Sunday, May 7, 2017

Thailand [COLDPLAY] 2/5 : Phuket and Beautiful Lookout at Phi Phi Island

"Take a good look at God's wonders - 
they will take your breath away"
- Psalm 66 : 5

Wednesday, 5 April 2017
Tried to sleep for few hours and woke up in early morning, our flight to Phuket is at 8.20 AM, it took almost 2 hours, kinda afraid to fly on that condition and thinking that I still have 4 flights are just made me terrified. Okay, I shouldn't focus on that damn hurt left ear. I tried to cover my left ear with tissue during the flight, eating gums, yawning, drinking water and do whatever I found in Google. Yay, I can handle this flight and the flight was smooth, the pilot doing his job very good, I didn't feel the sudden changing pressure really bad like I had on my first flight.
had breakfast for SGD 4.8 for Tea, Butter Toast & 2 Soft Boiled Eggs
Immigration Card to be filled to enter Thailand

Welcome to Phuket!

So excited to finally be here, landed on 9.10 AM, it will be so short and I hardly keep insisting to go to Phi Phi Island for Phuket because that was my main destination in Phuket. The airport is quite big and nice yet pretty empty. I bought Sim Card there (AIS), 199 Baht including Internet 1.5GB if I am not mistaken, because I only have around 3-4 days in Thailand so I think that's enough. They will help you to install so leave it to them, they also will need your passport, just one passport. We decided to stay in Phi Phi Island and already booked our hotel in advance. 

We are planning to take airport bus from airport to Phuket Old Town Bus Terminal (100 Baht), Airport Bus has the schedule but not on-time, and from Old Bus Terminal to Rassada Pier by Tuk Tuk and plan to catch Ferry to Phi Phi Island on 11 AM or at least we need to take Ferry on 1.30 PM. Airport Bus located near Exit Domestic Arrival. Since we landed at International so we need to walk, from Exit International Arrival go to the left and walk to Domestic Terminal, walked around 15 minutes.
Airport Bus at Domestic Terminal
How to get to Phi Phi Island from Phuket International Airport?

Options 1 : Take Airport Bus (100 Baht) to Phuket Old Bus Terminal, from there take Tuk Tuk to Rassada Pier (I read it's 15 minutes and 100 Baht/tuk tuk) and buy the Ferry ticket there to Phi Phi Island (sorry I don't know the Ferry ticket cost if you are buying directly on the pier, from I read it's around 400 Baht). Airport - Rassada Pier took around an hour but I don't know if Airport Bus, might spare your time like 1,5 hours to Pier. Rassada Pier - Phi Phi Island take 2 hours by Ferry.

Options 2 : Take Taxi Meter from Airport, if you take directly inside the airport from a booth somehow they say they want take meter but they will ask additional 100 Baht for the driver, I don't know for what butI rode this taxi, and I saw the meter is almost 600 Baht from Airport to Rassada Pier so I paid 700 Baht. For the Ferry ticket, I bought in Airport for 400 Baht. Once in Pier, you need to find the agent booth that stated on your Ferry ticket and do Check-in, you will get a sticker. They will tell you which boat are you in, and you can go directly to your boat.

From those options, I took the Options 2 because I was kinda in a rush and luckily I met a guy from France. He approached me when I was planning to buy Airport Bus ticket and telling me if he also wants to go to Phi Phi Island. We chatted for a while and finally decided to sharing cost for Taxi to Rassada Pier. We also bought Ferry Ticket (400 Baht) together in the airport. Thanks to him we got to sharing cost and enjoying the taxi ride to the Pier.

Watch out Scamming!

When we get off at the Pier, there was a local guy from one of agent approaching us and asked our ticket, without knowing it and thought he is an officer of the Ferry, we followed him. Apparently, he is from another agent who tried to offer us to buy Ferry ticket from Phi Phi Island to the pier and asked for 400 Baht. We still thinking and plus he said, if you buy the Ferry ticket in Phi Phi Island directly it would be more expensive, we were kinda distracted by his statement, this is kinda tricky because based on my experience in Lombok, it's almost similar experience and well at there, the guy telling me the truth but in here, don't believe what the guy said to you, if you don't know you can ask but if you can't ask then use your instinct hehe. 

Finally we decided not to buy the ticket there and tell him it's okay we will buy at Phi Phi Island. His face bit changing and looks upset and he said okay your boat is on the right side. We still have time waiting for our boat, it's 1.30 PM though. We sat on the bench, I checked my ticket and I read agent's name on the envelope written on the back side and I saw the booth with the same name as stated in my envelope for the ticket. I was curious and went to that booth for asking. Apparently you can check in first on that booth and get your sticker then they will show you which boat, so the guy that offered me to buy Ferry ticket was totally wrong when he told me which boat I should get in. This agent also tried to offer people before me to buy return ticket from them but they refuse and they didn't offer to me maybe because they thought I am local :D If you read this, well, you can save 50 or even 100 Baht then!
inside the Ferry boat to Phi Phi Island from Rassada Pier
We are lucky because the Ferry leave earlier than schedule, one hour faster from schedule, yay! feel so happy about it. We were soooo tired since we didn't get good sleep so we slept tight on the Ferry. After 2 hours, finally we arrive at Phi Phi Island. Woww!! I am in love with it!! The emerald color of the water, the lovely! When you enter Phi Phi Island you need to pay 20 Baht, for Clearance Fee or something.

Welcome to Phi Phi Island!
after 2 hours we arived at Phi Phi Island, wohooo! :)
Went to find our hotel that we booked already by GPS. My first impression with Phi Phi Island was the island reminded me with Gili Trawangan in Lombok. It's so crowded with tourist and I didn't see any Indonesian there. So many stalls or Cafe or Hotel along the way. We kept walking to find our hostel, well, the location was like 15 minutes walk from pier if you already know the way but it took us about 20 - 25 minutes to find the hostel. Following Google Maps is pretty easy though and you can just ask people there when you are already close by.

Almost same like its name, Viewpoint, so it's close with Phi Phi Viewpoint where you can see Phi Phi Island from the top. Checked in to Phi Phi Ingphu Viewpoint Hotel, around 633 baht/room/night for 2 people, Standard Fan Room with Bathroom inside. The Hotel was quite nice, but be careful if you carry lot of stuff since the stairs are too steep, luckily our room is not on the top haha. Arrived at Hotel and first thing I did was lying on the bed, so tired and what a long journey. 

We had lunch at Harmony Thai Food, a restaurant next to Harmony House. It's really cheap there, I had my Fried Rice for 60 Baht and Orange Juice in can 20 Baht. The Fried Rice is so different with Indonesian one and I like it. We need to feed ourselves before getting to Phi Phi Viewpoint since you need to climb up the stairs, so you need energy to do so.
Okay, now we are full and ready to climb up. Still figure out for tomorrow plan since we actually want to do Island Hopping but rent a private boat might expensive for both of us. Well, we will find a way later but first, let's go to Phi Phi Viewpoint, climb up for about half an hour, what a work out for me, so exhausted and can't wait to reach the top. Entrance Fee is 30 Baht and they have 2 Viewpoint.

When we reached the top, it's truly wonderful up there. At Viewpoint 1 you can spot "I Love Phi Phi Island" signage there and I really love the view. From there we plan to go to Viewpoint 2 where you need to going up again, walk about 15-20 minutes. And once you reach the top, it was so crowded when I went there..I arrive in the afternoon around 5.30 PM. It's packed with people but such a beautiful lookout, amazing view from the top! I love it! Spending time there for a while, taking pictures for sure and enjoying the breeze from the top. No Sunset because the cloudy but thankfully it's not raining :)
sooo crowded at Viewpoint 2 haha
me & Nessa :)
Decided to stroll around the island at night and try to find a boat for tomorrow trip, anyway there are so many agents providing tour or ferry boat ticket there so no worries, beside most of them will ask 350 Baht for Ferry to Phuket and not 400 Baht, so it's cheaper to buy at Phi Phi Island. And believe me, if you go more into the middle, far from the front side of Phi Phi Island, you can get like 300 Baht for Ferry. 

We asked some agents for the tour, the price is vary but mostly they have variation tour like Half Day which most of them start at 10 AM - 1 PM, cost 450 Baht or Full Day. We always asked if we can go earlier than 10 AM, since we need to go back to Phuket around 2 or 3 PM. Some of them couldn't do it unless you want to book private boat but don't worry because there are plenty agent that you can find until you get the good one for you. We found this agent which offer us 1200 Baht/ person to Early Tour but you need to pay another 400 Baht for entering Maya Bay. Our budget for both of us if we need to rent a long tail boat or speedboat or whatever is 3,500 Baht so we thought that's quite good deal and fit into our budget, beside we can buy Ferry boat ticket for 300 Baht there. The agent located near the stairs when we going down from Phi Phi Viewpoint. Okay, maybe we should try option and try looking another one.

Finally, we walk a bit to the front side of Phi Phi Island and along the way we found this agent which is the Early tour is pretty same like before and the price is 1,200 Baht which is exactly the same BUT the lady told us, it's already included the fee for Maya Bay, and we were like, seriously? She also sell the Ferry Boat ticket for 300 Baht but for the 11 AM and 2.30 PM, so we thought we want to board at 2 PM Boat so the price is 350 Baht. And thankfully she gave us discount for the tour, so 1,100 Baht/person for earlier tour with Speedboat plus 350 Baht for the Ferry ticket back to Phuket. The trip will start on 6.30 AM until 10 AM with Speedboat since we only have limited time in Phi Phi Island. It's quite expensive but still okay comparing with previous offer.
we bought the tour package there

Finished with booking, we were starving and I don't know we just like the restaurant that we went before for lunch so we went back to that restaurant for dinner. Surprisingly it's really crowded there, no wonder when we went there, there are so many pictures hanging on the wall with the customer's messages and pictures, it turned out this place is this crowded haha. I had Noodle with Soup and drink for total 80 Baht. We love it, spent some time there before going back to hotel to sleep. Phi Phi Island especially the front side is going to be so crowded and they won't sleep because they do party all night long. If you plan to party like them then stay on the hotel in the front side would be perfect choice for you but we stayed far a bit from the crowd so you will find our hotel is away from the crowd and I like it beside the price haha
at Harmony Thai Food (again)
Dinner time! :D
Thank you for reading my blog and next part is Maya Bay, where movie from Leonardo Di Caprio "The Beach" taken and made this beach so famous :)

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