We arrived at Khao Lak no problems and were pleased to see our hotel wasn't too far from the bus stop. The hotel was beautiful, definitely the best hotel I have ever stayed in. This week was the last week of the low season so we got a great deal, pretty much got 5 nights for the price of one. Our room was enormous with a gigantic bed. I could actually live in that room. The staff were so polite and treated us like royalty. The best thing was this hotel had a pool. Thank goodness because I seem to develop a bit of a sweat problem in hot climates and just sweat profusely from the face area. So now I have a pool to hide in, great! We went straight down to the pool which was dead – even better! This is pretty much where we spent all of our time. I think we might have been the only non German/Scandinavian guests in this hotel. The hotel got progressively busier, I guess as it got closer to the 'high season'. The hotel was right across from the beach so we had a few walks up and down it. It wasn't a spectacular beach, but nice enough. One day we got a taxi up to a place called White Sand Beach. Unfortunately it poured with rain on the way so it was a bit grey when we got there. It soon brightened up and it was a lovely beach, very quiet with clear water and well, white sand. The water is amazingly warm, you can just sit in the sea and it's like sitting in the bath.
We got a bit more into the Thai food in Khao Lak. Andy found a dish which he ate pretty much every night for the rest of our time in Thailand – a massaman curry. Which turned out to be the only curry that wasn't actually a Thai curry. It is delicious though, I will be learning to make that. Khao Lak also had a banana pancake stall which are probably the tastiest treats ever. I have no idea what they are because they start of as dough balls and they are spun around like pizza dough to make a thin crepe, then they are fried and the banana is placed on top and they fold it up. Oh man these things are amazing. I think it would be impossible for anyone outside of Thailand to replicate though.
After Khao Lak it was onto Krabi, via public bus again. We got ripped off on the bus and by the taxi driver taking us to our hotel. Pretty standard practice we have to come realise. Our next hotel was located in a resort that consisted of our hotel, a Sheraton, a 7/11 and a couple of restaurants. It was a bit of a comedown after our last hotel and resort. We were staying at a beach called Klong Muang if anyone wants to look it up. Our hotel was fine, the room was massive and came with surround sound (random much?) so Andy was happy. The pool was filthy though, there was dead bugs floating in it and even a massive spider on the bottom. Eek. We had learned through reviews of the hotel that the beach was a bit of a trek, but you could make a short cut through the Sheraton. So we pretended to be rich and snuck through every day. The beach here was beautiful. I think this resort is under development because there was a lot of construction of new hotels going on along the beach front, so I expect this beautiful, quiet beach to be ruined in 5 years. At the moment there is only the Sheraton hotel on the beach and it appeared to be empty so there was hardly anyone else on the beach. It was great, the water is so calm, clear and warm so we just sat in the sea for hours on end. We also bought a bucket and spade and built sandcastles. Great fun! We made friends with a dog who destroyed my sandcastle, but he was cute so I forgave him. We took a day trip to Railay beach which is an island nearby. It was really beautiful there. Unfortunately the internet connection is awful where we are at the moment so I can't upload any pictures, but I will get them up soon because you have to see this place. It was gorgeous there, although it was slightly ruined by all the noisy boat loads of tourists coming in. Says she who got to Railay beach via a boat full of tourists. We climbed over these rocks to another beach which was just as nice, but a bit more of a backpacker beach. This path wasn't the easiest path to climb and Andy insisted I do it in my flip flops. Thankfully no broken ankles. There was huge limestone cliffs so lots of people rock climbing which I think if we went back, we would like to attempt.
Back to our rest, because it was so small we didn't have much choice for food so ended up eating in the same restaurant every night. It was really good though, probably the best food we had in Thailand. At this point we had figured out what we liked and didn't like about Thai food so we were really enjoying it and getting a few dishes to share between us each night. It was great, I will have to learn how to cook Thai food. I don't think it is that great for you because we both put on weight in Thailand. Everything was so cheap so you could eat and drink whatever you wanted, when you wanted so we over indulged a little bit.
So after Krabi it was back up to Bangkok to fly to Sydney. We were originally meant to take the over night train but decided to fly on the morning of our flight because of the floods. I am so glad we did because when we flew into Bangkok we really got to see the extent of the floods. It is very sad and you really have to feel for these people who have lost everything. We got into Bangkok about 10am and our flight wasn't until 5pm so it was a long day of waiting around the very busy airport.
Overall there was parts of Thailand we loved, and parts we hated. We didn't enjoy Bangkok. It is so busy and crowded with people trying to hassle you everywhere you go. There are some great parts, and some spectacular sights. But things get so full on that it can really get to you and you just want some peace. The scenery in Thailand is amazing, the jungle was really quite something. There are some gorgeous beaches and you do feel like you are in paradise. The food is out of this world, it is really delicious. It is so cheap that you can really enjoy yourself and not have to worry about money, which is great. I would love to explore it further, or if I wanted a beach holiday I would definitely consider Thailand. Some of the people are the nicest people you could ever meet and will do anything for you. They call Thailand the land of the smiles, and I can see why. Sometimes you will catch someone staring at you and they will just give you the widest, most genuine smile. For all the nice, great people there is the bad ones. Sometimes we felt a bit vulnerable which wasn't nice. We could tell people were screwing us over but what could we do about it? But then again the amount of money they are screwing you out of is not a significant amount to you or me so perhaps we shouldn't have let it bother us. I think the highlight of Thailand for the both of us was Khao Sok National Park. It was so different to anything we had ever experienced before, it was quite breath taking. The hotel was amazing, the resort was so quiet and nobody bothered us, the sky was pitch black so you could see all the stars shining really brightly, the sounds of the jungle.... it was just amazing!
Okay so I have rambled enough pish. I should be looking for a job so I will get back to that. Once I get a job I will fill you in on all Melbourne has to offer.
Take care guys and keep the emails coming, they are really appreciated!
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