Wednesday, March 22, 2006

The Beach

Koh Phi Phi - two islands famous for two things. Phi Phi Leh famous for being The Beach in the film version of the book The Beach and Phi Phi Don being famous for being one of the worst sites for the 2004 tsunami which decimated the island, killing 2000 people.

With bad timing, just after we made a decision to go to Phi Phi (after being told it is a must see in Thailand) a series of aftershocks sent the island into a panic the day before we arrived - people freaked out and ran for the hills but luckily nothing happened.

So we went, and just made sure that we stayed way up the hill after harms way. Found ourselves in the lovely little Garden bungalows run by a bunch of stoner hippie thai people and populated with a couple of cheeky cats and a nice swimming pool.

The island has appeared to have bounced back thanks to good ole tourism, in fact in most places it's pretty difficult to tell that anything happened here at all -fingers crossed it doesn't overdevelop too much, there seems to be quite the building frenzy going on.

But it's a beautiful island - blinding white sand, aqua blue water. We took two trips to Phi Phi Leh which thankfully cannot be built on and is for day trips only. Looking like a massive limestone boat floating on the sea Phi Phi Leh has deep lagoons hidden behind it's sheer walls which are so beautiful it is almost ridiculous. We took a boat to one of the lagoons early in the morning and for a while were the only people there - we slid into the water and I honestly felt like I had fallen into a postcard or tv commercial where everything is so beautiful it looks like it can only exist in photoshop - except that it was real. Nature turned the colour scheme up to eleven when she made this one.

But just to remind me that I was still in the real world while I was swimming around in fantasy paradiseland la la la, a fish came up and bit me on the ankle, cheeky bugger. He was only quite small and darted away after doing it. Thinking that maybe I had imagined it I swam on and then he bolted out from behind a rock and did it again! This time I could feel his rough little mouth on my ankle bone. After telling Ed (who didn't believe me) suddenly I hear Ed going "oh it's so nice here blah blah blah ARGH!" the feisty little fish got him too. Funny thing, he must be sick of gormless tousits ruining his lovely home, can't really blame him.


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