Don’t miss part 1 of our adventure, The road to paradise is filled with kittens!
Phayam, Phayam, Phayam…. what is there to say about this island? Paradise? Perfection? The ultimate getaway? You know how sometimes you hear about a place, and there’s so much hype that when you get there it’s overblown? Well, unlike the Valve Sound System in London, Phayam is everything we had ever imagined an island in Thailand to be. There’s not much info on the island and had only read Dave from GoBackpacking.com‘s review from a couple years ago. He said that it was a small island, no electricity and no roads, and was a bit boring.
Is that a road or sidewalk?
Yes, it’s an elephant shower. Be careful when you back up.
This was exactly what we were looking for. A place off the beaten track. Somewhere there wasn’t someone hassling us every second for a suit, tuk-tuk or pancake. Somewhere we could unwind a bit and relax. From the sidewalk roads only made for motorbikes, to the solar powered electricity that shut off the lights at 11:00PM each night, Phayam exudes relaxation. If your looking for a party scene like in Phuket or Phangan, this is definitely not it. Nor if you want a huge variety. But if you want somewhere that has a 3KM long white sandy beach with small bars playing Reggae and Rock, a beach that you can stretch out on and not sit near anyone for 50 meters, this is it. We saw many families here with small children, and it’s defiantly the kind of place that both kids and parents can relax at without having to worry about the little tikes. Unlike other beaches, there’s very few people here and you pretty much have the entire place to yourself.
Cushions and beer, right on the beach.
Anna’s hiding behind the Chang. Notice the glasses they give to get everyone drunk out of?
We also found the perfect place to spend our two weeks on Phayam called Bamboo Bungalows. They were cheap, clean and had mosquito nets and free wifi access – as long as the solar power generated enough electricity for the signal that is! It was a good thing that there’s lots of sun here, however they do cut off electricity to the bungalows during the day, but there is a charging station in the restaurant you can use. They have a huge common area with tables, mats, hammocks and lots of large Changs. Chang is the beer that’s popular here, and I think we drank them out of their supply several times. The common area is pretty relaxed, and that’s where we managed to meet two cool cats, Anna and Adam from London. We managed to get the nickname “One more Chang” from the bar staff, as every night when they were packing up for the night we were still the only ones drinking. But that’s the kind of place that Koh Phayam is, time doesn’t really matter and you get to set your own pace of things. That pace is often very slow… and drunk in our cases.
1 more Chang! That’s fisherman on the horizon doing night fishing.
Did I mention the sunsets? It’s not often that I sit and watch the sun set, but Phayam has a built in alarm clock so you can’t miss it. If your having your afternoon siesta you don’t have to worry about missing the sunset, because like clockwork the alarm goes off 30 minutes before sunset. The alarm in this case are Cicadas, large beetle like creatures that emit an ear piercing mating call just before sunset. When you have 2000 of them all going off at the same time, it sounds like a fire alarm. It wakes you up, gets you out of your bungalow and down to the beach to enjoy a cold beer and the sunset. Which is also a perfect time to play a game of Madam du Pique with new friends.
Yes, this is a scooter. Yes, it runs.