We’ve been on the island of Koh Samui for 11 days now and we are truly loving life. Honestly – we haven’t done much of anything but that is totally fine by us considering the last 3 weeks. And when we first arrived here? I’ll be honest – we were a bit terrified.
Before arriving – we rented an Airbnb in advance (the listing is here.) Looks like paradise, right? It totally is – but when we first arrived we almost wanted to cry. Our amazing hosts arranged a pick up for us from the main ferry dock (after an hour and a half bus ride from the Surat Thani airport.) His name is Will and immediately after picking us up – him, holding up a piece of cardboard that he’d written our names on – he pointed to the mountain on the island. He said “we are going there!” Where he pointed was way up there – like way way up there.
I knew by the listing that we’d be up on a “hill” but I didn’t realize it was a mountain. And a very steep one at that. He drove us to our place after winding up hill after steep ass hill. Every time he turned and went up another hill I just had a thought of “holy shit.” Once we arrived we were greeted by one of our hosts named Sophie. She’s a beautiful Belgian girl who was super sweet right off the bat. I think she might have sensed our nervousness of being so far away from the main town (about 3 miles) in a place with no microwave or stove (only a fridge.) Regardless, we thanked her after she showed us around and then we were left staring at each other.
So many thoughts were running through our heads like “how the hell do we go about getting water?” (which we had none) or “how do we buy or cook/eat food?” (of which we also had none.) We were informed that a restaurant was located even further up the mountain and at that point – we knew it was our only option for the night. There was no possible chance of any human being walking down to the main road in town – it’s literally that steep. You’d die (probably not but it would take you forever, it’s about 2.5 miles away, and it’s beyond steep that you’d struggle profoundly.)
Our Airbnb hosts (Sophie and Loicq) offered scooters to rent but considering the fact that the hills are so steep and neither one of us had driven scooters/motorbikes before – it seemed out of the question. So we hiked our way up to the restaurant for some dinner and noticed that the restaurant offered a car to rent by the day. We asked about the car – wondering how much it would be to rent just for maybe an hour (to go to the store and back) and it turned out we were talking to the owner named Ouna. She spoke little English but caught on to what we were asking. She then offered to just drive us to the store the following day. I wanted to kiss her. This is also a testament to how nice the Thai people are.
The next morning we called Ouna and she told us she’d meet us in 15 minutes. She came down on her scooter and told us that it would actually be her husband named Kob who would be driving us to the store. Ever so gratefully he took us to the supermarket to stock up on water and food that didn’t need to be cooked (fruit, sandwich stuff, snacks, etc.) They were the sweetest couple ever! And we so needed them at that time. All of the sudden – things started looking up and very ‘doable.’
The next day we talked more with our hosts and Loicq offered to give Kile a quick scooter lesson up and down the mountain. He caught on super quickly – and now we were mobile. Our dread went from “holy shit” to “this is totally awesome.” At this point we realized what an amazing spot we were at, with such a great view and we were only a scooter ride away from anything we really needed. Not to mention – our hosts were so so gracious.
The building we’re staying in also had an additional guest room near ours. Turns out – our hosts had their friends Delphine and Dries (another Belgian couple) visiting them. We were invited to come upstairs to the main house for a BBQ. At this point in our travels – we’re not necessarily missing “home” but we’re just missing all the people we love. So a BBQ with people our age sounded absolutely perfect.
It wasn’t quick before we realized we really liked these people and this is what traveling is all about. We love meeting people from all over the world – discussing differences and similarities in culture – and forming a forever bond that we can take with us wherever we go.
Since then we’ve pretty much just chilled out in our beautiful apartment. Playing dice and cards, reading books, working a few hours a day, swimming in the gorgeous pool, watching the storms come and go and just taking in the scenery. We’ve only ventured to the nearest beaches as of yet but we have over a week and a half to still explore. We’ve gone out to dinner with our new friends and look forward to more evenings with them.
Another fun (a term used very loosely in this context) thing here is the wildlife. There’s tons of geckos, tokays (larger geckos), spiders and snakes. Yup. Freakin’ snakes. Since we’re snug against the jungle – we happen to run into these critters on a normal basis at this point. Mostly the geckos, thank goodness. We were sitting by the pool the other day when a snake came slithering up near us. I don’t think either one of us has moved that fast in our entire lives. That’s a big fat – NOPE.
There’s a lot to do on this island (the biggest in Thailand) – waterfalls to explore, beaches to see and new tattoos to get (surprise!) Stay tuned for our next couple weeks on the gorgeous island of Koh Samui.