We were up early and quickly transfered to the pier at Phuket for our 3 hour ferry accross to the mainland area of Ao-Nang in Krabi. The weather this morning was horrific and as sad as we were to be leaving Phuket and the nearby islands, we were glad we had chosen a morning where the weather wasn't great and we wouldn't be missing out on the sun. We slept for most of the journey to Krabi which took about 3 hours and when we arrived it was still raining, so without a place to stay we jumped in a taxi van to the town centre to find a guesthouse for a few nights. We were dropped off by a row of about 5 guesthouses and within 10 minutes we had found a really nice place with a brand new room king size bed, flat screen tv, bathroom and balcony for the equivalent of just £16 a night!
Over the moon with our accomodation for the next few nights, we headed into the centre of Ao Nang for some lunch as the rain had stopped and found a great little place on the beach esplanade where we had one of
our best Thai meals yet (although all the food has been great) - red duck curry and pad thai noodles - before walking further down and indulging in massages (with a free manicure thrown in for Vic) for £4 each. We are loving Thailand! We then looked round the shops and although most places sell the same or similarstuff to the ones in phuket we realised that they are not as willing to haggle or bargain with you, something we had become used to in just 3 days of being in Thailand.
Here in Ao Nang we also discovered the main mode of transport is Tuk Tuk - a guy rides a moped which has a cage with seats type contraption attached to it for passengers - safer than it sounds and less than £1 for any journey, so this became our way of getting around over the next few days. We got a tuk tuk back to our hotel, had a sleep and got ready to go out for dinner that evening. On the way to dinner Scott passed a bar which was showing football so as he had been missing it we stopped there first to watch
some of the game which pleased him, especially as Chelsa drew. There are many restaurants in Ao Nang and on the walk to the centre we pass around 50 which all looked good, but we were so impressed with where we had lunch we went back for dinner! Again the food was excellent and we sat outside overlooking the beach which was lovely, there was also a live singer although the restaurant was so quiet, there were only 2 other people in there plus us! We then walked back towards the hotel but passed a bar which was showing the Tottenham game so stopped there to watch it. Alongside the tv screen there was a fire - eating performing outside the bar (common in Thailand) and a band playing on stage, so we just watched a bit of the footie as it was hard to concentrate on it! But we had a really fun evening and headed back to the hotel before midnight.
The next morning we woke up to sunshine so decided to walk down to the pier and catch a long tail boat to the nearby beach of Railey for the day, which is said to be
one of the best in Thailand, and it was only 20 mins away from us. We jumped in the boat which was our first time in one of these, a long wooden boat with an engine, and headed over to Railey. Its a tiny place and there was just 3 hotels on the front with restaurants attached (only places to eat), but to our dissapointment the beach wasn't nearly as nice as we had expected and was really stony, not the soft white sand we had heard of, so we sat by one of the hotels pools for a while instead. It got quite cloudy around lunchtime so we ate in one of the 3 restuarants and had a short walk around the shops and stalls (about 5 on a tiny sidewalk).
We were going to go back to the pool afterwards but it started to spit with rain, so jumped on a boat back to the mainland where of course the sun had come out! We chilled on the beach there for a while before it started to rain heavily, so we did what we know best and went to our massage place which was just behind the part
of beach we were on. The people there remembered us from the day before and were so friendly, so we each had a foot scrub and a face scrub while waiting for the rain to stop.
When it had stopped raining we walked down towards another beach which we had heard was nice and had a good beach bar on. After walking for 15 minutes we couldn't see this bar but did walk past several tasty looking food stalls, selling thai dishes for less than £1 each so decided to go back there later for dinner and try a few different things. We kept on walking and eventually came to the beach bar which looked good so we agreed to go back later that eveing after eating at the nearby stalls, and got a tuk tuk back to our hotel.
We showered, got ready and did some internet stuff before heading back out. We walked into the centre and passed several more food stalls and market stalls which we hadn't noticed the night before - there are so many things to distract you here - but kept going to the stalls we had seen in the day. Once
there we had 2 fresh juices, a thai spicy soup, sweet and sour chicken and rice and a pad thai for less than £3 and it was really good! We then walked down tothe beach ar but it was really quiet, so just stayed for one drink before calling it a night, hoping the next day we would get a whole day of sunshine...
Which we did! When we woke up it was gorgeous and so walked down to the pier and hopped on a long tail boat to Chicken Island, a small island about 35 mins away which is uninhabited but looked beautiful. When we got there it was just a paradise - clear turquoise waters, soft white sand and not many people, just what we had been looking for. Chicken Island is a national park and is called this as one of its big rocks looks like a chickens head (although we didn't see this) and when the tide is out it is conected to a small island called Tub island by a strip of sand so you can walk accross which is what we did. We sunbathed here all day, it was so so hot, and
took breaks only to splash around in the warm waters and walk over to chicken island for some lunch at the only eaterie on the island. After lunch we strolled round the island and came accross a big monkey just sitting on the rocks, so we fed him some crisps and watched him fora while as we had never seen a monkey in the wild like this before and it was amazing. We had agreed with our boat driver to come back at 3.30 for us on chicken island, but we were on tub island and by this time the tide was in so we couldn't walk back accross! After waving madly towards him for 15 minutes with no success the park ranger had to radio accross to get him to come and get us, which he did shortly after, although we wished we could stay on the island for longer. This was once of our best days so far and just what we had been looking forward to about Thailand - a desserted beach, hot weather and clear waters - incredible!
That evening was to be our last in Krabi as we had booked to go up to
Bangkok on the night bus the following evening. We were pretty tired from our day sunbathing (it really takes it our of you!) so walked into town for an early dinner, where on the way we saw two monkeys on leads in the street! We found a lovely restaurant which had tables on a roof terrace overlooking the beach and the town (so so nice) and a few drinks in some local bars and played some pool before getting in our last tuk tuk back to our hotel. The next morning it was raining again (we were quite unlucky as therain season sjouldbe over by now we were told), so chilled at our hotel, went for some lunch (pasta for a change - first time we had not had thai food!) and caught up with some internet bits before being picked up and taken to the bus station, again sad to be leaving the islands but looking forward to what Bangkok had to offer us....
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