We were supposed to leave with the 8 AM catamaran but it was late. The waves were really big again. We then were also late at Don Sak pier. When we arrived, it turned out that we couldn’t get off the ship because the waves were too big. We then sailed to another pier and got on our bus to Khao Sok there around 10 AM.
Around 11 AM we were dropped off our minibus to wait for a bigger bus. I had some food finally: fried rice with veggies and 2 bananas. Next we were put on a tuk-tuk and taken to another waiting point where around 11.45 we got on the actual bus to Khao Sok. We had small stops on the road where people came on the bus and sold grilled chicken, fruit etc. We bought watermelon 🙂
By 2.30 PM we were in Khao Sok. There were a couple of accommodation providers right at the bus stop ready to pick us up and take to the jungle huts. We picked one for 400 baht per night.
After we had unpacked, we were ready to explore the surroundings of the park, eat and buy ourselves a trip to the park for the next day (1700 baht). I tried some soy milk (yum!), fried bananas and sweet potatoes and nuts in caramel for lunch and sweet and sour vegetables with pork for dinner. Thai food is sooooo good!
After dinner we felt that the weather had gone pretty chilly outside. We decided to ask for some extra blanket and that was a very wise decision. Later we found out that this night was coldest in many parts of Thailand (like Bangkok) in 30 YEARS.
In the morning it was pretty cool outside. We had a light breakfast (fruit with yogurt) and were ready to visit the national park. First we were put on a minibus to get park entrance. Before getting there we made a quick stop at a local market to buy some fruit for lunch etc. I finally found coconut waffles Heidi had been talking about. They were SO good! I also tried little steamed cakes and some grilled chicken. Must I say everything was lovely? 🙂
We arrived around 11 AM and were then put on a long-tail boat. The motorized boat created a lot of waves and I was literally soaked after 1 hour when we reached our lunch stop.
The lunch stop was actually in a little floating village. All the houses there were built on water. Really cool setup 🙂 We had some time to swim, relax and look around. And then it was lunchtime! We were served fish, 2 vegetable dishes, a lovely fresh salad and rice cooked to perfection. Seriously, wherever I ate rice in Thailand, it was perfect and so tasty.
After our tasty lunch it was time to get some action going. We started our journey in the jungle to the cave. We walked on a forrest trail, saw lots of different trees, bamboo and other flora. Everything is so big in the jungle, like 2 times taller than here in Estonia. We also saw some beautiful butterflies. On the trail we had to go through water all the time, my feet were soaked the entire hike.
After walking for quite some time we finally reached the cave. It was completely dark in there and our guide gave us all miniature light torches. I don’t know how I would have survived in there without it. He also told us that we would be swimming in the cave and when the time comes, he will take our electronics and put them in a waterproof bag. Other unnecessary things were left outside the cave.
This is the only OK picture I got in the cave. Lots of stalactites, stalagmites and stagnates. We also saw tons of bats hanging from the ceiling – CREEPY! The trail was rocky and completely dark, I had to watch my step closely. In parts we had to climb a rope, swim in cold water, climb bigger rocks and then swim some more. It was so EXTREME and really really cool. Even my mom got excited which is a big deal 🙂
When we got out of the cave, everyone was soaked. There was not a spot on my body that wasn’t wet, maybe only my hair since we didn’t have to dive. While we were in the cave, the sun had also come up and the clouds had departed.
Then we hiked back to our boat and were taken back to the floating village. We had a snack break: dragon fruit, watermelon and pineapples. The dragonfruits are not my favourite, they taste kind of bland to me. Watermelons were good but the pineapple… I have never had pineapple that good and probably won’t have ever again. Unless I go back to Thailand (and I sure will!).
After the snack-break we had some time to relax, swim and sunbathe. The water in the lake was so warm! I was a great afternoon. Around 3 PM we started sailing back to the pier to jump on the minibus and go back to our accommodation. I got soaked again and also was a little cold. Later I got a bad cough because of that and treated the cough even when I was back home 😦
We got back just around sunset. We showered, hung out, bought some food from a small grocery store and then had dinner at Jasmine’s Restaurant. It was a new place in Khao Sok and had a cozy interior and a lovely hostess. I ordered a Tom Yum Goong aka spicy thai soup with shrimp, a mixed fruit shake and with every meal also came a free desert: banana in coconut milk. While making the soup, the cook came and let me smell coriander etc, just to make sure how much herbs and spices I liked and wanted. That’s customer service! 🙂 The soup was the best soup in my life. Seriously. Unfortunately I bit into a small hot chili with my first bite and then had to wait for the fire in my mouth to disappear before I could continue 😀
We were pretty tired after our fun and exciting day at the park and hit the hay around 10 PM. Next morning it was time to hit the road and set off to our next adventures…
Next post: our final destinations in southern Thailand – Ao Nang and Phi Phi Islands.