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Ao Nang, Thailand

Where the sun starts its slow descent on our protagonists' adventure

sunny 29 °C

Following the exhilaration of diving in the Similan Islands we head to Ao Nang in Krabi for a few days of classic Thai beach relaxation time.

Thoughts of returning home are starting to sneak up on us. We dream sometimes of work and increasingly about seeing family and friends.

We resolve to make the most of our final 10 days and talk about what we'll do. Visit a beach or two and get in the water, find some great food and visit a few bars.

Ao Nang's a nice town with a seafront road of bars, shops and restaurants with plenty going on and, if not the best beach, a wonderful view out to sea of little islands jutting up. We sat watching the red sun set into the sea and heard a bit of a commotion as a small confused snake popped it's head over a wall, looked at all the people, and promptly retreated back into the rock.

We found a few seafood restaurants, continuing our habit of ordering fish, either deep fried in a sauce, or BBQ with a dip alongside sea food. The thrill of looking at the array of options, set out in icy rows, for you to point at and claim continues to excite. Clams in hot chilli paste, prawns in an earthy turmeric sauce, a sizzling sea food hotpot of octopus and prawns and a big vat of mussels in a spicy aromatic light green curry sauce. As ever the size and delicacy delighted.

There were quite a few party bars here too, reps on the street enticing you in, we chose one place as the friendly guide had pointed us in the direction of an Irish bar (a competitor) that I'd wanted to pop in to see how England were doing in the cricket (well, but it wasn't being shown). Having got to this rooftop place we saw table football and had a game or two, honours even since you asked, and were presented with plastic glasses of cocktails that we'd ordered and free shots. It's that sort of town. Another fave was a little hut selling cocktails with stools on the pavement. The folks working there had a real pride in what they were doing even if the bottles sometimes attracted a load of wasps. Sitting back away from the wasps we watched the evening sky and people in their glad rags wandering down into town.

In the day time we got a longtail boat to nearby Railay beach, which is pretty stunning, hid in the shade (natch) and read. There's a hippy vibe to the collection of shops and bars here and there were some pungent aromas around. We also took sea canoes out and explored some of the steep cliffs and a small island off the coast whilst the waves bobbed us about. We found a shallow section in the shade behind the island and swam around the canoe enjoying the warm water, the views and being on our own in the middle of the sea. The odd jumping fish splashed around us.

Along the back of the beach, away from the main drag, there's a little row of higher end bars and we sit with a draught Chang debating the best sunsets. Luang Prabang was good, we found a wall halfway up a hill away from the busy top, and sat with our legs hanging down as the sun set behind mountains over the Mekong. Vang Vieng was similar, but the mountains were closer so as the sun went down there they were wrapped in shadows; in Bagan, one slightly cloudy day, we had sat on the roof of our hotel, and the sky had become vivid orange, reds and even purples like a sci-fi film. In Gili Air, way back 3 months before, the sky turned into many colours too, but softer tranquil yellows and oranges. Those were the best skies, though these ones in Thailand we're the best for the pure unadulterated sun shot of a large red disc slowly sinking into the ocean.

Posted by TaylorElphicks 21:06 Archived in Thailand Tagged thailand ao_nang

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