Monday, July 9, 2012

Pictures

Hey there :)

So, I finally uploaded all the pics. Got rly nice internet here, in the middle of nowhere :P aka Laos!

https://picasaweb.google.com/100876426531771700930

its about Chiang Mai, the slow boat trip and the waterfall in Luang Prabang.

Gonna write something about the slowboat trip by today evening. See u

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Chiang Mai


Hey there!

Last time I wrote to you I lied in my lovely appartment on Koh Chang, listning to Jack Johnson. At this time I am listning to Belle & Sebastian and sitting on the border right next to Laos – approximately 1000km north of Koh Chang. Yet I got no exact idea where I am, cuz I forgot the name of the town that I'm housing for the night, before approaching the two-day-trip with a slow boat on the Mekong River to Luang Prabang.

So, many days have passed since my last entry and decisions had to me made! I finally decided to go the eastward circle – Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Laos, Cambodia, Bangkok.

Well, I left Koh Chang on Friday (I guess … I keep forgetting the time more and more, what is just beautiful!) and headed back to Bangkok where I took another two days off, due to unwanted circumstances ^.^ Well, I got your t-shirts, Luke!

However, I took the train to Chiang Mai on Monday. I was told that it would take us approximately 10 hours to our destination, but apparently it took us 13.5 hours. Don't ask me why, but I guess the driver was just too relaxing going about 30 km/h sometimes. Friends told me the ride'd be very scenery and would go straight through the jungle and … yeah … if you looked close enough you could even spy the huts of remote hill-tribe villages – just beside the track!

When I arrived to the city in late evening I saw something that I didn't expect of a city in thailand: So quiet, black sky and no big traffic! I stayed in some hostel called “the little bird”, located in the old city center, that probabbly wisely chose its' name, since you can't find that hostel in the top ratings on any guesthouse-portal on the internet. A friend told me about it, or better: a little bird told me :) It was a really cool place! A bed in a 4-bed-dorm with a private bathroom is only 120 Baht (3€) a night. On top of that this place is very social, near to markets and temples. And the best of all: very very near to Tips Muesly Stall. A place where you could just experience the best fruit-shakes and fruit muesly of Thailand! At leat this is what people, who've been to Chiang Mai, say :) I went there every morning to have a fruit muesly for only 50 Baht – Pineapple, Dragonfruit, Mango, Banana, Passionfruit, Joghurt & Muesli. You might've seen the pic that I uploaded to Facebook few days ago. When I sat there several people asked me if this was the place where they have these awesome fruit shakes everybody talks about. :D Awesome!

Well, after visiting some temples the next day, I went Mountainbiking the day after that for my first time. Pretty cool, but at the end of the track your hands really begin to hurt, cuz your bike is really shaking crazy on these dusty tracks :D I also fell off the bike several times. Found myself running down a knoll, shaking my arms here and there, desperately trying not to fall on the ground and hoping to be able to stop running before I'd hit the tree right infront of me :P Just what I like!

The day after that I went on a two day trekking trip, including trekking to some remote hill-tribe and staying there for a night, then elephant riding, bamboo rafting, zip-lining, white water rafting and watching a waterfall on the next day. The first day wasn't really necessary to do. We just trekked through some forrests while sweating ALOT! Plus the nature wasn't really that scenery – I hope that is not how south-east asia looks like in the wilderness. Else hiking won't be fun to me down here :/
The next day was more like the action- and fun-day. I heared a lot about elephant riding and how fun and how strange it is, riding on an elephant – 10 times bigger than you. Yes, it is strange, but still fun :) It's really weird when you sit on top of them and feel all their muscles moving beneith your bottom, carrying you up and down steep knolls, going like 45°! Never knew they could go this steeply!
After that we went bamboo rafting, which is quite boring. You just sit on a float made out of bamboo and “go with the flow” of the river. Mhm …
The next activity was zip-lining. Zip-lining itself is probabbly a lot of fun, but somehow we only zipped one line, which was pretty lame. I guess it's just on the program to lure us foreign visitors to do the tour! … lame.
However, after that we went wild-water-rafting. Now that was fun! Luckily we had the most energetic rafting guide of all of them and won any splashing battle we started, just to see the others drowning in their own boat :P Though we didnt leave the battleground without any loses. I fell off the boat when it was going down a rapid at like 45° (I was sitting on the lower side) and everybody was falling on me ^.^ Okay, got a few scretches from it, but that's how it works! At least now I know how to confront a rapid without having wheels under myself :P

So that was my stay in Chiang Mai. I got pretty sick that last day and evening. I felt like having the flue without having real temperature. I guess my body really tried and succeded fighting against getting ill. Good for me :) Though I got kind of a hangover, which is weird, since I have not been drinking at all. But what ever …

I'll just go to Luang Prabang by tomorrow and see what's there to do :) Got approx 3 weeks of travelling left! Still looking forward to return home :D

All the best,
Basti

PS: didnt find time and decent internet yet to resize and upload the pics. I'll do it 2morrow or when I'm in Luang Prabang.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Bangbao Kayaktrip

Hey!

So today I finally came to do a long wanted kayak trip - and it was my first time on the ocean :D

Well, I started off at my resort at 11:50 and followed the route of the internet guide: Pass the BangBao Pier beneath, head towards Klong Koi Beach and paddle to Wai Check Beach, the final destination. Fair enough, not too difficult to understand. So there I paddeled and paddeled and paddeled and finally arrived at the beach an hour later ... phew ... Didn't realise until then that I went WITH the current ;) When I headed towards the beach I was like "whow, finally :D fair enough!", but the waves hitting the beach looked smaller than they were. Realised it too late, so I got hit by tons of water ;D Though, I could surf on the waves, when I turned around. Heaps of fun :D How ever, I ended up crawling out of the kayak in the end, beeing soaked to the skin!

Well, you can see the beach on the pictures on Picasa. Very remote, very nice, but very dirty as well. Koh Chang is dirty in overall :/ After 20mins I headed back. A bit difficult to paddle against the waves, since the hit you and make you wet again ^.^ After a few tries I got the hang of it and finally got out of the bay. Then I realised I had to paddle against the current ... took my more than two hours to get back to my resort. In addition to that I finally experienced how the ocean "takes you out" on it. Pretty desperating if you want to go on the land but the ocean doesn't let you :/ Never though it'd be so strong! So that's been pretty exhausting in overall, that's why I didnt want to go around the peninsula as well, because it would've been 4km more :/

Well that was my day. Liked it :)

So tomorrow I'll head back to BKK, stay there for a day and go north. Still not sure if i should hit Chiang Mai and Rai, too. :(

All the best, Basti

Monday, June 25, 2012

BangBao & surrounds


Hey there again!

I told you I'd keep you posted about my days on Koh Chang, so here you go!

Currently it's 01.30 pm and I'm sitting in my appartment, escaping from the sun and the hot weather - can't do that forever, though :D The reason why is because I've got a sunburn all over my body … my face, my neck, my shoulders and my back. In addition to that I can't really walk right now, because I've cut one of my feet on the rocks at the beach yesterday. So yeah, I'm trying to kill the time right now ;/ Trying to keep me busy with playing games, listening to Jack Johnson and writing this post :D

So yesterday the weather hasn't been as bad as the weather forecast told me, so I could go on this 5-islands-snorkel-trip. It's been sunny with a few clouds in the sky. Too bad I didn't have sunscreen … never though that the thai sun would be more intense than the australian sun! So, I've been to this snorkel trip and went to visit more or less 5 “islands”, where 3 of them were rocks looking out of the sea near bigger “real” islands. Not bad, though, because we could just snorkel around them :D
I wish I could supply you with pictures, but I didnt bring me camera, cause I though it'd be a too wet trip – and yes, I was right. Would've been too dangerous for the money I spent on it. What ever, the trip started in the south of Koh Chang at the BangBao Pier. We went about 30km south with a big tour boat carrying approximately 20 guests. The first stop was Koh Yak Lak, where we had 1h for snorkeling. The second and third stop was Koh Mapring and Koh Rung Beach. Over there we could either go for 1.5h snorkeling, 1.5h relaxing on the beach or doing both, since Koh Mapring was so near to that other island that you could just swim there! The forth stop was Koh Yak Yai, another hour of snorkeling before going to Koh Wai for 45mins of relaxing on the beach. The islands really looked like paradise. Just what you expect a beach for holidays to look like :D Well, that's it – snorkeling a day for 16€!

I met some guy on the boat who I was hanging out with for the whole day and he is going to send me the pictures he made with his camera as soon as he gets home again, which is in about a week.

So there's not much going on today, but tomorrow I'll hopefull go by kayak around BangBao & the peninsula, if I'll be able to move my arms again …

Anyways, thanks that you keep supporting me on this trip! I'll hopefully return the favour with some pictures of tomorrow :P

All the best,
Basti

Saturday, June 23, 2012

First days in BangBao

Hey there

So, I'm just sitting in my sweet little appartment and eating Squid-Jerky! I just discovered these small dried pieces of squid meat when I arrived in Thailand, and you know that I like Beef-Jerky ALOT. I can't believe Luke didn't bring me some of these when he came back from Thailand last time -.-' To be honest, it doesn't taste as good as you might think now, but I still can't stop nibbling one and an other :)

So how is it? Well, yesterday I arrived in Trad or Trat (no idea how to spell it. Nobody knows, since every travel agency writes it different) with the bus and had to take a taxi to the ferry and the ferry to Koh Chang (or Ko Chang ...). I didn't think Koh Chang is so near to the mainland - could see all of its' beauty off the pier! It's a pretty mountanieous island with roads going steep like 30° or more! I hope I can provide you with some pictures of those streets, cuz you easily get knocked back if you don't grab some bar in the taxi. Taxis ... basically they're Pick-ups ... you just sit down in the back and hop off when you need to.

Today I went to the "Town" BangBao. It's a small former fisher village at the south tip of Koh Chang. Well, some people still go out to fish, but most citizins live from the tourism - they work in souvenier shops, diving centers, travel agencies, scooter-rent shops and in 7-11. But still it's a cute village with a long pier, which is about 300m long. Half of it is filled with restaurants, souvenier shops, travel agencies and diving centers. The other half is for boats with a cute light-tower at the end. This pier is about everything you can see in BangBao itself, but there is some peninsula beside the village with a little walk as well. The walk is closed though due to danger that the boardwalk would break, but it looked pretty stable to me, so ... nobody was looking ... =)

Tomorrow I'll go on some 5-Islands-Boat-Cruise with snorkel- and beach-breaks! It's pretty cheap around here. Paid 650 Baht (16€) for a whole-day-trip - Lunch, snorkel- & kayakequipment included! Would've been more than $75 in australia - if not even more than $100! I'm a bit scared though, cuz the weather forecast says it's going to rain tomorrow and the week after that :/ I'll see! On monday I'll probabbly go on a self guided kayak trip around BangBao and the peninsula. Some good guide that I found in the internet said that you could see a bunch of monkeys hanging on the cliffs by the peninsula :D

Well, Check out the pictures!

All the best to you,
Basti

Friday, June 22, 2012

Going to Koh Chang

hey,
i just think i have to update those who dont know it yet ... im going to koh chang this morning. im just sitting in the bus at the terminal right now and am ready for some beach-style holidays - again. happy-smiley. i actually cant write smileys, cuz google-blogspot has no good mobile version ... but what ever. ill stay there for a few days or a week and head to laos and cambodia  after that.
well, got my lense repaired and bought an other one, so i can keep you up with photos again. happy-smile. lol. well, got approx 5 weeks left  of travelling, which means i will come back by the end of july or beginning of august. happy-smile hehe ... looking forward to see you guys again and u wont believe it, im looking forward to study. exclamation-mark. probably sounds crazy to most of you. colon right parenthetis. how ever, the bus is rolling now and i gotta go, cuz i cant write while we are rolling.
all the best for what ever you are reaching for now. exclamation mark. laughing-smile. cheers, basti

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Going further north

Hey folks,

so for those who don't know it yet: I'm going up to Southeast Asia for the last part of my trip - leaving Australia! Just yesterday morning I was like "no idea what to do next :/", but I met some former travelmates in Darwin and had a talk with my bro Luke and they told me it's rly nice up there. So in the evening I was like "Yeh, going to Bangkok tomorrow :D". My stepfather got me this cheap ticket just yesterday after some great work of researching, with a stopover in Perth. So that's where I am right now - back in Perth at my relatives Ken and Joos. Just crashed into their appartment for a night =)

The reason why is just that I wanna make a "break" from travelling. Just sit down at a place and make a rest for a week or so. I also just don't like the north of australia, since it's just all about beaches and gorges (sure, except the north east). Everything looks the same to me around here. I'd love to stay for longer in the south of australia, but the weather is like winter in germany - freeezing cold and rainy all day long! Not a good time to visit it :/

I'll just arrive in Bangkok tomorrow and will visit my uncle, living right in the centre of the city :D Will probabbly stay there for a few days and will go somewhere else to take a rest.

Well, that's it for now. I'll keep you posted!

Cheers, Basti