Saturday, August 13, 2011

Many Sunsets, No Full Moons

Ko Phangan's Full Moon Party is a notorious bacchanal, an all-night beach party for up to 30,000 people.  But Dave and I, we like to buck trends.  We like to go our own way, do our own thing.

And also, we weren't there during a full moon.  And we're old.

So we took the opportunity to spend our time on Ko Phangan relaxing: lounging by the beach, doing yoga, scuba diving the fantastic sail rock dive sites, hiking the lush, mountainous interior of the island, scootering to the night market, reading some fascinating materials on securities laws and having the most ridiculously scenic massages of our lives.

Lounging/Dining/Securities Laws:
Low season meant that the beaches were pretty deserted.
We ate most of our meals with our toes in the sand (and paddy by our side)
What did we eat besides delicious Thai food and fresh seafood?
The pancake man at our hotel must have seen the inner five-year-old in me.
Hat Salat beach at sunset
It was kind of ridiculously peaceful and scenic.
No, really.  It was.
The hike:  underwhelming.  A water-less waterfall.
But at least there was wildlife!  I love anything that eats bugs.
And the view was nice.
Dave especially enjoyed his cooling post-hike dip in a stagnant pool.  I declined.
Scoot Scoot Scooting:
Two of Dave's great loves are motorbikes and whiskey.
Imagine his delight in filling up his bike with a petrol-filled whisky bottle!
Note: Thai whiskey vs petrol - it's only a matter of degrees.

Thai Massages:
Did you ever have a more scenic massage?
Did it cost $5/hour?
Tuk's Magic Hands on Hat Salat: Go there!
All of our Koh Phangan photos are available here.

If you go: We stayed on the quiet, peaceful Hat Salat, in the north-western part of the island (you can find a map here).  We got a great off-season rate on at Salad Beach Resort, and even though our room was in the back of the resort over the kitchen and facing a wall, the beachfront location of the resort was spectacular.  The Full Moon Party is held on Hat Rin, in the southern part of the island.  The island is perfect for exploring by motorbike; it's probably too hilly for a bicycle, unless you really really love hills.  There's a very good night market near the ferry terminal, and some nice quiet seafood places (and a good Italian restaurant) in Chalok Lam Village, in the north.  We'd highly recommend diving with Sail Rock Divers - they were fabulous, and the Sail Rock dive site yielded two of the best dives of our lives!

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