21.03.2012 - 24.03.2012 30 °C
We are staying in a bungalow hut off the beach and surrounded by palm trees and situated behind the pool. The place looks nice, we've got verandah with chairs, a double bed with mosquito net, towels, a fan, and a bathroom out the back with cold water and no flush toilet. We had dinner over the beach at our resort at Freedom Restaurant and Bar. I gave Pad Thai another go, still don't like it, and we shared spring rolls. The prices aren't cheap but reasonable for being on the beach. I'm not sure I like the beach, bit rough with waves and it didn't look like great sand, we'll tomorrow, might just use the pool.
During the night I'd left the mosquito net open so we got eaten a bit. I slept pretty average and my cold was getting worse - ergh. Got up and had a cold shower which was refreshing. There was a guy cleaning up outside the bathroom which I could see through the holes in the wall. It was hot. We had breakfast at Freedom again and I tried the porridge with banana and honey and an iced coffee (100 baht). Then we walked down to the end of Khlong Khong beach. There were lots of tiny white crabs running around. There was a flock of baby seagulls and one bird among them which wasn't a seagull - the ugly duckling. Bundy made a bag out of my dress so I could carry everything easier. We walked back and went in and sun-baked at our pool. The coconut palms were above us and when we walk to our hut I dodge them so I don't die from a coconut. We then walked to the main road to a travel agent and found a good one. We booked a motorbike for the day (250 baht auto), booked a 4 island tour for tomorrow (750 baht), booked a Phi Phi hotel on the internet, and booked a Phi Phi tour/transfer (1000 baht (200 discount)). Bundy broke the bike and had to walk back to travel agent from our hut where the guy there drove him back to fix it. Then we drove to the market up the road and got gas and some bananas (7 for 20 baht). The scenery was nice and there was lots of forest on the left and the beach on the right on our drive down to Kantiang Bay. We drove for ages, then stopped and checked map to make sure we weren't lost, then kept driving. We got there and had to go up a dirt road to the Lanta Topview Restaurant. We sat down for dinner and sunset. We sat in a little shack thing with table and cushions away from everyone else in the corner over a cliff 30-40m up with a beautiful view of the sunset over the rocks and the ocean and Kantiang Bay. The view was spectacular and it was quite romantic. I had spaghetti bolognese for dinner (120 baht) which was really good and quite spicy. We left before the sun set and drove to the Saladan markets way at the other end of the island. They were a bit expensive and it took us ages to find somewhere to park. We spent a few hours walking around there and then drove back to our hotel at about 10:00PM. I was a bit disappointed I didn't buy anything, I'd really wanted a sarong and he went down to 150 which is what I said I'd paid but they weren't hemmed so I decided against it.
I got very bitten in my sleep, when I actually got some sleep. It was horrible. We got woken up at 8:15AM by a knock on the door - our alarm hadn't gone off. Shit! We had about 5 minutes to get ready and leave and Bundy take the bike back. We got on the back of a ute (tuk-tuk) with 5 French people. I got car-sick from all the rocking around in the back and being sideways. We picked up another 5 people on the way to Kantiang Bay. We got in a longtail and it was a long trip in that out to sea to the islands. We had plain bread for breakfast. I put on only a little bit of sunscreen while on the boat so I tried staying out of the sun most of the day (luckily the boat had covering). The first stop was at a cliff-face with bright green water (no beach or anything and it was the eastern tip of Koh Ngai). We jumped off the boat with snorkel gear. It was great snorkeling (except my mask was super tight over my lip). We saw bannerfish, parrotfish, a leopard fish, and lots of damsel fish at the surface which you swam through. Bundy saw a giant moray eel. There were lots of sea urchins We got back on the longtail and set off for the next island. We stopped again in the ocean at a cliff and had more snorkeling near Koh Cheuak. It was deeper here and the visibility wasn't as good but you could stand on the sand near the cliff where there were small caves. We saw long cornet fish with sword-like faces and heaps of damsel fish again. There were lots of clownfish on the edge of the reef but I didn't go over there. I went back to the boat early. Then we went to Koh Mook with Emerald Cave. Here we jumped in the ocean with life jackets. We swam over to the cliff-face with a guide who had a torch (and on the way went to the toilet). We went into the very dark cave which was pitch black without the torch. The water at the entrance the water was quite high and hitting the rocks. Had to watch our heads a few times. It was about 5 minutes in the cave and towards the end we could see a bright green glow and it got smelly. We emerged out of the darkness into a beautiful little lagoon with clear water and huge cliff faces covered in trees surrounding us and rising very high. It was lovely, would have been better without everyone swimming around with bright jackets on. After 20 minutes of enjoying the place we swam back through the cave and out into the ocean again. I got Bundy to just drag me along so I just relaxed and floated out. Then we got back on the longtail. We got plates of watermelon and pineapple for a snack. Then it was off to Koh Ngai where we stopped for lunch at Mayalay Resort. The beach was breathtaking. The water was a clear bright turquoise close to shore and then a dark blue further out. There were 3 or 4 longtails on the shore edge which made for a picturesque postcard view. Had sweet and sour chicken with rice and some vegetables for lunch and free water. It was very hot in the sun and walking around on the wooden boards. At the toilets there was a sleeping cat in the corner which I woke up and patted for awhile. I was feeling a little burnt so we stayed in the shade and admired the view. We were chatting to some lovely old ladies who apparently think we don't sound like Australians. We saw a magnificent bird (a red-backed sea eagle). It was soaring and hovering over the water trying to catch fish. After 2 hours of paradise we got back on the boat for a very long and choppy ride back to Lanta. We arrived in Kantiang bay with a rocky walk into shore from the boat. We got back into the car and I asked for the front seat which was so much better - it was a smooth ride with music and air-conditioning. When we got back to the hotel we had a shower. I felt shit and had headache. We then went on the internet for awhile and discovered our room was supposed to have a TV so it will now be getting a bad review (also pretty sure we were getting bitten by fleas). We went to dinner down the beach at a different restaurant (Garden Beach restaurant or something). I had a vegetable burger (80 and didn't come with chips) and we shared spring rolls (80 - ouch!). It was pretty good. It was dark and the beach is quite dirty so I walked on some pointy stuff. We went back to our hotel. I went to get my thongs from near reception but they were gone. The manager said someone had taken them and would be back later from 7/11. What the hell?! We waited 10 minutes but were tired and shitty so asked him what time this guy would return with my shoes. He said he didn't know and laughed and I said I had to go to bed so get him to put them outside our room. He muttered something and everyone was smiling - I was not happy. Who does that? What kind of staff take their customers shoes! They are definitely now getting a bad review on Agoda. We went back to our room (I used Bundy's thongs) and packed our bags and shook out the sheets in the hope of not getting terribly bitten in our sleep again. The guy brought back my thongs 20 minutes later and I went out and just gave him an angry glare.
I had a great sleep! I only got bitten on my hand and that was after I'd woken up. Had a freezing cold shower and got ready. We were running a bit late and a pick-up ute was waiting at reception but it wasn't ours. I had peanut butter on bread for breakfast while we waited. Our ute was 20 minutes late and we called to see where they were. I went to run back to the hut for the toilet but saw the ute pull-in when I was half-way. I got in the backseat (in the front). We arrived at the dock and got on the middle ferry. Off to Phi Phi!
-everything is very spread out along the length of the island (so no place is better to be)
-need to hire a scooter (especially if down south)
-beach is quite dirty with rubbish
-4 island tour is excellent, better than Lanta itself
-stay on Koh Ngai (expensive but absolutely stunning)