With Emma only having a few days left I had wanted to show her a relaxed Island and chill after Koh PhiPhi, and the one I had heard a lot about was Koh Lanta. To start things off, our boat to Koh Lanta got canceled due to being broken, therefore we were escorted onto a lovely little speedboat, which got us there 30 minutes faster.
On our arrival, I was quite surprised to find Koh Lanta was an absolute ghost town, there was not one other person in any of the streets. We were quite confused, I knew it was a quiet island, but this was eerily quiet. Hostels were closed, bars boarded up and restaurants had been closed for weeks according to the handwritten signs on the doors. What had I got us into now.
We managed to find a small cafe open, which was built on stilts over water, looking out towards a small perfectly golden beach. We ate and utilised the free wifi to find somewhere to stay in the ghost town. We ended up in a double bed in Lanta House, which was actually quite nice, we headed out and got ourselves oil massages to begin the night, before hitting the jackpot finding English cereal brands in a local shop and snacking on them in our room.
The next day consisted of a very sweaty run, in the morning heat and sun. I had been lacking motivation for exercise since I began travelling, something I’m going to blame on the heat and large quantities of alcohol, but Emma got me going and got me out on a run, something I admit, I felt a lot better for. We jumped into a truck to reach our next hostel, Non Le Mer, which was closer to Long Beach, where we thought things may be open. Of course, we were wrong, luckily it was a really nice hostel and close to the completely deserted beach so we headed out on a walk. Almost immediately we were followed by a dog. With me hiding in a shop as Emma walked on we weren’t getting very far, so I had to be brave and head out after her. With flashbacks of Koh Samui engulfing me I was super nervous, but it seemed this dog just wanted to walk with us and wanted the company, which I begrudgenly gave it.
We had planned to be productive tourists in Koh Lanta, and promptly booked up a few activities, first up was a thai cooking class. Finally, after 3 months in Asia I was doing a cooking class, and it didn’t disappoint. Accompanied by Scott from Scotlnd, we met Pea, our lovely cooking instructor, and her son TinTin who ran around wanting to eat the food. It felt a nice family experience, as we watched her explaining each ingredient, how it is collected, prepared and used in a variety of dishes, we chose to make chicken and shrimp wontons, a stir-fried seafood curry, my favourite massaman curry and finally mango with sticky rice for dessert. We got to eat each course after making it and were soon stuffed full of food, and bagging the rest up to take away with us.
The next day unfortunately was full of thunderstorms, so we drank thai tea and ate our leftover food whilst watching films in the hostel, enjoying the rest day before our booked up Muay Thai gym class at Lanta gym.
We were picked up from our hotel the next day and taken to our hotel, which was surprisingly nice, it even had a swimming pool, which was where we spent the day until our 5pm class, which turned out to be one of the hardest training sessions I have done. The warm up was jumping up and down on a big tyre, before splitting off with our own trainer to practice punching, kicking, kneeing and elbowing pad work. With boxing gloves on, a thai fighter shouting at me and a big pad being shoved towards me, I gave it my all in the heat and sweated buckets, developed blisters on my feet and got a buzz off the exercise. Cool down was a load of ab work in the ring, before hitting the showers and crashing on our beds. Thank god that’s over.
We spent the evening with the thai fighters and 2 other guests having training, they took us out for a pad Thai dinner after sharing pork and alcohol shots at the hotel. It was a nice evening, but we couldn’t wait to relax our aching bods in the big comfy beds.
I almost left my diary at the hotel the next day, but luckily emma checked under the beds one last time as we were checking out, I would have been devastated to lose my diary and thanked God Emma was as paranoid as me at forgetting something. We planned to do an island hopping tour around Koh Lanta that day, but unfortunately we had to cancel due to the thunderstorms which had been following us around the islands. Reluctantly we decided to head back to Krabi via bus to try and escape the rain…