Day 89: Fireflies, flying fish and two Railay good boat trips!

14 October 2010

Phuket to Krabi

We left Panang Beach on Phuket island in heavy rain that did nothing to wash away our disbelief at what we had seen the night before…I didn’t know places like that existed. It was a relatively short drive but the tricky conditions meant we didn’t roll into Krabi until mid afternoon but it wasn’t long before we had checked into our accommodation and were ready to explore. The ladies hit the markets, but not before they were asked if Martha had a toilet (a luxury camper van she is not!) and came away with some rather fetching t-shirts but Michelle’s magnificent fluoro pink watch stole the show – check the photos.

Steve, Matthew and myself strangely swerved the opportunity to do some shopping and despite it being grey skies and strong breeze quickly headed to the beach to see if we we’re in time to grab a long boat over to Railay Beach, which is a peninsula off the mainland that can only be reached by boat. Please note our courage!

Having been allotted a captain and a vessel headed out into the choppy Andaman Sea, that despite the weather was still a slight turquoise blue. Not for the first time that day we were cursing our luck that blue skies had prevented us seeing the colour of the sea in its full glory.

The captain skilfully accelerated and decelerated down the peaks and troughs and guided us into Railay Beach pulling up on the sand. Railay Beach is a beautiful small beach of golden sand, bordered by gigantic cliffs with a few bars, hotels and restaurants that are in keeping with the surroundings. An inter island volleyball match was taking place so we watched some of the action and even had a hit ourselves and followed that up with an obligatory dip in the warm sea.

We then sat in one of the bars, which was dominated by Western couples, enjoyed a beer and would have watched the sun go down if we could see it. Who says romance is dead!

Time for some food and we took a short walk down a small but well trodden path to the other side of the peninsula through the forest in darkness when we were told there would be numerous bars and restaurants catering for more of a backpacker budget. As we walked we noticed some lights in the trees, a few at first that made us think we were hallucinating but as there numbers grew and they began to fly over our head we realised they were fireflies. Awesome.

We reached our destination and had plenty of choice and headed into one of them to enjoy some pad thai, although the next day Steve was far from complimentary about his!

Time to procure a boat back to Krabi as we were stuck with no real idea of how we were going to get back and we were delaying starting to ask the question. Steve made some enquiries at the bar and was told that there was no boat captain willing to take us back due to high seas! They could however take us to the other side of the peninsula so not having any other option we accepted and followed our captain into the dark water to his boat.

We were expecting a rocky ride but the water this side of the peninsula was like a millpond and the captain took time to light up the surface of the water to show the flying fish that were accompanying the brow of the boat. Very surreal.

We were dropped off at a quiet village and weren’t sure exactly how to get home but after asking some locals by way of sign language it wasn’t long before one of them zipped off on a moped to return with a passenger who ushered us to his nearby car and drove us back to Krabi for a small charge. This typifies how friendly the Thai’s have been to us and their willingness to really go out of their way to help us and will be a lasting memory of Thailand.


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2 Responses to “Day 89: Fireflies, flying fish and two Railay good boat trips!”

  1. I watched England get knocked out of the 2006 World Cup on that beach! Wasn’t raining though!!

  2. Wow, brings back memories! Stayed there with the Mrs and we saw Sarah Harding (from Girls Aloud) on that beach before I got food poisoning! Don’t eat the shrimp! Incredibly beautiful location that I fear the rain dampened (sorry about the pun)!