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Koh Phi Phi

Koh Phi Phi Don, Thailand
Friday, June 14, 2013

Day 150!

Instead of departing Phuket by bus and briefly retracing our steps we decided to go to Krabi by boat with an overnight stop over on Phi Phi Island.

We arrived on Phi Phi after another exceptionally rough sea crossing. Luckily we managed to grab a whole row of seats to ourselves and settled down for the journey ahead. Although we didn't feel the best we seemed to cope better than most! We are just glad we didn't have to clean up the mess afterwards.

It is almost incomprehensible what happened on Phi Phi Island on 26th December 2004 when the Tsunami hit the island from both sides. It is estimated that 70% of the buildings were destroyed and although the true loss of life will never be known it is estimated that as many as 4,000 people died. The island rapidly bounced back and with massive redevelopment the devastation that took place in those few minutes is now barely visible.

There is no doubting that Phi Phi is truly beautiful, virtually two islands joined together by a narrow isthmus with golden beaches and turquoise sea water it is like a fairy tale drawing of an island a child might draw.

But it has to be said this island is too beautiful and has become a victim of its own success. Without wanting to sound too old, we felt that it was a big draw for the 'young crowd' who are looking for a constant party. Admittedly we just spent the best part of three weeks partying on the mainland but there is so much other stuff to do on Phuket Island, and as it is so much bigger, if you want to avoid the party you can. Phi Phi is too small to do that and unless you take a tour or head to a remote part of the island (which is difficult without roads!) you can't escape the party. A nice walk on the beach was marred by people drinking both on the beach and in the sea. Maybe we have come at the wrong time of year as there appears to be a lot of people who have just finished uni. and have escaped the UK. Maybe it isn't like this all year round, however the numerous bars that line the beach do not give off that impression!

Also the small 20B (approx. 50p) environmental tax that you have to pay to 'Keep Phi Phi Clean' on arrival is a complete joke. It might only be 50p but we have seen more rubbish in and around the island than most other places in Thailand. Forgetting a few discarded drink cartons we suggest the money is better spent cleaning the beaches and collecting the broken Whiskey and beer bottles, as there is an accident waiting to happen.

If we had to choose between Phi Phi and Samui, Samui would win hands down. If you want a party on Samui you can any night of the week, but it is concentrated in one part of the island and then once a month there is the world renowned 'Full Moon Party' only a short boat ride away. But you can easily escape the party scene like we did as Ross was on medication from his fated horse ride in Hua Hin and we both still had an amazing time.

Phi Phi it is a beautiful island but in our opinion other islands in Thailand have much more to offer and without the premium price tag. If you do decide to visit we would recommend taking a day trip and avoiding the nightlife.

Next stop Krabi.

Team Chip

Hotel Review

We stayed at the Phuttachot Resort in a double private. First impressions the hotel was impressive, made completely from wood and nestled into the hillside but as we approached it was evident that little if any maintenance had taken place since it was built. The reception area smelt like Amsterdam in South East Asia. Our room was slowly falling apart, one window wouldn't close and after a bit of jiggling around with the closer a large part of the window frame broke off! The bed was the funkiest we have slept in with the corners made from tree trunks, unfortunately it was not as comfortable as it looked and then there was the bed bugs to contend with. We had the room at the far end of the hotel next to the aviary full of exotic birds, nice to look at for a few minutes but they certainly weren't the quietest of neighbours at night. There is so much choice for accommodation on Phi Phi we would suggest you look elsewhere.


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