Category

Thailand

Category

Bangkok to Siem Reap Overland Crossing

I’ve never really considered myself a backpacker. And part of not being a backpacker is that we value time a little more than money. For example, we’d rather pay a little more for a 2-hour flight than save $20 by taking a 7-hour bus. I’ve crossed a lot of borders, but none in Asia. We’ve always flown, which is very simple and regulated. I’ve heard lots of stories about the Cambodia-Thailand border, and I really wanted to experience it for myself. Big mistake. We should have flown. Especially today, but we’ll get into that in a minute. We took a…

Phra Nang Beach

Just a quick longtail boat ride away from Ao Nang beach is Railay, a peninsula cut off from the mainland by limestone cliffs, making it accessible exclusively by boat. We had never been on a longtail boat, and Thailand’s beaches are kinda famous for them, so we decided to take it. 100 baht pp, each way. Not bad. The ride out was fun and the landscape was beautiful! The cliffs diving straight down into the pretty water and the deep greenery of the jungles made for really pretty scenery. We stopped at a few beaches along the way, including Railay…

Ao Nang, Krabi

Upon returning from Maya Bay, we picked up our bags from the tour company’s office and almost immediately bought a ferry ticket to Krabi. Little did we know we should have just stayed in Phi Phi. The ferry dropped us off in the middle of nowhere, outside of Krabi. Our hotel is not in Krabi either (because there’s actually nothing worth seeing in Krabi Town, the beaches are a 20 minute drive outside), but also not near the ferry terminal. Our hotel is just a few minutes walk from the beach, so we paid a ridiculous amount to get on…

Maya Bay Camping

That was fun. Maya Bay came to fame by being the beach featured in the Leonardo DiCaprio movie called, “The Beach.” It is ridiculously pretty. Super soft white sand, clear turquoise warm water, protected and surrounded by giant limestone cliffs, and even coral reefs and secluded side beaches to explore and enjoy. It is surreal in every way. The only downside is that everyone wants to be there, so it is crazy packed with boats and tourists all day long. So we decided to overnight there. We booked this tour months ago, but when we showed up, they didn’t have…

Koh Phi Phi

I have been waiting years to be here. My expectations were borderline unrealistic, and at the same time I didn’t really know what to expect. I just knew it would be beautiful and awesome. Koh Phi Phi doesn’t disappoint. We arrived yesterday afternoon on an unremarkable ferry from somewhere near Phuket Town. The ride started off beautiful and sunny, and people were laying out on the back deck getting some sun in already. Clouds and rain came in when we neared the island, but they cleared out just about the time we disembarked. Phi Phi is unique in many ways.…

Karon Beach

Our hotel is conveniently situated at the north end of Kata Beach. We’re happy up here. You don’t want to be in the middle of the beach because there’s a Club Med that spans almost the entire length of the beach and you can’t get through it, so you have to walk around it. The south end has more restaurants and bars, but up here has quick access to Karon Beach for a little change of scenery. Just a 15 minute walk from our hotel put us at the south end of Karon Beach. As you can see, today was…

Kata Beach

We took a way too expensive taxi (we negotiated down to 350 baht for the 20 minute drive) from Patong down two beaches to Kata. It’s a cute little town with a nice beach that is far less crowded than Patong Beach. We picked out a spot that happened to be right next to the lift off spot for the parasailing people. It was fun to see people “Running! Running! Running” and then pop into the air. As you can see, it was a pretty cloudy day today. The sun popped out a few times, but not for very long.…

Patong Beach and Bangla Road

Our plan today was to go to the beach and hang out on Bangla Road. That’s it. Needless to say, we rocked it. We had heard bad things about Patong Beach, but we found all the negative things to be completely wrong. We heard it was full of trash, but we’ll let you be the judge of that. The sand was actually really nice. And we loved these little butterfly shells. The reviews say this beach is super crowded, but we didn’t think it was that bad. There were a lot of people, but there was a lot of space…

Exploring Hua Hin

So first things first we rented a scooter at the place right next to our hotel. One day, 200 baht (about $6.50 US). Good deal. What we didn’t realize is the gas gauge was not broken – it was empty when we got it. 🙁 That will come into play in a minute. We drove directly out to Wat Huay Mongkol. This is a giant statue of a famous Thai monk (Luang Phor Thuad) that sits on a hill about 20 minutes inland from Hua Hin. Apparently this monk is well known for his enlightenment and for performing miracles and…

Chiang Rai Black House

It’s hard not to compare the White Temple to the Black House. It’s almost as if they were deliberately created as opposites – opposite colors and locations – white is south of Chiang Rai, black is north; white is surreal, black is naturalistic; white is enlightenment and life, black is death. But once you experience each one, you realize that they’re not in competition at all. They’re both in their own little worlds, seemingly oblivious to their “counterpart” on the other side of town. The Black House or “Baan Dam” in Thai (บ้านดำ), sometimes incorrectly referred to as the Black…