Approx. 10 months in SE Asia visiting majority of countries on motorbikes, camping & backpacking style. Photos taken by iPhone 4s + iDry. You can reach me on blogs /at/ davss /dot/ com.
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Feb 28, 2012   Day 118-154
Thailand
118
Narathiwat, Thailand
Narathiwat, Thailand
Mueang Narathiwat, Thailand
Military presence everywhere.Geared up guarding streets & temples. A conflict between Thai & Muslim has been going on for years. At present bombings (one last year) & occasional violent attacks occur. This explains why not so many tourists come here.
Feb 28, 2012 12:53PM
Narathiwat, Thailand
Narathiwat, Thailand
Mueang Narathiwat, Thailand
Streets look calm daytime with very friendly people but danger could be hiding round any corner so we stay vigilant. We had to hide inside our hotel motorbikes because were told they could get shot during fights. Also, hotel's front doors close 9pm.
Feb 28, 2012 3:28PM
119
Flat tyre
Flat tyre
Mueang Narathiwat, Thailand
My rear tyre suddenly looses all air @ 70km/h on a road to Pattani causing dangerous tale swinging hard to control under a 150kg load. Fortunately it was a straight road else effects could've been disastrous. A weak Malaysian tube splits wide open!
Feb 29, 2012 11:56AM
Mai Kaen, Thailand
Endless empty beaches. Maybe not so suitable for swimmers & rather for surfers because of strong waves. It was only us on this beach & we couldn't see ends of it. Then a local in a pick up stops us saying it's too dangerous here & leads to main road.
Feb 29, 2012 12:28PM
School Kids
School Kids
Mai Kaen, Thailand
Two army man carrying M16s appear to be normal for local people. They passed by a school from which emerged a group of curious & welcoming kids asking if we are teachers by any accident. They also run along motorbikes shouting out with excitement.
Feb 29, 2012 12:51PM
Mai Kaen, Thailand
It makes me feel very sad knowing these innocent kids are part of a conflict caused by adults. Who knows what their future life will look like & what they'll be forced to do in order to survive in such cruel & inappropriate for them environment.
Feb 29, 2012 12:53PM
Cola Refuel?
Cola Refuel?
Mai Kaen, Thailand
Refuelling only possible from bottles :) We've run out of fuel once on a motorway before & at that time wished for a station like this. Here they are in Narathiwat state similar to Myanmar where petrol stations are extremely rare.
Feb 29, 2012 12:57PM
Sai Buri, Thailand
Barricades stations every few kilometres increase & heavily guarded by patrols with proper machine guns the closer we get to Pattani. It looks & feel serious. A local who helps us to find a hotel advises to watch out for bombs & street shootings.
Feb 29, 2012 1:22PM
Mueang Pattani
Mueang Pattani
I've never seen such colourful sushi.
Feb 29, 2012 4:42PM
120
Pattani-Songkhla
Pattani-Songkhla
Thepha, Thailand
Accidents. Mostly because of reckless driving, overloaded or road unworthy vehicles. The roads are generally pretty ok on the east side with few pot holes.
Mar 1, 2012 12:46PM
Road 43
Road 43
Thepha, Thailand
Rest areas let us take a break from riding & have a cup of coffe (our own coffe with their hot water cause Thai rarely serve hot coffee - suppose it's because of the heat). The beach is a bit better with calmer waves suitable for swimming.
Mar 1, 2012 1:06PM
121
The Golden Mermaid, Songkhla
The Golden Mermaid, Songkhla
Mueang Songkhla, Thailand
A Thai mythical tale which Sa-nga Karnchanakhabhanth told that a mermaid would sat on a beach & combed her hair. One day a fisherman passed by, frightened the mermaid & made her escaped into the sea while forgetting her golden comb...
Mar 2, 2012 11:58AM
Samila Beach Art, Songkhla
Samila Beach Art, Songkhla
Mueang Songkhla, Thailand
... So, he kept the golden comb & often waited for her @ the beach but she'd never returned.

There is art sculptures scattered across the beach. Plenty of kids & parents gather for a rest or lunch, mainly locals. The beach itself is OK-ish.
Mar 2, 2012 1:59PM
Outside of Songhla
Outside of Songhla
Mueang Songkhla, Thailand
Going to the south of Songkhla we come across fisherman's villages. They are very modest. Rubbish is also a real problem here.
Mar 2, 2012 2:12PM
Mueang Songkhla, Thailand
Boats swinging on strong waves.
Mar 2, 2012 2:18PM
Songkhla Night Market
Songkhla Night Market
Mueang Songkhla, Thailand
A good variety of food, clothing & souvenirs. It usually starts on Friday & Saturday evenings.
Mar 2, 2012 6:35PM
Mueang Songkhla, Thailand
It was our biggest mistake to have dinner before going to the night market. We were full after sampling few things only regretting not being able to carry on on tasting more.
Mar 2, 2012 6:38PM
Songkhla Night Market
Songkhla Night Market
Mueang Songkhla, Thailand
Fancy a fried bug or insect?
Mar 2, 2012 7:24PM
Mueang Songkhla, Thailand
Sweets lovers will find many goodies on stalls too.
Mar 2, 2012 7:29PM
Peking Opera - Songkhla Night Market
Peking Opera - Songkhla Night Market
Mueang Songkhla, Thailand
Some entertainment such as live karaoke & plays tonight. Wish we could understand what they were saying/singing... I must say I quite like this town even though in some parts smells very fishy & not many things to see. Great people & fewer tourists.
Mar 2, 2012 7:35PM
122
Mueang Satun, Thailand
From east to west coast we are on the way to Pakabara ferry after a quick visit to Satun's Tammalang Port which turned out to be too far from the centre hence no accommodation available by the port.
Mar 3, 2012 2:42PM
123
Pakbara Pier, Satun, Thailand
Pakbara Pier, Satun, Thailand
La-ngu, Thailand
Awaiting ferry. Normal price 1200 return we negotiate down to 700. There is quite an aggressive competition between tourist agencies going on here.
We are leaving our bikes in a guesthouse 300m from the port where we stayed last night.
Mar 4, 2012 11:14AM
Ko Kipe, Thailand
Ko Kipe, Thailand
Thailand
Just arrived at Ko Lipe. Ferry boats can't get to beaches & long-tale boats fetch us instead from a floating platform. Many people including us had a grim on our faces because the shore is about 50m away & they rip us all off by charging 50THB!
Mar 4, 2012 1:10PM
124
Ko Lipe - Reefs
Ko Lipe - Reefs
Thailand
Reefs & fish. Not as spectacular & colourful as Tioman or Perhentian's. There is plenty of coral reefs on the Sunrise & Pattaya beaches. Not so many on the Sunset beach though. I did 2 x 20m dives & it's pretty much similar views at the bottom.
Mar 5, 2012 3:44PM
Ko Lipe - Reefs
Ko Lipe - Reefs
Thailand
Nemo's brothers on the west coast ;) High peak season starts from Nov-May & should be good but it's just average. Many reviews say it's one of the best snorkelling places. Maybe we just got spoilt too much by Perhentian or wrong timing...
Mar 5, 2012 3:49PM
Ko Lipe - Reefs
Ko Lipe - Reefs
Thailand
An eel fish spotted while snorkelling at the Sunrise beach. I saw same size one at 18m so it's not necessary to go that deep to get to see some nice creatures.
Mar 5, 2012 4:02PM
Lipe Walking Street
Lipe Walking Street
Thailand
So called "walking street". A concrete path along which bars, restaurants & shops are crammed on both sides. We've sampled some & generally the food is good but often portions too small & expensive. Many motorbikes slipping through pedestrians too.
Mar 5, 2012 6:58PM
Lipe Pattaya Beach
Lipe Pattaya Beach
Thailand
At night many people gather at the beaches to have food, drinks or just chill out by candles or fire places that are lined up along shores making up a beautiful romantic scenery. There is also different music played at bars.
Mar 5, 2012 7:08PM
125
Ko Lipe - Sunset Beach
Ko Lipe - Sunset Beach
Thailand
At last a quiet corner with no loud long-tail boats passing by every half a minute. I was really fed up/annoyed with them especially while snorkelling when you have to constantly keep looking out to avoid being run over. They spoil all the fun!
Mar 6, 2012 1:31PM
Thailand
View at Adang National Park island. It's a shame we didn't get to go there. Maybe it's better for nature explorers & a good place to have a break from overcrowded Ko Lipe. There is also Rawi & many more smaller islands around so plenty of options.
Mar 6, 2012 2:16PM
Famous = spoilt, expensive & overrated?
Famous = spoilt, expensive & overrated?
Thailand
My idea of going to islands is to get away from civilisation & experience undisturbed aquatic life. Development should be strictly controlled to preserve as much of natural environment as possible.This island is the exact opposite of it in my opinion
Mar 6, 2012 5:50PM
126
A Positive Evening
A Positive Evening
Thailand
Our home stay owners offered us a delicious fish & vegetables for dinner (half the normal price). We had food with a Spanish couple & Canadian girl.We all chatted about Asia experiences.It was a positive evening & we should dine more often like this.
Mar 7, 2012 7:40PM
127
Ko Lipe - Not so much for me
Ko Lipe - Not so much for me
Thailand
If you like shopping, restaurants, bars, average reefs, good beaches all packed with tourists then you might like it. I don't.
So, it appears ferry boats can get to shore after all & we were lied to. They also oversell tickets & we almost got stuck.
Mar 8, 2012 12:30PM
Ko Lipe's Crowds
Ko Lipe's Crowds
Mar 8, 2012 1:46PM
129
Krabi
Krabi
Mueang Krabi, Thailand
A lift to catch our ferry to Ko Lanta via Ko Jum in the morning.
Mar 10, 2012 10:10AM
Ko Jum Island, Andaman Beach
Ko Jum Island, Andaman Beach
Thailand
After spending a night in Krabi we skip famous Phi Phi & go to a less crowded Ko Jum instead. Even though beaches are partially rocky it's so peaceful with fewer tourists / motorbikes, great accommodation & food.We'll be exploring it more.
Mar 10, 2012 6:43PM
Beach Night Life
Beach Night Life
Thailand
A size of a human fist. We also had a vivid green snake (not poisonous) in our resort so it's always wise to have some light on in the dark.
Mar 10, 2012 8:56PM
Ko Jum Fu Bar Fireshow
Ko Jum Fu Bar Fireshow
Thailand
A fireshow organised by Fu Bar. These young guys did an amazing performance. There was a band playing live music too with funny vocal ;) YouTube link to be attached.
Mar 10, 2012 9:31PM
130
Ko Jum Bungalows
Ko Jum Bungalows
Nuea Khlong, Thailand
Plenty of accommodation options ranging from cheap 250THB very modest bamboo or slightly more modern concrete bungalows with 24h electricity to 5k very luxury mansions on the west side of the island.
Mar 11, 2012 12:51PM
131
Ko Jum/Pu Beaches
Ko Jum/Pu Beaches
Nice sand and crystal clear water in some spots. No reefs though which is a shame (closest is 40 minutes away by long-tale boat). There are only rocks to explore during hi-tide. Can get full of floating stuff after storms but recover after 1-2 days.
Mar 12, 2012 11:37AM
Ko Jum/Pu Beaches
Ko Jum/Pu Beaches
Thailand
I saw few expats cleaning up beaches. Clearly they are appreaciating this place. Others including some locals still need to learn that throwing rubbish anywhere possible is going to backfire at them one day & look after what's precious & gives income
Mar 12, 2012 12:07PM
Rubber Trees Plantations
Rubber Trees Plantations
Nuea Khlong, Thailand
Rubber trees plantations seem to be everywhere (they are also homes for zebra mosquitos & their bites are incredibly itchy!). Nicked by an englishman from the Amazon, initially grown at London's Kew Gardens then on a mass scale in Asia.
Mar 12, 2012 12:19PM
Ko Jum/Pu Roads
Ko Jum/Pu Roads
Nuea Khlong, Thailand
New roads are on the way. The west coast's accommodation places are still reasonably composed into surrounding nature although there are signs of newly developed resorts which, when uncontrolled, will lead to inevitable commercialism.
Mar 12, 2012 12:53PM
Ko Pu Activities
Ko Pu Activities
Nuea Khlong, Thailand
At Ko Pu (north part of the island) reachable by east or west roads every year there is a fest (this one's fourth) held when people gather to watch or participate in playing football, volleyball & other sports. The timing for us couldn't be better.
Mar 12, 2012 3:05PM
Ko Pu Stalls
Ko Pu Stalls
Nuea Khlong, Thailand
Stalls with delicious snacks & pancakes filled with colourful jams or chilli, if you are adventures enough, are occupied by local kids.
Mar 12, 2012 3:14PM
Birds
Birds
Nuea Khlong, Thailand
Bird lovers! Almost every one must have at least one bird. They even take them with on motorbikes.
Mar 12, 2012 3:32PM
132
Home made Tom Yum ;)
Home made Tom Yum ;)
Nuea Khlong, Thailand
We've already lost 2 water heaters. Last one bought at Mae Sai was very unsafe & its encasing melted down. This was caused by bad design & too thin wires. Antek got a new kettle which now boils us not only morning coffee but also tasty Tom Yum soups.
Mar 13, 2012 9:42PM
133
For RuRu
For RuRu
Nuea Khlong, Thailand
RuRu seems to love cats (there must be dozen of photos on her blog). So, decided to load this one up for her :) He was our companion at lunches at a next door resort. Such a cute fellow.
Mar 14, 2012 3:02PM
135
Off to Surin Islands
Off to Surin Islands
Ao Luek, Thailand
We spend one night at Khura Buri to catch a speedboat that will take us to Ko Surin. Some say that Similian (more popular & commercial) & Surin islands have best reefs & a paradise for snorkelling/diving. Hope it's worth it. Will report in soon.
Mar 16, 2012 12:54PM
136
Ko Surin Tao National Park
Ko Surin Tao National Park
Ranong, Thailand
This is it! Although a bit expensive (1500 boat + 400 bath/5 days park admission) we thought it would put off some people & indeed this place is a lot more quiet that others in Thailand.
Mar 17, 2012 9:24AM
Mai Ngam Beach, Ko Surin
Mai Ngam Beach, Ko Surin
Ranong, Thailand
We arrived at a well maintained camp site on a beach. There are only tents hidden in a jungle that are inconspicuous. No bungalows too. There is a restaurant with electricity & free hot/drinking water. All designed so it doesn't stand out from nature
Mar 17, 2012 9:43AM
Mai Ngam Camp Site
Mai Ngam Camp Site
Ranong, Thailand
We setup a 1 roof combination with 2 mosquito nets. Mosquitos usually bite between certain hours but not at the restaurant so we dodge them by going there. A hanging food box prevents monkeys or rats from having your stuff.
Mar 17, 2012 11:51AM
137
Mai Ngam Reefs
Mai Ngam Reefs
Ranong, Thailand
Let's go snorkelling! First 3 days were a bit disappointing. Then a guy tells us about good spots & the fun begins. We had to go a bit further away from the beach to find & explore cool reefs.
Mar 18, 2012 2:57PM
Mai Ngam Marine Life
Mai Ngam Marine Life
Ranong, Thailand
Plenty of colourful fish & reefs.
Mar 18, 2012 4:13PM
Mai Ngam Marine Life
Mai Ngam Marine Life
Ranong, Thailand
Someone ordered a lobster?
Mar 18, 2012 4:21PM
138
Mai Ngam Low-tide
Mai Ngam Low-tide
Ranong, Thailand
Many beaches have very green trees. Their roots uncover during low-tide.
Mar 19, 2012 11:49AM
139
Black Tip Sharks
Black Tip Sharks
Ranong, Thailand
These baby black tip sharks always come to shores in groups in the mornings hovering between tree roots or sand.They are about 40cm so pretty harmless. Many people walk or even swim with them. Very beautiful creatures. Am wondering where their mom is
Mar 20, 2012 11:19AM
Mai Ngam Reefs
Mai Ngam Reefs
Ranong, Thailand
Mar 20, 2012 12:05PM
Surin National Park
Surin National Park
Ranong, Thailand
The other side reefs.
Mar 20, 2012 12:20PM
140
Mai Ngam Reefs, Ko Surin
Mai Ngam Reefs, Ko Surin
Ranong, Thailand
Mar 21, 2012 2:50PM
Mai Ngam Reefs, Ko Surin
Mai Ngam Reefs, Ko Surin
Ranong, Thailand
Mar 21, 2012 3:26PM
Mai Ngam Marine Life, Ko Surin
Mai Ngam Marine Life, Ko Surin
Ranong, Thailand
Mar 21, 2012 3:37PM
141
Mu Ko Surin
Mu Ko Surin
Ranong, Thailand
It's amazing how much water is being withdrawn during low-tide lasting four hours from 2.30-6.30pm. There is plenty of crabs & smaller fish that get stuck so it's a good time to get a closer look without the need of getting into water.
Mar 22, 2012 3:31PM
142
Leaving Ko Surin
Leaving Ko Surin
Mar 23, 2012 1:51PM
143
Names Mix-Up
Names Mix-Up
Phanom, Thailand
We read in a polish guide about rock formations on the way to Ko Phang Nga island (west coast) so decided to check them out. We headed to Surathani then Don Sak piers. It turned out though that the guide was incorrect & it's Phang-Nga bay in east!
Mar 24, 2012 10:01AM
Krabi
Krabi
Mueang Krabi, Thailand
We are back to Krabi after not making it to Phang-Nga by riding in the dark. We did over 500km & our bums are falling off a bit. It was late & there was live music coming out from across a fence at our guesthouse so we popped over to relax before bed
Mar 24, 2012 11:00PM
Mueang Krabi, Thailand
A band was playing cool EN tunes. A couple of beers & dancing with a newly met polish chap from Australia made us almost instantly forget about long hours spent on motorbikes in heat. It's a very nice bar with really cool atmosphere & a library.
Mar 24, 2012 11:15PM
144
Ao Luek, Thailand
Since we only have little time here we book tours instead of exploring by ourselves. First one is a kayaking trip to see caves & rocks. We got picked up from our guesthouse early morning & headed to Phan-Nga bay.
Mar 25, 2012 10:12AM
The Big - headed Ghost Cave
The Big - headed Ghost Cave
This limestone cave with stalagmites also known as the Skull cave (2497BE skulls were found) is famous for mural colourful paintings of non/human beings, animals & hand/foot shapes made by tribes that used to inhabit this land about 3000 years ago.
Mar 25, 2012 10:54AM
Lagoons
Lagoons
Visiting amazing lagoons. Passages sometimes require some skills to navigate through but most people are fine (there was few bumping into almost every wall or three hehe)
Mar 25, 2012 11:17AM
Lagoons
Lagoons
Ao Luek, Thailand
Mar 25, 2012 11:18AM
Mar 25, 2012 11:51AM
Ao Luek, Thailand
Mar 25, 2012 12:06PM
Jungle Kyaking
Jungle Kyaking
Ao Luek, Thailand
Our guide leading us through a jungle.
Mar 25, 2012 12:10PM
Another Lagoon
Another Lagoon
Mar 25, 2012 12:27PM
Mar 25, 2012 12:28PM
Swim Fun
Swim Fun
Mar 25, 2012 2:52PM
Krabi Bay
Krabi Bay
Mueang Krabi, Thailand
Mar 25, 2012 6:22PM
145
8k Yamaha Service
8k Yamaha Service
Mueang Krabi, Thailand
Mar 26, 2012 10:21AM
146
My Sea to Summit Backpack
My Sea to Summit Backpack
This is an extremely light-weight & compact backpack. I looked after it well & avoided placing sharp objects inside or on surfaces that could puncture its delicate material. I did swim with it over 20 hours in salty water causing it to break.
Mar 27, 2012 6:51AM
Going to Bangkok
Going to Bangkok
Thap Put, Thailand
On our way to Bangkok. About 800km to do. We intended to split distance into 3 but the first day got caught up by heavy rain & had to sleep over at Phang-Nga town. Not much to do there but it's a good base for many trips to explore the nearby bay.
Mar 27, 2012 8:05AM
Sampling new fruit sold by a road. The taste was ok although would not buy more.
Mar 27, 2012 12:18PM
147
Mueang Prachuap Khiri Khan, Thailand
450km done today. We treat ourselves by spending a night in a luxury hotel with this balcony view.
Mar 28, 2012 8:28AM
148
Bangkok - Fish Pedicure
Bangkok - Fish Pedicure
Bangkok, Thailand
Ada's experiencing fish massage. She was struggling not to giggle. I was afraid they'd make me laughter to death & skipped it this time ;)
Mar 29, 2012 12:22PM
149
Cambodia/Laos Tourist Visas
Cambodia/Laos Tourist Visas
Bangkok, Thailand
Getting to embassies can be a mission. Addresses are out of date even on official websites. Both embassies are 5 mins away from each other. I did Lao first (800THB) to pick up my passport the next day & get Cambodia visa (1000THB) on the same day.
Mar 30, 2012 2:17PM
150
Chatuchak Market
Chatuchak Market
Bangkok, Thailand
One of the biggest I've seen. Many souvenirs here, some found in shops in other countries a lot more expensive. They claim to have 15000 stalls & one could get easily lost. We're staying in BKK until 3rd when Ada's flying back home.
Mar 31, 2012 1:31PM
154
Aranya Prathet - Poipet border
Aranya Prathet - Poipet border
Aranyaprathet, Thailand
A night spent in Aranya Prathet at a cheap guesthouse with a swimming pool pretty much to ourselves. In the morning we are mentally prepared to set off & cross Thai-Cambodian border (read some stories about many scams practised on tourists here).
Apr 4, 2012 11:08AM
Thailand-Cambodia border
Thailand-Cambodia border
Aranyaprathet, Thailand
We had to show our greenbooks / passports to obtain a temporary export certificate that we'll be required by immigration upon return.Then another checkpoint where a conveyance form needs to be filled out & copies of greenbook/passport + 20THB left.
Apr 4, 2012 11:23AM