Even in Thailand, life can become mundane if you let it. Chad and I were both feeling a little unsettled being so settled recently and decided that we needed to get away for the weekend. Through chance and happenstance we ended up deciding on Koh Kho Khao.
We had heard many good things about Khao Lak and originally decided that we would go there. It is just about a 2 hour drive north of Phuket and is known to have a relaxed atmosphere, beautiful beaches, and relatively inexpensive resorts in which to play and stay. So we (meaning Chad… Thanks Chad!) did the research and found us an amazing looking resort with villa’s, a private beach, a massive pool and kiddie pool with slides, and a small playground. It was called The Sunset Beach Resort and looked like it had the best of all things. We booked our fairly priced large room for the next night. Yep, it was very spontaneous. We started packing, all the while thinking we were going to Khao Lak.
The next morning as Chad pulled up the directions to our destination, he realized that we were not actually staying in Khao Lak, but Koh Kho Khao! Oops! It turned out to be a wonderful mistake though.
Koh Kho Khao (or KKK as it is called here, though I hesitate to use those initials… I can just imagine the google searches that will show up on my stats for that acronym) is in fact about a half hour north of Khao Lak and is a large island that can only be reached by ferry! My love of adventure was in full effect and I was so excited to see somewhere that I had never heard of and that was so close to home!
Our drive was uneventful, at least for Thailand standards… We have learned to ignore the fact that there are lines on the road and there are speed limits. Passing on a double yellow line… with oncoming cars barreling towards you… pfft… normal stuff here. And ghost riders (people driving on the wrong side of the road) are a constant, but don’t worry, we don’t participate in that one. I guess that makes us safe drivers,right? But seriously, I am exaggerating (a little).
Before I knew it we had arrived in a little village called Ban Nam Khem. The small streets and local shops reminded me of the Thailand that I fell in love with. It felt like authentic Thailand. Not touristy Thailand. It was refreshing and exciting!
Thank goodness for Apple Maps, because it got us right to our tiny little ferry to Koh Kho Khao. I have been on ferries numerous times in the past, but never one so small. Thank goodness Chad was driving, because in order to get on the ferry, you had to back up onto the minuscule ramp and park within inches from the edge of the boat. Yep… there is no way I could have done it. Chad made it look easy.
Just to show you how it was done, I took this video of another car backing onto the ferry.
We safely made it to KKK (woo hoo!) and drove on roads seemingly deserted roads for another 20 minutes until we arrived at the beautiful and surprisingly empty Sunset Beach Resort. The whole resort was ours until the evening and then it was just a few other families. We played in the pool, romped on the beautiful private beach looking for seashells. ate a wonderful dinner at the outdoor restaurant, and then slept like we had run a marathon.
The next day we played in the pool some more, ate a wonderful free buffet breakfast, and made our way back to Phuket. The ferry ride on the way back was even more fun, we were parked on top of the engines surrounded by a car, two other trucks, a large tractor, and a huge truck filled with some kind of fruit (maybe you can tell me what it is…see picture below). But, we lived to tell the tale. And made it back home to Phuket, whew!
I am going to post a full review of The Sunset Beach Resort next week, but I will say that it was the most fun and relaxing couple of days we have had in a long time. It felt so good to be on the road again for fun instead of a visa run.
If you are looking for a relaxing atmosphere with quiet beaches all within driving distance to Phuket, make the trip to Koh Kho Khao.
Now it’s your turn! Would you have been able to make it onto that ferry? Do you know what the kind of fruit is in the back of the truck in the picture above? We are going to be visiting other areas of Thailand once a month now, what area are you interested in reading about? Leave a comment and join in the conversation!