Lonely Beach, Ko Chang
This morning had me up early and ready to finally hit a proper beach. After waiting for the songthauw to fill up (and snapping silly self-portraits in the mirrored ceiling), I headed to Trat’s pier to continue my journey by slow-boat. Staying true to its name, the rusted ferry delivered me and a mass of European backpackers to Ko Chang’s shore in about an hour. After, we all headed to Lonely Beach, a supposedly more secluded beach along the island’s west coast. Given this was the group’s lone destination, something told me the secret was out about Lonely Beach.
Ko Chang, Thailand’s second largest island, is situated on the Eastern coast of the gulf. It is also known as Elephant Island because of the way its mountains appeared to loom out of the water as ships approached, like an elephant in their path. The entire island is part of a marine national park containing 46 other much smaller islands and some waterfalls. The falls are said to not be worth the trek inland if it is not during the rainy season, when run-off is plentiful. I have other opportunities to see falls in Northern Thailand so I took my time at Ko Chang easy. Opting for good food, swimming, resting, reading and acquiring a major sunburn.
I was the first of the backpackers to disembark the songthaw to check-in to Nature Beach Resort. The resort was not so cheap but was certainly worth its price. On the secluded grounds was a full restaurant with tons of vegetarian options, an internet cafe, a lending library, a lounge area with hammocks, a full bar and evening entertainment (a fire dancer whom I skipped as I was underneath my mosquito-netted bed suffering from my inflamed sunburn, half-convinced I had caught malaria). Interestingly, all of the backpackers who disembarked at the pier wound up here with me later in the day. In the sign-in book I made the observation that I was the only American in da house. Many, many Swedes, Brit folk, Aussies, Germans, French, Russians, it was like the U.N.
The beach was spectacular: the water, clear and cool, and the sun, blazing. Given the small length of the beach (and it being shared with several other resorts and hotels), it was tame, relaxing and very clean.
And since I mentioned their ample food choices, allow me to post my dinner of pad see ew with vegetables and tofu and a pineapple shake and my breakfast of muesli with soymilk and fresh pineapple, papaya, watermelon and banana.