Thursday, December 22, 2016

Thailand Diaries-2

Koh NangYuan
Well, I have no idea how am I gonna share about all those fun, adventures and beautiful memories I have collected during my 3 months' stay in Thailand.I was there for a internship of 2.5 months through Flyway Foundation to assist raptor migration count at Khao Dinsor, Chumphon which is one of the best sites in Asia to observe raptor migration.I will share all about it on my next post. Then, after those 2.5 months of learnings, working, and withering myself from the extreme sun, I yet took a refuge to the aquatic life, enjoying spectacular beaches, islands and some national parks. I thought of sharing my rest travelling in my first part of the Thailand blog. I hope it will make you giggle, enjoy and also literally take you into the world of sun, sand and shops. wohooo! Welcome to Thailand!!

Sunset at Koh Tao
As the autumn raptor migration count was wrapped up on Nov 15, I was pretty excited to explore southern Thailand. Being from a land locked country; I guess you can imagine the level of excitement to see glistening Blue Ocean, beautiful islands. I was literally enthralled by what I saw. After doing some research online and also talking to locals, I decided to visit Koh Tao, a small island on the south-east gulf of Thailand. I wanted to go somewhere peaceful and economic so Koh Tao is much better than going to phuket or even nearby big islands. It offers wide range of leisure activities to indulge in.
On 16th Nov, I took an early morning high speed Lomprayah ferry to the island. It took almost 2 hours. My eyes were wide open when I saw those beautiful islands from distance.  I was quite excited about the journey I am about to begin; most awaited holiday. I had planned to be there for 3 days so I had to enjoy it to the fullest. It included walking along the stunning Sairee beach, riding scooter to different look outs and streets in the island, and the most important; snorkeling.
However, I was extremely interested to see the under-water organisms and being in Thailand was the best opportunity for me which I didn’t want to miss. I so repented not knowing how to swim but yet the transparent blue water was so luring that I cudn't help myself and jumped in the water with my life jacket. I enjoyed snorkeling in Freedom beach which is so stunning. I was jumping in awe when hundreds of fish were around me. All those creatures that I have either studied or seen only in television were in front of me. Sea anemones, sea cucumbers, sea urchins, coral reefs, jelly fish and many more. I already had wings and now I got fins as well, hehe! Yeah I ticked one of my bucket lists.
After that I definitely made a silly decision (which wasn't so but it turned out that way). I was thinking to go to the other side of the island i.e. Mango Bay which was equally famous for snorkeling. So, hiring a long tail boat, me and some of my friends hopped on towards the bay however after reaching the half way, driver informed that the waves are big so its difficult to go there rather he dropped us in Koh Nangyuan(another beautiful island) which I had planned coming the other day. Oh well sometimes it's not good being too smarty, hehe, may be as it was quite expensive already plus I had to pay twice. Silly me! . How could I forget a lil bit of mishap on my way back from Leuk Bay (ssshh) umm just a minor incident and scars. Anyways, I also have learned to not to feel bad for what went wrong but feel good as it could have been worst. I wasn't aware about it but before coming Koh Tao, I had already made my mind to have a background picture of a particular place that was in internet. The viewpoint happened to be at Koh Nangyuan, which is soooo pretty small island. I was also lured to go to the place when I reached Nangyuan Terrace; spectacular view of sun set and the other island. Another important confession, Thai food is solely responsible for making me a glutton ;) hehe!! But to be frank, I loved the Som Tam and Tom yum there, try the spiciest version, you wouldn't regret it. But some of my white friends turn Prawn (informal version of saying they turn completely red after having spicy food or tanned ;)) Lol!

Cheow Lan Lake
After flaunting my caramelized skin n enjoying my aquatic life in two islands, I went back to mainland's Khao Sok National park which falls under Surat Thani province. I was quite excited about it. I stayed at Jungle hut which offered fun as soon as I reach there. I saw some monkeys entering in to a room and stealing chips and chocolates out of the room. It reminded me of home as we see many monkeys trying to snatch the fruits or even flowers sometimes. I was little tired so just laid back for some time and  later enquired about various activities they offer, I booked for the 2 days and one night package at Cheow Lan Lake also called Ratchaprapha dam. Trust me, it is one of the highlights of my trip. The beautiful greenish water with majestic limestone cliffs in the backdrop was something to be mesmerized. The package also included night stay at one of the floating bungalows in the lake which was something I was intending to try. I was super happy to enjoy fresh water after getting overdose of salty water. Swimming(of course with life jacket), kayaking, evening and morning trips in the long tailed boat to explore the lake and some islands where we did see some mammals including Gibbons, gray macaque, dusky langur and some birds made it special. 
However, the most adventurous part of the trip was the hike to Nam Ta Lu cave. Walking in the tropical forest, escaping the leeches, termites, ants, slippery paths, crossing neck deep water holes, swinging in lianas was fun but when we entered the cave with running water was quite thrilling. At one point, water level was so high in the cave that I had to crawl and walk holding on the walls. Then, the scariest part was waiting where the water current was very strong and we had to climb up holding unto a rope. We made it at the end. Then, we decided to close our torch and enjoy the darkness for a minute. But the adventure hadn't ended, when we came out of the cave, it was raining cats n dogs. So, we were walking, slipping, laughing on our way back to our Smiley's floating bungalows. I also sneaked sometime for birdwatching which was fun. Before leaving the lake, we hiked upto a bat n spider cave which was pretty cool. I must say, Khao Sok National Park is a must visit place to the adrenaline junkies and nature lovers
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Grand Palace and Temple of Emerald Buddha
I had only planned for these places but I came to realize that the western Thai beach is just 2 hours away i.e. Khao Lak. So, I thought of making a quick visit before I head back to the concrete jungle.  I was rejuvenated to be back to the beach. Walked along the Andaman Sea, enjoyed some refreshing coconut juice to beat the sun and also tried Thai massage for the first time.  This concluded my southern Thailand trip and got back to Bangkok. Well, I was too nervous and overwhelmed about it because I hadn’t got to see Bangkok when I entered the country. When the bus dropped us at the bus station, I even didn’t know where I was. The only place I remembered Khao San, hehe. So asked a taxi driver to take Khao San, but the problem was it was so early to check into a room. At that time, I only needed a restaurant with wifi ;) so that I can look for some place to stay nearby. The famous Khao San road is worth a visit which is also nearby Grand Palace, Temple of Emerald Buddha, Wat Arun. These heritages are so spectacular.  Besides, I loved the fish feet spa hehe which was so ticklish that I could hardly keep my feet in the water as the fish start biting you feet. Besides, you can literally get to eat everything including scorpions, cockroaches and even dog's meat.
Fish spa


BKK
In Bangkok, I walked till my feet hurt strolling around some crazy markets, some city parks, ancient cultural heritages and whale watching trip sadly I couldn't see any.  Bangkok is definitely a shopping spree where some economic yet interesting markets like Chatuchak, MBK and excruciatingly lavish Siam, Central World, Emporium are attracting large number of shopaholics. Even to a person like me who doesn’t like shopping much, it would make you drool for sure. Talking about Thai food, I need not say anything as it is famous worldwide. However, being a vegetarian, it was a little bit of challenge to get a proper food for me. I either had to repeat the food I wanted 2 or 3 times and sometimes they would still add meat on it, which was frustrating. But still I had fun customizing the food and requesting to make the veg versions and they were still very delicious. To be specific, I am head over heels for Pad Thai and Tom yum plus all the foods prepared by Pioy(my Thai mom J).  I already miss them so badly.


Thailand is perfect place for Nepalese to beat this painful winter in quite economic way. I have completely enjoyed my stay in Thailand which also involved their hospitality, delicious food and unbelievably beautiful beach/ islands. 


Thank you so much for everyone who made it special <3