We finally got to the south of Thailand! After living almost 4 months in the lovely Chiang Mai it was about the time we reached the sea.
Chiang Mai was an amazing place to start our Asian adventure – full of Thai culture with plenty of western amenities and cheap prices! We understood why bloggers from around the world choose this place to settle down for few months to take a break from the live on suitcase and catch up with writing.
Koh Samui, from what we have seen so far, is far more touristic. It is a relatively small island with a very tropical feeling. Prices in restaurants are almost twice of what you would have expected to pay in Chiang Mai. There are lots of resorts, restaurants and Thai massage places on the beach. There is a large Russian community living in the island (in many places you can see price lists in Thai, English and Russian). Also surprised to see so many French bakeries and French products in the shops. Plenty of Italian restaurants – but that’s something to which we got used to in Chiang Mai.
Accommodation / Scooter & Car rental
Because we both work online we did not want to risk renting a room in a guest house first and then search for apartment/house when here. That was probably a mistake. Although we have found a lovely house with swimming pool about 2 weeks before arriving (www.overseaspropertyportfolio.com) we definitely could have saved at least 10.000 THB (220 EUR) if we were looking when here. Very soon we will add more info about our house to our accommodation page here.
On a first day we decided to rent a motorbike. There are literally hundreds of rental places here but most of them will either ask you to deposit your passport (which is a big No for us) or pay a cash deposit which you are always running into the risk of never seeing again. For those reasons we have decided to rent the bike via same agency we rented a house although it was 5000 THB (vs 3500 THB street price). The plus was that we did not have to pay any additional deposit and bike was delivered to our house.
After two days of driving, Anna’s stress level caused by traffic made us to upgrade the scooter to a car for an additional 15.000 THB. Oh Koh Samui you are being awfully expensive so far! However without a scooter or a car it will be close to impossible to live here. Its not Chiang Mai full of tuk-tuks and red songthaews (cheap taxi transport).
What we have seen so far?
On Saturday we have visited nearby Choeng Mon Beach before rain forced us to return home. It’s a small beach located in the north east of the island. Below you can see few images from there:
On Sunday we went for a trip around the island which took us 3 hours with 3 stops incl. lunch. The first stop was in Ban Pang Ka. The sky was getting gray and few drops of rain fell down.
The second stop was at Tong Yang / Ban Lipa Noi. We parked our car between Nikki Beach and Lipa Lodge. Beach was quite narrow but beautiful.
Our last stop was on the beach in Mae Nam region. We stopped on the side of the road and took a quick coffee and fresh coconut in a little bar right on the beach.
For more pictures from Koh Samui check out www.annasieniawska.com/Thailand/Koh-Samui
Shopping / Eating In & Out
Like in Chiang Mai there is 7/11 grocery shop on every corner. Other than that we have also shopped in 2 large super markets full of western products – Big C and recently opened Central Festival Plaza with Tops Supermarket. There are also few Tesco Lotus shops.
As mentioned before eating out seems to be almost twice as expensive as in Chiang Mai however groceries seems to be at the same price. One of the great features of our house here is full western kitchen with 4 stoves and oven. The plan for Koh Samui is to cook most of the meals ourselves. Roberto is a great cook and we both are in need of home cooked food.
What’s the plan?
The plan is to stay in Koh Samui at least ’till the end of April. Romo would love to find here few places where he could spin music. It maybe challenging as we are outside of high season but we still want to give it a goal. If he can spin music here we will most likely extend our stay. If we decide to move it will most likely be either Bangkok or Krabi/Phuket region.