Ahh the joys of flying. How much easier it is to take a two hour flight than a 12 hour bus ride! I said goodbye to Amelia, Mikaela, and Brittany at different times. I was sad to leave them, but had a happy heart knowing that these will be lifelong friends who I will see back home.
Never did I think I would be so happy to get back to Thailand. After the ups and downs of traveling there, I was shocked that I wanted to kiss the ground at BKK. My happiness was solidified when I ate dinner at a small cafe. I was the sole customer and the Thai owner played me American songs on his guitar for over an hour. Much appreciated. I picked Jordan up at the airport at 11:30 PM and he was so excited that we just stayed up discussing Thailand for hours. With him here, my travels finally felt like a vacation!
Jordan and I started in Bangkok. We got a tuk tuk for the day, saw a couple of temples, Wat Pho included, and then made our way to a tailor shop that a Thai man highly suggested. Of course the tuk tuk driver got commission if he brought tourists there and of course Jordan got talked into buying two custom-made suits. They should be arriving to New York shortly! As we were driving around the city, it made me so happy to see how giddy Jordan was. He quickly fell for the country that I am so dearly fond of.
That day, we checked into The Warehouse Bangkok, a hip new hotel that was very accommodating. First thing on the list that night, the setting of The Hangover: Sky Bar at Lebua State Tower. I have to admit I had some doubts about going there, but those doubts were immediately put to rest as soon as we stepped out of the elevator onto the 64th floor. The view of Bangkok was amazing, looking up at the golden dome was unreal, and the taste of Jack Daniels was just what I needed. Although the drinks are MUCH pricier than I've been used to in Thailand ($16 for a Jack and coke), I was ready for the splurge. You actually can go up there without buying anything, which is great that the hotel doesn't charge a fee. After meeting two girls from the UK, the four of us headed to Khoa San Road, Bangkok's hub for Westerners and backpackers. Jordan got his fill of scorpion, frogs, and insects, and we had an unintentional, but very fun, night out.
At the airport the next morning, I had McDonalds for breakfast, the first fast food I've had in SE Asia (pat on the back). The Hangover cure. Next stop was Phuket, a well known and touristy island in Thailand. Our hotel, Amata Resort, was enormous and beautiful. First thing on the to-do list in Phuket: get Jordan a bamboo tattoo at Siam Ink. The tattoo came out so nicely and will be one that always reminds Jordan of how amazing this trip was :) I was very tempted to get one myself, but I decided to hold off. You're welcome mom and dad. That same night we went to a Muay Thai fight at Patong Boxing Stadium. Some fights are staged, but at this gym it's the real thing. We saw multiple knock-outs and for 1,300 baht and six fights, it was worth it.
The next day we took a day trip to Maya Bay and Koh Phi Phi. Maya Bay is where The Beach was filmed and it was jam packed. Our boat stopped far away from the beach with intentions for the passengers to snorkel for an hour. Jordan and I decided we wanted pictures on Maya Bay. We swam there and back and it was an extremely difficult swim amongst all the boats driving past. Was it worth the swim and three pictures? Probably not, but at least we got a solid workout. We made a stop to Koh Phi Phi for a couple of hours and Jordan got some major sun poisoning. Red from head to toe.
I planned a day for Jordan to ride elephants. Since I had already done so in December, I opted out and sent him out alone. I'm pretty sure this was his best day and I'm glad he got to go. While he did that, I enjoyed a beer at an Irish Pub and got a pedicure! By this point, I was beginning to feel a bit traveled-out. A month of traveling was starting to wear me out! We planned on going out this night, but got distracted by a talented group of break dancers on Bangla Road. We ended up having drinks at a bar next to them and watched for two hours. Jordan did a trick and it made his life!
Off to Koh Lanta we went! I wanted to stay here one night because it is a much less touristy and more remote island. We stayed at the lovely Papillon Bungalows, a short walk from the deserted Phra Ae Beach. We layed, we swam, we collected seashells, we walked. It was a quiet refuge after Phuket. I put up a photo of seashells on Instagram that afternoon that said that I was in Koh Lanta. Technology is so interesting, as my friend Ally, who taught in Chon Buri, saw this and reached out. She was on the island alone, and the three of us met for dinner and drinks on the beach.
After only one night on Koh Lanta, Jordan and I set off on the ferry for Ao Nang, Krabi. Ao Nang reminds me a bit of Ocean City. It's a cute little beach town with amazing beaches so close by. I did a big splurge for our last place. Ao Nang Cliff Beach Resort. The most beautiful view and room. There was a jacuzzi on the balcony, a gorgeous view of the gigantic limestone cliffs, and a refreshing pool. We took a long tail boat to Railay Beach. I heard and read nothing but great things about this beach, and it exceeded my expectations! There were limestone cliffs on either side of us and the beach had only a handful of people when we arrived. It was a relaxing morning, especially with the foot scrub and aloe massage that we got in the shade.
Because we had three beds in our hotel room, I suggested that Ally stay with us on our last night, and I'm glad she did! The three of us went to Crazy Gringos for 50 baht tequila shots ($1.50) and 120 baht passion fruit margaritas ($3.60). It was a great last night with Jordan and I was sad to leave him at the airport the next day!
Since this was Jordan's first time in this part of the world, I'm going to have him write his own post. His experience was much different than mine and he'll have more of a tourist view! I know how much he loved the country and I'm happy for him to share!