A few days after arriving from Seoul I went down south for a short beach holiday with Lara Stone. It's about time I take a break as I haven't been on a holiday since May.
Our destination was the island of Koh Lipe in Satun. We stayed in the charming Castaway Resort on Sunrise Beach.
I loved Castaway! It was tastefully done and it does not have any of the tacky frills that one sees in regular beach bungalows in Thailand. The most admirable part of their operation is they try to go green. For instance, they recycle your bathwater to be used as water for flushing the toilet. And the people manning the resort are completely nice, on top of the wonderful food (we certainly got hooked on the fried somtam salad).
Koh Lipe is rather tiny. If I remember it correctly it's only like six kilometers square. The Chao Lay are the indigenous people living on the island, however since the boom of tourism, many people from the mainland have been living there, thus stressing the island's resources. Add to that the large number of tourists.
Koh Lipe's tourism is the only obvious industry on the island, with many construction projects going all over the place. We also saw heaps of garbage in some parts of the island, a common sight in many of Thailand's beaches. I hope somehow the residents and tourists of the island would get their act together to save it from becoming yet another beach that's victimized by unchecked tourism.
Other than that, Koh Lipe is quite a paradise. The views of the nearby island of Koh Adang, with its towering peak brimming with thick forest (most of the area is part of the Koh Tarutao National Park), is majestic. One afternoon Lara Stone and I kayaked from Koh Lipe to Koh Adang.
The green waters of Koh Lipe open up to a beautiful world of corals, fish, and other marine life. We snorkeled a couple of times, including a snorkeling day-trip, which brought us to a few nearby islands.
Other than that, it was a completely lazy holiday for us. We sat on hammocks facing the water, read, drank fruit juice, and took lots of nap. In the evening we had a few occasions of romantic walks on the beach or just sharing a hammock while watching the moon hover the water.