Thailand Travelling Series
If you’re a bit late to this series of travel posts depicting my month-long journey around Thailand, with my dear sister and Chief Travelling Buddy, then please allow me to catch you up PRONTO!
Firstly, we went to the lovely islands of Koh Samui and Koh Phangan where we had a bit of bad luck (read about it here) before we headed across the mainland to the southern province of Krabi and the cute little beach town that is Ao Nang (read about it here). These initial three stops took us to the halfway point of our trip, which is when we decided that it would be the right time to hit up Koh Phi Phi.
Now, everybody raves about Koh Phi Phi. Yes, RAVES! It’s not just a: ‘oh Koh Phi Phi is cool.’ It’s more like ‘OMGOMGOMG Phi Phi is INCREDIBLE, it’s AMAZING, it’s where DREAMS ARE MADE, it’s ALL YOU’D EVER WANT IN LIFE AND MORE!’ (Okay perhaps the response is not usually quite that enthusiastic – I might be being a little melodramatic. Regardless, people dig it – got it?!)
To be completely honest, Nic and I were dying to see what all the fuss was about. Was Koh Phi Phi going to be as dazzling as everybody makes out? Would it be able to live up to the hype? Would it really change our lives forever? (Spoilers, the answers are: yes, yes and HECK YES!)
Here are 5 reasons why Koh Phi Phi is the best island in Thailand:
1. There are no roads so you cannot drive anywhere.
The lack of roads and cars means that Phi Phi is the most unique island in this sense. I honestly did not realise this was going to be the case when Nic and I showed up off the ferry hot, tired and sweaty with our backpacks ready to hail a taxi to get us to our hotel before we keeled over with exhaustion. As we made our way off the pier into the chaotic streets of Phi Phi, we took a look around and it suddenly dawned on us… Hey, WHERE ON EARTH are all the cars?!
We totally missed that memo. However, luckily, our hotel was only a 15 minute walk away. In fact, the main touristic part of the island is very easy to walk around as the streets are compact and only cover a small area. It gives the island a rather cute, community feel and this make-up is perfect for stumbling home at the end of a drunken night out! (Disclaimer: of course I’m not referring to myself and Nic here, as we are super sensible twenty six and twenty eight year olds who can handle their liquor. Obviously.)
2. The night life is the most lively.
Speaking of drunkenness, there’s no denying that the partying on Phi Phi is something else! Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a partying expert… and I haven’t been everywhere in Thailand. BUT, out of the places I have been to, Phi Phi wins for the night life hands down!
I find it difficult to describe when people ask me why the Phi Phi partying is so good. All I can say is tht it’s just a feeling, an attitude, a vibe that you get when you’re out there. Everybody is there to enjoy themselves and have a good time, meaning the atmosphere is electric as a result. (Oh and the cocktail buckets are lethal, so you hardly spend any money!)
My favourite night life spot, if you’re interested, was a live music bar called Kongsiam. Check it out if you’re heading to Phi Phi and you’re in the mood for a fun night out! Imagine a bunch of tipsy tourists from all over the world, swaying and singing along to classics such as Oasis’ ‘Wonderwall’ or Bob Marley’s ‘Three Little Birds’. Put it this way, it certainly does not disappoint!
3. The beaches are some of the prettiest EVER.
Forgive me if I sound pretentious here, but I’ve been to a lot of beaches around the world. (Ooh, LADEEDAH!) Some have been impressive and some – not so much! However, it seems I have a newbie on my favourites list! Step forward, Loh Dalam Bay.
The water is the clearest light blue, the sand is the softest white and the bay overlooks pretty islets on the horizon. The only downside to this beach is the amount of tourists on it at any given time; but, if you get there early before any partygoers have arisen, the view is simply breathtaking!
4. Maya Bay and Monkey Beach are a longtail boat ride away.
Speaking of breathtaking, the island where The Beach was filmed (you know, the year 2000 movie with Leonardo Di Caprio) is a short boat ride away from Phi Phi. You can take a tour there in a small group of about 10-12 people and it not only stops off at Maya Bay, but it also goes to Viking Cave where you can snorkel if you so wish before finishing up at Monkey Beach. Monkey Beach is literally what it says on the tin, a beach where a load of monkeys live and roam around, and it sure is a sight to behold!
Maya Bay itself is unbelievably beautiful – definitely one of the most stunning spots my eyes have ever seen! One of the plus points is you can do one of the tours first thing in the morning before the majority of people are even awake. Yes, it’s a bit of stinger getting up at 6am when you’re on holiday but, that way, you will have the place to yourself and get some gorgeous photos that will make it all worthwhile.
5. There’s a tattoo shop on every corner.
Finally, there is something really important that you need to know about Phi Phi. It’s home to the posers – tattooed posers, to be precise. Every man and his dog decides to get a tattoo on Phi Phi because tattoo shops out there are literally like Starbucks cafes in America – there’s one on every corner.
A lot of partygoers in Phi Phi think that having a tattoo is the best decision when they’ve had one too many to drink on a heavy night out. On your walk back to your hotel, you’ll see that every tattoo shop is busy in the early hours of the mornings with said poor decision-makers. It’s great for business but not for that poor lass who’s just woken up with a huge banana on her arm and has no recollection of how or why it got there.
Nic and I were toying with the idea of getting a tattoo for a while and, after some careful consideration, we thought… If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em! #wheninPhiPhi
Watch out for an upcoming post all about my first ever tattoo experience but, in the mean time, Phi Phi – you have been AWESOME. It really does not only meet but exceed expectations and I highly recommend the island to anyone travelling around Thailand in the future.
Next up: Chiang Mai and the North of Thailand.