A Travellerspoint blog

Day 4

Koh Phi Phi Scuba

sunny 35 °C
View Southeast Asia #2 on Bucky Slomski's travel map.

Day 4 began around 6am since the single fan in our room stopped pushing air because power is shut off in the early morning. Luckily, we were able to watch the sun rise instead of sleep.

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We took an early morning long tail around to the Koh Phi Phi port (about a 15 min ride) to walk around and figure out what our plan for the day was. Early on, we decided a day of snorkeling would be fun. The island warned us about making out with fish.

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While walking around we found a small trail leading up a hill...

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...to a small shrine in the jungle.

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We wolfed down some banana pancakes and a passion fruit smoothie at a local joint and headed out on the water. Pancakes here are a relative term. They're all different. Some are banana infused biscuits/muffins, others are more crepe-style. The one commonality: they're all delicious for breakfast, lunch, dinner, dessert or as a snack. Especially with Nutella.

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Our guide for the day drove us over to another island close by to get our first taste of snorkeling in Phi Phi.

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He then took us to Monkey Beach. This is the life of the monkey on Phi Phi. Constant peanuts and pineapple.

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Lunch at a seafood place in the heart of the small island.

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Then up 200 steps (more like 2k) to see the Koh Phi Phi viewpoint.

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Pano of the view above.

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Back down some sketchy steps from the top

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And some waiting at the pier with tons of fish eating stale bread. Pretty cool spiky sea anemone.

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Finally a restful night on the beach with gorgeous Arizona-like sunsets.

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Tomorrow, rock climbing!! (Sadly had to forego free water soloing -- maybe next time).

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Sorry for the brief descriptions.. We've had a long day. Tomorrow is full of activities and more island life!

Posted by Bucky Slomski 06:14 Archived in Thailand Tagged phi & koh snorkel viewpoint Comments (1)

Day 3

Krabi > Koh Phi Phi Don

35 °C
View Southeast Asia #2 on Bucky Slomski's travel map.

Our third day of travel began waking up in a room much too cold, which was a godsend given the humidity. Have I mentioned how humid this place is? Our windows had so much condensation you couldn't see out of them. And when I opened them, this mangie fellow freaked. There are cats everywhere, with the occasional dog. They all seem to look alike..

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We took a short walk down to the river before breakfast to take pictures of some of the sculpture we saw last night at the night market and to enjoy the view.

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From there, we wandered into the heart of Krabi Town to get some good breakfast -- soup and curry. While walking back to our place, we stumbled upon a temple and had to check it out.

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Those dragon stairs sucked after a big meal....

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We hurriedly said goodbye to our host, who was still lounging on the couch in the lobby as his grandfather smoked a cig at 8am and headed off to catch our shuttle to the pier.

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I read a travel blog before I left on this trip that began commenting on how superficial a lot of social media has become. We post the good or the terribly bad, but none of the in between. There is no sense of journey or lull. So, true to that notion, here's our two hour ferry ride and the people we rode it with.

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Side note... This. This is not ok. This is like the man bun, but way, way worse.

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Our ferry took us from Krabi Town to Koh Phi Phi and straight into a rain storm. The view was spectacular as everything changed from ocean and sun to dark clouds, rain, and jagged islands reaching far into the sky.

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After a bit of rain and another beer, and the sky cleared up. Our "taxi boat" showed up to bring us to our resort, which is a long wooden boat with an old engine strapped to a metal structure turning the propeller.

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The "long tail" boats are everywhere. Getting to and from any place criss-crosses a handful of other long tails and speed boats, usually getting quite close to one another.

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We got to our resort, and after a brief disagreement with the host with the amount of time we would be spending here, we were taken to our little hut.

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After getting settled, we opened the door to the balcony and this is our current view..

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The place is beautiful, tranquil and exotic. I went snorkling and immediately became enfatuated with the sea life. Schools of fish, some silver, some white, others look like a neon light show - teal body with a red underbelly, an aqua blue stripe along its spine and yellow tipped fins. They're absolutely gorgeous. I was out for over 1.5 hrs and immediately felt the effects of this sun on my back, even after twice applying 55 spf sunscreen. Oops.

A small meal at our local restaurant and it was off to bed in our mosquito net covered bed. Tomorrow, snorkling around the island and more adventure.

Important note: we are NOT in Bangkok and didn't hear about the bombing until the next morning. It seems like with the timing, we were already safely in Krabi Town drinking beers in an eccentric Rastafarian bar before anything went off. We will be checking in on the news and with the U.S. Embassy to get their recommendation on safety in Bangkok in the upcoming weeks. If it is too dangerous for foreigners, we will unfortunately, most likely skip the city and reorganize our trip. But for now, we're in a very safe place, far away from any twisted minds and any danger. Keep your thoughts with those that lost their lives and/or family members.

Until next time!

Posted by Bucky Slomski 05:05 Archived in Thailand Tagged town krabi phi koh > Comments (0)

Day 2

Bangkok > Krabi Town


View Southeast Asia #2 on Bucky Slomski's travel map.

After a ridiculous amount of travel, we were able to grab some rest at a quaint back-alley hotel by 4:30am. Sleep, you're so good to me.

Around 7:30am I woke to the sound of drums, chimes and women singing. Confused, I went to check it out....

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Nothing so far... Although I did immediately notice the thick, sticky humid air. But once I turned the corner...

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.... I found out we booked the one place that was having a full on Thai wedding!

Still groggy from the travel, we grabbed some food and holed up in our room until it was time to fly.

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Bangkok to Krabi is a relatively short (2 hr) flight that drops you into more of a jungle location than Bangkok. Krabi is full of partially maintained asphalt roads winding around huge limestone cliffs jutting out of the ground. Random shops on the side of the road, some selling tables enshrined with Angry Birds decals. Way too many close calls with our shuttle driver and bikers, some even driving in the opposite direction of traffic on the actual wrong side of the road.

Krabi is obese with "stuff." There is construction next to run down shops next to local establishments, next to brand new corporate complexes. The opposing forces of wealth and poverty have met, here, in an explosion that no one seems to really give a shit about. Everyone is happy with what they have, what they've been given and generally enjoy life. The balance is intriguing and disturbing.

After driving around for a while, we were shuttled to Krabi Town, and straight to our shuttle driver's family business. Some people were pissed off about the deception, others took it in stride, still others stayed in their seats, clearly oblivious as to what was going on.

We decided this was the perfect time to grab a beer and reset.

I walked down the street and found a good deal on a room. We set our packs down, cranked the AC and went to get food. Krabi Town is a vibrant city with bars, street cars, restaurants, family owned shops, stray dogs and smells - some good, some bad. But the people are friendly. Cars and motorbikes fly by on the opposite side of the road as the U.S. The reality that I'm in Thailand finally starts to settle in.

We ended the night at a friendly local bar talking to locals, drinking Chang beer, eating exotic fruit (which, I apologize I didn't photograph) and playing connect four.
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Tomorrow, Koh Phi Phi island. Where "The Beach" was made, so I'm told. Still haven't seen the damn movie...

Posted by Bucky Slomski 01:29 Archived in Thailand Comments (0)

Day 1

PHX > LAX > Taipei > Bangkok

50 °C

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We're off! Headed to LAX first for a short layover then a 13 hour flight to Taipei. From there we'll take a red eye to Bangkok and stay there for the night.

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The LAX international terminal has some LARGE planes. Double Decker (not our plane, we're on a 777).

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Free Taiwan beer is always welcome!

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Chasing down the sun at 570 MPH... almost caught it.

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Post 13 hour flight to Taiwan.

Posted by Bucky Slomski 13:43 Archived in USA Comments (0)

Day 1

PHX > LAX > Taipei > Bangkok

50 °C

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We're off! Headed to LAX first for a short layover then a 13 hour flight to Taipei. From there we'll take a red eye to Bangkok and stay there for the night.

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The LAX international terminal has some LARGE planes. Double Decker (not our plane, we're on a 777).

Posted by Bucky Slomski 13:43 Archived in USA Comments (0)

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