaches of Thailand, that we had heard great things about.  We took a night train out of Bangkok, that you could sleep on, so that in the morning you would be at your destination.  The train was nice, it had air conditioning and bunks so you could fully recline.  I actually slept quite well.  I am quite proud of my ability to sleep through most amounts of motion, noise, and light - it comes in handy when you are traveling.  At some point at the beginning of the journey there was a sudden jolt that stopped the train.  We were stopped for over an hour (without anyone telling us why) and ended up getting in late to our destination.  We had missed the morning ferry that was supposed to bring us to Ko Samoi, an island off of the east coast of Southern Thailand.  This is the day that I learned when you are going from place to place in Thailand be prepared to wait.  Bring cards and bring food.  Since we missed the 9:30 ferry we had to sit all day at sort of a transfer station, where you could buy crappy food and pay to use the toilet, until the 4:30 ferry.  We met a couple from the UK and started some rousing games of Uno and Spades.  By the time we got to our hotel on the island we were hungry, tired, but mainly annoyed at wasting a whole day.  The island of Ko Samoi is pretty big - about 30 miles to drive around the whole thing.  That doesn't sound big but it was big enough where you couldn't really walk from place to place which we didn't really like.  Many tourists rent motor bikes.  We were hoping to rent human powered bikes but never got around to it.  While in Ko Samoi we mainly just looked at shops, hung out on the beach, and searched for local places to eat (harder than you might imagine, everywhere sells western food but for about 3x the price as local Thai food).  For the next day we booked a kayaking and snorkel tour out to a marine reserve about 15 miles from the island.  The tour was pretty fun it took us to a really beautiful green lagoon, a ok snorkeling location, but the best part was the amazing rock formations coming out of the water.  The tour was ok - I guess we didn't really enjoy it as much as we could because we felt sort of out of place as far as the crowd.  For one, everyone was a couple except for us and most of them didn't seem very active so when we would kayak it would only be for about 45 minutes at at time.  It was at this point that we also decided that was how we felt about the crowd at Ko Samoi - not really our scene and we decided to look for something else.  We had gotten a suggestion from our friend Chas about a small climbing hippy community called Ton Sai.  I will do that part in another blog post - stay tuned.  See photos from our boating/kayaking/snorkeling trip below.
The green lagoon (salt water lake connected to the sea via underground tunnels).

Caitlin and I at the green lagoon


Cool rocks

More cool rocks

Another lagoon that we got to kayak to


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