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Monday, 9 February 2009

Ko Tao

2nd - 7th February

So after 10 days in Bangkok and a week behind schedule we finally set out for the islands of the Thai peninsular. Many thanks go to Rhiannon though, for accommodating Sam the whole time Ady was in hospital and for making us both feel so welcome in her beautiful apartment, even though our stay was well beyond the planned 3 days! Our extended stay gave us both an insight into Bangkok from a resident’s point of view and as city lovers we’d both be open to the idea of living and working there in
the future. Job offers anyone??!!

After an exhausting 14 hour bus and boat journey we arrived on Ko Tao. The island, who’s waters were historically rich with sea turtles, was named after these turtles and translates to Turtle Island. Since the island was “discovered” in the 80’s by the first backpackers it has become famous as a diving mecca and churns out more Padi divers than anywhere else in the world (except maybe Cairns??). Unfortunately and unsurprisingly most of the turtles have since moved onto other breeding grounds, though the sea is rich in other marine life.

The main beach is Sairee, north of the main pier where the boats arrive from the mainland. We decided against this area as we’d heard of how built up the area has become and instead headed for the second beach of Chaulok, in search of some tranquillity. We found a nice room at Sunshine 2, just metres away from the beach and home to one of the islands many Dive Schools. Without wanting to bore anyone too much, we spent a relaxing six days basking in the sun and sea on some of the smaller beaches, taking in a bit of snorkelling, some diving (including a very cool, 2 foot wide vertical swim-through!) and getting down with the yogis at Shambala Yoga.

Feeling fully recuperated after Bangkok and Bumrungrad hospital we are now looking forwards to catching up with friends from home who visit Thailand over the coming weeks. Anyone who’d like to donate some Percy Pigs or Cornish Rattler (our favourite cider but any would do!) please courier to Ben, Alison or Amy ASAP!

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