Day 83: Koh Mook > Koh Lipe
Claire: As I type this on my phone on a speedboat to Koh Lipe I really hope we make it there alive! If you’re reading this, we did. Just.
This is our second speedboat of the trip and definitely the bumpiest. It’s a 2 hr trip to Koh Lipe so we’re properly out at sea and it’s a bit rough!! The waves are smashing the side of the boat offering an intermittent salty shower. The captain occasionally slams the brakes on as we hit a big one and it’s not until we stop altogether that we realise how choppy the waters are. He had to stop to ask some of us to sit the other side of the boat to help the weight.
Koh Lipe is actually near the border of Malaysia so we’re heading south again. If we’d planned properly we’d have just flown from Kuala Lumpur to Langkawi (Malaysian island) and island hopped Thailand from there. But hindsight is a wonderful thing isn't it.
As I type this I nearly lost my phone to the ocean! We hit the biggest bump yet and everybody lifted from their seats. The guy in front of us just put his life jacket on. He’s lost hope. I’m going to put my phone away and hold on tight. Wish us luck.
We arrived in Koh Lipe alive and were greeted with a ticket booth where everybody had to pay 200 baht (£5) to come on the island. Oh. But we like Koh Lipe, it feels very bohemian. It’s a lot more touristy than Koh Mook but definitely has a laid back charm. There’s no big hotels and apart from the odd 7-Eleven the shops and restaurants seem independently run. We’re staying near sunrise beach which has several beach bars with hammocks, deck chairs and chilled out house music. The water here is incredibly turquoise too and the beaches are fine white sand. The island is tiny and the main area, Walking Street, stretches from sunrise beach to Pattaya beach. Which you can walk it in about 10mins!
After the traumatising speedboat journey we had lunch at Bloom, a cute cafe/hostel serving incredibly huge smoothie bowls. We’d heard their coffee was delicious but alas the machine had broken.... waaah.
This eve we had a great people watching spot in a bar on the corner of Walking Street. We even had an Aperol Spritz and Gin&Tonic which tasted sooooo good after months of beer. After spending a day’s budget on lunch and cocktails we’d said we’d keep dinner cheap but instead ended up in Elephant for pizza and live acoustic. It was a really nice place that does everything it can to be sustainable, including no plastic bottles and also supporting Trash Heroes — the volunteer beach cleaners. A trip to their toilets will leave you bemused as you realise there’s no toilet paper just a humorous instructional poster on the wall about saving the islands drainage system by washing Thai style with the ‘bum spray’. Because tourists can’t be trusted with tissue paper!
Gav's day 83 takeaway
- So it would seem speedboats are of little use when the waves are little choppy. Bless the lad in front of us who put his life jacket on, although there were a couple of moments of nerves. Especially as we were being safely guided from one island to the other by our twelve year old captain and his 2-man crew consisting with a combined age of around eleven! Start 'em young.