“Luxury” Beach Bungalow on Phi Phi Island, Thailand
The morning after Alex and I arrived in Krabi, we boarded an extremely slow ferry to Phi Phi island (it took close to three hours when it should have only taken one). Once we arrived at the busy port, we boarded our Tohko Beach Resort’s small long tail boat (the quickest way to get around the island’s perimeter) to get to our beach bungalow. For those of you who don’t know, a long tail boat is about the size of a rescue boat on a cruise ship, and is powered by a car engine (completely exposed) attached to a long propeller (that the steersman uses to move the boat). They’re loud but fairly fast, and it was fun for Alex and me to have one all to ourselves as we zipped along Phi Phi’s coastline.
Once we arrived at the resort, the first thing I noticed were the KING-sized mosquitos. It HURT every time I was bitten! We were worried about the island mosquitos but thought that maybe our room would protect us against mosquitos… Boy were we wrong.
We were taken to our bamboo bungalow (with a view of the ocean) and “rustic” only begins to describe it. The door’s outer “lock” was just a bicycle lock, and the inside lock was a sliding bamboo rod. There was a six-inch gap between the bottom of the door and the bamboo floor, and a one-foot gap between the ceiling and the walls. The bathroom was connected to the bedroom without a door, and it was open to the ocean view (a plus). In the “shower” area, there was a tiled picture of a Thai beauty, which always made me laugh. There wasn’t any hot water.
The best part was that there wasn’t any electricity between the hours of 6 AM and 6 PM (the island had power rationing)! We made sure to charge our phones before going to sleep, and spent a lot of our downtime either reading on our balcony or hanging out by the restaurant (only wifi available).
But, once were able to overlook all that (let’s just say the first night we both really had to pee but didn’t want to venture out beyond the safety of our mosquito net), it was kind of nice. We had a great view of the ocean and it was refreshing to listen to the sounds of waves crashing (sometimes very loudly) while we slept. All we could hear from our balcony were the waves and the occasional puttering sounds of a long tail boat passing by. The restaurant offered some really good food, and we were able to rent masks for snorkeling.
It was the first time either one of us had seen sea urchins, and wow! do they look menacing!! There was a section of coral right in front of the resort that we were able to explore, and we took our new underwater camera to take some pictures of the urchins and fish (our pictures didn’t come out that great). It was my first time snorkeling where I could see so much. It was definitely the highlight of our trip to Phi Phi.
During our second afternoon sitting on the balcony chatting, I noticed some large debris (mattresses and big plastic bags) floating in the water in the distance. It looked like a boat had jettisoned a bunch of trash. It was stormy out (heavy rain and large waves), but once the rain stopped, we went down to the restaurant to ask. One of the waiters said that a boat carrying a bunch of goods and fifteen crew members capsized. Sadly, only fourteen people were found. 😦 It’s scary to think that we saw the boat sink while we were on our balcony…
Our second morning, we enjoyed an early breakfast, and took the long tail boat (this time full of passengers) back to the main port, to take another slow ferry back to Krabi. While our bamboo bungalow took some getting used to (and we can safely say that we didn’t get dengue fever from the mosquitos), we did enjoy ourselves (and can laugh now that we have electricity, hot water, and other creature comforts)!!