April 16, 2019
Koh Tao | SongKran Festival (Day 20-23) 🦈🐢💦🌴
First of all I would like to apologize for letting this entry long in coming. I had been having issues with my phone on Koh Tao. Actually, it had something to do with the ongoing Songkran Festival that I have already mentioned in my previous blog post about our adventures in Koh Samui. Anyway, a short summary of what Songkran is. It it the Thai New Year celebrated from April 13th-15th. Basically, everyone is going out on the street with water guns, buckets as well as containers filled with water.
On April 13th Johannes and I took a Speed Catamaran from Koh Smaui to Koh Tao. At the dock where our catamaran departed, the people have already given us a pretaste of it.
Firstly, we stopped at Koh Phangan, which is located between both islands and well known for its Full and Half Moon parties (unfortunately we could not make it to one, as it did not work out with our time schedule). After about 70 minutes we made it to Koh Tao. Shortly after our arrival at that little island many taxi drivers approached us, too bad they were all from the same company. Accordingly, they could just charge us whatever they want as there was literally no competition. Of course no taxi meter, just like on Koh Samui, Phuket or Koh Lanta. The prices were ridiculously high but we had no option. Luckily, we find two people who were staying at the same hotel and also looking to share a taxi. On the way to our hotel everyone was already in rage and throwing water buckets as well as pointing water guns at each other. Honestly, the water was just what we needed after that ride. Soon afterwards we arrived at our hotel, which was a few hundred meters away from all the bars restaurants as well as the beach. We decided to go the center of the town and joined the big hose fight.
Additionally, we were starving from our journey and therefore hoping to find something to eat.
In the evening we went partying on the beach. Since it was a Thai holiday I feel like almost everyone was out there partying. The beach bars and restaurants were full and everyone was having a good time.
Unluckily, my phone got a little bit too wet that day. This is actually the reason my phone died all of the sudden a couple days later and would not turn on again. Well, since I hadn’t done any backups lately, a few pictures of our adventures on Koh Tao are unfortunately gone now.
On the next day we determined to sleep in before exploring a little bit of the island of Koh Tao. Owing to our negative experience with all those taxis who are not willing to turn there taxi meters on and people telling us to be extremely careful when renting scooters on Koh Tao, we decided to walk to a beach. Apparently, they are trying anything to charge you the extra money for damages you did not do.
The beach we intended to go to was on the other side of the island. Well, I was pretty sure that another hike would not do us any bad. Furthermore, I hoped to enjoy some terrific views over the island as well as the surroundings.
As expected, the beach was not very crowded especially due to the fact that there were not any hotels anywhere near. Just a bar and a restaurant. Beyond that the water was super clear and the place turned out to be an amazing place for snorkeling.
Besides many colorful fish and swarms I got to see another shark. This time the shark was almost my size though. Well to still everyone’s fears most of the sharks that are living in South-Eastern Asia are not dangerous at all. Another very unique experience. The funny thing it was just like 50 meters from the beach. After spending almost all day at the beach we headed back to the hotel just before sunset as both of us were starving. All you can eat Pizza and a few drinks let the day come to an end in a very relaxed atmosphere.
On our third and last full day on Koh Tao we joined another day tour. We aimed to do more snorkeling towards our end of our trip. Many people recommended it to us. Koh Tao is like one of the better places to do snorkeling in Thailand so if you are ever come to visit Koh Tao, I promise you will not regret it go snorkeling or diving. I have heard that Koh Tao offers one of the cheapest diving licenses in the world. Our first stop was at a marvelous island called Ko Nang Yuan. It is well known for it is special beach. The island is connected by white sandbanks and the water is also extremely clear. Furthermore, we visited another great viewpoint overlooking that stunning island.
The rest of the day was completely dedicated to snorkeling. We stopped at four bays. Every one of them was unique and different somehow. We happened to observe so many species. Turtles that were the size of us, colorful as well as big and even poisonous fish. One of the highlights was presumably the place where we witnessed to see the biggest swarm ever. At first I thought the fish were forming the ground until I realized that there were hundreds of thousands of fish forming a long and big carpet-like thing. The day tour was definitely worth the money.
I am very grateful to have recently been to so many wonderful places. It has been an absolutely amazing trip. I am definitely hyped for the last days in Thailand. On April 16th, we will take a night bus all the way back to Thailand’s capital, Bangkok. Stay tuned for our last adventure. You will hear from me soon.