Diving in Koh Tao and Full Moon Party in Koh Phangan
After the adventure in Myanmar, it was time for something totally different. I met up with Benny, a friend I met during my first stay in Thailand during Songkran. We met up in Bangkok and headed to Koh Tao and Koh Phangan for some diving and of course… the infamous full moon party.
The island of Koh Tao is mainly famous its diving. There are plenty of dive shops spread out over the island and from what I’ve seen so far, it seems that it’s one of the cheapest place to get your diving certificate. You pay for the course and you get 4 days of diving instead of 2. Back when I got my certificate I only had a 2 day course for the same price so you get your money’s worth here and the dive sites are excellent.I only had 1 day to go diving because we wanted to make it to Koh Phangan on time for the full moon party. But also because we just wanted to chill out at the beach. We picked a secluded beach on Koh Tao with our own beach front. Nothing much to do except to walk around, sun bathing and doing some swimming. Diving was amazing as usual of course, I asked for the 2 best dive sites and went to Shark Island and Tanote bay, both with great coral reefs. But don’t really think those were the BEST ones around, but then again, there were tons of dive sites and I only went to 2 of them, so next time I’m in the neighbourhood, I’m definately gonna do more dives!
After spending a few days in Koh Tao we finally arrive at Koh Phangan. Main reason why people come here for is for the infamous full moon party. One of the biggest beach parties in the world and every traveler in the South-East Asia region has probably heard of it before. Just like how I wrote about Vang Vieng being a party place, this is pretty much along the same lines. This place is filled with tourists who come down to the island to party every month. In fact there’s not just the full moon party but actually, there’s a party for every occassion. There’s: half moon party, jungle party, waterfall party, boat party and many more that people randomly start up.Before I get to the party, I want to mention that there’s more to do on the island than just partying. One day we rented a bike and drove along the coastline to visit some of the more secluded beaches and do some sightseeing around the island. The roads are really nice to drive on and it’s quite hilly as well, even for novices it’s quite an amazing ride. Several viewing points for a great sunset are spread out as well, so you can just pick one and try to avoid the crowd. Off to the party itself then! I wasn’t that excited to actually visit the full moon party, compared to visiting Vang Vieng. Even before we arrived on the island, the boat was already packed with party goers and obnoxious people. And it was even worse on the beach itself. There were tons and tons of people getting wasted on cheap liquor and getting these blacklight paintings on them. To be honest, at one point I just said “f**k it, let’s get drunk and join the crowd and act stupid”. And so we did! I actually had a decent time there for the short amount of time we were there. There were some fire shows as well where people were doing rope skipping with burning ropes. And of course, since a lot of the people here are inebriated, many of them failed of course and ended up with the burning rope slamming against their legs. Hilarious of course. There was also a mega slide through a flaming hoop. Sigh… I don’t know if I’m too old for it but didn’t seem that much fun to me, maybe I didn’t get drunk enough to act like that…. Anyhow, the next day I sobered up, packed up and left for Malaysia. I hoped to get to Penang in 1 trip, but the boat/bus trip took a bit longer than I thought, so I had to stay overnight in Surat Thani and and so I headed to Penang the next day. But important thing was that I was off to a new country for more exploring!