A Krabi Love Story

By the time I got to Krabi, the 10 days I spent in Thailand were coming to a close. I had been to the markets and the Chao Phraya River in Bangkok, I had lain on the beaches of Koh Samui, sipped fruity cocktails under a blazing sun and kayaked in  42-island national park. What more could there be? Could this trip get any more exciting, indulgent, escapist…

Krabi, a village on the southwest coast of the Thai isthmus, unfolded before me in a rolling landscape punctuated heavily by vegetation-covered cliffs. About a two-and-a half-hour ferry ride from Phi Phi, the filming location for The Beach (cue a topless Leonardo DiCaprio), this place was the stuff of more than dreams, it was the tangible, touchable conception of a remote island fantasy. Though Krabi had been noticeably touched by tourism (what parts of Thailand aren’t?), it had remained closest of kin with its original manifestation as a soft-sand, hot-sunned paradise enclosed by sky-high granite peaks.

When in Krabi… do as everyone else and smile at the locals, eat juicy pineapple off sticks at the beach, devour your weight in seafood at oceanside cafes, imbibe cases of Chang and roam around in general blissed-out delirium. We rode elephants (an activity I can’t endorse after seeing the poor creatures slop around in the mud after a rainy day) and did a tour called Four Islands (little tip here: reapply your sunblock and bring a hat. If it’s a sunny day, it will be scorching), to Chicken Island, Poda Island, Tup Island and Phra Nang Cave, snorkeling and swimming with swarms of tiny fish, and jumping 20 feet into the ocean like we had no other lives to come back to.

When it was time to go home, the frost bitten climate of Shanghai, our layover destination, thrust us toward unwelcome glimmers of reality, where we ultimately dispersed along the East Coast, from D.C., to NYC, Albany, and finally and most goosepimply, Buffalo.

Goodbye Krabi, we’ll always love you!

This we call, "feet and cliffs" (photo courtesy of Shawn Baisely)

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