Koh Samui & Koh Tao
09.10.2010 - 17.11.2010 80 °F
Ok where to start... Well first was the very interesting entry into Koh Samui, the smallest airport I have ever flown into. Upon entry the airport looked more like an exclusive holiday resort rather than an airport with golf cart style transport to take you to the terminal which was no more than approx 10 steps away from the plane. So trust me the pilots are high calibre to be able to land a plane on such a short runway, and so near to the main and only terminal.
Once I left the airport we travelled through a place which looked very basic with simple living conditions, and very close together. Back to a place with lots of people riding bikes and scooters, but nowhere is ever going to top Saigon in Vietnam. The weather was beautiful and it was just what I needed, I arrived at my very exclusive hotel where I was met by a team of very nice staff who made me feel very comfortable, as soon as I stepped foot into the reception. So what does Koh Samui have to offer. Well for starters it has the following:-
- Spas - Well known for it's abundance and range of luxury day spas, beauty salons and health programs. Ben Sabal Spa at Big Buddha Beach
- Yoga - Available where better to be able to do sunrise and sunset yoga
- Hin Ta & Hin Yai Rocks - Are the famous twin granite rocks on Lamai Beach. Hin Ta or Granfather Rock isin the form of a male genitals while Hin Yai or Grandmother Rock, those of a female.
- Beaches - Chaweng Beach is by far the biggest and busiest on the east coast with over a 5km stretch of sand. Lamai Beach is a great spot for a swim or just a drop to cool you off. Big Buddha beach is located on the north coast and is tranquil and nice spot for relaxation along with Bophut Beach. There are also many other beaches dotted around the island to explore as well.
- Chaweng - has plenty to keep you occupied! Whether you're looking for artgwork, clothing, tailors, CDs/DVD's, sports stores, books or Thai handicrafts, you'll find something here. Most of the action happens in the early evening till late. Be sure to test your bargaining skills!
- Watersports - include scuba & snorkeling (both of which I tried out in Koh Tao, more about that later, plus it is cheaper than doing these activities in Koh Samui!) To complete PADI courses. Other options are also weather dependent, Kayaking, Kiteboarding, sunset cruises, sailing and fishing.
The Sea Samui was paradise and just amazing see attached pictures. Definitely a place to return to, time and time again.....
After a very rough crossing I finally get to the small and perfectly formed Koh Tao. I am surround as soon as I get off the boat by lots of people offering diving packages...however lucky for me I had a recommendation Simple Life Divers by a friend who has been diving with them every year for a while now.... so you see a recommendation does not come better than that.
I finally make my way to the centre, and track down the Dive School, where I am greeted by a friendly face. I have a brief chat and explained that I would like to book to do a Padi Open Water dive course. They were really good and even helped me sort out my accommodation and I even got a good rate, due to signing up with them to do my open water. I was booked in straight away to start work, I had to hit the books straight away, which was a little strange, given I have not studied for some time, plus after chilling out and having a good time, I had to get my head down, as scuba diving is serious with dangerous side effects, I am sure that the majority of you reading this have heard about 'the bends'. Those of you that have not heard of it, 'google' it.
Anyway I was assigned to Lee who was a complete star, so please if you go to Koh Tao, like my friend I would like to highly recommend Simple Life Divers, Sairee Beach, Surathani, Thailand, 84360 check out there link www.simplelifedivers.com it is run by Luke and Haydon who are both British are the managers/partners of the dive school. I for one am looking forward to visiting them again, I hope to be in the position and be able to return every year like my friend. All being I get on with scuba diving of course, as might end up deciding it is not for me.
Don't forget to ask for Lee or Steve should you decided to dive with them in Koh Tao, oh and be sure to say Dee recommended the place to you. You won't regret it.