Songkran Festival (April 13-15)
We spent the famous waterfestival in Koh Tao. The atmosphere is second to none, and it’s unlike any street party I’ve ever been to. It’s basically a massive water fight that lasts for a whole week in some places (Bangkok, Chiang Mai…) but just a day in Koh Tao. We drove our scooter round the island visiting all the little villages, where the kids wait outside all day to chuck water on any passers-by.
Sadao Bike Show
(usually early-mid June) We met some expats in Koh Lanta who invited us to the bike show on the Thai/Malaysian border. Sadao is a bit of an eyesore, but the bike show was so much more fun than we expected. There were a lot of tourists from around Asia, and we even gotto see one of Thailand’s most famous rock bands, Carabao,who you may recognise from the back of a Chang bottle. We stuck out like a sore thumb, but everyone was really friendly, including the leader of the Thai Hells Angels!
Eat street food
I’m not talking about the roasted scorpions they sell on Koh Sahn Road, I mean proper street food. My absolute favourite was pad kra prao; fried pork with garlic, chilli and a fried egg on top. Learn a few words of Thai It will go a long way with locals. ‘Sawatdee ka’, if you are a woman, and ‘sawatdee khap’, if you are a man, is a polite way of saying ‘hello’ and ‘goodbye’ – ‘ka’ and ‘khap’ are added to most sentencesas a form of respect. We also found knowing the word for ‘toilet’ (‘hong naam’) came in very useful! Read Josie’s travel blog at penvy.co.uk
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