Yoga, Meditation, and Monkey Thievery

December 28. Day 13. Party day. As in THE Full Moon Party on Haad Rin Beach. However, after several nights of partying – especially my encounter with Thai Methamphetamines – I decided it was time to pull chocks and head to another place. I had spent 4 days on Koh Phangan and felt I had explored all I could. Full Moon Party? Nah – not my thing. Onward.


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I headed to the Thong Sala Pier to see what options I had to leave the island. The ferry times were posted in many places so it was decision time. Where did I want to go? Hmmm… I had seen and explored a good portion of the Eastern Andaman coast; perhaps the Western Andaman coast? Yup. Decision made. Western coast or bust. And with that decision, I had some time to kill. almost 3 hours actually, so I grabbed some juice and found a nice veranda area near the pier to kill some time. What better place to practice yoga and do some meditating?


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I returned my bike back to the place I rented it from, retrieved my passport (XXXXX) and walked back to the pier. Now I had a few more hours to kill because someone mentioned the ferry I bought a ticket for was having maintenance issues so there was gonna be a slight delay (slight delay combined with “Thai Time” = 3+ hour delay). I sewed some more patches on my ruck sack, had a couple veggie sandwiches for 30 baht each ($1) and board the boat. An hour later I was in Koh Samui and 2.5 hours after that, I was at Don Sak Pier waiting for a bus transfer to Krabi Town.


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Once I arrived in Krabi Town, it had been a full day of traveling – most of it being in the hot southern Thai sun so I was beat. I grabbed some juice, wandered from the bus stop into Krabi Town, found a nice hostel (P. Guesthouse) for 300 baht, took a hot shower, and retired for the night; after all, I had more traveling to do in the morning to get to Railay Beach.


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December 29. Day 14. I woke up fully rested, checked out of P. Guesthouse, and headed towards the pier. Along the way I found a nice little coffee shop with good wifi and stopped for some hot tea. As soon as I walked out the front door, I was approached by a scruffy little guy asking me if I wanted to go to Railay Beach. 150 baht ($5) and an hour later I arrived on what had to be the prettiest place I’ve been to yet.

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In order to find an affordable place and learn my surroundings, I’ve made a habit of wandering around for a while before settling in. This way I can see what’s available in terms of food, hostels, entertainment etc., and then decide which places I wanna check out.


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There was quiet a variety of places to stay in on Railay. Remember, this was “high season,” but still, Rayavadee was the nicest place (and had the highest prices of course – $5,400 per night with a 7 night minimum stay?!). I ended up staying at Rapala Inn for a mere 300 baht per night ($10). I had a queen sized mattress, private bathroom with shower, and a hammock already strung out for me on the front porch. My own private bungalow just 100 yards up the hill from the center of town.


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I dropped my things inside, grabbed a quick shower, lost a few layers, threw on some SPF 50 and headed back out. Time to see what this island had to offer. I bought a shoulder sling bag, 3 postcards, sarong, bottle of water, and 3 bananas – all for 265 baht (~$9). On the way to the other side of the island, one of the ladies at once of the booths mentioned I should hold onto my things or hide them because the monkeys would get them. I perked up right away and thought to myself – monkeys? Steal my stuff? Nahhhh. She’s messing with me. Just then I turned the corner and found TONS OF MONKEYS.


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I even decided to share one of my bananas and feed one of them…

I spent the next 2 days exploring all that Railay Beach has to offer. Most notably, the lagoon and lookout (click here). I also started some more serious trip planning seeing as though I wanted to focus on couch surfing. Countries, cities, dates, arrivals, departures, visas, train, bus, and plane tickets. It was time to nail down at least a few details so I could spend less on my travels. After 2 nights in my bungalow, it was time to bid it farewell and head to Railay West for some work (catching up on my travel journal). I took out my ENO Hammock, set it up in the mangrove overlooking the beach, and settled in.


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The view from my hammock was incredible. People were getting massages nearby on the beach. Each person smiled almost uncontrollably as a small thai woman not any bigger than 5’0″ tall and 45 kg in weight revealed her talents. 3o min massage? 100 baht ($3). Just then, a crowd started to gather and everyone was staring in the same direction. I got up to see what the commotion was about and was delighted with what I saw. It was a young man slack-lining between two of the mountain peaks just a few thousand meters away and a couple hundred meters up.


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The day wore on and the wind picked up. Waves grew and rain started falling. I was dry and safe under the cover of the mangrove. The rain was so incredibly peaceful, that I fell asleep. When I woke, it was dusk and time to head to the fireworks show to bring in 2013 with a bang.


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Have you been to the western Andaman Coast? Did you know that James Bond’s The Man With The Golden Gun was filmed here?

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