The Beaches of Southern Thailand


After a night in Vientiane, Laos we spent a couple of low key nights in Ko Lanta before the calvary came. We stayed at a nice beachfront resort in the town of Long Beach and didn’t do much but soak up the sun. It’s really a place for families and couples, so it was good that we didn’t stay long.

Sunset in Ko Lanta

Sunset in Ko Lanta

Next stop was a ferry ride to the town of Ao Nang, where the crew joined up for the rest of the Thailand trip. It’s a touristy town with a mediocre nightlife, mediocre food, and vendors selling all of the same crap. If you come, don’t stay long, do however take a 5 minute long tail boat ride to Railay Beach (or stay there), where we spent most of our days. It’s a world renowned rock climbing destination, and a beautiful beach surrounded by limestone karsts. I didn’t feel like dropping the money necessary for a day of climbing, I am on a budget after all, and I’m not much of a rock climber so I left the climbing up to Schwartz, Wolff and the Cantor’s.

Limestone Karsts in Railay

Limestone Karsts in Railay

Originally we were supposed to spend 4 nights in Ao Nang, but being underwhelmed with the place in general we cut the trip a day short and took a ferry to Koh Phi Ph for an extra night. Koh Phi Phi is an island that I had visited with the PK crew a few years ago. In all of my travels thus far, Koh Phi Phi had ranked as one of my favorite places in the world. Even though when I visited last time the weather was really shitty, it’s still a beautiful place with a very young, social, backpacker crowd. There is also another part of the island that caters to couples/families.

This island was also devastated in the 2004 Tsunami, and we were there for the 9 year anniversary on December 26. Of the 10,000 inhabitants including tourists, roughly 4,000 have believed to have died from that disaster. What was pretty erie was that the tide was realllly far out that day, unlike the rest of the day, so much so that we questioned whether or not another tsunami was eminent.

Once again we spent a majority of our stay on the beach. The town was pretty packed for christmas, so we got a couple good nights of partying in. All of the bars on the beach hold pretty large parties, with fire being the central theme. Fire twirlers, fire limbo, jumping through a ring of fire, fire jump rope, flame throwers, you name it, they have it.

Fire Show on the Beach in Phi Phi

Fire Show on the Beach in Phi Phi

We took a day trip on one of the days to go to Monkey Beach, snorkeling, and Maya Beach (where they filmed the movie “The Beach” with Leonardo DiCaprio). Snorkeling was really cool, saw a ton of beautiful fish, with really great visibility.

Don't feed the monkeys!

Don’t feed the monkeys!

The next day, after receiving a tip from one of the guys we met on our trip we took a 30 min hike to Long Beach and rented some snorkeling gear to check out Shark Point, where apparently you can see reef sharks. Unfortunately we didn’t spot any sharks, and the water was pretty choppy around the rocks, so airing on better judgement we called it a day, but still got to see a bunch of wildlife.

Long Tails lined up at Maya Bay

Long Tails lined up at Maya Bay

Tune in for part 2 where I’ll tackle Phuket, Koh Phangnan, and Ko Tao!

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