Archive | January, 2012

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Yangon (Rangoon), Myanmar (Burma)

Posted on 20 January 2012 by brett

Yangon, Myanmar

With our Myanmar Visa’s in hand, we were finally ready to begin our next journey throughout Burma. After making speedy travel plans, we set off for Yangon (capital city, also “Rangoon”) at 5am in the morning without much of a plan and no real guidebook. We later realized this was a bit of a mistake, although prices have risen significantly since the latest Lonely Planet. Once we entered Burma (after paying the $10 gov’t entrance fee), we quickly realized we were decades behind other developing countries in Southeast Asia. Simple communication with the outside world had us scraping for internet access in the early morning. The government must slow down access starting in the afternoon.

Our day in Yangon was filled with wondering the streets, meeting people with bleeding red mouths, and Brett accidentally eating chicken toenails. Surprisingly, Burmese people in the tourism industry speak decent english, so we were able to make travel arrangements for Bagan at Vega Travel. We wondered how much affluence is contributed to British Colonialism vs. will to progress vs. job necessity. Continue Reading

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Crunchy Grasshopper in Chumphon, Thailand

Posted on 19 January 2012 by christie

It’s crunchy, it’s salty, it’s nutty and just a bit fishy too. It’s grilled grasshopper time! That’s right it’s time to try a taste of one of those nutritional insect snacks that have become a popular delicacy in so many parts of the world. Not only are insects high in protein, but they are also rich in vitamins and minerals. We just might be missing out back in the United States! Continue Reading

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Snorkeling Mecca in the Thai Islands

Posted on 17 January 2012 by brett

Christie snorkeling in Koh Rok

We’ve had some of the best snorkeling days while hopping around the Thai Islands. Brett and I have found our new favorite water sport! Two of our most memorable snorkeling days were at Koh Rok Island (near Koh Lanta & Phi Phi Islands) in the Andaman Sea and at the Nangyuan Islands (near Ko Tao) in the Gulf of Thailand.

Ko Rok Island
On the first snorkeling trip, we took a speedboat to Koh Rok Island. The 45 minute boatride was quite choppy, causing sea sickness for some. However, as we approach Koh Rok, the beautiful pristine crystal blue waters and and powdery white sand beaches that awaited us were well worth the trip. The island is virtually deserted except for those making the trip out for the day. The surrounding lagoons and waters hold some of the best snorkeling in the area. Continue Reading

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Ko Tao “Turtle Island”

Posted on 16 January 2012 by brett

Nangyuan Island - Ko Tao

Nangyuan Island - Ko Tao

Our trek from the Andaman Sea to the Gulf of Thailand was quite a gnarly adventure. One relaxing week around Koh Lanta helped prepare us for a bit faster pace at Koa Tao Island. We also needed to move back towards Bangkok to receive our next round of immunizations and extend our 30-day Thailand tourist visa.

We decided to take an 11:30am bus to Krabi and then onward to Suratthani and Ko Tao. Our bus was packed with about 12 travelers, but luckily we had A/C for the first two and a half hours. At Krabi, we waited in a garage-like travel agency for a few hours for a Suratthani transfer bus. With left Krabi in a new van with a slightly smaller set of travel companions. Our new driver threw us a curveball by dropping us off separately at a travel agents’ office for a transfer ride in Suratthani. We waited a few hours in the muggy, mosquitoey air for a lift to the Suratthani pier. After a bizarre pickup truck ride with the agent and a young chubby Thai boy, we were dropped at the pier around 7pm. The pier scene reminded us of a mini Bangkok with tons of street food vendors, motor bikes and young night goers. We now had four hours to kill before our long night ferry ride to Ko Tao. Continue Reading

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Koh Lanta Island – The Right Speed for Everyone

Posted on 14 January 2012 by brett

Cruisin' to Koh Lanta Park

We arrived at Koh Lanta Island via flight from Bangkok and then Ferry Boat from Krabi Airport on 1/6/12.

Our original two night stay at Emerald Lanta Resort turned into seven adventure-packed days. For 1500 baht ($50), we had very basic bungalow accommodations (A-20) including breakfast. For the last five nights, we were able to upgrade to a much nicer bungalow (A-14) for 1300 baht ($43) without breakfast. Most vacationers were couples or families from Sweden, England, Holland and France. We were the only Americans besides one dude from Los Angeles who wrecked himself in a motorbike accident. Continue Reading

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