Kursten and I often joked that we didn't sleep very much while on vacation. We went through a lot of trouble to be on the other side of the world, so why would we be asleep for it!? Ain't nobody got time for that! In that spirit, we were up early the next day to catch a ferry to Koh Phi Phi Don island. The ferry was actually quite nice. It took ~ 2 hours to get from Phuket to Koh Phi Phi Don island, but there was a nice breeze, and we passed some really beautiful islands on the way there.
Once we arrived on the beach, we went into full relaxation mode in this island paradise. Order of business:
1) Food...get in ma belly. Let's be clear, one doesn't go to Phi Phi (pronounced Pee Pee, ;)) for the food, but there are two distinct advantages to dining on the island. First, everything is insanely cheap. A beer would run under $3 and a dinner, under $6. Secondly, fresh fruit is really easy to come by. We were able to get sliced papaya, pineapple, a fresh fruit smoothie...you name it!
2) Relax in the water with a cold one. No elaboration required.
3) Massage. Two hour-long massage ran us $15, I kid you not. I learned, though, that light on the wallet does not mean light on my back. I was "coppertoned", where my bathing suit bottom was pulled halfway down. Since these massages took place on a veranda overlooking the beach/bay, I'm sure some strangers saw my plumbers crack. Boy do I feel bad for them! Knuckles were cracked against the vertebrae of my back, and I was twisted and folded into positions that I feared would paralyze me.
4. Nap. Jet lag is real, yo. Kursten and I slept a solid 3 hours, waking up to the "uns uns uns" of music blaring from the beach. The sunny paradise of Koh Phi Phi Don was no longer. In its place was an island teaming with neon, kerosene, and the European equivalent of the frat boy. Still worth exploring, if you ask me.
The beach parties were something else. Every bar puts on a fire show with Thai guys twirling batons of fire to the beat of the techno music. I got wild and jumped through a ring of fire...when in Rome, Koh Phi Phi right?
The next day, we went snorkeling in bays of Koh Phi Phi Ley with the Adventure Club. Although I got a little queasy on the longboat ride out to Koh Phi Phi Ley, I really enjoyed this trip. We snorkeled in three bays: In the first bay, I was mildly disappointed when I saw brown coral. It didn't last long, though, because the vividly colorful fish were amazing to watch. Blues, greens, purples, and yellows zoomed around the reefs--my eyes didn't know where to look next! In the second bay, we were stung by thousands of little...somethings. They looked like small little jellyfish, but even that isn't an accurate description. In any event, they creeped me out, and I felt like a water ninja dodging them for a half hour. Hiiiiiiiya! Take that ya (sort of) jellyfish! We rested in Maya Bay, where Leonardo DiCaprio's "The Beach" was filmed before heading to the third bay. The third bay was my absolute favorite. We saw a turtle and some black finned reef sharks! It was incredible.
That night was our last one on the island--we left early the next day. On the ferry back to Phuket, I was surprised that I felt relief in leaving. The island is equal parts beautiful and disgusting. No doubt about it, the islands have a natural beauty that is unsurpassed. However, tourism has definitely taken its toll. Litter is everywhere, kerosene from the nightly fire shows oozes into the waters of the bay, and there's an undentifiable"funk" that locals attribute to the horrible plumbing system of the island. If I were to go on this trip all over again, I would visit a less touristy island, but I was glad that I did get a chance to experience Koh Phi Phi at least once in my life!
Check out my trip advisor reviews (showing under To The Full List):
Dee Dee's Beach House (where we stayed)
Adventure Club (snorkel)