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Published: January 18th 2008
Had a great night in Trat - food was just excellent, quaint little town, very quiet. Off in the morning for ferry to Koh Chang. A trip of an hour on a large plodding ferry, again just stunning scenery with lots of mountainous islands although at this point the water is not clear due to river silt.
Next some fun with the first nasty person we have encountered. There were not enough people to completely fill the ute so even though there were people who knew the price the lady driver tried to charge as all 3 times the amount each (on top of adding the charge for the missing 2 people). She was really rude - it must be such a bad reflection for people who have not been away much before, not a good first impression. We got off at white sand beach - very busy and noisy and the places we had thought we might stay in had all been bulldozed. Huge hotels going up everywhere. On to the next beach or 2.
Driver took us to a place he liked on Khlong Prao beach. It was lovely, huts in a semi circle around lawn on
the beach. The beaches here are small in comparison to ours at home.
For the next few days we explored the island. Firstly on a motobike (very dodgy), then for the longer distance a car (wished we had bike though as not all roads useable for car. Island very hilly, steep sharp bends, no road rules. There are at least 70 accidents a day with tourists coming off bikes. Still Steve is great, knows how to ride and is very sensible and careful. I felt completely safe. The bikes are not fast and often with 2 on one they don't get up the hills, someone has to get off and walk......
The side of the island we are is busy, lots of different seperate beaches, but all small so much of the accommodation is on rock. The other side is very quiet and much cheaper, you could stay at the new marina for 1300 baht a day including full board. The bottom end of the island was the most impressive so far for scenery but the road was a little dodgy, would not want to travel along it in the wet. Again very windy and steep with many
places down to one lane due to mud and tree slides. in one place there were some odd stones and branches on the other side of the road - on the way back we realised they were there to stop you driving on that bit as there was nothing left under the road to hold it up.......
At night we went to a bar along the beach and watched some fabulous fire dancing - amazing, doin't know how they do it. Very fit - looks great.
Next a speed boat to Koh Kood, this was very fast and also took 1 hour. We decided to stay at a place called Nature beach after looking at available options from the ferry. It is a door to door ferry, takes you to pier at each resort. This was a great place, garden like setting on the beach, we had a seafront/view cottage.
Again a day exploring the island by motobike - even worse than before. Not much in the way of roads, mainly washed out dirt tracks and a mud map that was useless. We ended up going all sorts of strange routes and it was pretty hard riding
for Steve (easy for me I just have to hang on). Once up a steep hill the bike started sliding back and I had to jump of in a hurry so Steve could get it to stop. Later up another hill on changing gear it reared up like a horse - getting good at the fast jumps.
We found our way to a walk up the mountain to a waterfall and swimming hole. It was not bad but not enough water, reckon it would be stunning in the wet season though.
Next day kayaking, we wern't doing to bad but then the wind got up and it looked a bit rough to go round the headland so we stayed in the bay. Rest of the days there were really just snorkelling, swimming and reading. It is a shame that there is not much coral left but there are at least still heaps of different fish. we saw some cuttle fish which I have not seen wild before and another strange thing that we don't know yet what it was.
On the last evening we spotted a turtle off the end of the jetty. The local lads were very excited as they don't normally come in to the bay - they were still on about it at breakfast the next morning.
We had planned a trip to a pearl farm but the wind did not die down enough for the small boat until the day we left.
Back to Koh Chang - as the wind was still stronger than on our way out the trip back was great fun, we were getting soaked as some waves swamped us occassionally - great way to cool down.
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