Tag Archives: Haad Rin

Koh Phangan, part 2

If you haven’t read it yet – here’s Part 1.

Since the sun sets very early in Thailand (7 PM) we were pretty sure it rises early too, so we set our alarm clock for 5 AM. When we woke up it was still pitch black outside, so we tried our luck again at 5:40. And I’m glad we did, because the sunrise was beautiful… We made ourselves some coffee and enjoyed the view.

Koh Phangan, Haad Rin sunrise Amaresa resort

Koh Phangan, Haad Rin sunrise Amaresa resort

Koh Phangan, Haad Rin, Amaresa resort

We then went to have breakfast at the sky bar and got sooo full! It was like a combo of breakfast AND lunch as we had pancakes, toast, fruit, coffee, juice and then a massive portion of noodles and rice. And it was delicious. Afterwards we went to see how wonderful the seaside lounge area was and thought why we hadn’t come there earlier…

Koh Phangan, Haad Rin, Amaresa resort

Koh Phangan, Haad Rin, Amaresa resort

Koh Phangan, Haad Rin, Amaresa resort

Unfortunately we then had to check out from this heavenly place. But while we were waiting for the taxi to the village we decided to check where the ‘To Beach’ sign lead to. We walked down a steep road and came to a beautiful beach. After a while we realised it was the same beach we walked into the night before, just from the opposite side!

The taxi took us down to the village where we caught a songthaew to our next hotel. The difference was striking: the receptionist was really rude and he requested we leave one passport at reception for the duration of our stay! No other hotel that we stayed had such requests. Luckily he was happy with an ID card instead, and we walked to our room. It was a tiny dark ridiculously-hot paper-thin bungalow with a tiny window and a padlock for locking it. It didn’t look clean either. We set the fan to maximum, but it didn’t help at all, as there was no oxygen to be circulated in it!

So we walked to the village and decided to eat at the same place as yesterday. But this time Vidmantas drew the Thai name for ‘fried rice with vegetables’, as the girl taking our order just left a notepad and a pen for us. The lady who cooked our food yesterday laughed and asked whether we want just one portion suggesting she understood what we had written! =)

Please note the portion size
Please note the portion size

We walked to the pier and watched the storm on the other side of the island. Looking at it from a great distance made it look so beautiful and peaceful. Back at our resort we jumped into the pool (the only good thing about this hotel!) and that was just cool enough to cool your body down, but warm enough so you can stay there for a while, listening to chill out music at the poolside bar, looking at palm trees, beach, the stars …

Koh Phangan

We got back to our bungalow and saw a giant cockroach on our porch. We pushed it down with the clothes drying rack and went inside – it felt even hotter than before. The fan was making a huge noise and wasn’t really helping, so we turned it to a minimum, which was still noisy, but slightly better. It took a while before we managed to fall asleep in that heat.

But then I only slept for an hour until Vidmantas woke me up and pointed to the corner of the room. The giant cockroach was inside, on the wall, looking at us. Bye-bye precious sleep! Vidmantas pushed it outside with a broom, but now we knew that the gap under the door was large enough for cockroaches to get in. We turned the laptop on and started googling about cockroaches. There wasn’t anything helpful for how to keep them away though. As if that wasn’t enough, there was a black bug in the bathroom, even bigger than the cockroach. Although it crawled really slowly and mostly stayed inside the hole in the shower drainage corner, and the bathroom door had no gaps, so we knew he wouldn’t get in. But it was still scary to sit on the bed knowing that the cockroaches could run up the wall next to you or behind you any second – and they run fast!

Finally we came up with a solution – to fill the gaps around the door and near the bed with our blankets, as we didn’t need them anyway. We then set the alarm clock for 5:30 and tried to sleep for a couple of hours. Ironically, when we woke up the cockroach was sitting on the rubbish bin – we had sealed the three of us in the room!

cockroaches Hacienda resort Koh Phangan

We walked outside, it was cloudy so the sunrise that we hoped to photograph didn’t happen. But it was nice and cool on the beach with a gentle breeze coming from the water, and no cockroaches as it was too bright for them. We took our blankets from the room and napped for an hour on the deck chairs on the beach. At 7 AM having had a little rest after a stressful night we were packing our bags for a trip to Angthong National Marine Park.

For more stories from the same trip read: Koh Samui and Koh Tao.

More photos on our Flickr page here.

Koh Phangan
Beautiful morning after a sleepless night

Koh Phangan

Koh Phangan, part 1

Our trip around the islands doesn’t follow any logical order as we booked an amazing hotel for the first night really cheap [without planning the itinerary]. It was on the middle island – Ko Pha Ngan, so that’s where we started.

Around 8am our overnight train reached Surat Thani, and as soon as we got out of the station some woman asked for our boat tickets and pointed to our shuttle bus shouting ‘Hurry, hurry’. On the bus our tickets were exchanged for stickers – different colours for different islands – an easy way for the boat operators to guide this mass of tourists wherever they want them to go, like a flock of sheep. Just not sure what the hurry was for, as everybody sat on the bus waiting for a good 30 minutes before it finally started moving. About an hour later we were on the boat: hot burning sun, wind and a lovely view. It took a lot of nagging to convince Vidmantas to hide in the shade, so that we wouldn’t turn lobster-red on the first day.

Koh Phangan

The boat stopped at Koh Samui first and a bit later arrived at Ko Pha Ngan. We headed to the village straight away to search for food, and when we were full and happy we caught a songthaew to Haad Rin. It’s sooo fun when you’re flying at something that feels like 80km/h with the wind messing up with your hair, palm trees flying by, and when you’re going up the steep curvy roads you have to hold on tight as it feels like you’re going to slide down the bench-type seat and fall out!

Koh Phangan songthaew

We arrived at our hotel full of excitement. A friendly receptionist greeted us, offered some cold pineapple juice and showed us to our room. WHAT A ROOM! Not even a room, it was a house. A very modern tree house: wooden floor, flowers scattered on the bed, couchette overlooking the balcony, floor-to-ceiling windows and glass doors, pretty wicker baskets for everything from snacks to toiletries… And the view: we were high up on the hill, surrounded by palm trees, with our balcony overlooking the rocky seaside. What a welcome to the islands. And the funniest thing is – the price for one night here was the same as the Bangkok hotel we stayed in, with the outdated room in the middle of a busy district where as soon as you step outside you’re surrounded by rubbish, noise and giant cockroaches.

Koh Phangan Amaresa resort

Koh Phangan Amaresa resort

Koh Phangan Amaresa resort

After a while of enjoying the view we decided to walk to the village and find something to eat. We walked down the hill, trying to remember which way we came with the taxi, until we walked into a forest, and then we stopped. The sound in the trees, which was getting louder and louder, was indescribable. It felt as if we were surrounded by millions of tropical insects hiding in the trees making that uncomfortable sound and it was getting dark. Then we thought that it could be the electric current running through the wires as we heard it creaking near the pier earlier that day, but it was nowhere near as loud as this. We started walking forward but it was still pretty scary. We reached some village with barely any lights on and nobody outside.

Koh Phangan Haad Rin

We walked further behind the huts and saw a beach. What a beautiful beach… Suddenly it wasn’t all that scary anymore. We stayed there for a while, took a few pictures and decided to walk back as we couldn’t remember driving through this village with the taxi. Besides, it was getting really dark, mosquitos started biting us and there were bats flying around… As we rushed back we saw where we took the wrong turn. Haad Rin village was the opposite way!

Koh Phangan Haad Rin

Safe and sound we had a meal at our hotel’s sky bar and walked back to our room. We took our pillows and laid down on the terrace watching the stars, thinking how happy we were =) And then we saw a lightning. And another one. It looked so beautiful… After a while we came inside and watched the storm from our bed until we fell asleep.

Read about the next part of our adventures in Koh Phangan here. Also, some more stories from the same trip: Koh Samui, Anghthong Marine Park and Koh Tao.

More photos on our Flickr page here.