While my parents were still in Thailand, we all made a quick side-trip to somewhere sandy. We chose Koh Samui which is Thailand’s second largest island (after Phuket). Getting to Koh Samui was a somewhat interesting process in and of itself, although we chose to make it so. We caught a quick flight from Chiang Mai to Surat Thani. From there we took a 2 hour bus ride–which felt more like four hours because I really had to go to the bathroom–and then we caught a ferry. Needless to say, I was happy when we arrived at our final destination. I think we all were.
We’d all done a lot of looking into different accommodations during our planning phase and we finally selected the Zazen Boutique Resort and Spa. This is on the north side of the island, near Bophut Beach and the Big Buddha. They took excellent care of us at the resort and I was blown away by our bungalow! I particularly liked the shower.
The private beach area was small but very relaxing and the perfect place to take a nap or a dip in the ocean to cool off. We took advantage of this almost every afternoon. The color of the water was probably the prettiest I’ve ever seen, although the water itself was a little dirty so I preferred swimming in the pool.
The food and drinks at the restaurant were fantastic! We ate most of our meals right there at the resort and I had the best massaman curry I’ve ever had. It was packed with flavor and not too spicy for me to eat, which was a real treat. In addition, because of my parent’s great generosity, I got to try some of that seafood I’d been craving. Thank you Mom and Dad!!!
That doesn’t mean we never left the resort. We still wanted to see Koh Samui so on one of the days we paid a driver to take us around the island. We stopped at many of the temples along the way, including What Phra Yai (or the Big Buddha) and Wat Plai Laem. These two temple complexes were both very colorful and modern. Neither were too crowded, which I always appreciate.
The mummified monk at Wat Khunaram was especially interesting. Loung Pordaeng is Koh Samui’s most famous monk and his body sits in an upright glass casket surrounded by offerings. I was a little surprised (and somewhat relieved) to find him wearing sunglasses. It just goes to show that monks often have a great sense of humor.
We visited many of the beaches during our outing as well, including Bophut, Chaweng, Chaweng Noi and Lamai. They were less crowded than I’d been expecting and the sand was nice and clean and soft underfoot. We stopped at the Hin Ta and Hin Yai rocks (aka Grandpa and Grandma Rocks) resembling male and female genitalia. It was a lot easier for me to recognize “grandpa” than “grandma,” although she was definitely there.
We also visited the Na Muang 2 Waterfall. This place was a little more crowded with tourists but not overwhelmingly so. We found a more quiet place down stream which gave us a good view of some elephant rides that were taking place along the river. It was interesting to see how well the elephants could maneuver their big feet around all the rocks in the river bed.
Our day of adventure concluded in Nathon Town with some shopping and lunch. It was good local food, but I have to admit I was happy we’d be having dinner again back at the resort. There’s just something so tasty about being truly pampered and I enjoyed every minute of it! Thank you Mom and Dad from the bottom of my heart! Not only did you come all the way to Thailand to visit us, but you spoiled us rotten. What an amazing trip!