I jumped, my mask firmly in place, biting on my snorkel. The warm translucent water enveloped me, millions of bubbles forming right before my very eyes. Once my vision cleared, the underwater world of Koh Rok opened right before my eyes, gigantic mounds of healthy corals teeming with colorful tropical fishes. Paradise.
That morning was almost a typical one during our stay at Koh Lanta. We woke early and had a leisurely breakfast at Soontreeya Resort. The only difference was, instead of simply wasting another day walking around and lounging at Long Beach, we actually have something else to do.
|KOH LANTA ISLAND FROM THE FERRY|
A songthaew truck from Rainbow Lanta Travel & Tour soon picked us up, carried us off along its open back and dropped us at Long Beach. We could’ve walked, but I guess the experience of riding at the back of the 4x4 with other backpackers was an experience in itself.
|PARTING THE WATERS OF THE ANDAMAN SEA|
From the beach, we boarded a handsome speedboat with about 20 other travelers and were soon careening over the waters of the Andaman Sea, ripping through its blue-green waters with abandon. It took an hour before we stopped in the middle of Man Sai Bay, surrounded by a few scraggly islands replete with hardy vegetation, and donned our snorkels and masks, it was swimming time!
|SNORKELING TIME AT MAN SAI BAY|
|SEARGENT MAJORS ALONG THE REEF|
Water clarity was very good and the marine life, overwhelming. Fishes swam freely, unafraid of us, and the seabed was replete with colorful hard and soft corals. It was a bonus that the water was warm to our skin, making it quite hard for the boatmen to convince us to go back on the boat.
Lunchtime! They called, that made us swim back to the boat in a jiffy.
|KOH ROK NOK ISLAND|
|SPEEDBOATS DOCKED AT THE SHORE OF KOH ROK NOK|
Lunch was held at the nearby Koh Rok Nok Island. It was quite beautiful. The shore is lined with very fine white sand complemented by clear aquamarine waters. This place is easily one of the most beautiful I’ve seen in the whole of Thailand.
|OUR PICNIC GROUND|
The two-island paradise, Koh Rok Nai and Koh Rok Nok, are both parts of the Muh Koh Lanta National Park. They are uninhabited except for park officials who man it. There are no entrance fees and most tour groups in Koh Lanta drop by on the island for their island hopping tours. It has a full range of facilities, from canteens to restrooms and even has a nature trail out back leading to another cove beach along Tha Lu Bay.
|LUNCH IS INCLUSIVE WITH THE TOUR|
Us, we were quite contented on the beach along Man Sai Bay with plates of chicken curry, stir-fried veggies, white rice, fruits and crispy fried chickens, all compliments of the tour. The only thing missing were cold cans of Chang beers, lol.
We were given two more hours after lunchtime to explore and swim along the beach, which we so eagerly did. The water here is really very clear, with a few fishes swimming along its rippling seabed. Somehow, it reminded me of Leyte’s Kalanggaman Island.
|ONE LAST SWIM BEFORE GOING BACK|
I thought we were going back to Koh Lanta as we were herded by our guide back to the speedboat once more, but after a couple of minutes, we again anchored on another part of the bay. It was snorkeling time once more. And this time, the underwater world was much more beautiful than the last. Paradise, indeed.
~ TOUR COMPLIMENTS OF OUR FRIENDS FROM RAINBOW LANTA TRAVEL & TOUR. ALL VIEWS & OPINIONS ARE MINE.
Rainbow Lanta Travel & Tour
Address: Moo 3, Saladan, Koh Lanta, Krabi, Thailand
Contact Number: (+6690) 173-5215
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