You know how I’m not really a city-person? After a few days in Bangkok I couldn’t wait to get out of the city and onto a more relaxed environment. I had planned to go directly to Khao Lak, but was advised against it because the bus ride would be a lovely 16 hours long.. You really wouldn’t want that..
So I decided to change my route and do a stop in Koh Tao, which is an island about halfway on route to Khao Lak.. And let’s just call it paradise island for all intents and purposes.. It has the proper bounty-beaches, cool diving spots and a genuine island-vibe.. Lovely!
When I first arrived at the island, I was a bit shocked: the pier is surrounded by little touristy shops and somewhat dirty, smelly streets.. not what I had expected from such a place.. But once you get moving and walk to the other side of town (about 5 minutes later) it all changes and you get the views you were looking for.
I was staying at a hostel called the Taco Shack, where they served: yes, you guessed it right: Taco’s!! And really good ones at that! My dorm (or the people in it) were one of the most social I’ve ever been in.. We all had our own little plans, but next to that we went to the beach together, watched the sunset, went to lunch, went to dinner, went drinking.. We really had a blast!
Koh Tao is one of the cheapest places in the world to get your PADI certification for Scuba Diving.. So naturally a lot of people visit it to go diving.. I figured it was a good opportunity to refresh my diving skills, so I did 2 dives as well. The first one was a wreck dive which was cool because I never did one before, but there weren’t a lot of fish around.. The second dive had a lot of coral and a lot of fish.. Especially a few cool big blue spotted stingrays made an impression! I tried to take pictures with my underwater camera, but I haven’t really got the hang of it yet 😉
Wherever I go, I want to go explore. I don’t really do well with just sitting on the beach.. So I went exploring in Koh Tao a bit.. for only a few hours, because it was hot as hell and I hadn’t had a proper breakfast.. But it was still worth the effort: beautiful scenery, cool flowers and a couple of squirrels that wouldn’t wait for me to take a picture 😉
The last thing I did in Koh Tao was get a Thai massage. For everyone who’s ever had one: You’ll feel my pain! If you don’t know: the masseuse literally sits on top of you and bends all your limbs in every possible direction needed to crack your joints.. Next to that they ‘massage’ you which is more like trying to push your muscles out of your body. Really, there isn’t a lot of relaxing during a Thai massage. But afterwards you feel great! (Albeit slightly bruised)
So this morning I got up at 5.10 to catch the ferry out of Koh Tao.. After a few hours on the boat, and another 7 hours in a bus, I finally reached Khao Lak. I couldn’t find my hostel: some locals thought it was in another village, others said it had closed a while ago.. So after an hour of searching for it, I just walked into another hostel and got a room there.. It’s actually way cooler than the one I had booked so that is just fine 🙂
The next 2 days are just for relaxing, and on the 26th I’ll be heading out on a 4-day dive trip to one of the best dive spots in the world: the Similan islands. Can’t wait!!
(I’ll add some pictures later on, as my wifi really doesn’t want to upload anything)