Wild…. Is all I have to say about this place.
Wild jungle, wild food, wild views, wild parties…. Just….wild
- We had to take a ferry from Phuket to phi phi. This was a first for us to use a ferry as mode of transportation. It was about a 1.5 hr ride. As we were barely leaving port, we all witnessed a man running as fast as he could to catch the ferry. It looked like he was going to make s jump for it and everyone on the boat was cheering him on, but he stopped short. Booooooooo.
- For those of you who aren’t familiar with this island, it’s pretty small. There is also no main road that connects the whole island. There are foot trails that go through the jungle. To get around, you take water taxis that are traditional wooden longboats….. aka not the most reliable thing to be in when the water is choppy.
- Before Hina and Jonathan joined us, we had decided to stay at a hostel in the main part of the island, but due to lack of accommodations, we had to move to a more secluded part that could accommodate all 4 of us without breaking the bank. Usually I would cram people into a room, but being in a foreign country is not very forgiving about these rules.
- We originally stayed at Tohko Beach in a bungalow that is literally right on the water during high tide. It was as beach front as you can get. It’s a very secluded resort that is literally the definition of living off the grid. The power cuts out from 6am – 6pm, the bathroom is slightly in the wilderness, the only access to wifi is from the main lobby, and there were daily shuttles that went to and from port at 8am, 12:30 pm, 3:30 pm and 5:30 pm. This was probably the greatest chill time ever. Unfortunately, we only stayed there for 1 night because we didn’t even make it back to the hotel the next.
- We stayed at the port at the Chaokoh Phi Phi Hotel and Resort, close to the water taxis so that we could get to the taxis early (more about why we had to stay here below) When we first arrived to the hotel and explained our situation, they told us that there were no rooms available. We called them out on their bullshit because we had been on booking.com to check out available hotels and they had multiple rooms open. The guy at the counter was extremely flustered and was speaking to his co-staffer in Thai before he apologized and said that there was only 1 room available. So we had asked to go take a look. He took us to the older huts and when we opened the door….. I kid you not…. I wanted to die… the room looked like a scene from a serial murder waiting to happen. Tonga was nice about it and kept saying, ” Oh great…. oh look the bathroom… it has a tub.” I looked at her the entire time with my mouth wide open and was like…. ARE YOU SEEING WHAT I’M SEEING??? BECAUSE I SEE DEATH…. the staffer asked me if I liked it, and I looked him straight in the eye and said, ” no way.” I asked if another accommodation/ upgrade was available, because online, I had seen modern/contemporary rooms available. Finally he says, yes there is a room available and walks us to the most beautiful room ever. There was concrete, marble, wood, glass… everything was clean and sleek. It was only $60 for the night, so I said hell yes.
- Our main goal of Ko Phi Phi was to see the viewpoint. We all had woken up so early for the sunrise, that the water taxi wasn’t arriving for another few hours. So we killed time by swimming and snorkeling, sitting on the hammocks, swinging over the ocean, playing janga… we were truly off the grid. It was amazing. The intention for the day was to go to the port, hike to the viewpoint, find a beach, chill at beach, eat, shop, and try to stay out as late as we could. We had asked some of the water taxis, what the latest they would take us out would be and the best time and price we got was 7pm.
- Now originally, I wanted to go to the beach parties and it just didn’t seem like it was in our cards to do so since the gamble with the water taxis was that if it’s too late, the water could get too rough and then we wouldn’t make it home. Now earlier in the day, since we had been up since 6 am, we had seen these 2 girls come back to our hotel around 6:30, which meant that they had stayed over in the port overnight and got stranded. The ironic part about this was that we had been like LOL those girls… suckas!!! … but little did we know that would happen to us too.
- So 7pm was our safety time and we were set for the day. I had seen a sign that had the direction of the viewpoint on it, so I asked our host if we could just climb the jungle to get to the viewpoint instead of paying for a water taxi. She told me that yes, but it’s a bit challenging, but she believed in me…. THANKS!!!… but she really put too much faith in me…. ever since I did the 9 mile hike in Santorini, my mind keeps tricking me into thinking that I can do anything. She told me we would need water and to watch out for mosquitoes. I was like…. pshhh easy.. we have hella repellent and hella water…. WHAT A BIG MISTAKE.
- As we were going up the trek, which was barely marked, we realized quickly that this was a terrible idea. The climb was steep and narrow, but the thing that truly screwed us over were the mosquitoes. Those DAMN mosquito. Tonga and Jonathan took lead and I trailed behind Hina to make sure she was clear. I realized as we were going up, that HINA WAS MOSQUITO BAIT. She had a cloud of mosquitoes trailing after her and since I was behind her, they would run into me. I had to cut her off and go in front of her and attempt to run. When she wanted to take breaks, I had to push her to keep moving because they were settling on her legs. We had run out of repellent and didn’t have any lavender with us so we were fresh meat for the mosquitoes.
- We couldn’t even enjoy the hike. We went through butterfly forest where there were hundreds of butterflies floating around, but we had to keep moving because of the damn mosquitoes. I managed to look up at one point and see a sliver of a beautiful ocean/ jungle view, but that was short lived.
- Our host told us it was a 30 minute hike… but that easily turned into an hour long hike with a lot of casualties on our poor arms and legs.
- We finally had made it to the viewpoint and I bought myself an ice cream because I freaking deserved it.
- Once we headed into town, our main goal was the beach. We headed past all of the beach bars and went straight to take a dip in the cerulean ocean. That’s when it rained cats and dogs on us. We headed for shelter, before hunger took over. That’s when we had decided to see where the other side of the port was so that we knew how to get to our water taxi later.
- That’s when we ran into the 3 most perfect men I had ever seen in my life….. We call them the German 10s. Now that I know what a 10 looks like… I’ll never settle… I kid you not…. I turned around to talk to the group and then I just stared at these men and forgot what I was trying to tell Hina, Jonathan, and Tonga.
- Ok moving on…. so we went to get food, then we went back to the beach to chill and eventually found a hookah place. We stayed there for some time until it was around 6:50 pm or so and headed to the water taxi. We honestly tried very hard to go back to the hotel. We paid extra for the taxi and we were on our way. Once we got about half way in the water, we were at the point where 2 currents met in the ocean, I slowly realized that this boat had a huge potential of capsizing. The water was throwing us side to side and up and down. Hina doesn’t know how to swim. So I looked at her seriously and calmly told her that I needed her to remain calm. If she panicked, she would get hurt. I told Jonathan to grab a life jacket for her and himself and to make sure that they were strapped in. I then told them that if the boat capsizes, all they need to do is is face the ocean and not the land. The waves were pushing towards land, so it would eventually send them back to shore, but they should never turn their back on the waves. The waves weren’t crashing, they were just rolling at this point. But Tonga and I realized that it was enough to overturn the boat. The driver had also realized this and then told us he was going to turn around. So we turned around and headed back to the port, but not after we had a few more scares of the boat leaning to much to one side and then the other.
- This meant that we were stranded at the port… just like those girls from earlier in the morning. The only way to get back to the hotel would be to go through the jungle…. and there was no way in hell that we were going to go through the jungle at night.
- The taxi driver paid us back in full and told us to come back to him in the morning at 6 am. So the reason why we were in a rush to get back to our hotel was because at 9am, we had to catch a ferry to Krabi to catch our flight. Luckily I had built in enough time for us in case we missed our 9 am ferry so that we could catch an 11 am ferry. But we were determined to make the 9 am ferry. So this meant that we would have to leave port by 6am to get back to the Tohko by 7am to pack and take Tohko’s shuttle back to the port at 8am and go back to check out of Chaokoh Phi Phi Hotel and Resort (because their front desk opened at 7am and we had to physically be there to check out to get our deposit back) … this is getting confusing… I know… bare with me. So in short, here was the timing:
- 5:30 am wake up
- 6:00 am catch taxi to Tohko Beach
- 6:30 am arrive at Tohko
- 6:30 am – 8:00 am pack, have breakfast, and close out
- 8:00 am take water shuttle back to port
- 8:30 am check out of Chaokoh Phi Phi Hotel and Resort
- 9:00 am board ferry
- Now in an awesome world, this would have been a flawless gameplan…. but of course… nothing every goes right when you really need it to. So this is how it really went down:
- 5:30 am wake up
- 6:00 am went to catch taxi… they said we couldn’t leave until 7am because of low tide
- 6:00 am – 6:30 am I try to barter and convince other taxis to take us who weren’t in low tide… no one budges
- 7:15 am we’re able to leave to Tohko Beach
- 7:45 am arrive at Tohko
- 7:45 am – 8:00 am pack and close out
- 8:00 am – 8:05 am Hina stalls the water shuttle for the rest of us
- 8:45 am arrive at port
- 8:45 am – 9:00 Tonga has to run to Chaokoh Phi Phi Hotel and Resort to check out and print our boarding passes.
- 9:03 am Hina and I talk slowly to the boat operators to buy time for Tonga
- 9:05 am Tonga arrives and we are the last people to board!
- Our first goal was to find accommodations so that we could rest (it was a very eventful and long day…. we missed our afternoon nap time) and so that we could clean up. After looking at 2 different accommodations ( see accommodations section) we settled on one and cleaned up.
- Being in this part of town at this time at night meant one thing…. WE COULD GO TO THE BEACH PARTY!!!
- We really did try our best to get home, but Buddha obviously wanted us to go to the beach party. Additionally, none of us had a full extra outfit. I had another bathing suit; Hina had a romper, but no bra; Jonathan had no underwear, but bought a shirt and shorts; Tonga had shorts and a bathing suit top. Altogether, we would have had a full outfit, but individually, we all only had bits and pieces. But we weren’t going to let that stop us.
- We started our night out with buckets. When I saw the bottle of vodka being poured in, I felt my soul die a little bit. We headed for the beach and then it was game on.
- Phi Phi was nothing like I had ever experienced. Good music, chill people, an overall great time. We got painted, did the limbo, played with fire performers, and we danced until sunrise. We met so many people, but as always, I am super bad with names and remember no one. Additionally, the men were so handsome. I had never seen a 10 IRL before that wasn’t a celebrity and now I know that 10s are real.
- We really only ended up staying at the Chaokoh Phi Phi Hotel and Resort for 1 hour before we had to leave.
BEST TIME EVER…. totally worth all of the craziness of being stranded, almost getting our boat flipped, and getting all of our blood sucked by mosquitoes.