I can`t believe this trip finally happened! And what an adventure that was! Two amazing weeks exploring Thailand and its islands.
I have always wanted to visit Thailand and to be honest, it was exactly as I imagined it to be! And I have quite an imagination…
I travelled with 2 friends so we purchased the flights together which made them a bit cheaper as well. We found flights with Qatar, 3200 DKK from Copenhagen and we went on the 16th of Ocober and came back on the 30th. It was perfect timing to go there in the end of October as it is the end of the rainy season. Occasionally, there were few showers during the day but nothing major to stop us from exploring the country.
It was a long 17-hour flight when we finally landed in Bangkok. Hot air hit us immediately when getting off the place. It was SO hot! We got a taxi and went to the airbnb apartment we have booked. TIP NO.1: Never say to the taxi driver it is your first time in Thailand. He charged us 3 times more and since for us it was still cheap we did not notice. After refreshing we went to Cielo Sky Bar where we celebrated Boyan`s birthday. It was late night and we saw the city shinning – skyscrapers and lights were before us. The city is so alive. The population is more than 8 million people. It is more than Bulgaria and Denmark`s total population.
It was not expensive for people who come from Denmark, 2 course menu and 2-3 drinks would be about 500 DKK, but later we compared with regular restaurants where the same would cost 150 DKK. Well, I guess that is expected 🙂
We did not want to spend much time in Bangkok. It was too busy and dirty. Street food stands everywhere offering all kinds of food, most of it vegetarian which made me really happy 🙂
It is a different world there… you may end up on a really poor street, cables hanging thought the whole city and in a minute you may end up in front of an area which is really well taken care of, like a shopping area.
We decided to skip the local street food and go for something organic and more western style – yes, we were scared we will get food poisoning, which in the end also happened but I will get there 😛
After lunch we went to the airport and took a flight to Phuket. The biggest island of Thailand, full with amazing beaches and party places. We got a taxi to get us to our bungalow at Kata beach. It had 2 big double rooms with small living room and huge balcony, separate bathrooms. It was really nice apart from having to climb about 130 stairs to get to our bungalow. It was exhausting… then we also discovered the local…. lizards. Our rooms were full of them. One of the nights I actually woke up because a lizard was screaming. I guess this is what they do when they mate… At first I was scared but then I just got used to it. They are harmless and ran as soon as I moved around them. The first day we spend at the beach and later we went to the Big Buddha temple. It is on a hill and it can be seen from far away. TIP NO.2 Cover your sholders and legs when entering any temple in Thailand. They may not let you in, if you do not pay respect to that.
The beach was not crowded and the water was amazing, clean and warm. We had the view of that little island. It was a paradise!
I found out that durian and jackfruit are alike but very different! No matter what people say about durian, it was delicious for me! 🙂 It is creamy and has a mix taste of mango and banana. TIP NO. 3 – if you eat durian, do not drink anything sparkling. I am glas to say it is not an advice from my own experience but the lady in the shop was kind enough to warn me 🙂 You can also find coconuts everywhere – 40 baht, and it is freshly cut in front of you.
The second day we discovered the speed boat trips! TIP NO.4 You can buy a ticket from almost every booth on the street that displays brochures for these trips. They are very cheap – visiting 4-5 islands a day would take about 8-9 hours, incl. lunch and soft drinks and fruits on the boat, and they will pick you up and return you to your hotel. The prices vary between 1000-1500 baht if you go in slow season. Otherwise, the prices get almost double.
We took a boat ride to the James Bond island. It was full with tourists but my photos do not capure them. It is sooo touristic. There were also a lot of booths selling souvenirs which brings me to TIP NO.5 – bargain! I got a neckless for 150 baht which originally they tried to sell for 950 baht. Bargain but also know that the sellers also have their limits, so be reasonable. These people stand there at the heat trying to make a living. I myself got so excited to bargain that I did that for everything I bought. However, later I felt a bit guilty pressing the price so low… sometimes too low. I know I would not do that next time and be reasonable.
The boat tour includes lunch on an island. We had lunch on an very poor and small one. People there live in extreme poverty and owe small businesses like shops and restaurants. The population was muslim and very concervative so we had special instruction on where to go and to cover ourselves.
That night when we returned we all fell very ill. I felt sick – could not eat or drink and I left like I would vomit. I fell asleep and things got better with eating less. Boyan and Chrisy who I travelled with felt the same so I guess it could also be the shock from the heat. I am glad it did not last long. TIP NO. 6 Do not drink water from the sink. Always buy mineral or filtered water as the pipes in Thailand are not filtered and you may get sick.
The second day we went to a second speed boat ride to Phi Phi island. And in photos this is where my story ends because I dropped my phone in the sea and had no phone for 10 days while being in Thailand. I really… connected to the nature 🙂 So, here is TIP NO.7 – get a waterproof phone cover before getting on the boat!
The speed boat to Phi Phi took us to see an island where we fed monkeys and we also did some snorketing. It was so beautiful!
One of the stops was Maya Bay. The place gained its fame though the movie The Beach with Leonardo DiCaprio. It has an astonishing view and I guess due to this it was very crowded.
TIP NO. 8 – Apply sun protection cream all the time! The sun is so strong I did not wear my hat for 1-2 hours and my scalp burned. It was painful as hell..
Veeery special TIP NO. 9 – Wear the life jacket when snorketing if you are not a good swimmer. In my case? I had a life jacket, lifebuoy… and one of the guides from the tourboat helping me chill after a panic attack… and I feel I should not go deeper into that story 😀 But here is a funny photo of me below:
TIP NO. 10 – Dot not stay longer than 3 days anywhere but travel, explore the country. The transport is very well organized with boats, taxis, tuk-tuk, ferries and scooters are available on a good price. From example from Kata beach in Phuket to Patong ( the most party beach in Phuket ) the price for taxi and tuk-tuk is 1000 baht both ways. By the way, always get the tuk-tuk. It is so much fun 🙂 Ferry from Phuket to Koh Lanta island was about 150 DKK one way. You may check prices for public transport always online. I find them quite accurate.
Bangkok and Phuket were lovely, however, they were also very touristic. Our next stop after 3 days in Phuket was Koh Lanta which I will tell you more about in the next blog. If you are fan of getting lost on a non-touristic island, ghost streets, poisonous animals and bugs and wild beaches, stay tuned 🙂