Thai New Year and Water Festival on Ko Pha Ngan Island
I spent a few more days in Ko Pha Ngan island where I did some snorkeling for the first time. It was a wonderful experience in a really stunning coral beach called Mae Had on the northern shore of the island.
The big excitement during my stay there was Songkran, the Thai new years and water festival. This is celebrated when Thai people (and some tourists) arm themselves with water pistols, hoses or buckets and generally drench anyone who passes by. I decided to go out on my motorcycle to check out the party on the rest of the island and spent the day getting totally drenched by partiers on the side of the road.
Scooter being drenched on Thai New Year
It sounds a little dangerous but mostly they wave you down and you have to “accept” the invitation to be “attacked”. Or there is a traffic jam and you just submit. It was extremely hot so actually a lot of fun.
On April 15 I took a boat and bus to Phuket, which is a touristy vacation island a bit farther south. Not really much of interest here but parts of the island are very beautiful. There is also a red light district here, which was almost comical with the disneyesque lady-boys and the western families with children walking around gawking at it all.