Ao Nang, Koh Lanta & Krabi Town
26.10.2010 - 05.11.2010 24 °C
This may be my crankiest blog post, mainly because it was quite possibly the laziest and most boring week and a half of this trip yet. This was the result of a headcold and a wee tropical depression off the Gulf of Thailand that caused the worst floods in the southern provinces in quite some time.
So Ao Nang was the first stop after Koh Samui, it is a little seaside town in Krabi province on the west coast. The first day it rained, a lot, and throw into the mix a lack of power in the town from 6am to 4pm (for "construction") and it made for a nice day of napping. The second day we hit the beach, the sun was out and we were off. Surrounded by tsunami evacuation route signs and old men in inappropriately tight and tiny speedos, I kept a keen eye on the horizon and Will went for a dip. He returned after what surely must have been a massive tussle with a deadly man-eating sabre-toothed jellyfish and with a bit of a stingy ankle. I promptly removed the offending tentacles, we decided I probably didn't need to pee on him, shook our fists at the sea and ran away back to the hotel to clean him up (not before receiving some nice fresh pineapple from a lovely local woman for our troubles).
Not so much fun so far (despite the free pineapple). We eyed Koh Lanta for our next stop, billed as a less commercial, cheaper version of Koh Phi Phi. We decided on a splurge and picked a rather fancy sounding resort to stay in not too far away from the main town on the island, Sala Dan. That's when it decided to rain for four days nonstop and, rather conveniently, also when my body decided that if I were at home it would be the right time of year to get a bit of a headcold. Will, the clear hero of this blog post what with his jellyfish fighting capabilities, took it upon himself to trek into town and get supplies - important things to fight off a cold such as beer and chicken soup. The resort itself was lovely, even in the rain and even though it seemed to be staffed by complete morons who wouldn't understand good service if slapped them in the face. There was a pool and a small private beach and even a swim-up bar, unfortunately none were enjoyed by us.
At this stage we were beginning to lose our travel mojo and any interest in Thai beach time. Plans for the next destination ranged from heading to backpacker party central on Koh Phi Phi to get some liveliness to going back inland to get the real Thai experience again. With four days of rain and news of floods islands were taken off the table, there was no point in weather like this so we got on a bus bound for Krabi town, the provincial capital on the mainland along the coast.
Krabi town is small enough to walk around but there's not a whole bunch to do. At least the weather was better when we arrived, and we decided on a boat trip around the nearby mangrove swamps the following day. And the following day was when the rain returned. We couldn't catch a break so there was only one thing for it...
...after which the following day was a write-off. We had to decide on our next move, we could go further south to Trang and into Malaysia via Koh Lipe to land on Langkawi but that involved more islands and moving through an increasingly flooded southern Thailand. We then started hearing about flooding in northern Malaysia, and with a quick discovery of a cheap flight with Air Asia we decided to retreat back to Bangkok. Our home away from home, we'll be welcomed back by the hostel owners (and hopefully get more homemade cake), feast on fantastic street food for pittance, pick up a Rough Guide to Malaysia and get our mojo back while the weather settles down. After all, I have to keep reminding myself, we're in no rush.