Sunday, March 22, 2009

Koh Rok

The seas south of Thailand are like an ocean scattered randomly with gems. Koh Rok, one of the most distant islands south of Phuket and Koh Lanta is the furthest the operators will go without turning the trip into a sea sick torture adventure. The journey will take an hour and there are two island surrounded by emerald waters abundant with sea life for one to snorkel around in.

Being on a virgin trip to Koh Lanta, I booked the trip directly from the operator booth located next to the beach in Cha Da. Bad mistake. The opening price of $1400 was knocked to only $1300 and I took it. Only to realize later then when in the town of Sala Dan, I could get a similar trip for as good as $800.

A favorite haunt that I frequent for coffee or that ice cold lemonade is called Cat Fish Restaurant. They have plenty of cats there. As I spoke Thai to the friendly old lady, she told me of the $800 trip to Koh Rok, special price for people roo-jaik-gan (who know each other on the island). She could have gotten me that but I had already took on the one in Cha Da, bait line sinker and all.

The town of Sala Dan is dotted with a number of tour operators. In Cha Da where I curiously asked for car rental, I was offered $2000 per day for a pick-up and they had no other smaller vehicles. But in Sala Dan, the Suzuki was only going for $1000 ($1200 for Farangs the operator said discreetly).

And onto Koh Rok I went in the morning, to be the first passengers we were as the speed boat fetched the passengers from one beach to the other. The sea was rough and we ain’t going full speed as the pilot throttled up and down riding the swelling ridges and moving valleys created by the enchanting blue ocean.

The journey an hour long and could had been shorter on a better day. We reached anyway and were released into the inviting green waters on the west of the island pair. In the bay the sheltering effects was a good thing, preventing us from being swept away west and be collected in pieces on Indian shores.

Lunch was served simple, we had Thai food. Each lined up to scoop our servings and ventured off in our own directions to gorge under shades as the hermit crab scrambles into the crevices between roots of trees.

The wind caught up without warning and darkness gloomed at a distance sinisterly. In a time frame less then a third of an hour the boats sped away leaving us in wonder. Not long later the storm touched shores, the sun bright day had bleak down in rain, our mood turned a wee bit sour.

As the rain lightened with about thirty ticks of the minute, the shower gentle but still the waters churned in anger. My day shall not be ruin, I fear you not swirling waters. And so many ventured in, one by one with me joining the order. Surprisingly the water was pleasingly warm in contrast to the air so breezy, at a distance the roar of thunder. The waves broke shore with strength, my heavy ass the anchor. I win.

The day ended near 2 pm, we had snorkeled 3 bays in total. We galloped the high seas back to Lanta which took more then an hour. The body tired, the sun burn was impending. I soaked my self on the steps, I sipped my coffee with the room to my back. I enjoyed my day, the breeze was on, but darn, the squeaky screams of toddlers.

Click here for full photo sets under Lazing in Lanta Mar 2009.

1 comment:

Daranee said...

Thanks for sharing the story and the beautitful pictures. I have added a link to your site on my blog.

All the best, Daranee