Sunday, 18 November 2007

Koh Lipe

Koh Lipe is a gorgeous little island off the coast of Satun Province in Southern Thailand. If you're doing a visa run to Malaysia or going to Penang, it is well worth a side trip for a few days. A minivan from the new minivan station in Hat Yai costs 100-120 baht to go to Pak Bara Pier in Satun. The trip takes about an hour and a half (2 hours in the improbable event that you get a sane driver). At the pier you can get a return boat ticket for only 700 baht (A$25). If you get suckered into buying one in Hat Yai (where they take commission) you'll be looking at about 1300 baht door to door (HY-Lipe-HY). The boat trip is about an hour 15. This was our first view from the boat coming into the sandy shores.

The island is less than 3 kms across and the lovely Chao Ley islanders reside in a small village near the middle of the island, living in corrugated iron houses..hothothot! And get this... the strange little scarecrow men ghostbusters were in tha house!! Couldn't believe how the superstition spread this far!

We stayed on Pattaya Beach at Daya Resort for 300 baht (A$10) a night! Basic rooms with double bed, bathroom and plenty of room to hang a hammock. Also it's owned by a local Chao Ley family (and not the mafia like some other larger places with nice views are!). Pattaya is the longest, whitest beach on the island. There are about 10 resorts along this stretch which offers a couple of hundred bungalows to choose from. In high season Dec-Jan the island can book out so you should try and arrange your room before hand ...or take a tent. There are heaps of other bungalows around the island on the other beaches, including this fab one, Mountain Resort with the best view, but all those stairs up was the turn off. My princess pea ways dictate that I require less than 10 metre walk to the water!! A flat walk at that!

Oh, the food, glorious food! Breakfast was at the Swiss dude's place almost daily due to his fabulous coffee and mountainous muesli fruit concoctions and drool producing fresh homemade bread! Argllarglll. Not to mention this view from his tiny restaurant was only just bearable. And then there was his battery operated grinding machine which I've never been exposed to before, especially at breakfast time!! Not one for the kiddies...this is NOT a TOY!!!

Only 3 places were open for dinner whilst we were there, so we alternated but these yummy garlic squiddies kept calling us back like sirens to unsuspecting sailors! They set up tables on the beach every night at sunset which was just lurvly.

Got up early one morning and was happily surprised to see a couple of monks wandering down the beach..didn't manage to find the temple but there's obviously one there.

I feel there's so much to catch up on. Have been taking lots of photos around the place so watch this space...great to be back by the way (even though I have a splitting headache from the karaoke!!)

4 commentaramas:

Carol and Chris said...

We've not been to any Islands yet but I have to say that that one looks absolutely wonderful!!

C x

Mel said...

You have a few islands close to you..Samet and Chang my hubby says are beautiful. Nothing like getting away to an island to recharge the batteries! Check out my fb page for more pics ;-D

Amy said...

I thought I heard of nearly all the islands in Thailand, but I have not heard of Koh Lipe! I just checked out the homepage link you provided on the island and clicked to enlarge all your photos. It looks BEAUTIFUL and such a great way to recharge, as you commented. I only hope that this island is not over developed. Places like Koh Samet are very much over developed and Koh Chang is on the brink. It no longer recharges the batteries when an island is over crowded, trashed, polluted and ugly with pushy touts.

Mel said...

It really is a gorgeous little island. Unfortunately it is a miniature version of all the other islands..already reaching its capacity but no restraints on construction. In another 2 years it won't be recognisable and the pollution will be too much. Last year it ran out of fresh water and they had to run pipes under the water from a nearby island with waterfalls. It's all too clear but of course no one with power has the foresight to stop it before it's too late. Such a familiar sad story.