Beaches. Monkeys. Jungle.

 

Railay Beach, Thailand

From Koh Phi Phi we took a ferry (about an hour longer than told) to the port in Krabi where we found a small 12-person boat that took another hour to the beaches of Railay.

Our boat stopped next to a submerged cement path and we took off our shoes and walked in the 50cm deep water with our backpacks for nearly 50 metres.

From here in soggy shoes we hiked uphill past rocky cliffs with mountain climbers hanging and stopped on the edge of a hot and humid jungle where we laid our bags at an empty reception desk. After a brief search we find a pretty laid back fellow with long dreids who takes us to our bungalow.

The first thing we notice in this humble wooden structure is the extremelly precarious steps – each thin narrow boards on a terrible angle with a handrail long gone replaced with a dozen nails pointed upwards (tip: always make sure you’ve had your tetanus shot before travel). Reaching the summit and removing the small padlock reveals a bare room with a small bathroom at the back with just a shower head, toilet and faucet hanging over the floor. No sink. Thankfully, there is a mosquito net as I see large spaces between the floorboards and a large window with no glass in the bathroom. No AC or hot water of course.

We would spend three nights here.

The beaches of Thailand are beautiful and the beaches at Railay are even more so. Indeed, I felt like I had stepped into a postcard. I envied myself for being in such a gorgeous place and being allowed to swim in its warm sparkling turquoise. This was probably my favourite place in Thailand.

Beyond the beaches there were some really neat hikes into the jungle up steep muddy slopes and under trees full of strange cackling monkeys (see above) as large lizards scurried away.

Railay was far more laid back than the more touristy Koh Phi Phi. Many of the bars and restaurants would pump Bob Marley and encourage you to take your shoes off, put your feet up and enjoy a cocktail or Chang beer. Which, of course, I did.

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