We finally arrived into Trang at 9am, an hour behind schedule (16 hours of train!).
Sleep – not a chance.
But the journey is not over yet, I still have a 3 hour minibus journey to go!
The minibuses depart just across from the station. But the next few were full, so I had to wait until 10.30am for the next one.
That was ok, gave me some time for pancakes in the cafe next door!
Ko Lanta is a fairly large island on the Andaman coast, being 6km wide and 30km long, with 9 beaches spread around its perimeter.
I’m staying right at the Northern end.
I’m not too bothered about staying in a beach resort – I’ve done that for the past year!
So I’m staying more towards the small town.
We arrived into Saladan town and rather than drive us to our hotels, the driver just dumped us on the side of the road!
Luckily I was just a short walk away.
The town is full of touristy things – stalls selling everything (sunglasses, dresses, sarongs, bags, souvenirs….), supermarket, lots of dive centres and tour booking shops.
Not been anywhere like this for a while!
Full of tourists, but quite fun for a while!
I had some mango sticky rice for lunch (a mango chopped up on top of sticky rice that’s been cooked in coconut milk)!
And found my friends from Borneo who have now moved here to work.
For the rest of the afternoon and evening we moved from bar to bar; sitting over the water to sitting on the beach!
Thursday 7 February 2013
While I’m here, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity for a spot of diving!
Hin Muang and Hin Daeng (meaning purple rock and red rock respectively) are two popular dive sites nearby-ish (a 40km, or 4 hour very slow boat ride away!!!) and regularly feature highly on ‘best dive site’ lists – namely due to the possibility of finding both mantas and whalesharks here.
The list price for a 2-dive day here is nearly £90 – that is very expensive.
It was an early morning, leaving at 6.45am.
We had a lovely sunrise from the boat.
As I went to take some photos, my camera wouldn’t turn on.
Totally dead 😦
so no underwater photos then.
Last time I was in Thailand my camera was flooded, so I’ve never managed to take any underwater photos here!!!!
After some breakfast, some sunbathing and 4 hours of sailing, we arrived to the middle of the sea!
There are some small rocks poking out, but most of the site is a submerged pinnacle.
After the first dive, we had some lunch, then went diving again before starting the long 4 hour drive back.
Overall I wasn’t too impressed with the diving.
The rocks were nice, lumpy pinnacles – that’s different to what I am used to in Borneo.
But the coral and marine life was somewhat lacking.
We saw some giant moray eels, spot fin lionfish and many snapper and fusilier.
Really nothing special. I guess if I had seen a manta I would have had a different story!!
In Borneo you don’t need to look that hard and you will see a lot (with lionfish and moray eels definitely not being a highlight!). So that was disappointing.
But I’m spoilt having dived somewhere so wonderful for a year.
We didn’t arrive back until nearly 7pm.
So time for another bar……
Friday 8 February 2013
I quite fancied staying a bit longer on Lanta, but after looking around and online, I couldn’t find anywhere available (at a reasonable price!) so looks like I’m going to have to leave as planned.
It’s coming up to Chinese New Year, everything has been booked out.
So I booked my mini bus to leave.
I didn’t fancy going for another day of diving.
So headed off down to Long Beach. This is a 2km stretch of sand, and as with most of the island, is lined with resorts, restaurants and bars!
The sea looked beautiful – bright blue, along the white sand beach. Shame about all the people!!
We found one of the bars, made ourselves comfy and sat on the beach for the rest of the day! We were gradually joined by more friends, who all had a day off! Not busy dive centres at the moment!
I was hoping for a lovely sunset – not had one at all for the last couple of days I’ve been here, but again, no luck, the sun just disappeared, leaving no pretty colours behind.