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The Full Moon Party Koh Phangnan

Pink Buckets and Neon Paint = no sleep

rain 28 °C

There is so much hype about this party and yes we have been to it before but being on our last leg of our trip Chloe wanted to go one more time to party it out.

We thought it would also be a good opportunity to grab some rays to top the tan up, actually to get a tan as we hadn't been beaching it for some time now.  Unfortunately, it rained the entire time we were there, being rainy season of course it did.  But it's still hot and if you go at the right time you can get an amazing tan on one of the many beautiful beaches. It's not all about the Full Moon there is a lot to see on the island....it really is lovely.

We made our way from Langkawi taking the ferry to Satun apx 23 ringgit, a taxi to the bus station apx 20baht, a bus to Surit Thani (5hrs) 123 baht, another taxi to the ferry 20 baht and finally the night ferry to Koh Phagnan 400 baht.  Far cheaper than going via an organised tour, ours cost about 16 quid each, the tour would have been 40 quid.  On the overnight ferry is a long line of foam mattresses pushed together as beds with your allocated number on, believe me it's very cozy...you could be sleeping next to anyone!  Not really my thing but it had to be done and I knew I wouldn't be getting any sleep so it didn't matter too much.    We spoke to a few people who were literally weeks into their trip which made me feel sooo envious.....because I knew what was ahead of them.....ahead off me.....9 days before we went home.

When we got in it started to pour down with rain and it was 6am, we hadn't booked anywhere and everywhere was shut.   Rushing through the rain we bumbed into two guys from Switzerland making their way back from a party, there's a party every night in this place.  They kindly invited to 'house' us until everything opened  but we decided to get some food instead of sleep so thanked them and ventured into the rain again.  We made our way to Mama Schnitzels....a restaurant open 24 hrs that has a menu like a book....Gordon Ramsey would have a fit if he saw the amount of dishes each restaurant offers in this place....seriously what ever you want they have it.....even during power cuts, they just flick on the generator and kitchen is open.  We struggled finishing our food because of the large portions and made our way to Haad Rin bungalows which have good rooms near to the beach at decent prices, we opted for tv and air con which was abit more but a blessing later in the stay!  1200 baht but you can get a fan room for 400.  To get this place go to the 7/11 on the corner opposite the clinic and pharmacy.....it's very central.

"Open at 10" one local told us and invited us into his bar, we had to go in because of the rain.  Our rucksacks were wet through and later the smell of our clothes.....awful....the joys of back packing!  Inside the bar were left overs from the night before....one guy asleep on a ledge and another sprawled across aload of cushions!

At about 8am we got our room and went to sleep...bliss.  The evening was to go to the beach bar Cactus which is where everyone goes, we bumbed into the Swiss guys again so it was nice to talk to someone.  Infact, I ended up spending a few evenings with them until they left, very good company so thank you guys, especially Patrick.

Now back to the full moon....practically everyone wears neon stuff, tops, shorts, paint, jewellery etc you name it, it can be painted on you in neon colours.  You've got to be careful not to get it on the bedding or else they will fine you!    I painted flowers down Chloe's arm and I was lazy so just puts pink dots on my legs....simple.    The streets are full of venders selling all sorts of food which can be out on their stall for hours.....and hours.  The party is much the same as the other nights except on the full moon .....it is packed!!!  People come over from the other islands especially.  

There is a lot of talk about drugs, fights and even deaths, luckily we didn't see anything like this....considering the amount of people there its controlled well....by the people there....this time I didn't see any police.  A guy staying near us was hit in the face and needed stitches to his cheek....he had a huge black eye!

The thing to buy are buckets....like a bucket you would make a sandcastle from, they are filled with vodka or whiskey and topped us with coke, lychee, sprite etc  all for 150 baht (3quid)  all you see around is people wearing neon and carrying pink buckets.

Being as busy as it was I lost Chloe and so I stayed in one spot .....as discussed....but she never came back for me (ummmmm) ....as unbeknown to me she was at the medical centre helping the guy get his cheek stitched up.  So I ended up chatting to a stall vender who made jewellery, very interesting but I did wonder if he was mistaking my 'chat' for 'interest' so when he asked if I wanted to go to the party with him....I lied.....yes....I told him I was tired.  My plan was to go back to my room, wait abit, then go out, but he insisted on walking me back to my room, so I was quite relieved to see Patrick knocking on our door when I got there.

So I did the best thing and went off to the party with Patrick and found Chloe.  It was a crazy evening as we decided to go sit on our porch instead of going to the after party, which starts at about 6 am.  In the end everyone left and it was me....wide awake and Chloe sound asleep.  Later I was woken to moaning.....Chloe....in pain...unfortunately she had a slice of pizza from one of the stalls and now she was paying for it, she was so sick and had stomach cramps for the following two days/nights which meant I was stuck in the room being nurse, which is where the TV came into play.  Not what either of us had in mind.

We had to stay an extra day because she was ill, I went to the chemist and they told me many had been in for the same meds....clearly the street food at 3/4/5/6 am....which is put out at 7pm.  So a revisit to Koh Tao was cancelled and now we were making our way to Bangkok for the grand finalle which is going to be grand ....as we are going to stay in a 5 star hotel by the river just for some plush.  But first we have to do an overnight train and a ferry.......I'm thinking we will look like riff raff going into the lovely hotel....it's times like this I wish I had my heels, perfume, hair dryer, clothes.......my stuff, but there's going to be plenty of time for that in a few days time......yikes.....where has the time gone?

Tips for the full moon:  don't wear anything you really like...it'll get ruined by the paint.

Watch your money.... 1000 baht looks like 100 baht in the dark

Careful with the buckets, they are quite strong

Look upto the sky, when we were there there was a perfect ring around the moon....never seen anything like it.

Don't swim in the sea at the party....it's more wee than sea!

Have fun!

Heres a link to the ferry times to help with transfers to Koh Tao, Surit Thani and Koh Samui


Posted by Vicky Bailey 17:46 Archived in Thailand Tagged sunsets_and_sunrises beach travel ferry langkawi journey mother_daughter blog buckets world_trip full_moon_party surit_thani chloe_bailey Comments (0)


Sun, sand, sea and inappropriate sexual behaviour! Green Canyon

semi-overcast 27 °C


Try saying that after you've had a few, most places in Indonesia are difficult to pronounce.  After a long bus journey here it was good to be away from city life again and back on a coastal beach resort.  I always miss the sea and when I'm away from it I seem to be less tolerable of things, its either that or inland people are more uptight!    In Paragandaran the coast line is the biggest I've ever seen.....miles and miles of sea crashing upon the sand, it's beautiful.   It's a good place to surf but mainly in the morning as the currents are strong so it's quite dangerous.

We stayed in a guesthouse highly recommended by the LP and it was a cute little place with a beautiful courtyard to relax in which was just as well considering I had brought a bug from Jakarta with me and couldn't really do very much as I felt really rough, weak and dizzy.

The only problem with the accommodation is that hawkers would just wander in trying to sell you stuff, initially I didn't mind so much as they are just trying to earn a living but then something happened which made me rethink so we moved.  

We had a massage on our second day, I thought it might help my bug.  The lady was very humble and started to talk to me about when the 2006 Tsunami came, not the boxing day 04 one...not much is heard about the 06 one but she lost her mum and her 11 month old baby.....so sad.  600 people died that day and it took years to recover especially for the poorer people before who ended up living under blue tarpaulin.   They had no electricity or clean water, it was devastating for them.  The people here are so wonderful and kind, you wouldn't even guess what they have been through.  She told me about her husband leaving her for another woman which she was most upset about because the 'other woman' was much older than her!  We had a giggle together and she told me she had just got herself a new boyfriend who was 24... Something that gave the Kampon abit of gossip!

The following day, still feeling poorly I sat in the courtyard on my own typing out a message on my phone when a young lad came in, he was only about 19 and as skinny as a rake.  He asked me if I had any water, in Indonesian so I said "tidak Ada" meaning don't have.  He started to pull at his belt and I was wondering what he was doing, I thought maybe he was trying to show me how thin he was!  With that he stated to take his clothes off until he was completely NAKED!  Now my reaction was not good because I was so shocked I wondered what he was doing!  He went in to a room opposite me, where a member of staff usually sleeps, and led down on the bed beckoning me to go into the room whilst he masterbated!  Seriously!  I sat looking down at my phone thinking to myself 'is he actually doing that? Have you seen properly?'  I  didn't want to look again but I could still see him out f the corner of my eye waving with one hand and .....with the other.  I got up and walked inside and saw two guests, boyfriend and girlfriend and told them what I had seen.  The guy confirmed it after challenging the lad who came out of the room starkers again!  I got the owner who tried to get rid of him but he wouldn't go so the guest ended up chasing him out....he left his trousers behind....not the guest....the naked guy!

With that I thought it would be best to move, considering he just went into someone's room and it could have been worse.

We moved to Ali Beach....owned by Ali himself....a great guy who has portraits of himself in his restaurant.  Really good food here and the accommodation is much better for the same price.  

We hired a scooter from Ali and visited the Green Canyon, which is a green river leading upto a cave, well arch of rock.  Our boat drivers took us swimming and showed us abit further down the river so again we were treated.  It was great being back on the bike, the roads were bumpy and we had lots of toots and waves from the locals.

Posted by Vicky Bailey 00:56 Archived in Indonesia Tagged beaches beach indonesia travel sunsets surfing sunrises naked journey mother_daughter blog pangandaran world_trip sickness green_canyon guest_house chloe_bailey masterbate local_ naked-man Comments (0)

Perhentian Island

Panorama Chalets, Monkey Bar

sunny 33 °C

We had heard marvellous tales of this Island "it's a must", "so beautiful" etc. It leaves a mental note to ensure you go there at some point and being on the west side of Malaysia it would be foolish not to take the 7 ish hour bus journey and 1/2 hr boat trip there. Ok so if we were at home that would be like saying " we're just popping upto Scotland for a few days." You can't go anywhere here without some lengthy bus ride but it's always worth it.

It sounded easy and to be fair it was pretty straight forward in comparison to other trips. The only snag was waiting to get on the plentiful boats, they wouldn't accept our tour operator ticket but eventually we made it. One overnight bus and a short boat cruise.

Docking upto the beach you swap onto a water taxi for a few ringgit then you're on the shore. A beautiful beach with an abundance of chalets and according to the internet you can't book online so we decided to ditch the bags for one of us to do the accommodation hunt in the blazing heat. I offered to go as I can never turn down a mission plus loaded with the Lonely Planet tips of where to stay I thought it would be simple. Unfortunately one of the tips in the book is to get there early to get accommodation but because we had the last morning boat everywhere that was a reasonable price was booked aside one place called Chempacka so 'beggars can't be choosers' we ended up there for two nights. What a dive! I'm not talking sea diving, I'm talking very run down chalets with a pipe for a shower, stinking toilet, pillows you wouldn't let your dog lie on etc. We had to make do and endeavoured to find a decent place asap. Outside of our door was a huge dead monitor lizard, reckon it was as tall as me! We saw live ones too, but you don't want to get close to the live ones as they have quick response to lashing out with their tails plus if they bite they won't let go. So a dead one gave me the chance to get some photos. Grim eh! They also have the biggest geckos here I've seen any where! Big buggers!

The island itself, you can't complain, it's got what you need but for basic stuff like snacks and drinks with seaside gifts of bangles and sarongs. There are plenty of cafes with exactly the same menu and some good beach bars for when the sun goes down. You can watch the sun set and rise sitting on the beach, even go for a moonlit dip....it's that safe. Also there's something about plastic doors with plastic locks???.....

We were very fortunate that Dan knew Bart the owner of Monkey Bar, with a buzzing atmosphere and fantastic staff making you feel welcome. Here they play live music everynight with Anaz singing and playing the guitar.....a brilliant musician capable of belting out all your favourites. They have an open mic too and we were lucky to hear some very talented tourists make use of the stage. One night we found a couple from our town....turns out the wife was in the same school as me but the year below! Small world and all that.

It's a very friendly place and nearby are better chalets in Panorama where we ended up moving to.

Bart took us out on his boat and showed us the best snorkling sites where we saw massive turtles and all sorts of colourful fish. I saw more here than I did in Koh Tao scuba diving...it was brilliant and all thanks to Bart.

After a few days I caught some sort of bug and suffered for a few days which was a pain feeling miserable, being miserable and not being able to do anything but eventually I shook it off.

In a nut shell the island is so relaxed and chilled out you can't ask for much more if you want to escape the rat race or city life. Initially you might find it too chilled if that's so, you need to be there! Listen out for the firework bangers being let off or you might jump abit.

So people were right and now I'm telling you..... put it on your list.

Posted by Vicky Bailey 23:27 Archived in Malaysia Tagged sea accommodation beach travel island perhentian journey mother_daughter blog world_trip back_packing chloe_bailey flash_packing monitor_lizard gekos monkey_bar how_to_get_to_perhentian_island Comments (0)

Leaving Australia for Christchurch New Zealand

Earthquake aftermath, Brisbane, Airlie Beach, Hamilton Island, Sydney, Collangatta, Manley Beach

So completely cutting out Australia as in we only went to Airle Beach, Brisbane, Coolangatta and Sydney cutting our Aussie trip from anything upto 3 months down to 2 weeks is quite some decision making but believe me this decision is not one that I have lived to regret and to be honest if I did who cares! Why? Simple ......New Zealand is amazing! I can give you a run down of auz in a paragraph, yes I know I've issued out the best bits, yes I didn't give it enough time, yes......NO! Remember one thing here...I'm on a budget for two and staying in auz and not working is bloody expensive. Plus I have been there befo and I did like it, so it's not that I don't like it.....heres why........

Arrived in Brisbane and ended up in a really shitty backpackers hostel....yep....booked by Chloe....if you've read the porno set blog ....this one was like staying in a 12 year olds messy bedroom albeit was for one night so we could move one but it was a big curve for us as it was the first time since October we have had to shop and cook for ourselves. We had to buy a small cooler bag from Coles (same thing as Asda/Somerfields) to put our cold food in and attach a label with our name, room and date of leaving and only then was it allowed to go not the fridge with all the other blue Coles bags, don't forget where you put yours because then you have to search through 50-60 other blue Coles bags the same just to find your tag. We didn't get the bag for the first hostel to be honest, it was bad enough trying to get to our bed through the floordrobe that made us go out to eat. We couldn't even find Coles and I wasn't in the mood for looking for it, I was not feeling the love of Oz at all and couldn't wait to get to Airlie Beach where I remembered good times. We had to leave early the next morning and I cussed myself after having about 1 hr sleep.....mainly due to being in Oz I kept myself awake wondering why the hell I was there especially in some manky bedroom, anyway..... I got up having promised honestly the night before to drop the room key off to reception so that I didn't have to leave a depost of $20 and to my horror I couldn't find the key. I can only imagine I left it on the bed so we left with me worrying all day about the key that could only have been in the room.

Airlie Beach ....we stayed at the youth hostel which was very clean, we had been travelling all day and only just got onto the flight thanks to some lady who had clearly got out of bed the right side....thankfully. That night I was in bed half asleep in our 6 bed dorm and thought I could smell tuna, I opened my eyes and saw the bathroom door shut "perhaps thes someone in there eating tuna sandwiches". Is actually what I thought. I was being very understanding and even considered someone with an eating disorder...you know....too scared to eat in front of anyone....well I was half asleep remember. Next thing I knew was this moaning sound, which incidently soundly very ......sexually explicit......"ummmmm"........."ohhhhhhh"........"uuuuhhhhhhhhh". I did think one of the girls had brought a guy back and when I looked and saw no one I said aloud "are you alright over there?". I didn't get a reply from the girl but the others said that they thought she was drunk and that she had left the shower on. Let's go back to that tuna smell......yes ....not tuna sarnies.....as soon as they opened the bathroom door....tuna....she had thrown up all over the floor and the toilet. "Dont worry" i said "I know what to do". The puker was in no fit state to do anything and sat with another girls towel on around her asleep. I got one of the girls to stand in the bathroom and passed them the outside hose, I turned it on and instructed them to wash it away down the drain. Good plan aye.....well it would have been if it the drain worked....but it didn't....so it overflowed and spilt out into the dorm (which I thought was quite funny) unfortunately the girl holding the hose was very upset about this thinking it was her fault.....course it wasn't.....it was mine!

In the end we had to get the management in to clean it up. The funny thing of it was that whenever I had a shower after that if you got the water not enough....you could smell the tuna down the drain.

We had a trip to the barrier reef which was fun unfortunately the weather was bad on the way back and everyone except for me, Chloe and the staff threw up on the boat. I spent my journey helping an old lady bless her who couldn't keep it down ....bless her.

We had a great evening with the lovely Annabel catching up on stuff and having a few heart stopping moments......bank card....and lots of giggles. Also some great laughs with Mr Ross Leighton....who managed to keep his entire outfit on, which I'm told is very unusual.....bit i do have one incriminating photo of the WOW without the WW.....you know what I mean!! Not forgetting a night with Mr Henderson who tried to show his muscles in the punch bag machine but instead missed and ended up with broken fingers.....another good evening....lol.....muppet! X

So with all those events wrapped up nicely and the thought of not paying $5 for a bottle of water we left for New Zealand ....Campervan booked with luxury hot water and tv/DVD player.

When we got to Christchurch it was a it of a shocker, our plane was delayed by an hour and customes/passport control took about another 2 hours to get through...seriously. We were collected by taxi booked by our hostel and we given a guided tour through the journey by our driver who was brilliant. We were shown the devastation for the earthquake last year and even though I had seen it on the news I wasn't prepared for what was in front of my eyes. It was dark it you could still see hugh empty areas where buildings had been pulled down, roads all broke , barriers around blocks of houses. There are compulsary purchase orders etc on properties, imagine one day you just can't go into your home because it's too dangerous but it was ok the day before. It was the 4th deadliest disaster in new Zealand ever killing 185 people....imagine 185 people near you dying in one day....I mean one person is too many but these natural disasters that just wipe out people are not reported to us enough. They are still trying to rebuild their lives now ...a good year on....and still the road and barriers are up. It really opens my eyes to how fortunate we are, you know what the New Zealand people are really good people and very friendly, they are welcoming to new people and will do anything to help out. Its like a cruel twisting nature to deal this to them. Sometimes, a lot of times, I wish I had a magic wand that I could just wave and make it all better......but I expect a lot of people wish that too.

However, despite that most of Christchurch looks like its been in the blitz the people are amazing and we had a lovey time there for our one night before picking up our camper. So we are going to go back and go to the museum about the earthquake just before we are due to leave New Zealand. So far though......I wonder.....why doesn't everyone visit here....it's got to be the most beautifulist place in the whole world.....and I've seen abit of it already.

By the way...when we picked up the campervan.....we spent a good ten minutes in the car park because I didn't know how to start it as it was a mix of automatic and manual. I didn't want to ask and look dumb....so I spent ten minutes trying different techniques.....come on......what would you have done??????

Posted by Vicky Bailey 01:04 Archived in New Zealand Tagged beach christchurch brisbane journey mother_daughter blog world_trip airlie back_packing chloe_bailey flash_packing Comments (0)


Squirrels and Railay Beach

sunny 30 °C

After the disaster in ...that place beginning with P I don't want to mention, Christine and Gee recommended Krabi as they had been there already and knew it was a good place to go. So a whistle stop booking procedure and picked up to leave 45 mins later....how organised were we! The trip over was lovely ...very relaxing ferry ride into a small dock and being seasoned boaters now we managed to bag the front deck of the boat. Christine and Gee sat against a door though and wondered why it was rattling, then a man came out....! We had the best seats on the boat so we sat back with the sun shining down on us and the water was like a mirror....best journey yet. Unfortunately when we arrived we had to do the accommodation search and again it was a nightmare, we just couldn't find anywhere so in the end I went into the tourist information and they suggested a place which had vacancies. We got there and managed to bargain up a deal with the price and on seeing the size of the room we were relieved. Our room had a dodgy shower the whole time until our last night, it had six small jets of water that dripped out....it was pitiful! It rained nearly every night in Krabi and it poured, think it followed us from P town. We were in a restaurant....no 1 on trip advisor....and there wasn't enought tables inside so one table had a chair where the roof didnt cover a lady customer so she opened up her umbrella and ate her dinner, she just got on with it...no moaning or complaining, that was refreshing and I have learnt already that us English are professional complainers. Yes we are...it's true! For example i order poach eggs and toast for breakfast and scrambled eggs come out with toast, so what do I do? Nothing....I sit and eat what's infront of me, this wouldn't happen in England though, in England it would be sent back "I didn't order this, I wanted poached eggs!". See you soon learn over here that it doesn't really matter....don't they say eggs are eggs? No? Well something like that anyway. You know what I mean, we are spoilt...we order and want and expect. We need to appreciate that we have breakfast, I won't be complaining or expecting so much......we will see anyway.

We hired mopeds again and this time they were the business....the best ones yet and brand new! Really funky with skulls, mouths and flowers on....Scoopys if I recall. We buzzed around looking at all the sights and one day we ended up at the Buddah at Tigers Cave which had a staggering 1234 extremely steep steps to the top. This was really hard work and after the first 100 I knew it was going to be a struggle especially with the heat. Each step was like a breeze block ladder and the air was thick with the heat - this was really really hard and the sweat (been told that ladies don't sweat they have angel tears) was pouring! Going up took concentration to keep the breathing in tune and the looks on the faces of people coming down showed that it can be done. When we eventually got to the top some 45 minutes later the views were amazing plus there was a big gold buddah sat there (another buddah). I took loads of snaps and then promptly deleted them by mistake ......yes Chloe it was me ....I pressed the wrong button, panicked and took the battery out to stop it and luckily saved the rest of the photos, so it wasn't the camera....it was me! Sorry!

There is nothing like buzzing around on the mopeds with the sun beating down on you and the breeze against your face.....missing the Vespa! We met a young lad called Andreas and Gee invited him to dine with us one evening.....yes he turned up....course he did....four lovely ladies as company! The funniest bit was when we took his picture Gee asked if she could sit next to him so she could tell her mates she got off with him......bless him he looked petrified. We swapped emails as we were going to Bangkok at the same time so when I emailed him to update him he went on about Chloe's hair and how beautiful it was.....I think he though we were all after him!!!

Finally on the last day we went to Railay Beach which is beautiful and I wish we had stayed there but hey ....you can't research everything! We sat for lunch in the beach restaurant when I felt a tap on my head.....no not a sink tap....then it happened again, I looked up to see two squirrels sat on a branch....the tapping on my head was poo....nice aye......s**t on from a great height. Guess it has to be extra luck for that to happen! If you don't know what squirrel poo looks like....next time you have a chocolate peanut make sure it's out of an M&Ms bag!

Posted by Vicky Bailey 18:02 Archived in Thailand Tagged beach railay squirrel poo. krabi. Comments (1)

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