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14 Jul

The day I climbed a volcano... (and lived to tell the tale)

sunset drinks small

Arriving in Guatemala international airport is like arriving in a quiet regional destination. Easy and relaxed. My compadres and I headed for Antigua, a UNESCO listed town one hour cab ride for US$10. This is where they keep their tourists in Guatemala. It's a really pretty 18th Century Spanish outpost, that looks like it has been given a make over by a bunch of gay guys – all ochre and mustard tones, with archways, courtyards, gardens & fountains trickling, just gorgeous sweety!

26 Jun

Day 9 Thailand, Chiang Mai

chiang mai markets120

LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Chiang Mai! We have two days here and it's quickly becoming obvious that this is nowhere near enough time to visit all the places we want to... but we will give it a try.

The first thing that hits us is that it's way cheaper up here, only 120THB from the airport to our accommodation... and cheaper transport across the board, nice!

25 Jun

Day 8 Thailand, onward to Chiang Mai

Northbound... bye bye Thai islands it's been a blast!

Leaving Phi Phi and headed back to Phuket, we have a huge travel day... final destination tonight is Chiang Mai, I'm super excited about seeing up north for the first time as I have heard great things. Most travellers head down around the islands, however those who have ventured north to Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai have amazing stories of hill top tribes and rafting... I'm intrigued.

24 Jun

Day 7 Thailand, Phi Phi Island

longboats phi phi thailand

Phi Phi Island... a bucket load of fun.

After an early rise, we caught the Andaman Ferry. The ferry trip is 1 and a 1/2 hours long, there are chairs on the deck or chairs inside in the air con, they even show movies inside... good if you have had a big night the day before.

23 Jun

Day 6 Thailand, Fantasea Show


Patong madness... no curfew here, this places goes off! We headed to Phuket and have chosen to stay at Patong and check it out. This place is known for it's nightlife... the bars are massive!! We went to the walking street (Bangla Rd) and came across the Tiger Bar, needs to be seen to be believed! This place has 20 bars just on the ground floor. Cheap beer and lots of fun.

20 Jun

Day 5 Thailand, Koh Samui easy rider

golden buddha koh samuismall

Best way to start the day? With a swim in the ocean of course... mornings are the best there's no one around and it does help to get rid off last night's hangover... but that's another story!

Chaweng Beach is the longest and most famous in Koh Samui. There are heaps of restaurants and bars in Chaweng open 24 hours, and it has the best nightlife and shopping. Definitely the place to be.

19 Jun

Day 4 Thailand, Elephant trekking & lobster

meeting an elephantsmall

Ok, playing the total tourist today. We both have always wanted to ride an elephant... we saw the brochure and next thing I find myself up on top of a huge beautiful creature trekking through the river. We chose the elephant village, a heaven and home for old elephants. We bought a few bags of bananas and shared the love around (100THB per bag). The trek lasted 1 hour, a combination of rivers, grass lands and back roads... good, but one hour was well enough.

18 Jun

Day 3 Thailand, Pattaya & floating market

food floating market pattaya120

We head south today to the closest beach to Bangkok, Pattaya. A van ride will set you back 300THB per person and take 2 hours approx. I say approx as you can guarantee the bus won't be on time, although you need to be :-) vans can be booked from any local agent. Pattaya, when you do a search for things to do, will show you a really big range of activities, from underwater world, big Buddha statues, bungy jumping, jungle exhibition and rafting, kiteboarding, parasailing, diving, horse riding and any number of lady boy cabaret shows.

17 Jun

Day 2 Thailand, exploring Bangkok

elephants Thailand

It's Day 2 and the curfew has been lifted, the soccer World Cup has kicked off, and it's game on Bangkok Exploring on Day 2. A must see on the list for the day is the Golden Buddha, the Royal Palace and a cruise along the river. This might not be for everyone but just a suggestion, leave early in the morning it gets very, very hot later on in the day.

16 Jun

THAILAND: To go or not to go...

saphaipae hostel

Welcome to a series of articles written by a couple of Australian backpackers who have just arrived in Thailand and wanted to find out whether the recent military coup has affected tourism.

So should you go to Thailand or not? The answer is Thailand is open for business. With all the media hype we wanted to go and check it out for ourselves. Here's what we found...

Day one arriving to Bangkok, business as usual at the airport and one day in we still haven't seen any military presence anywhere... Our local friends tell us they actually feel safer at the moment...