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Which Way to the Beach?

THAILAND | Friday, 20 December 2013 | Views [1028]

Krabi is described more as a launching spot than as a destination and this became apparent the first night we arrived. We are staying in the 'downtown' area where there are many restaurants, travel agencies and gift shops. The markets are overpriced for Thai standards and even the food is about 30% more expensive than on the islands. It is not hard to understand why people come here simply to leave; we wouldn't be the exception.

 

We had a relaxed morning, sleeping in and enjoying each others company until about 10am when we decided to make a plan. We had originally planned to stay a night in Ao Nang, a popular beach town about 16 kilometres south-west; however, reviews that the town had almost of it charm snuffed out by tourism scared us off. We decided however, that we would venture out to the little town to see what it had to offer; had to be more than Krabi town.

 

Our first order of business was to determine how we would travel to our next destination, Koh Phi Phi, and island located about 30 kilometres West in the Andaman Sea. Our first offers were for long tail boat, which would suck; but we soon found what we were looking for. When we were researching Koh Phi Phi, we wanted to book our tickets in advance, like we had with Koh Pha Nang; however, we couldn't actually find the carrier and only found ticket through third party sites. The prices seamed OK at about 600 baht a person. Today, we were very happy to have waited. The tickets at the first place we checked were 350, but at the agent at our hotel, who was offering free shuttle service, was only 280 per person; sold!

 

After securing our tickets, we hopped onto a songthaew, the local bus/taxi service (basically a pick-up truck with a box on that people get into), which promised a trip in crowded corners, but after Tim's reluctance the driver offered us a ride in the front (air conditioned) seat; we were a bit spoiled. The trip didn't take long, but the truck travelled slow, making to occasional stop to drop off a passenger or parcel (KFC at one place). He would honk his horn at most convenience stores and at the tourist hotels in hopes of increasing his profit from the trip to Ao Nang. From our counts, this trip made him 650 baht, a decent amount for a single trip and if you do the math, that's 13 people in a small truck.

 In the Truck

From the Truck

The landscape was beautiful with large mountainous limestone peaks. Tim snapped many pictures from the front seat of the truck; our anticipation was growing.

 

The first beach we passed, Nopparat Thara looked very nice, but the shore was small because the tide was still mainly in. Low tide this day was supposed to be about 5am and 5pm, so at about 11:30, we were close to high tide. The street was lined with many food vendors and gift shops.

 

We were dropped off in the centre of Ao Nang, only about 200 metres from the beach. We sought out a toilet at the local McDonald’s, the most reliable toilets in the world, and then bought some refreshments. The cooler was so effective on our trip from the islands, Tim decided to replicate it for our time on the beach.

 

We noticed quickly that Ao Nang proper was very tourist oriented, with aggressive matradee's attempting to entice customers into their establishments for “happy hour” (it was lunch) wine and Hors d'ouves. A clear sense of stiff competitions emerged and we hustled past the cacophony of offers until we found what we were there for; the beach.

 The Beach

Ao Nang is settled directly between one large limestone peak along with an assortment of tree covered hills (also limestone). Not surprisingly, it looked better in the brochure, but it was a majestic sight of blue water and a sand beach that stretched at least a couple kilometres. We found our little spot amongst the thousands of other sun seekers and set in for a long time in the sun.

 Our Spot

Crushed Shells for Sand

Our View

 

Our time at the beach was great, we had lots of sunscreen on so we didn't mind the openness of our piece of real-estate. Frequent trips into the refreshing water helped to keep us cool. We enjoyed a full 2 hours of sun and cold beverages before Tim started getting fidgety.

The Beach 

Us in the Water

Vendor

He set out around 2pm to secure us some mid afternoon nosh; however to his dismay, couldn't find a single road side food stall. It was very strange that we saw hundreds at the beach not far away, but either by choice or by regulation, the restaurants appeared to have pushed off all signed of the traditional Thai cuisine that we had come to enjoy. We settled for some sandwiches from 7-11 because they were cheap and consistent. We would not contribute to the restaurant culture of Ao Nang.

 Food 7-11 Style

The return trip was uneventful, although it was not the same comfort as the the way out. We arrived back to our hotel and had a well needed nap after a day in the sun.

 

Later in the night we found a night market which is on the periphery of the downtown and was feeding mainly locals. We watched a Muslim lady preparing some take-out for a Thai delivery and decided we would try her food. Our only real concern was one ingredient she would throw into her pot, which immediately turned to steam that resembled the gas hut in our military training; clearly some sort of pepper concoction that turn to pepper spray when vaporized. We requested no spice, order up some fried rice and noodles. We were not disappointed with the price and the taste.

 

We walked around for some time before finding anything interesting. We found the 'famous' Krabi Town sign with massive crab and explore a couple shots finding nothing of interest.

Me in Krabi 

Tim in Krabi

Our evening ended with Tim encouraging me to try a roti, an Indian style crepe that is fried in butter (or margarine), stuffed and topped. I splurged 45 baht ($1.50), most were only 25-30 baht, but I was not disappointed. My sticky roti was stuffed with sweet banana that became warm during the frying, topped with peanut butter AND nutella. If that wasn't enough, the chef offered up some sweetened condescend milk for good measure. I was in sweet peanut butter and banana heaven. Probably one of the best things I have ever enjoyed in my life...

Best Food Ever! 

 

 

Tags: ao nang

 

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