Bangkok and Koh Phangan Full Moon Party
5hrs on the bus and we're in Bangkok. This time we have company as our friends Rod and Dan met up with us for a week. It's been 7 months since we left home so it was great to finally see some familiar faces on our trip!
We had a couple of days in Bangkok before taking our flight to Koh Phangan for three days (full moon party!) and then come back to Bangkok for another three days. The top attraction we attended before leaving was the Grand Palace. The architecure of the buildings were beautiful to say the least. The main draw here was the large reclining Buddha.
Nice massage signs on the way there
These statues were on both sides of every gate entrance
You can't bear your shoulders and legs in the temple so Viv got to wear this lovely neon green robe. This probably something you'd find from the full moon party 🙂
Viv pointed out that these were a couple of Japanese celebrities. I guess they were since they were being followed by cameras and dressed really metro for the temple lol
Oh right, the Buddha
On the other side
The bottom of the feet looked very cool
Along the side of the hallway is a row of pots where drop single coins into each one as you walk towards the exit. A blessing ritual?
The tip of the headpiece practically touches the ceiling
Nice patterns on the pillows!
Sights from the rest of the temple grounds.
Structures were too big to get it in the whole picture
We used Air Asia for our flight to Koh Phangan. It wasn't a straight airport to airport transfer as there are no airports on the island. So we had to fly to Nakhon Si Thammarat airport, then transfer to a 1.5hr bus ride that took us to the Donsak Ferry Port for a 2.5hr ferry to Thong Sala Pier at Koh Phangan. The cost of the whole process was included with our flight ticket so I'd say the transfer was efficient, although not too convenient.
I felt it before we left Bangkok but I was starting to come down with a cold. Great, the worse time to start getting a cold when you're about to be partying the next night. It was raining the day we got there too so that wasn't a good sign either.
Luckily the next day the weather let up and the skies were clear for the full moon party! We cabbed down there in the evening and you'll know when you've arrived – stalls selling pail buckets of various alcohol mixes, glow in the dark body painting, ultra neon clothing and accessories…yep, we're here.
We made our way down towards Haad Rin beach and start the festivities! Every section of the beach was playing various stuff – disco/beach house, electro house, hip hop, trance, etc. it was bumpin!
We left at 3am. It was good timing because the rain started to pour within the hour.
The ride back in the songthaew was weird. We sat across this Euro dude with his lady boy friend. He was pretty out of it. He told the driver he was staying at Haad Rin Resort (which is the area we were in already) but insisted that it was 4km west of here. After some back and forth exchanges they stayed on.
Next to the Euro guy was a woman who we thought was accompanied by her bf that was sitting beside her. As we were riding back, the 'bf' puts his arm behind the woman but he starts massaging the euro guys arm?? This went on for a good 5min at least. As the songthaew stops at the first drop off, he gets off and pauses a briefly looking at the Euro guy like he was expecting him and the lady boy to come with him? After an awkward moment with no response, he leaves. Right away the Euro guy asked the woman 'he's not with you?' She said no he wasn't. They both started laughing about the whole twisted situation. On odd way to end the night I must say!
The following day was recovery day. My body definitely let me know that I had to pay for partying while sick 🙂 So we hibernated at the hotel and went out for din with the guys. I didn't really take many pics here as the DSLR camera was too big to be lugging around. I need to get all the pics that Rod took and update this post later.
Pathway to the hotel restaurant
Getting together for lunch
Beach at the doorstep
Swimming pool facing the beach
So we get back to Bangkok for 3 more nights. A couple of things on the list of to do's was shopping at the Chatuchak Market and watching a Muay Thai event at the infamous Lumphini Boxing Stadium.
The market was huge. If you're the street market shopper type, you could spend the whole day here. It's very easy to get overwhelmed as there are thousands of stalls here. We only stuck around for about 3hrs and we were done.
We were excited to check out the Muay Thai fights later in the day. We went to the 4pm event which involved fighters from lighter weight classes but still was a good show. We only saw one knockout but every fighter is tough so you can't expect frequent KO's.
With our last night out with the guys we went to the Banyan Tree Hotel to check out the rooftop bar there. The view wasn't as spectacular as we had hoped as the air was rather hazy. It was a mistake to sit down at the dining section as the food was pricey as expected. Me and Viv ordered one drink each and shared an appy which was already $40. An experience that does not need to be repeated again! We ended up going back to another pub restaurant in our area to have a real meal under more reasonable pricing lol
It was time to say goodbye as the boys were heading to HK for a cousin's wedding and we're off to Cambodia. Thanks for coming down boys! We'll see you back at home!
The next day we took a train to Aranyaprathet which is the last train station in Thailand before entering Poi Pet, Cambodia.
I've read that there are a lot of scams that happen doing an overland crossing from Thailand to Cambodia. I've studied the process so hopefully we'll come out unscathed in reaching Siem Reap!