Saturday, May 20, 2006

Ko Phi Phi

Finding that Phuket was a little more packed with buildings and commerce than the beach destination we pictured, we moved on to Ko Phi-Phi, one of Thailand's famous islands but more popular with young backpackers than big resorts as of yet. The Island is an amazing piece of geology, with a long north-south spine of limestone rising 500-1000 feet high, runing parallel to a very similar spine half a mile away. In between, A thin isthmus of sand provides the horizontal part, making an H, and the isthmus also provides the flat ground upon which the island's facilities are built, which mainly consist of one or two level guest houses and relatively cheap hotels.

There are beaches on each side of the isthmus, offering few waves thanks to the shelter of the big spines, but beautiful water and white sand. There is a market on the island offering cheap meals for any and all, but everything must be brought to the island by boat. The island was devastated by the December 2004 tsunami, and perhaps due to the difficulty of removing trash and wreckage by boat, and bringing new building materials by boat, it is still not fully recovered. However, it is relatively quiet this time of year and was a great place to relax for a couple of days.

Unfortunately, most of my first day was spent going back to Phuket. I'd left my passport as a guarantee for a motorcycle I'd rented, and the lady forgot to return it to me, though I also forgot to ask. So I rode 2.5 hours by ferry one way, a little over an hour by motorbike from the pier to the hotel and back, waited another hour, then another 2.5 hours on the ferry. Needless to say, I was ready to jump in the water when I returned in the afternoon!

A few more photos from this beautiful island area are here:


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