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Old 26th May 2011, 13:10   #121
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Default Re: 10 days across Thailand (2009) - and 8 more days (2011)

19 May 2011

If one word can describe our drive to Krabi and Phuket, it is EXHILARATION. The memory of a speedboat ride to Koh Phi Phi at 80 km/h, and a middle-of-the-night drive back from Phuket through twisty and deserted (but billiard-table-smooth) roads through the hills puts a stupid grin on my face even a week later, like I haven't had for a long time.

GPS track of speedboat trip from Ao Nang to Koh Phi Phi
Track201105190829tophiphi.kmz

A couple of short videos of the speedboat ride. Power comes from two of these 225hp engines: Honda BF225 Outboard Engine - 225 hp boat motor specs and features.



Accidents happen, and we had to turn back to offload a family, but more about that later. Enjoy the ride!

Last edited by SS-Traveller : 26th May 2011 at 13:23.
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Old 26th May 2011, 21:07   #122
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Default Re: 10 days across Thailand (2009) - and 8 more days (2011)

Quote:
Originally Posted by SS-Traveller View Post
Posting a video of my daughter with the orang utans at Safari World, Bangkok.

Great thread.
Now to show that the tiger cub was more alive than the Obamas!

Regards
Sutripta

Last edited by Sutripta : 26th May 2011 at 21:16.
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Old 27th May 2011, 21:19   #123
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Default Re: 10 days across Thailand (2009) - and 8 more days (2011)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sutripta View Post
Now to show that the tiger cub was more alive than the Obamas!
Good question, fuelled by a high index of suspicion?

Ok, the ultimate proof. Have you seen wax models open and close their eyes?
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Or, for that matter, wax models flap their wings?
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Old 27th May 2011, 21:54   #124
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Default Re: 10 days across Thailand (2009) - and 8 more days (2011)

19 May 2011

It's 8 AM, and I discover a serious problem while having breakfast. The camera lens, exposed to the cold from the super-efficient air-conditioning in our room all night, has now fogged over after exposure to the warm and humid weather outside. Big mistake, letting it lie open on the table all night. The sun clears the fog as the day progresses, but the initial pictures of the morning are hazy as a result.

Our pick-up vehicle is called a songthaew, that arrives 5 minutes before time.
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Songthaews are mostly 4wd Hilux, and it isn't uncommon to find a lady driving one either.
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At the pier we get 'stickered', and board our speedboat...
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The first impression of being aboard such a craft on water is, well, WOW. This thing can really move - and the nose lifting up amplifies the feeling of acceleration. My first experience...
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Our first short stop is the Railey Beach, which is next to Ao Nang on the mainland itself, but inaccessible by road. The only way in and out is by boat, and with only a couple of resorts there, the beach is unspoilt and very private. The speedboat company also has its office there.
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Last edited by SS-Traveller : 27th May 2011 at 21:57.
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Old 29th May 2011, 00:04   #125
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Default Re: 10 days across Thailand (2009) - and 8 more days (2011)

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Originally Posted by SS-Traveller View Post
Good question, fuelled by a high index of suspicion?

Ok, the ultimate proof. Have you seen wax models open and close their eyes?
Animatronics!

Regards
Sutripta
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Old 29th May 2011, 21:37   #126
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Default The Accident

19 May 2011 continued...
We set off Railey beach and it's time to head into the open ocean. The boat is doing a good 70+ km as it slams through the waves, and we hang on tight. Up front ride a few adventurous souls who love the wind in their hair and the feeling as the boat slams into every new wave.
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As for us, we are happy to hang on tight and enjoy the ride as much as we can, even as my wife is acutely uncomfortable with the motion.
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One of the ladies riding at the bow decides the ride is a little too rough for her, and comes to sit down at the stern.
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Soon after, as the boat slams down over a particularly big wave, the lady's husband gives a sharp cry of pain and tries to stand up. Unable to, he falls down into the well of the boat.
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The people on the boat are certainly an efficient lot. A phone call to shore, and the boat turned around - we are on our way back to the Ao Nang pier.
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GPS tracks show our incomplete trip as we return to the Ao Nang Pier.
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Ao Nang Pier
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There's an ambulance waiting when we arrive, and the gent is carried away on a makeshift stretcher. No time was wasted.
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to the people who run these trips.

It transpires the gent had an old injury to his spine, and spinal surgery done about 2 years previously.
===========================================
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sutripta View Post
Animatronics!
Maybe. Videos won't prove anything in that case either. Next time I'll make sure to videograph as well as take radiographs and biopsies to make absolutely sure there's living tissue inside. Will give you the results of the DNA analysis afterwards too.
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Old 30th May 2011, 20:32   #127
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Default Re: The Accident

Quote:
Originally Posted by SS-Traveller View Post
Maybe. Videos won't prove anything in that case either.
All singing all dancing animatronics will be too difficult/ expensive and require an umbilical. Uncertified DNA not required.

Shall we call May - June to be your sea to mountain trip?

Regards
Sutripta
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Old 31st May 2011, 12:43   #128
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Default Re: The Accident

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sutripta View Post
Shall we call May - June to be your sea to mountain trip?
I guess so! We'll talk about the mountains later, let's see the sea first .

19 May 2011 - the journey to Koh Phi Phi continues...

The speedboat drops off the injured passenger and his family, while one more family decides to discontinue the journey too. Our first destination is the Bamboo Island, where I fail to spot a single shoot of the giant grass anywhere.

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The boat crew takes a late breakfast break.
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Our next stop is for a round of snorkelling. An ethereal experience, as one stares at the schools of colourful fish streaming around, trying to get a bite of the bread the crew throws into the water as bait to attract them. The shots from above the water do no justice to the view from the snorkelling mask.
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Last edited by SS-Traveller : 31st May 2011 at 12:52.
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Old 31st May 2011, 13:22   #129
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Default Re: 10 days across Thailand (2009) - and 8 more days (2011)

Time for a lunch stopover at Koh Phi Phi Don. Amazing how organized the preparations are, and this is a standard stopover for all speedboat operators from both Krabi and Phuket during the tour of Koh Phi Phi and the surrounding islands.
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Lunch area. There are 3 massive sheds like this, and the food is really, really good. Or is it that we are just extra-hungry after all the exercise of the morning?
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Shopping for souvenirs. A whole lot more expensive than the same stuff bought in Bangkok, naturally.
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Back to the boat after lunch... We're headed for Koh Phi Phi Lay.
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Old 3rd June 2011, 23:22   #130
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Default Re: 10 days across Thailand (2009) - and 8 more days (2011)

SS, no update from long time! My planning getting halted , please continue.
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Old 3rd June 2011, 23:58   #131
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Default Re: 10 days across Thailand (2009) - and 8 more days (2011)

SS is on his way to getting Leh'd
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Old 2nd July 2011, 00:37   #132
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Default Re: 10 days across Thailand (2009) - and 8 more days (2011)

Quote:
Originally Posted by arindamray View Post
SS, no update from long time! My planning getting halted , please continue.
Big apologies, Arindam, totally ignored this thread for the last month since we were, indeed...
Quote:
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...getting Leh'd
...as discussed on this thread (Hawk-On-Fours® (H-4®) Roadtrip: Leh(t)'s go to Ladakh & Srinagar with QuickSilver.). Hope to take this thread forward over the weekend. Please bear with me till then.
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Old 2nd July 2011, 22:27   #133
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Default Re: 10 days across Thailand (2009) - and 8 more days (2011)

This thread is going to be really helpful for my upcoming trip to Thailand. My trip will be short and will include Bangkok and Ayuthaya (I think). Excellent pictures.
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Old 2nd July 2011, 23:24   #134
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Default Re: 10 days across Thailand (2009) - and 8 more days (2011)

To continue with the photos and narration of our speedboat tour around Koh Phi Phi...

GPS trail of the full speedboat trip
10 days across Thailand (2009) - and 8 more days (2011)-trail1.jpg

GPS trail around Koh Phi Phi
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Speeding away after lunch to...
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...the Viking Caves
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Clear waters and lots of fish
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Aah, for the good life! A private yacht
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On our way again...
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...to a shallow and picturesque lagoon
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Limestone stalactites
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Time for some more snorkelling. Not us, after a full lunch, thank you!
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More speeding across the sea
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Time to anchor at...
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...the Maya Beach, the the movie The Beach was filmed.
10 days across Thailand (2009) - and 8 more days (2011)-phiphimaya-29k100.jpg

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Old 31st October 2012, 17:52   #135
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Default Re: 10 days across Thailand (2009) - and 8 more days (2011)

I plead guilty to not having completed this travelogue over the last year and more, before we ended up travelling to Thailand once again this year (21 - 28 October 2012). That travelogue can be accessed on this link (Thailand | Third Time). I hope to complete this one after I have finished describing our third trip to Thailand!

Thanks for your patience.
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