We left all that is Pattaya and headed out on the motorbikes for Koh Samet Island. Nothing too remarkable about the drive on a busy road through town after town. We had to get to Ban Phe which is south of Rayong, not too far from Pattaya in the grand scheme of things. We got to the docks at Rayong and began the search for a ferry to take us to the Island. After going to a few of the 10+ piers looking for a boat that would take our bikes to the Island, we finally found one.
Taking The Ferry To Koh Samet
Loading the Bikes on the Ferry
We unloaded the bags from the bikes and they brought out an 8 inch wide wooden plank and said they were going to put the bikes on the roof of the boat. I thought this was going to be more than difficult to do and had visions of my bike slipping off the wooden board and into the bay below. Surprisingly enough, no problem. The boat hands and I were able to get the bikes on safely and I tied them up to the front of the boat on the roof. Shelly and I sat on the roof with Buddha for the 30-45 minute slow boat ride to the island.
Unloading The Bikes in Koh Samet
Arriving to Koh Samet
When we got to the Dock in Koh Samet, I helped other passengers off the boat and off loaded the bikes. We hooked up the racks and bags again and headed into the small town on the island. It cost 200 baht to stay on the island as it's a "protected" national forest. 200 Baht is about 7 dollars. We took a right out of the port down the dirt road around the island to find a place to stay. The road was potholed and rutted, there was trash strewn about places, and the Island was nowhere near as clean as we had hoped for. The people in general here are apathetic and not that cordial, to downright rude. This is not the Thai Island we hoped it would be and a little disappointed in the how "un-Thai" the people appeared.
Koh Samet Day 1 and 2
Disappointment in Koh Samet
I suppose we were disappointed in that fact and thought that the island was going to be more rustic and pure. Not so much. The beaches looked nice however, and the water looked great too. We made our way a kilometer or two and found a place called the Ao Phi Huts. They are little bungalows with a simple cold water shower, bed, TV, Air-Conditioning and a basic no flush toilet. We did however have a large porch that overlooked the complex of huts/bungalows with two chairs and they were pet friendly and were only steps from the beach below, and cheap! We could hear the waves crashing on the shore and besides the mosquitos and red fire ants... the place was perfect for us.
We didn't do much the first day but get something to eat at a beach-side cafe. There are about a million of them that have wonderful views of the beach right on the sand. Some have mats on the ground that you sit on with a low table, some have tables and chairs in the sand, and some have decks. We sat at one of the restaurants with a deck and that evening... the rain started.
Rain Spoils the Fun
What?? Rain again! Why is it every time we get on an island looking for sun and sand, we get rain? It was frustrating to say the least when the whole second day on the island was wrought with rain. We didn't do much but relax on our porch and head out once in a while in our ponchos to get some food. The roads turned to a thickened pea soup of mud and potholes and made travel into town a messy one. That evening we ate at resort next to our huts called the Silver Sand Resort. We can hear their disco thumping away in the distance from our bungalow until the wee hours of the morning, but not loud enough to keep us up. Day two... not so great.
The Cobra of Koh Samet
Cobra in the Woods
Day three we arose to find the sun beaming through our windows!! Sun at last! We saw a huge snake crawling in the woods below our bungalow...it was easily 10 feet long and would raise its head up like a cobra. We took a picture and I went to the office to ask them if they knew they had a cobra on their property. They said they know about the snake, and that it's not a cobra but a snake that mimics a cobra. Either way, we are going to keep Buddha away from the small trash pile he slithered out of.
Beach Day on Koh Samet
Beach Days on Koh Samet
We went to the beach and relaxed for a few hours on the pristine white powder sand in a little cove right outsideout bungalows. There were rocks in the water and we both got cut on our feet. Shelly on the top of her feet and I on the heel. Only small cuts, but I know that coral can really cause a nasty staph infection, so after the beach we picked up some iodine and cleaned it well. Finally we were able to lay on the beach, get some sun, and enjoy island life. That night we had an amazing dinner of Crab fried rice, fresh calamari, I had a pork steak and Shelly had garlic seafood stir fry. Great food on the beach once again.
The next day we went to beach again and spent the whole day laying on the sand. We went a little further down beach to a stretch of sand with no rocks and would alternate sunning and swimming. It really was an epic beach day. One we had been craving for a long time. We both got a little burnt, but don't mind at all. . That night we had another awesome dinner right on the beach on a low table in the sand. We decided to leave the next day and go to Cambodia. The next day we woke, packed up the bikes and rode the soupy road to the pier and loaded the bikes on the boat and headed back to Ban Phe with a mediocre taste in our mouths about Koh Samet.
Leaving Koh Samet
Leaving Samet for Trat
We rode that day to Trat, which is a border town near Cambodia. We found a nice little bungalow style guest house called the Garden Guesthouse. It was a nice.. very clean room with a little porch with chairs. The mosquitos were horrendous and we went to a Lotus Tesco and bought an electric mosquito tennis racquet that zaps bugs. AWESOME thing. Works on any bugs. You simply hold a button and swat and when it makes contact with the bug, ZAP!! That night we had some Thai/Lao BBQ like we had in Laos previously of seafood, chicken, beef, and liver. We didn't do much with the liver, but devoured the rest and really enjoyed our night. We also had a Swenson's ice cream at the Lotus Tesco great night in general... now off to Cambodia the next day!