THAILAND DIARY: KOH PHI PHI – PART ONE: ARRIVAL

We arrived in Krabi, and decided to head across to Koh Phi Phi for a few days. We had been before on a day trip, when previously travelling around Thailand, but this time we actually wanted to see what the island had to offer and explore it a little more.

We ended up going to a shop in Krabi that sold tours, and they also sold ferry tickets across to Koh Phi Phi and Phuket. What started off at 600 baht each to get to Koh Phi Phi, soon changed to 300 baht each. Never agree on the first price, as they will always charge you more otherwise. Say you’ll go elsewhere, and they usually agree to do it for the cheaper price. A lot of people don’t agree with doing this, but they are still making money, and as a backpacker, every little helps. The woman also tried to tell us to buy our ferry ticket to Phuket at the same time. She said on the island of Koh Phi Phi, we wouldn’t be able to get a ferry ticket to Phuket for cheaper than 700baht. We refused the offer, knowing that she was probably trying it on, and we were right. We ended up getting a ferry ticket to Phuket for 250 baht while we were on Koh Phi Phi, so never listen to someone if they tell you this. It’s a scam to get them more money. Luckily, we didn’t fall for it.

The next morning, the bus picked us up directly from our hostel. It was around an hours drive to the ferry port. When we arrived, several other buses from other hotels and hostels in Krabi, had arrived. So it was busy. The driver pretty much pointed in the direction of a building, then left us to it. We didn’t have a clue where to go or what to do. All we had was a receipt in our hand, saying we had 3 tickets from Krabi to Koh Phi Phi for the afternoon ferry. We followed the direction of everyone else, and a member of staff in the building grabbed our receipt, and told us to sit in the waiting area. We were a little confused, as there were no boards or information about when the next ferry was leaving. After half hour waiting, we went up to a counter to ask a member of staff what to do with our receipt and what ferry we needed to catch. Plenty of other people on our bus from our hostel were still in the waiting room, so we weren’t panicking that we had missed our ferry, we just wanted to know what to do! Luckily at that moment, there was an announcement over the speaker for everyone on the Koh Phi Phi ferry to queue up at the gates. Luckily we were already there, so we were first in the queue and had timed it perfectly. The guy swapped our receipt for 3 tickets, and then we were let through the gates and made our way to the ferry.

20160927_123801.jpgWaiting at the Ferry Port to go to Koh Phi Phi

We were the first to get on the ferry, so being a sunny day we made our way to the top to sit outside, so we had the views and would catch a bit of a tan along the way. We knew the ferry journey was going to be nearly 2 hours long, so always go prepared with snacks and water. Also, wear plenty of sun cream. I was burnt by the time we got to Koh Phi Phi, and I had put loads on before we left.

14753385_1005908766202505_7096795965695242116_o.jpgLeaving Krabi

The guys that worked on the ferry took our bags, and put them all at the back of the boat. So it’s worth having any valuables you own, kept with you. Also leave nothing breakable in your bag/suitcase, and they all do get piled on. We were a bit cautious about this at first, as we didn’t want anyone to pick up our bag by mistake, when we arrived at Koh Phi Phi. But we soon realised, they were never going to get far, and even if they did take it, they would have only have got a bag of clothes. My camera gear etc, anything worth something, was with me in person, in my day pack.

We arrived in Koh Phi Phi to lots of rain. It was absolutely chucking it down. The sun we had most of the way, and in Krabi, was long gone. The staff do cover the bags up with waterproof sheet, so luckily, our bags were kept fairly dry. We all got into our bags and took out our waterproofs, and tried to wait back on the boat as long as possible, until the rain slowed down. Luckily by the time we had got off, it had almost stopped.

20160927_152730
Arriving on the pier at Koh Phi Phi

We walked along the pier and were greeted by the sight we had fell in love with on our first trip to Koh Phi Phi. We got to the gates and was told we’d have to pay a fee to get onto the island. The first time we visited Koh Phi Phi, we never had to pay a fee. So whether this is a scam, I don’t know. Although is was only something like 20baht, so not even 50p in English Currency, so we just paid it, rather than kick up a fuss over nothing.

Walking onto the island, be aware everyone comes out in their flocks to greet you, and to get you to use their hostel, or their tour service. My advice, ignore all. They will all be working on commission, and it will be cheaper to walk to the hostel yourself. They agree to carry your bags, and tell you it’s such a trek, but it really isn’t. The island is pretty small. If you can carry your bags for at least 20 minutes, you’ll be fine. Be aware, if you have a suitcase with wheels, the streets aren’t exactly smooth, and we had to walk across the beach to our hostel. So it’s worth baring in mind, as I should imagine it would have been tricky without a backpack!

Before you arrive to Koh Phi Phi, look up some ideas for a hostel to stay in, and where roughly it is on the island. We knew we wanted to stay in Stones, as we had heard good reviews, and knew it was on the back of the island on the beach. We also knew there were a few hostels around it, that were also good, incase that was full. At first, it’s hard to figure out which way to head around the tiny streets of the island. But we literally headed in a straight line, straight towards the back of the island, then walked up to the beach, until we got to Stones. In busy periods, November – April, it’s worth booking in advance, as the island does get busy. We were there in September, and we literally got the last 3 beds in Stones. It was fully booked for the next few days we were there and many hostels had full on their doors, while we were walking around.

14492404_988916144568434_2819489815809688209_n.jpgStones Hostel – Koh Phi Phi

Subscribe to my blog to find out what I got up to on the rest of my trip to Koh Phi Phi, and the rest of my travels. Part 2 coming up soon.

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