Today we decided to spend most of the day just chilling on the beautiful Tanjung Rhu beach. We just liked that place so much and decided to go back. It’s everything you’d want from a tropical beach – white sand, blue water, breathtaking scenery and relaxing atmosphere with not many people around.
But our journey started with quite a adventure. About 3km from our hostel while we were driving with our scooter I gazed at the mirror and suddenly saw a huge cloud of white smoke coming from the back of our bike accompanied by an oil spill and a sudden loss of power. Just great!, I thought! Luckily it didn’t happen on the other side of the island. So we pulled over and called an emergency number given to us from the hostel. After about half an hour of waiting they came to get us… with another scooter that was basically just as broken as ours :). Either way we somehow limped back to the hostel with both 2 scooters creating a massive hole in the ozone layer (luckily it wasn’t that bad but still 🙂 ). There we were given a substitute machine with about half a million miles on it. But hey, at least the engine was working properly :).
These kind of things can happen, especially with rental machines and since it wasn’t our fault all repair works will be covered by the hostel. Big thanks to them for such a quick reaction to come to get us and providing us with a new scooter! But still, their machine park is in a need of an update :).
In the end we got to the beach and spent most of the day there as planned. I don’t know is it due to the fact that we’re nearer to the equator but middays here are really scorching! So definitely bring sun-screen and every once in a while stay in the shadows while visiting Langkawi.
And one more thing. Maybe at first you may not like Langkawi as much as some other places but this island has a tendency to grow on you :). Just look at it…
So today we visited the most popular tourist attraction here in Langkawi – the cable car, sky bridge, oriental village and other related attractions. And I can tell you right now that this place is really really worth a visit. Entrance fee is 55 ringit per person and for that you’ll get a ride with the cable car, entrances to Sky Dome (where a space roller-coaster movie is projected to the ceiling), SkyRex ( a fun 4D attraction where you’re visiting the Dinosaur island) and 3D museum (you can find really beautiful artworks and 3D effect expositions there). There is some queuing involved so it’s recommend to visit as early in the day as possible. And if you’re going alone or in a company of 2 you’re also lucky while using the cable car. Since gondolas are for 6 people they very often let up to 2 people ahead in the queues so all places would be taken.
For additional 5 ringgit (when you decide to walk a short nature trail) or 15 ringgit (special lift to the bridge) you can visit the Sky Bridge and enjoy magnificent views from there. If you have already taken the journey to the top of the mountain I’d really advice you to visit the bridge also. But be careful if you’re afraid of heights since the bridge (and of course the cable car track) is located quite high above the ground. But all the scenery there and all over Langkawi is really breathtaking, no wonder it’s called the Jewel of Kedah (Kedah is a county in Malaysia).
Here’s a an overview of our adventures in Langkawi so far. It’s unfortunate that you really can’t capture all that beauty with the camera. So you have to come and see for yourself :). Feel free to follow me on YouTube to see all the other videos from our SE Asia trip + everything yet to come :)!
4 days ago we rented a scooter to have a proper look of the island. There are 2 bigger areas on Langkawi – one is the main city Kuah and the other is the tourist area Pantai Cenang near where we are located. And the rest of the island is full of smaller towns, villages, beautiful mountains, beaches, rice fields, forests and jungle. In some way (of course besides the mountains and jungle 🙂 ) it reminds my of an island called Saaremaa back home. Beautiful scenery, laid-back atmosphere and just an overall relaxing place to be. Since for some reason accommodation is not so cheap here compared to many other regions of SE Asia our hostel is maybe not the dream place to stay but in the big picture it doesn’t matter. Because when you get on your scooter and start driving around then you have to be really careful to watch the road since you find yourself constantly in awe of the surrounding nature.
By now we have basically made a full circle around the island and discovered some very picturesque places. For instance I highly recommend to visit Gunung Raya mountain which is the highest peak in Langkawi and easily accessible with a scooter or a car. On top of the hill there’s a a viewing tower (RM 10 entrance fee) from where you can see magical 360 views of the whole island (since the mountain is situated right in the middle of Langkawi).
Secondly one of the most beautiful beaches we’ve ever been are just a bit north from the mountain at Tanjung Rhu. The sand is white, water is blue (although still not as clear as in Phuket) and there are not much people around due to it’s remote location. Of course there are still some top-notch resorts located there and some local villages but still it’s really quiet. The beach actually consists of 2 parts but I’d recommend to visit both of them. We will definitely go back there in a few days!
Thirdly a must see place also located in the northern part of the island is Temurun waterfall where a small stream comes down from a rather high cliff into a beautiful clear water pool continuing it’s way through the forest. It’s actually quite easy to miss since there are not many signs around but when you look at the google maps you’ll find it.
By the way scooter rental here is 20 ringgit a day (about 4€) and one liter of gas is around 2,3 ringgit (about 0,48€) so driving around is really inexpensive! You have to be careful about the police though. Sometimes they like to put up roadblocks and check the documentation and as in Thailand to 100% legally drive a scooter you need a A category licence since scooters here are much more powerful.
Tomorrow we plan to visit Langkawi Cable car and Skybridge which are probably the main attractions on the island. More about that in the next posts :)!
We stayed at Phuket for 7 awesome weeks. As before I wrote down all our daily expenses to get a better overview ourselves and share it with you. Compared to Chiang Mai for example Phuket is definitely a bit more expensive but the difference isn’t big. It’s still a really affordable place to live. Once again these are our average costs per day for 2 people. Of course there were a lot of days where we didn’t have to pay for any entrance fees for example but to simplify things I averaged everything out. So here goes
- Groceries (this includes different food items, detergent, shampoo and all other similar things – 205 baht
- Transport (in case of Phuket it contains only scooter rental, gas and taxis to/from airport) – 200 baht. Our scooter rental for 5 weeks was 4500 baht
- Eating out (also includes breakfast) – 360 baht
- Entrance fees (our island hopping trip, massages, saunas and such) – 187 baht. By far the most expensive was our boat trip 1600 baht each. Without it you could save a lot but Phi Phi is still one of the must see places 🙂
- Shopping (clothes, new backpack, flip-flops and such) – 105 baht
- Other (mobile internet, cash withdrawal fees, washing clothes, scooter driving fine 🙂 ) – 76 baht
Our accommodation cost in Phuket was 17800 baht. So in total we spent around 57000 baht (about 1485€). In conclusion our monthly cost was slightly under 1200€! And for that kind of money you get a very decent living, scooter for the whole time and everything else you could wish for. Well, of course we got some great prices through our friend (he is more than welcome to help so let me know if you plan to travel there and are in need of a scooter for example). I believe that actually for about a 1000€/month you could do pretty well in Phuket.
Sending sunshine :)!
Here are first comments/thoughs about Langkawi during our 3 days in here:
Until the next post!
As I’m writing this post we’re already at Langkawi, Malaysia. But only after quite a journey once again since our flight to Langkawi was postponed (although it happened already quite while back and we were aware of it) and basically we had to spend a night in Kuala Lumpur airport. Wasn’t too bad but wouldn’t want to do it again.
First impressions of Langkawi are that it’s really rather quiet here. It’s basically the same size as Phuket but a a lot less people live here plus we are not staying in the main tourist area. The nature is beautiful and a lot of discovering awaits us. It seems that there’s some kind of construction boom going on in here and there are a lot of huge half-finished buildings everywhere. The only thing is that a lot of these places look like they have been half-finished already for 10 years. Seems strange but probably there’s a good reason behind it. But you will hear about Langkawi in the future posts, here are some final thoughts about Phuket.
First I’d like recommend our by far favorite eating place in Phuket where at least in our opinion best food in Thailand is served. It really actually doesn’t have a name but here are some photos to help locate it when you happen to be in that area. Besides the tasty food prices are also reasonable and service is spot-on! (although they don’t speak very much english there). Basically we went to eat there every day 🙂
Secondly if you have time to visit only one place in Thailand we’d recommend Phuket because it just has so much to offer! One of the places we will definitely visit again :)! And finally I also made one more video of our adventures in Phuket, hope you’ll enjoy it :)!
All the best!
Although we still have a few days left here I’d like to share our list of places to see and activities you can’t miss during your the stay in Phuket. Once again most of them have already been mentioned in the previous posts but it’s always good to have an overview. Here goes (in no particular order) 🙂
- Go to the beach! Enjoy the sun, swim in the warm sea, do whatever you want to do but go to the beach :)! I would especially recommend Yanui, Nai Harn, Ao Sane and Bang Thao beaches but there is just a huge choice here!
- Drive on the west coast of the island. It’s full of beautiful beaches, mountains, views and just all in all magical nature accompanied by a small town or a bigger city every now and then.
- Rent a scooter. Honestly, if you plan a bit longer stay then scooter is necessary to get around the island. But of course be careful in the traffic!
- Windmill viewpoint – one of the best views on Phuket. In addition cute kittens live there 🙂
- Promthep cape – after a 15 min hike you can enjoy the nature at it’s fullest. Truly a sight you won’t forget!
- Chalong sauna – a truly vivid local experience + the sauna itself is just great! I don’t know what kind of herbal mixture they are cooking there but after each visit you will feel revitalized!
- Phuket weekend night market – the best market on the island. You can find basically everything from there! Opened from 4pm every weekend.
- Monkey hill – although monkeys living there are still wild animals they grow on you really fast and you get the urge to visit them again and again 🙂
- Phi-Phi islands and Maya bay – I know it’s a commercial touristy thing. But still, the islands are really beautiful and you can’t miss them while you’re here. But be advised, if you choose to go with a speedboat, sit in the back :)!
- King Rama IX park – a really beautiful park in the middle of Phuket town. Although it’s currently undergoing some renovations it’s still a great place to have a walk, feed the fish or do some exercise!
- Ton Ao Yon waterfall – a magical small waterfall in the middle of the jungle. Once again, you can’t miss this!
- Phuket aquarium – a great place to visit with a very reasonable entrance fee. Definitely worth a visit!
- The Big Buddha – one of the icons of Phuket. Although I’d say it’s still under construction the statue itself is beautiful and views from the hilltop just breathtaking!
- Go snorkeling – Phuket and Andaman sea has one of the most beautiful underwater scenery!
- Visit Central Festival shopping mall – it’s actually a pretty nice shopping mall with a lot to offer (including a cinema) plus quite often beautiful live music or dance shows are being performed near the main entrance.
- Enjoy the sunset from one of the many beautiful viewpoints!
- Go to the beach when it’s dark. Usually it happens here around 6-7 so it’s not late. But in the evenings most of the people have gone from the seaside and you can enjoy the beautiful sound of the waves and distant lights flickering on the water.
- Just enjoy yourself! As I’ve said before Phuket has a lot to offer to everyone! From great beaches to vivid nightlife in Patong area, it’s up to you! Just inhale the beautiful nature, kind people and a tender scent of paradise…