In this blog post series I will have six posts telling you all about my adventures in Thailand. The posts will be published every other Monday. See Thailand part I.
On the 16th of January around 3 PM we arrived to Koh Tao (the Turtle Island). We were tired, fed up with travelling and ready to hit the beach. But before the beach we had to find Lomprayah to get tickets to Samui and then a place to stay. We also knew we had to book our scuba diving tour for the next day.
We found Lomprayah bureau quickly since I had a little Koh Tao book with a map that I picked up in Don Sak. Then we shared a taxi from the pier to Sairee Beach and were dropped off near Ban’s Diving Resort. The accommodation prices there weren’t for us so we decided to walk and see what we can find. There are lots of accommodation providers on the road from Sairee Beach to Sairee Village so finding something you like is no problem. We walked all the way to the centre, had lots of bungalow offers and then reached Big Blue Diving. I remembered Heidi went diving with them and liked it. We decided to book a tour.
First of all a friendly guy there told us to take off our backpacks since we looked pretty tired :). Then we were offered a free fruit drink (very refreshing!) and he introduced us tours and packages they had. We decided to book Discover Scuba for 2000 baht that included one dive. We were also told that if we want to we can take a second dive for extra 1000 baht. Since we weren’t sure yet we decided to book the one dive option. When filling the medical for the dive, it turned out that my mom couldn’t go diving :(. So she would go snorkeling and me diving. Exciting stuff!
After booking Discover Scuba we went back to Nat Resort and got a lovely bungalow for 800 baht per night for 3 nights. It was a little bit more than we wanted to pay but it was in a great location and very cosy. See, the lady in Bangkok was really trying to fool us. “You’ll cry on Koh Tao when there is no accommodation left.” Yeah, sure… We literally dropped off our bags, put our swimsuits on and were on the beach right on time to see the sunset.
As I floated in the warm and salty water on Sairee Beach while the sun was setting in front of me, I caught myself thinking: “That’s life! This is paradise.”
Because it really was! I was so happy to be there. The long road to Tao was all worth it. 🙂
After the sun set and it got dark outside, we went back to our bungalow to have a shower. Man, I was so excited! 😀 I hadn’t showered since we left Stockholm and felt like crap. Literally. I washed my hair twice and scrubbed every inch of my skin hard. Then dried my hair (thanks to Heidi’s Thailand posts I was smart enough to bring a hair-drier with me, it was very useful since I didn’t have to wait for my hair to dry before going out!), found some nicer clothes and was ready to discover Koh Tao’s nightlife.
And by nightlife I mean restaurants, food stalls and little shops. I had green and spicy squid curry with a little bit of rice and some fresh coconut. Later bought my first banana pancake (Thai: roti or rotee) with Nutella. It was delicious! Then we did a little bit of shopping and went home to sleep since we were pretty tired.
The next day I had a mango smoothie for breakfast and then went to Big Blue. From 10.30 to 12 our instructor G taught us everything we needed to know and we also needed to fill some more paperwork. Around noon we had some lunch at a food stall and by 12.30 PM we were put and a boat and taken to the diving site.
Before we could go underwater we needed to put on a rather heavy set of diving gear. Then it was water time to practise some stuff on the surface. I got leg cramps in both legs at the same time! The instructors relaxed my legs but still: must I say how nervous I got? Fortunately I didn’t have any problems underwater.
The first dive was pretty difficult in the beginning but when we started swimming underwater I was totally in my element and enjoying every second of it. So many colourful fish! It was amazing 🙂 I decided to take the second dive after a small snack break on the boat. The second dive was also great. In total we were underwater for about 40–45 minutes and went as deep as 12 metres. When we were finally out of the water, instructor G couldn’t stop telling me and my mom how good I did underwater 😀 She told me I needed to do the Open Water course and get certified. I agree! When I go back to Koh Tao one day, I will do just that 😉
We returned to Big Blue around 5 PM. Then we met up with our underwater photographer and picked out 5 photos for 500 baht. Pretty expensive but hey: where am I going to get underwater pictures of me swimming with fish? Nowhere.
We spent some time on the beach until the sun set and spent our evening enjoying street food and shopping places on Koh Tao. We also visited a local grocery store and bought some dried tamarind, durian and peanuts.
Our last day on Koh Tao was a complete beach day. I have to say I’m not a fan of just laying on the beach for a whole day but my mom quite enjoys that. In the morning I had a mixed fruit smoothie and then around 11 AM our beach day began. During the day I also had a dragon fruit shake (not my favourite), some spicy pad thai (my favourite for sure) and mango roti. I also managed to burn my upper back because I obviously didn’t reach that area while reapplying my sunscreen. Ouch!
Walked all the way to Big Blue.
In the evening we did our regular evening things aka eating and shopping 😀 It was also my first and only time in Thailand to try mango with sticky rice. It was really good 🙂 We were pretty sad because it was our last night on Koh Tao which ended up being my favourite place on our Thailand trip. A lovely small island with great people, a chill vibe, amazing food and gorgeous sunsets.
Around 11 PM we called it a night since we had to be up around 7 AM to get to the pier to go to our next destination: Koh Samui.
Next post: a bumpy ride to Koh Samui & all the fun stuff there.