Thailand: Koh Ngai
Michael and I traveled to Thailand as part of our 2007 career break. The following is an excerpt from our travel blog.
[singlepic=634,175,,,right]We barely got to Thailand and already we were off and running. Our next stop – Trang in the south. This is where CCS’s other Thailand program is based and I was excited to see the staff again and have Michael meet them. It’s a short flight to Trang so we arrived in time for an early lunch with the staff. All of the volunteers had already left for the weekend, so we had them all to ourselves.
Over a delicious spicy meal the staff deliberated on what Michael’s Thai nickname should be (everyone in Thailand has a nickname). When I was last here, they bestowed “Chabaa” upon me, which translates into hibiscus flower (or crazy woman, depending on the tone. And that’s how I probably pronounce it as I always get laughs after I introduce myself). So they decided Michael should be “Nahm” which means water. Because, as they say, Chabaa needs Nahm. Awwwww.
Lunch was barely over and we were already off again – this time to one of the small islands just off the coast. Trang is not a popular tourist destination like so many parts of Thailand, and they have some great little islands that haven’t been discovered by the masses. We were excited for a few days of R&R along with two CCS staff members.
Koh Ngai Photos
From the mainland we took an hour longtail boat from Pak Meng Pier to Koh Ngai (aka Ko Hai). With about a half dozen resorts along its mainland beach, Koh Ngai looked like a great starting point for our Thailand adventures. As it was low-tide when we pulled in, we were greeted up the rocky, exposed beach by a trailer that took us the rest of the way in. That afternoon while everyone else relaxed, I was able to stroll up the 1.5km coastline. Within a couple of hours, we wouldn’t be able to leave our resort, the tides were that severe.
[singlepic=627,200,,,right]Besides relaxing on the white beaches and kayaking off the coast, Koh Ngai is a great launch pad for snorkeling day trips around the other islands. We stopped at a few of the limestone karsts that jet out everywhere, exploring the colorful fishes that reside at their bases. And we hopped off our longtail boat for a restful lunch at Ko Kraden, which is the remotest, and some say most beautiful island, in the area. And we ended the day at Ko Mook to explore the Emerald Cave. The only way to access the inland beach is by swimming through the 80-meter cave, some of which is in complete darkness. But when the tidal waves push you through the last bit and you land on a white beach surrounded by limestone walls covered in green vegetation, any hesitation is long forgotten.
We also had the pleasure of celebrating Loy Kratong while on Koh Ngai (see slideshow). And after a fun night of celebrating, we said farewell to our friends and had one more day of R&R before hitting the road again.
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