STEVEN COPPING

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STEVEN COPPING

PLAIN OF JARS, NOVEMBER 2008



Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Phuket February 17th 2009

Welcome all, to my last blog of what has turned out to be 18 months of travelling overland (not a single flight!) to and around mainland south east asia, an eventful time indeed... for next thursday night (26th february), ekk and i will board a Etihad airlines flight bound for london (via abu dhabi). it is also the first flight i've taken since april 2007, so slightly apprehensive... i wrote my last blog from the southern thai city of hat yai at the beginning of january, after just coming back from koh lipe for new years eve. ekk and i spent a few more rainy days there, including visiting the nearby beach resort of songkla, where it rained some more! ekk then had to return to work in hua hin, then i went onto bangkok. i ... read more
THE GIANT SWING
LUMPINI PARK, BANGKOK
KANCHANABURI WAR CEMETARY

Asia » Thailand » Southern Thailand » Hat Yai January 4th 2009

HAPPY NEW YEAR, from hat yai! welcome to my first blog of 2009, and the probably the penultimate one before Ekk and i return to the UK at the end of next month.. since i last spoke, i helped ekk celebrate his 35th birthday in hua hin, helped by some duty free famous grouse whisky, a large chocolate cake from siam paragon and 5 puppies! i then left hua hin by train to thung song junction, from where it is a short bus journey to krabi town. i could have got off at surat thani, but couldnt face the touts and hassle there. At thung song though, 2 hours further south, i was the only farang, and not a tout in sight ready to rip me off! time wise it was probably about the same, and ... read more
GAY VOLLEYBALL
EKK ON KOH KAI NUI
KOH KAI NUI

Asia » Thailand » Western Thailand » Hua Hin December 6th 2008

i am now in hua hin, having safely arrived from bangkok last night. its been quite an long and very varied adventure since my last blog from phuket.... i spent another 12 days in phuket. i had a great time there, so much so in fact, that i am going back there next week, to spend my 40th birthday, christmas and new year.... should be fun! spent the evenings seeing a lot of lip synching ladyboy cabaret, maybe too much, mainly in kiss bar, but also other establishments. boat bar sadly continues be become less popular, it is a shame, but they really to change their act... if anyone is wondering what the hell is going on in thailand right now, let me tell you it is still a safe place to visit, that is if ... read more
ROYAL PARADISE HOTEL, PATONG
EKK GETTING FRIENDLY WITH THE LOCALS
RIVER PING

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Phuket October 31st 2008

im now in phuket again, after spending the time since the last blog with travelling around southern thailand with ekk. after spending a week in bangkok and hua hin generally being depressed about the delays and bureaucracy and sheer bloody mindedness of the procedures involved in getting ekk a uk visa, we took the lomprayah cateraran to koh pangnan. we stayed on hat yao beach in the far north west of the island, at the shiralea backpackers resort, a new place with great beds and a pool for 500bht a night. it's not right on the beach, but near enough. some of the hotels on hat yao seem to be over-developing their plots somewhat, but is a still a great beach for the moment. we spent a week there, exploring the island by motorbike. also went ... read more
HAT KHOM
HAD RIN SUNRISE, KOH PANGNAN
WEIRD SUNSET LIGHT

Asia » Thailand » Central Thailand » Bangkok October 1st 2008

welcome again to my blog, i am back in Bangkok again, with my friend Ekk, after a solo foray to Laos and Cambodia. more on what's happened in Bangkok later... meanwhile let me regail you of the tale of the past 2 weeks of my travels, to pastures mainly new... after my last blog from Pakxe, which is the main town in southern Laos. i spent a couple more days there, enjoying the hassle free and laid back ambiance, that is so typical of Laos. i wanted to visit the Bolaven Plateau, an elevated area east of the town, notable for its cooler climate, many waterfalls and lots of tea and coffee plantations. there were no day tours going as not enough tourists about, and i still dont trust myself with a hired moped, so had ... read more
CYCLING ON DON KHONG (THE BIG ISLAND)
ON DON DET, IN THE MIDDLE OF THE MEKONG
GATEHOUSE AT BRIDGE BETWEEN DON DET AND DON KON

Asia » Laos » South » Pakxe September 18th 2008

hello, massage, welcome.... now i am alone in the small town of Pakxe in laos, having travelled here from north-eastern thailand yesterday. after my last blog from hat yai 4 weeks ago, it has been a rather drama filled time! i took the bus from hat yai to phuket, a slow 6 hour journey on winding roads. it was made worse by the driver being in a inappropriate race with a competitor company's bus on the section between krabi town and phang-nga town. resulting in several sharp brakes and swerves, much to mine and fellow passengers chagrin! phuket town has one of the most stupid locations for its bus station (and in asia there is a lot of competition for stupid bus station locations). it's right in the south east of the town, whereas as nearly ... read more
CENTRAL WORLD, BANGKOK
SPEEDING BY CAT BETWEEN KOH TAO AND KOH PHANGNAN
LOMPRAYAH CATAMARAN UNLOADING ITS PASSENGERS

Asia » Thailand » Southern Thailand » Hat Yai August 21st 2008

i am now back in Thailand having just spent the past 3 weeks in Malaysia and Singapore. after my last blog from Hat Yai, in far southern thailand, i took the direct overnight sleeper train from there to Kuala Lumpar, as my thai visa had expired. the ticket was only 518baht (about 8GBP). Although it starts in Hat Yai, it is a Malaysian train, with initially just two passenger carriages attached to the back of a very long and extremely slow goods train. the goods carriages are replaced by a lot more passenger ones at the Thailand/Malaysian border. compared with the freshly laundered sheets, that you could probably eat your dinner off, on thai sleepers, the bedding on the malaysian train left a lot to be desired. it didnt look or smell as if it had ... read more
MERLION
BOAT QUAY
STRANGE LOOKING SEAGULLS

Asia » Thailand » Southern Thailand » Hat Yai August 4th 2008

im now in the southern Thai city of Hat Yai, having arrived here saturday afternoon with my friend ekk. we got here by boat and bus from the island of koh muk, off the coast of Trang province, in south-western thailand. soon after my last blog i left bangkok for koh samet, a tiny but very popular island off the thai eastern seaboard. the reason for that was that a friend we had met on koh samui in june, had invited us to spend some time there. we arrived on the bus from bangkok (only about 3 hours), to the port of ban phe, where we met him. we then took the boat together to the island. we ended up staying on ao phai beach, which is pretty central for most things. the second day we ... read more
VIEW FROM THE RIVER FRONT AT KRABI TOWN
KOH JUM ON A ROUGH JULY DAY
THE BEACH AT WOODLAND LODGE, KOH JUM

Asia » Thailand » Central Thailand » Bangkok July 11th 2008

ekk was thankfully certified tb free a few days after my last blog, and the certificate has to be used for entry into the uk before december 12th 2008. getting a uk settlement visa will take 3 months, and cost about 500quid! immediately after the last blog, i spent a week on koh samui, while ekk was faffing about in bangkok with the tb results. had a great time there again, even though it was my fourth visit since february! the first few nights i spent on lamai beach, far from the "hurdy gurdy" of chaweng beach!! though i then spent the next 5 days on chaweng... after samui, i took the seatran express boat to chumphon, spent one night there, before taking a bus to hua hin. the bus frustratingly dropped me on the distant ... read more
BUSY DAY ON CENTRAL CHAWENG BEACH
SATHORN INN
VIEW FROM BALCONY OF OUR ROOM

Asia » Thailand » South-West Thailand » Khao Sok NP June 9th 2008

one month has now passed since my last blog from laos, so time for another one. after leaving laos, i crossed by a small boat across the mekong river, to the thai town of chiang khong. from there i took a very slow local bus through the country byways of far northern thailand, to the city of chiang rai, and met up with ekk. spent just one night there, sampling the delights of the local night bazaar. also went to a couple of extremely bad and sorrowful gay bars, the only 2 in town. needless to say only stayed as long as i could drink my drink. it was like going back to what i imagine bangkok was like 20 years ago, ie a few local, not even that good looking, or maybe not even gay, ... read more
CROSSING TO THAILAND AT CHANG KHONG
MAIN STREET IN CHIANG RAI
TUK TUKS AT CHIANG MAI NIGHT BAZAAR




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