Friday, 30 December 2011

Koh Phayam

After catching up with our good friends over a few beers we hit the sack with the view to leave early to catch the afternoon ferry to Koh Phayam. Sanne woke up with a hangover so we left a little later and hit the road before lunch. Within an hour or so we found ourselves pulling over to gear up in our wet weather gear. For the next couple of hours it didn't stop raining. It didn't dampen our spirits too much though knowing we were off to visit the hot springs when we arrived in Ranong. Boy were they hot, in no time we were red as tomatoes and needing a cold beer to cool back down again. The following morning we were up early to get the first ferry. Just so happened to be low tide so loading the bikes on board the passenger ferry was not much of a drama. What we didn't think about was the trouble of unloading the bikes. By the the time we arrived at the island 2.5hrs later the tide had come in quickly and the wind also making it very choppy and the boat very unstable. This did not stop the crew from jumping right in to unload our bikes. Sanne and I were shitting ourselves when it came to this, we still have a long way to go on our journey and the last thing we wanted to see happen was our bikes go over the edge and to the bottom of the ocean. However with enough man power we all managed to get the bikes off without incident. No more island hopping after this!
We spent the first night with our friends at their bungalow before checking out what accommodation was on offer and the best beach to stay at. After looking around we decided to stay at a little place called Sunset Bungalows on Aow Khao Kwai beach. We thought we could stay here to start with and move around after looking at more of the island. We ended up staying at this place for 10 days. We had found the cheapest place on the best beach with great cheap food. What else could you ask for. Phayam is a great island which is like no other place we have been in Thailand. Most other places have been over developed but this is still a quiet, little place to just chill out, and that's just what we did. We ate, we drank, we slept and occasionally went for a dip in the ocean. Island life agrees with us but we always know that we have a long way ahead of us so we made the most of our time knowing it could be a long time again before we get to have a break this long. Christmas came and went and was a quiet affair and made us both feel a little homesick. We soon forgot about it though with planning where we were off to next. Bangkok is where we have decided to head for new years and our first real big city to navigate! 
Getting off the island was almost as much fun as getting onto it. We were all set to catch the afternoon ferry but with the wind, the waves and the higher than expected tide we had to put it back to the following morning. No wind, no waves and a low tide make a big difference when it came to loading and we were away in no time. Back on the mainland we were all loaded and ready to rock when Sanne's bike decided it didn't want to play. How could there be problems with the battery again! Soon realised that when loading the bikes someone had flicked her heated grips on by mistake which is directly hooked to the battery so one dead battery. Managed to get it jump started without too many worries and after a good run the battery is charged and running fine again.

Loading the bikes was the easy part, getting them off was not!

Safely loaded and on our way to Koh Phayam

Burma in the distance

Sanne and I were both shitting ourselves at the way these guys wanted to unload our bikes. These guys did a great job however and somehow they were taken off with no major problems

Sanne zoned out on her swing

My first sunrise in a long time

 Also my first drive of a long tail boat

My man Joey!

 Sorry, another sunset photo!

This place has to be the coolest looking bar we have ever seen

These little ones loved chatting to one another through the intercoms on the helmets

Christmas lunch

 Our local beach where we stayed for 12 days

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