Monday, 23 November 2009

Saladan and Sunset at Kaw Kwang, Lanta – Day 8

Weather – Would you believe it`s hot.

The morning was spent at the pool in Kaw Kwang. We could say we had it all to ourselves again, but not today. There was at least one other person taking a cooling dip although the whole resort was virtually deserted. All the sun loungers were untouched with the mats laid out to dry and the gardens remained empty apart from a few brave animals risking the sunshine. Here I caught a little bird taking a bit of shade under a sun lounger.

Bird in shade

Kaw Kwang Jungle

The bay here has its own little bit of mangrove and coral reef along with the coconut filled jungle. The secret beach still seems to be keeping its location hidden.

The afternoon was started with a trip to Saladan, well its such a small town we have seen it all before but we might have missed something along its two roads. Getting a little feel of town life after the remoteness of the beach does actually feel good, even if it’s a few minutes in a town as basic as Saladan.

Saladan Koh Lanta Noi

Looking over to Koh Lanta Noi from Saladan Town

Saladan Road Koh Lanta

Down the empty streets of Saladan, I guess when the high season starts and the ferries begin their runs the town will become much busier.

It does have a few places to eat although and even if quite a few were still closed for the season the opportunity arose to sample the food again and how could we refuse. Butter fried chicken with peanut satay along with some deep fried onion rings. The O.H. delved in with fish and chips, no beer this time but a couple of cooling coconut drinks.

Thai Lunch

Today seemed to be an eating day and somehow we ended up down the strip and outside the German bakery. The lack of coffee the past few days seemed not to be affecting me at all, no caffeine withdrawal symptoms, short tempered outburst or aching sore heads. It must have been the thought of nice fresh cake that took us here and to justify it more, we never has dessert after out late lunch.

German Bakery Koh Lanta

Like most of the places here, the bakery is open ended to the road and the local Koh Lanta life can be watched passing by as you sip your drink. The coffee did taste good and the cake reminded me of something my mother would make. The O.H enjoyed her slice just as much and never even voiced any concern that it might make her fat.

Popping across the road to the 7-11 to get a few more snacks and drinks then we headed back to Kaw Kwang Resort to laze beside the pool and catch a bit of the sunset. Nothing really seems to be happening, eating and sunbathing and eating more, the days seem to go fast and I think the long walks make up a lot of our day time are not really noticed. It`s a funny feeling not being bored while really doing nothing for over a week.

Kaw KWang Lanta Football The football seems to be a regular thing and I`d guess with a few more holidaymakers that are a bit fitter than myself a few larger teams would be playing on the beach.

This would really be our first sunset at Kaw Kwang with the few days of cloud and catching the sunsets at Sanuk bar it seems we were never here at the right time to witness the scenes.

Kaw Kwang Lanta sunset

Kaw Kwang Lanta sunset Kaw Kwang Lanta sunset

Kaw Kwang Lanta sunset

The rocky jungle outcrop here means the sunset comes a bit earlier and sets behind the trees rather than descending on the horizon but the site is just as beautiful to witness. The day is not over yet and I guess it will soon be time to eat, again and actually again. Luckily we have a long walk to burn up those calories. Koh Lanta, Thailand in the low cost monsoon season is turning out to be very nice indeed.

Monday, 16 November 2009

Day 7 – Koh Lanta Thailand Sunsets at Sanuk Bar

Sanuk Bar provides another welcome relief from the heat and refreshments just in time to catch the Koh Lanta sunset over the Andaman Sea. Having lived for many years in a very northerly part of the world, I am used to long slow sunsets that last for hours and it really only goes dark(ish) after 10p.m. Here down in Thailand it comes much earlier and much quicker, not quite blink and you will miss it, but fast enough.

Having the usual nice cool drink, that salt water does make you a bit thirsty, and a little bit of a snack. If I remember correctly and I am ashamed to admit that the O.H had “Toast” , a not very Thai Choice.

sunset koh lanta

The time was around 5.30pm when we sat down to watch the skies and the Islands of Koh Phi Phi can be seen just on the horizon.

sunset koh lanta

I`d like to think that the animals of the jungle came out to watch the sun with us, bit of a Disney moment there.

sunset koh lanta

It was actually a Childs toy, a family was having dinner in Sanuk and the hosts provided something for the kids occupied with in the sand.

sunset over koh phi phi

I`m really hoping for the best with my photographs. The Canon G10 thankfully takes care of most of the settings automatically but it’s still up to me to frame the shot. I have no idea. Fortunately, snapping 100`s of photographs costs nothing with digital (except battery power) and maybe a few will look good.

sunset over koh phi phi

sunset over koh phi phi

Just before 6.10pm and Koh Phi Phi catches the sun.

sunset klong dao koh lanta

The beach was not quite empty, a few other diners mingled with the Thai football players on the beach.

sunset over koh phi phi

Koh lanta, kaw kwang

This was our destination, Kaw KWang, along the dark beach. By now we had travelled back and forth a few times and could really do it with our eyes shut. In fact it was so dark eye open or closed made no real difference once the sun went down.


6.30pm and it`s gone for another day.

Watching the sunset go down on Koh Lanta along with the atmosphere of the island was just as enjoyable as, if not better, than any all star cast blockbuster movie. Not everybody will enjoy it, but I know many that once it`s been experienced then you will want more.

Tuesday, 10 November 2009

Day 7 – Hot Day on Klong Dao Beach Koh Lanta

Weather - Like an oven with the door closed, hot

Kaw Kwang Beach Lanta Kaw Kwang Beach Lanta The morning revealed another beautiful day in Koh Lanta, Krabi. Our exertions over the first few days seem to have caught up with us and along with the heat made us a bit more lethargic.

Kaw Kwang hotel pool Lanta

Kaw Kwang hotel pool Lanta Kaw Kwang hotel pool Lanta We needed no excuse to spend the morning by the pool again. As usual the crowds were absent and we virtually had all the coolness to ourselves. It was badly needed, today was feeling a lot hotter than the past few days.

Crabs sand The beach was a little bit more active, the regular crabs were there someplace, filtering out the sand and leaving behind lots of tiny little balls. As soon as anybody approached they scurried back in a hole to hide.

Lanta Long Boat Lanta school Kids A fisherman's longboat had anchored on the beach sometime in the morning and joined by a group of what looked like school kids. The heat was even a bit much for them, a bit of shouting was heard and we noticed one kid flat out on the beach collapsed before being carried under some shade of the trees. They soon recovered after a few minutes but they kept in the cool spots.

Lanta Beach Being the sensible people that we are, ignoring the heat we set out along Klong Dao beach for a little bit of a walk. Walking in the water helped to keep us cool until we decided to head off the beach then we felt the heat on us again. Without the cool breeze from the sea any bit of shade was a welcome relief.

Arnee number one Lanta Lunch at Arnee restaurant, we had it all to ourselves again. After a minute of chatting “Mum” started to notice that I was starting to get dripping wet in sweat. Kind of noticed it myself, quite scary. Mum quickly got us some drinks with plenty of ice. Guess she has seen it all before with sill foreign people taking too much of the sun. Outside in the heat we never realized how much water we were loosing from out bodies. Probably a good lesson to learn there.

Kong Doa Beach Klong Dao Family Beach Klong Dao Old Thai Man After Lunch it was back to the beach, probably quickly forgetting our lesson. The sea was there to cool off in and the waves not to strong, but still enough to be fun. It was a little bit more busy today, more local and foreigners taking to the sand. Even a group of Thai kids that seemed to make us their adopted parents for a while and jump all over us in the waves. It was a bit of good harmless fun or maybe they just wanted to down the outsiders. The sea was nice today, probably because it was cooling, and I guess we must have spent quite a few hours catching the waves along the beach.

Klong Dao Dog Cooling offThe sun was about to go down and we timed it nicely with reaching Sanuk Bar. We didn’t have time to ask before we were offered 1 beer, large, 2 glasses. A lot of people seemed to remember us in the short time that we were here, I wonder if it would be the same during the busier season. Either way it made the Koh Lanta holiday feel like we were there with a group of friends.

Friday, 6 November 2009

Day 6 – Very Hot Day in Koh Lanta, Thailand

Weather – Like an oven with the door open.

Started the day with what is becoming a bit routine in Koh Lanta, back at the pool, how boring!

KAw Kaang Flower, Lanta

All this clean air, sunshine and blue skies are starting to get us down, we don't know if we can take much more of this. And to make things worse the tide was out, far too far to walk for a paddle.

Low Tide KAw Kwang Beach Lanta

Well seriously, it would take quite a while, months or years, for us to find the slightest need for a change. We were loving every minute and were already thinking about when are we coming back. After the speed of city life, the rate here is much much more more slower, even the Thai taxis seem to get to their destinations at a leisurely pace.

Pools side Kaw Kwang

Sun was shining brightly, so taking a sun lounger under the tree for a bit of shade, we relaxed. The occasional cool off in the pool was needed and still, mostly, all to ourselves. This is supposed to be the off-season but apart from the few downpours of rain the weather has been fantastic. We are still amazed at how deserted the beaches and resorts were.

Lanta Fishermen Lanta Fishermen

The local fishermen were out in the bay just off Kaw Kwang beach, I have no idea what they were doing, couldn't see any nets. Maybe they were just waiting for the right moment.

Goat on a Roap Lanta

We were running out of local currency and the weekend had just finished, so a trip into town was needed. The problem with Thai Baht, for us and probably other currencies is the conversion rate. At around 33 THB for a US$ and about 50 THB for the UKPound. Having a thousand THB seems like a lot of money and then spending 300 THB on a meal for two seems very expensive. But in reality it’s just the big numbers fooling us. A thousand is just around US$30 and actually can go a long long way in Thailand.

We were thinking of walking to Saladan but an excuse showed up in the form of a taxi sitting in the shade just outside our resort. Naturally the driver tried to offer his services and oh so reluctantly we accepted. From Kaw Kwang the cost was 40THB each. Speeding along the coast road at about 15 miles per hour was just enough to create a cooling breeze and a short conversation was started. A bit of confusion may have arose here, we were exchanging names and I passed mine and he said “mine is same”. Luckily I played safe and never said “bye same” just in case.

So off to the bank in Saladan and up to the money exchanger. We handed over a few notes and the cashier did quite a bit of typing, rubbing, looking, hoping for help from his colleagues – I guess they don’t see much of our currency on the island. With wads of cash now stuffed in our pockets we were going to hit the town.

Despite the smallness of Saladan we never got really too far, the heat was really too much for walking about. Refuge was sought in a restaurant complete with a good helping of food and 1 beer, large, 2 glasses just to get a bit of liquid back into our bodies.

It was going to be a really lazy day, had a nice slow long long lunch. In keeping with the theme of the day, we hailed over a taxi to take us back to the hotel. Not much more was going to happen today and we took up our spot under the trees beside the pool and let the day go by. We would probably die if we tried to exert ourselves. The heat was a bit much and tomorrow would show that even the locals found it too much to handle.

Sanuk Bar Lanta

During our treks along the beach we stopped by a few of the resorts and restaurants hoping they would be open. Most were still closed, others were gearing up and be open in a week. Some were open but too far along the beach from us. Sanuk Bar was our regular place, not just because it was the closest ( or we didn`t want to walk any further), but also the hosts were nice and friendly. The food was also pretty good too. That was our destination for tonight.

The sun had gone and although it was still very warm, there was no burning sun bearing down on us and a refreshing cooling breeze from the sea.

Tom Yum Sanuk Lanta

Tom Yum Koong along with a chicken curry was sampled here. We asked for spicy and sure enough it was. Very tasty and completely addictive, we were both nearly licking the bowl clean.

Tom Yum Sanuk  Lanta

While we were proud of on our ability to handle chilli (or silly) our nice hosts let slip that they have two versions of “extremely spicy”. One flaming spicy for born and bred native Thais and a baby spicy for the rest of us. We immediately lost all sense of achievement and ordered another large bottle of beer.

The day ended quietly.

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

Day 5 – Sunset at Sanuk Bar, Klong Dao Beach, Koh Lanta

Not letting an opportunity pass our little oasis appeared. Sanuk Bar was there at just the right time and having our usual, beer, large, and 2 glasses, we sat on the side of the beach and watched the sun go down and our first views of the sunsets here.

sunset Klong Dao Lanta There were still a few clouds out in the Andaman sea and the photographs capture some of the beauty, but it is something to be experienced. sunset Klong Dao Lanta

sunset Klong Dao Lanta sunset Klong Dao Lanta sunset Klong Dao Lanta sunset Klong Dao Lantasunset Klong Dao LantaIMG_3174IMG_3167sunset Klong Dao Lantasunset Klong Dao Lanta

sunset Klong Dao Lanta sunset Klong Dao Lanta

Our host at Sanuk with her dogs taking in the evening.

sunset Klong Dao Lanta sunset Klong Dao Lanta sunset Klong Dao Lantasunset Klong Dao Lanta sunset Klong Dao Lanta sunset Klong Dao Lanta The gentle slope of the beach made for some good reflections with the waves keeping the sand wet.

sunset Klong Dao Lanta sunset Klong Dao Lanta sunset Klong Dao Lanta sunset Klong Dao Lanta The Locals also take advantage of the slope and have their game of footy here.

sunset Klong Dao Lanta

The sun goes down quickly and soon it was all over too quick. Finishing our refreshments we start back to our resort and I managed to take some more long exposures of the night sky now a bit clear from clouds. With city lights I often forget how much is actually up there.stars Kaw Kwang Lanta

stars Kaw Kwang Lanta

In the above picture we seem to have caught a UFO streaking past.

stars Kaw Kwang Lanta stars Kaw Kwang Lanta