Oh man. You guys. This area is...I have no words. So beautiful!! I love the Andaman coast :)
We made it to Ao Nang and checked into our first dorm room style hostel of our trip. We got two bottom bunks beside each other (bottom bunks are the best so you can hide your big bag under your bed and even drape something from the top bunk to hide from the light) in a co-ed room for 30 people.
We stayed at Ao Nang Backpackers and I would def recommend it - super clean, friendly and helpful staff, good breakfast (although not included) AND real coffee.
It's the little things in life, amiright?!
Anywho, we kind of messed up our schedule a bit by booking a flight out of Krabi (40min drive from Ao Nang) to Chiang Mai in the north of Thailand ahead of time, so we only had a day and a half in this area.
We both decided that we could have stayed for at least a week - there are so many cool islands to check out in this area, like the infamous Koh Phi Phi where the movie 'the beach' was filmed, Koh Lanta and Koh Lipe.
Alas, we had to make due with the time that we had, so we took a long boat taxi ride to Railay beach, about a 20min ride, to hang out for our first afternoon.
The west side of the beach is gorgeous white sand, but packed full with long boats. We decided to wander over to the east side, which is covered in mangroves so you aren't able to swim there. The views are still stunning: we walked along the boardwalk to the very end and spent a ridiculous amount of money on two soda waters so we could loiter about on the cushions and look out on the cool rock islands.
We then wandered back over to the other side to go for a swim - it was flipping got outside. En route, Cynthia spotted a monkey crossing the path in front of us. She had mentioned just that morning that the one thing she really wanted to see were monkeys.
All of a sudden, we were surrounded by them. I have this irrational fear of being bitten by a monkey, so I kind of freaked out haha but it was awesome to see them just randomly hanging out.
After a dip in the ocean, it was time to head back to our beach. We took a long tail back and passed by Tonsai beach, known for its awesome rock climbing. You can even climb certain combos over the ocean and just drop into the water if you mess up. So cool!
We wandered along the road towards our hostel and stopped for some massaman curry for dinner, my new fave :)
We then found a random night market walking street. It was the coolest one we have seen so far - there were a bunch of clothing vendors, a lot of second hand clothing and unique handmade stuff. Cyn went a bit buck-wild buying souvenirs and I was satisfied by shopping vicariously through her.
Long boat taxi drivers
It's still too early in my trip to load up on gifties for people back home. Don't fret Momster, I haven't forgotten that I promised to bring back an elephant for you ;)
The first mosque I've seen here! The call to prayer made me miss Egypt a bit...
Fresh chicken (just kidding, kind of)
This morning we had a delish breaky (did I mention they had real coffee?!) and wandered down to Ao Nang beach. It is hard to say goodbye to this area so soon, I would love to come back and explore it more some day. Isha'Allah, God willing.
We are now at the Krabi airport waiti for our flight to Chiang Mai. I feel a bit lavish taking a flight when most people brave the 36 hour bus ride. Cyn only has 9 more days here(!!) so we are making the most of the time we have left.
Truck ride to the airport
Hoping the flight goes smoothly and our bags make it there without incident, and can't wait to explore a new and different area of Thailand!