Going to Phi Phi Island (pronounced Pee Pee, bahaha!) is one of the Things To Do while in Phuket. So as much as Helen and I dislike going with tour groups, and being tied to their schedules, and not being able to wander away whenever we feel like it, we decided to pay 1700 baht each and go Phi Phi it up.
Despite all of the aforementioned problems, I’m glad we went. Because of this.
And let’s not forget this.
We booked with one of the billion or so travel agencies near Kata Beach, then got picked up from our hostel around 10am. The van brought us to the pier, and we piled into a small speedboat. Helen and I kept thinking we would transfer to a bigger boat at some point, but no. That didn’t happen.
The hour-long speed boat ride to Phi Phi Island was a bit rough, and one of the Asian tourists on board got sea sick. Ewww. I don’t think she spewed on anyone but herself, though.
Our first stop was Maya Bay. There were approximately ten thousand other tourists there, but they couldn’t completely mask how beautiful it was. These girls made it particularly entertaining. They were taking sexy-time photos on the beach for about twenty minutes. I sarcastically praised them on their creative posing, but they ignored me.
After that we snorkelled in the bay for a while. It was the first time for me, and after I figured out how not to keep swallowing gallons of salt water, it was a blast! I even had enough confidence in my swimming abilities to go without a life jacket. That’s a pretty big deal for me.
Next we saw Monkey Beach and Viking Cave. One girl in another group got bit by a monkey and kept asking her guide if she should be worried about it. Um yes, you should probably get that checked out. Viking Cave is a spot where they get the mystical ingredients for bird nest soup, an Asian delicacy.
We got lunch in the touristy part of the island, then they had to move the boat to the other side of the bay. The water was so shallow with the low tide, that we could have gotten stuck there for a few hours if they hadn’t moved. We lost a couple from Australia for a few minutes on the walk through town to the boat, because they were sensationally drunk.
Later the guy lost one of his rings while out swimming and attempted to find it using his snorkel mask. When it was time for us to go, our tour guide went out there and found it in about five seconds. The Australian couldn’t sing his drunken praises enough.
Wth our tour behind schedule because of the low tide, we just drove past Mosquito Island and spent about half an hour on Bamboo Island. I tried snorkelling in the shallow water, until I imagined that every rock below me was actually a rock fish that wanted to kill me. No joke.
Still, despite my unfounded fears and the rainy weather, it was a beautiful place. I’d never seem anything quite like it.