09.07.2009 - 11.07.2009 27 °C
Thursday we packed & ate breakfast cereal just after 9am then took a walk to a temple north of the town. It was less remarkable than those we'd seen elsewhere but it was nice to do something different on the island, to explore somewhere more remote. Back in town we bought rice microwave lunches & pao then caught the boat from the beach, struggling to keep our stuff dry as we waded into the sea to our ride at midday. An hour later our ride reached Hat Thien Beach, in Koh Pha Ngan. From here was a tricky ten minute trek up steps, along a path, over a bamboo walkway & climbing up a boulder to Bamboo Hut, where we were helped up criss-crossing paths to our bungalow (prebooked the day before owing to the popularity of the island round fullmoon). As I unpacked Vicky used her firstaid training to clean & bandage up swedish girl Matilda's toe. We hung out with her an her American friend Lauren in Bamboo Restaurant, enjoying the astounding view from the bamboo platform of the bay below us which looked like a perfect watercolour painting with vivid blues, yellows & greens as well as reddy/grey cliffs. With so few people (the resort was isolated from the rest of the island as there were no roads, only taxiboats) but so much beauty it felt like we had discovered the ultimate paradise!
Expensive food prices at the restaurant encouraged us to ate elsewhere & so we stepped down, around the boulders then followed another walkway all the way round the cliff & down to the beach where we lay till 2.30pm. As the sun got too hot we jumped into the sea & for five minutes we were in heaven. Pleasure turned into pain as we were attacked by an almost invisible enemy - sea lice. The stinging was not as bad as that in Krabi but we could only tolerate it so long before we were driven from the sea. We chatted to a cool American guy Steve then had chinese sausage with rice & pad thai & beers at Big Blue Restaurant & Guesthouse. We walked off our full stomachs enroute to our place then had drinks at the funky, psychedelic Eden - a lethal whisky & coke combo.
At 10.30pm we shared a boat taxi to Haad Rin, the most popular of the island's resorts just round the next cove & saw for the first time the mayhem that was the Full Moon Party.
The event consisted of one almighty p*ssup all along the beach, chocked full of people & makeshift 'bars' (whiskey/vodka bucket stands). Even at that time we could barely move amongst the throng who were dressed in anything to nothing, uniforms, swimgear & caked in blue, green, red & orange flourescent body paint. Numerous D.Js kept the beats coming but in the hour it took us to walk along the beach all the dance, r 'n' b & techno beats merged & became indistinguishable. Further back from the beach the proper bars were also full & even the narrow streets were virtually impassible. It was fun but completely mad. We eventually found our friends Steve, AJ & Chris (other Yanks) & even bumped into Alexandra & Irish Fran from Koh Phi Phi. We got pretty drunk but the huge crowd left us feeling vunerable about pickpockets & beatings so we were completely wasted nor tempted to join those in the designated 'sleeping area' who were passed out or being looked after by medical staff. After watching a few drunken antics (people falling over, fights) we caught a taxi boat back to our resort, passing an intimately amorous couple deeply engaged, in the sea.
Friday we got up at 10ish after 5 hours passed out from the party. We checked out of Bamboo & cut across the boulders round the other side of the walkway & up to Eden to check in. The 150BT rooms weren't brillaint but suitable for us. At the restaurant we ate fruit porridge, beans on toast & hot drinks for 190BT, while chatting to the host Peter.
We walked back along the walkway to the beach & lay on sunbeds by Big Blue risking a very brief dip in the sea lice infested sea. We chilled on the beds from 12pm, dozing through a combination of lack of sleep, alcohol & the heat then met Steve & AJ & shared a pizza, & had a chip butty (with few chips) for 60BT, whilst playing a competitive game of cards.
We lay back on the sunbeds till 5ish, catching up with Chris on his fun night looking after a drunk Austrian girl whose boyfriend had abandoned her & caused her to miss the boat back. We showered & ate at Eden 8ish - coconut soup with tofu, vegetables & steamed rice; fried noodles with chicken & coconut shake - 200BT. We hung out with AJ & Steve for beer & pool then at 12.30pm trapsed through the jungle to Guys Bar, where there was a more cilivised 'locals full moon party' - even Peter was there. After the chaos of the previous night the place was pretty tame, although the chillout mood & funky music was fun, so we left at 2am.
Saturday was our final day in paradise. We got up at 10.30am after the strong wind had caught the back door & caused it to bang all morning. Filling ourselves up on full english breakfast at Eden for 150BT each we chilled on the beach till it started to rain then hid in an old cart trying to play cards until the wind blew them out our hands. The rain got heavier so we sat in the restaurant, ate pancakes & drank beer, playing pool till 4ish. We spent some time in our hut & then enjoyed schnitzel sandwiches with salad 7ish. The rest of the night we watched movies with Chris, Matilda & Lauren until the three passed out in a hammock.