Joined: Jul 2007
Location: Back in PDX again!
4/10 Ride to Koh Lanta
One drawback to our hotel is that they do not have rooms with one big bed. So this morning, after the alarm went off, Re came and snuggled up in my bed. One thing led to another... and so we got up later than planned. But actually, we didn't, since I forgot to change the time when we crossed back into Thailand. When the alarm went off at 7:00 am, it was really 6:00 am local time. We decided to take advantage of our free hour to actually go out and enjoy breakfast. We found the morning market, where we had some fried dough and really excellent and strong coffee. Back at the hotel, we packed up the bikes, showered, and rode out the front door, heading north for Koh Lanta.
While the roads weren't as good today, it was a pretty ride.
The road wound its way through large tree covered hills with dramatic limestone faces. We also found ourselves cruising through pineapple orchards and watermelon fields. The roadsides were lined with fruit stalls, some places advertising three pineapples for 20 baht (66 cents). Unfortunately, we had no way to carry any of this delicious fruit, so we rode on. After a couple of hours, we arrived at the first ferry of the day, where we paid a grand total of 56 baht (under 2 USD) for both of us and both bikes for both ferries. What a bargain!
After all the cars and trucks boarded the first ferry, we made our way up the ramp and onto the large, flat deck.
This ride only took about 15 minutes. It was nice to catch glimpses of the ocean between the islands, and the water was beginning to turn a nice shade of green. Once we disembarked from this ferry, we made the 8-mile ride across Koh Lanta Noi to the next ferry, which would take us to Koh Lanta Yai. This short ride was fun, since it wound up and back down the spine of the island.
The second ferry ride was similar to the first but much shorter, and the water got even greener.
Our bungalows were only about a 20-minute ride from the ferry dock so we pulled in around 12:30 pm. We were both hungry, so we ordered lunch and then unpacked our bikes while we waited. We were both a little underwhelmed by our bungalow and its proximity to the beach. While we could see the Andaman Sea from our porch, it was about 150 ft from the beach. I know lots of you are going, “waaaa,” right now, but we really thought we'd be closer to the water and that the beach would be wider. The other odd thing about the location was that only two of the ten bungalows were occupied. It is getting toward the end of the season on Koh Lanta, but we didn't expect it to be this deserted.
We did have a nice lunch overlooking the water and later, walked on the beach and waded in the surf. One of the nice things about our bungalows is the collection of local cats. We met a couple of adult cats who were nice and friendly, but our favorite was a young kitten who was full of energy and apparently, had no fear.
Because of this, we christened him, WFO.
A little later, we walked up to the main road to check out the dinner options and pick up some water at the 7Eleven. Since my last haircut was about a month ago, I was beginning to feel like a long-haired, hippie freak, so we took advantage of our open air bathroom, and Re gave me a haircut. After a quick shower, we hopped on the bikes and rode out in search of dinner. We picked up a couple of recommendations from Travelfish.org, but we didn't have any exact directions, so we planned to do a little bit of riding. As I bounced up the dirt path toward the main road, I heard a rattling from my chain case. I assumed that the bouncing had caused my chain case to shift, so when we got to the main road, I tried to adjust it by hand. No such luck. I ended up removing the chain case under a street light and found that two of the four bolts that hold the rear sprocket to the hub were loose AGAIN. FFS. I didn't feel like fixing this in the dark, so we rode slowly back toward the bungalows. On the way, we found a small noodle stand, where we had dinner. We stopped at the 7Eleven for some Changs and cookies before calling it a night.
105 miles in about 3.5 hours, including two ferry rides. I shed a small tear when we had to stop for petrol today, and 7.5 liters cost 11 USD.