Wednesday, June 22, 2011
After arriving in Phuket, we drove through Patong around midnight and were so thankful we decided to stay in Kata, a smaller beach with decent surfing and less of a tourist circus. We stayed at a small but comfortable hotel just 5-10 minutes walking distance from the beach.
Since it's rainy season in Thailand from May-October, it is the low season for tourism. This wasn't very apparent when we were staying in the tourist mecca Khao San Road in Bangkok, but it became quite clear in Kata Beach. Although most of the businesses, restaurants, and hotels cater to tourists, everything was empty. Employees and shop owners sat by the side of the road and yelled at us as we walked to the beach, hoping we would buy something and be their only customers of the day.
We relaxed on the beautiful beach and rented surfboards on the first afternoon. The water was the perfect temperature, although the surf wasn't great because it was so windy.
Next to the beach was a vendor selling the best phad thai I've ever had. I sat on a ledge overlooking the beach, surrounded by picnicking locals.
After 2 days of relaxing and swimming in Kata Beach, we took a speedboad to Koh Yao Noi, a small and less-developed island. People told us Koh Yao Noi is similar to Phuket 10 years ago. It was absolutely gorgeous, but searing hot and humid. We stayed at Sabai Corner, which was essentially a bunch of treehouses in the jungle. It was really pretty, but there were mosquitoes and frogs everywhere.
When Dana woke up with a black fuzzy bug crawling on her leg, we decided to move on to Krabi, via longtail boat and "songtheaw", or open-air public bus.