Yesterday (Wednesday) was a real travelling day. Bet and I went from Penang in Malaysia to Koh Phangan, an island in Thailand. This meant we were picked up by a van at 5 AM, to bring us into Thailand in a mere 3 hours. There we switched vans to bring us to Surat Thani, a ride of 5 hours. Luckily the second van had better suspension, because the first one had very little, causing us to jump up and down at every little bump in the road (and Thailand has many). Unluckily the second van was completely full, so the ride was pretty cramped. But what to expect when one pays 15 euro for the entire trip. The last part of this trip was the 3,5 hour ferry ride to Koh Phangan, only after we made it just in time to the ferry from Surat Thani in another van, completely packed and speeding with 120 km/h over roads with 2-way traffic. The ferry ride was quite nice though, with mainly backpackers also going to the island.
On the ferry we met this tout who was recommending a place on the beach where we were planning to go. Since the ferry arrived at 9 PM we figured it might not be such a bad idea to just accept his offer of a free ride to this place. The free ride turned out to be in the back of a pickup truck, pretty cool, even though the last part of the ride (20 min. in total) was over an unpaved road with deep holes in it. A 4WD is really necessary on this island, and it seems pickup trucks are by far the most common vehicle in Thailand. People are even standing in the back of them on the highways, a situation considered highly dangerous and illegal back home. Anyways, the place he brought us was really okay, and we decided to stay in this little bungalow with a nice view on the bay and the beach for only 3,15 euro a night. Thai prices are even lower than Malaysian 🙂
Today was a lazy day of sleeping late, swimming and relaxing on the beach. It almost speaks for itself that we watched the sunset into the sea. We also met some Norwegians who are also staying at the same place, they are already here for more than 3 months. Basically they work in Norway for 6 months during the summer, and spend the 6 months of winter (Norwegian winters are quite long) on a tropical island in Thailand. Not bad at all.