MANGO STICKY RICE [V]

Days 13, 14, 15: Railay

Where we stayed: Railay Great View Resort and Spa (http://www.railaygreatview.com). Last minute offers are one of the perks of not being a planning maniac. Perfectly aware that, under normal circumstances, we would have never been able to afford it, we found a bargain for a bungalow in this jaw dropping, luxurious beach resort from one day to the other. That’s when you enjoy things even more!

What we experienced:

  • long-tail boat trip from Krabi to Railay. Due to the surroundings high limestone cliffs, the only way to access Railay peninsula, a proper heaven for climbers, is through water, so keep that in mind if you suffer seasickness. And yes, expect your suitcase to get soaking wet during the journey!
  • West Railay. white sand, crystalline water, blue sky on the horizon, limestone karts on either side and a parade of moored long-tail boats. Picture perfect is not enough to define it.
  • East Railay. A long boardwalk with bars, restaurants and shops makes up for the unsuitable for swimming, mangroves filled, rough waters of the east side of the peninsula.
  • Phra Nang. Dubbed as one of the most beautiful beaches in the whole world, it is, somehow, ruined by its own fame because of the crazy number of tourists it draws. You can access to the beach either by foot from East Railey, following a macaque populated path along some impressive water carved limestone caves, or by long-tail boat from Krabi or Ao Nang. Quite romantic at sunset, when the majority of people leaves. And yes, those you’ve seen all around the cave’s shrine are hundreds of phalluses. Apparently the local fishermen offer them in order to have plenty of fish in return.
  • long-tail boat snorkeling tour. Our original plan was to spend one day in Koh Phi Phi but we got dissuaded when we realised how crowded it would have turned. That’s why we opted for something less popular and we visited Chicken, Poda and Tup islands, among the others. The coral reef was nothing in comparison to what we saw in the Bahamas, but the solitary beaches with their hundreds of corals ashore were to die for!
  • shameless lady boys trying to hit on you in front of your girlfriend… That happened!
  • food poisoning. Eating whatsoever food we found around for weeks without having any problems at all was too good to be true. And, funny enough, we both got sick in the most touristic area we visited, where we ate only in restaurants. The signs are dreadful and reaching dehydration is not a remote possibility. Especially when the resort kicks you out because new guests are coming, there’s no doctor on the whole peninsula and you’re forced to take a boat when you can barely stand and you keep on vomiting. I collapsed twice and I really don’t know how Isa managed to pack all our stuff. We found ourselves forced to postpone our flight back to Bangkok to the morning after and spend a whole day in bed to recover.

After 14 days of adventures and chilled out times, we had to say goodbye to sunny Thailand and come back to grey and cold London. The food poisoning accident wasn’t enough to change our overall feeling about the holiday. Thailand is something totally different from what we experienced before and we loved every single detail of it: from its history and landscapes, to its traditions, food and people, but, most of all, the light-hearted vibes that it emanates. Hope to carry them along our way.

p.s. to our utter surprise, a Thai gecko hid in an open bag of dried bananas in our backpack. Imagine my reaction when, in London, I grabbed some bananas, put them in my mouth and thought “damn, they’re so soggy!” to then acknowledge the presence of the tiny guest!

 Olympus OM-1, Fuji Velvia 50 (35, expired) / Lomochrome Purple 100-400 (35), 18-19-20/02/2016, Railay (Thailand)