Posted by: thoughtfulnomad | September 18, 2010

Koh Phi Phi Don…THE island of all islands

I got to Phi Phi island yesterday morning after taking the ferry from Krabi. The ferry took about one and a half hours, but the ride went by really quickly because of the amazing scenery. Non-stop islands dotted the horizon and bright white beaches drew a distinct line through the blues of the ocean and sky. The second the boat docked, I knew I had made the right choice in coming here. Looking over the side of the ferry revealed the most clear blue water I’ve ever seen absolutely cluttered with fish of every kind and color. The fact that I could see the fish so clearly from the deck of the ferry about 15 feet up actually brought a smile to my face. This is the kind of beach I had been looking for.

I had not booked any sort of accommodation before heading to the island, so the first thing I had to do was find a room. It’s monsoon season here, which means that it’s the low season and everything is cheaper. (I haven’t seen rain yet) The great thing about this island is that nothing motorized is allowed, besides boats. It’s so small that you can get anywhere by walking or riding a bike. This let me walk around to pretty much every guest house to compare my options. I had finally decided to “splurge” a little bit and go back to some nice bungalows that literally sat right on the beach. They were 500 baht a night (roughly $16), and since I seem to have stumbled upon paradise I figured I would spend the extra money and make my stay even better. After returning to the reception desk, though, I found out that they were full. Apparently while I was assessing my options someone else took the last room. I was a little disappointed, but decided to stay in some other bungalows just behind these, which meant that I would have a 45 second walk to the beach instead of a 10 second walk. After staying the first night in my bungalow I realized that I was actually sharing the room with lizards, roaches, and an unknown species of bug, but that’s another story….

Yesterday and today I just hung out on the beach. After laying out and swimming for a few hours today I decided that I had exerted myself enough to deserve a traditional Thai massage. For about $6 I got to spend a full hour having my body walked on, massaged, and bent in ways I had no idea were possible. The Thai woman had my arms bent backwards at certain points, her legs wrapped around mine with my back pulled into the most awkward arch you could imagine, and her feet jammed into various parts of my body so as to stabilize herself while she pulled another one of my extremities nearly out of its socket. I won’t lie and say it didn’t hurt, but I felt good enough afterwards to already plan on getting another at some point. What better way to end a day at the beach?

I’m really excited about tomorrow. I just booked a tour that includes some beach/island hopping (one of them has monkeys), kayaking, a visit to Maya Bay, which is the actual beach where the Lionardo Dicaprio movie “The Beach” was filmed, and……snorkeling with sharks. Yes…sharks. I can’t handle the bugs in my room, but I can’t even begin to describe how excited I am about snorkeling with sharks. Apparently they’re a completely harmless type of shark that don’t really even acknowledge people swimming around them, but still…sharks. I can’t wait. I already bought an underwater camera.

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  1. Your words paint a picture of such beauty, Kristen. Of course, they also bring a smile to my face as I envision my daughter being turned into a contortionist by a masseuse. Love you!

  2. How beautiful! I can envision how thrilled you are with each new area. It was great “talking” to you on Saturday. I hope that you were able to make out what I was saying. My typing is easier on my computer. I hope you are feeling better. Keep me posted. Love hearing about your experiences. Much love

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