Koh Lipe: Approaching the island on the ferry.
Ko Lipe does not have a pier to get off the ferry at so you need to ride in a longtail boat to get off the boat. The boat sits offshore in the bay off the beach and this makes for a crazy scene at the back end of the boat with boats logjammed up and the passengers not sure where to go. My guide has a longtail boat driver arranged for us and all we need to do is get to that boat. We end up passing our gear out the side window and climbing across another boat to get to our boat. All the other boats are starting to fill up and some of the food and produce that was stored in big footlockers and sacks on the boat are making their way to shore as well. The ferry seems to be one of the best ways to supply the island with food.
Koh Lipe: Getting off the ferry onto longtail boats.
We come ashore on the beach and head to our hotel. I am staying at the Verin Beach Resort which has 60 or so bungalows set in a grid pattern heading back from the beach. They also have a nice covered deck overlooking the bay and beach where the restaurant is. The Bungalows are pretty basic with the bathroom in a small corner of the room. The shower is the bathroom and the toilet is flushed with a bucket next to a faucet. My room has an air conditioner which means it is a more deluxe room. The room is part of my guided sea kayak tour but I think that I heard they are 1000 baht per night and that is probably including breakfast.
The island is beautiful. It is a remote island and there are no cars.
Koh Lipe: Another photo of Thailand and longtail boats.
I am staying on Pattaya beach wich faces south so you get some nice morning light and beautiful sunsets. The main walking paths are the beaches and and there are some trails across the island leading to the other beaches and also the Chau Ley (Sea Gypsy) villages. The Sea Gypsy villagers have motor bikes that they ride on some of the trails. They seem to have controled the motor bikes enough so that they do not ruin the tourist parts of the island. There are no places to rent motorbikes on the island (yet). There are just enough services on the island to make this a fun place. Internet cafes, restaurants, massage tables next to the beach and one of the side trails has some tourist shops which sell mainly clothing items. I can see this island getting to be too touristy in just a few short years. I heard talk about development of new guest houses along the side trails and you can see that there is space but this is a great place so who needs it. I think it is just foreign entrapaneurs wanting to have fun making their life in a new country. That is what I got talking ot one of the dive shop owners anyway. He has plans to build a bungalow operation on one of the side trails.