Friday, March 3, 2017

Thailand, Koh Tao - part 3

Our bungalow was quite spacious. I guess we were lucky when picking a hotel.

Hotel beach was rather small, but had nice shade. Here is Captain, preparing for next snorkelling.

We snorkelled every day, mostly in "our" bay. I guess we were lucky with location of our hotel as well. For me good snorkelling was way more important than lots of bars and restaurant and lots of people like in bigger villages. Although there were 2 more restaurants just couple of steps from hotel, both good, and in Chalok bay there were plenty more.
This is a Barrel sponge among Mushroom corals.

Pretty little green coral polyps

If I remember correctly, is this one called Slingjaw wrasse.

There were couple of Triggerfish around, but they were quite shy, not as happy to attack one's fins as their relatives in Maldives.

Our biggest adventure was hiring the local long tail boat for a snorkelling round-the-island trip. This beautiful vessel is Hulk, the name has maybe something to do with the green bimini. Isn't it pretty?

We were picked up from the beach beneath hotel by this mostly silent and seriously looking skipper. We teamed up with a very nice couple from our hotel for the trip, which not only halved the costs for the boat, but got us a delightful company as well.

We motored by the Chalok bay...

... and made first stop in Shark bay. We jumped into water with our masks and at first it looked like the luck was not on our side. But as we almost gave up searching for sharks, we discovered a couple a bit bigger ones - more like teenagers not babies - almost right behind our boat.

Next stop was Hin Wong bay on the East side of the island. In this time of year the wind blows from NE or E, so the ride was quite choppy and the waves seemed to push all the plastic waste into the bay.  Plastic waste is unfortunately one of the island's big problems, you see it everywhere on land and in the sea.

This is another long tail boat that had the same route planned as we did.

Snorkelling in Hin Wong bay was very good, despite all the plastic floating in the shallow water.
I guess this is also a sort of Grouper, there were quite many around.

I couldn't figure out what these bright blue things were while snorkelling, but I've taken a photo anyway. Only at home, looking at this on my computer, I realise they look very much like Tunicates.

And I wasn't sure what this was as well, but seeing it on my computer I'm quite sure - these are Corallimorphs, relatives of anemones.

Another colourful Parrotfish

This is one of few Surgeonfish that we saw, look at the orange scalpels near it's tail, they can do some serious damage.

This one is a Porcupinefish, they can also be found in Caribbeans.

And this is me just out of the water.

Our next stop was Mango bay at the North side of the island. The ride there was choppy and wet, and the waves were rolling into the bay. Because of that the visibility in the water wasn't great and exactly at that time clouds covered the sky and the sun. So not an ideal situation for taking photos and this one was one of the best - a Barrel sponge with nice green coral, it could be Lesser valley coral, a relative of Brain coral.

And the best snorkelling place was our last stop - the Japanese gardens on the East side of the Nang Juan island. I don't know why it's called Japanese gardens, but it's really very pretty despite the tens and tens of snorkelling and diving boats that come there every day.

I saw baby Mushroom corals ...

... and the only Sea pearl here.

I love the shape of this coral, it looks like it is made of piped cream ornaments, just like on a cake.

This one is called Scribbled leatherjacket, I've also seen them in Caribbeans.

On our way back Captain tried to steer the boat and he wasn't too bad.

Just before we landed I managed to take a photo of our resort - the building left on top of the hill is a reception, high square building on the right with grey roof is a restaurant, a bit to the left is our bungalow and above the Pinnacle sign is a pool. Left from the sign is a restaurant where we ate couple of times, they are building a new terrace that's why there are pillars, and to the left is hotel's beach.

1 comment:

  1. Look like a fabulous spot and you made the most of it! Thanks for some great photos and stories. Nice see you looking slim and trim.