January 2017 - Thailand
Crossing the border to Thailand did not cause any trouble. I used my 60-day-visa, which I got from the embassy in Saigon. The quality of the streets are improving instantly in Thailand.
The way to Trat leads me along the coast through small fishing villages, where I got stuck again. At my accomodation in Trat I accidently meet Natali and Patrick, who I met earlier in Vietnam. They are on their way to Koh Chang, which is also my planned destination in order to stay there three weeks together with my daughter. Shortly after the ferry-crossing I have to climb a mountain to reach the west coast. This is a challenge. Never before on my trip i faced gradients like this one. Because of my heavy weight I don't manage to cycle uphill even in the lowest gear. It takes a lot of effort to push my 70 kilograms of bicycle and luggage all the way up.
As always the reward is waiting on top of the hill: a fabulous view at the coast. I arrive on the island some days ahead of scedule and begin to discover it. I get to know Max from Munich, who is travelling around and recording videos, which he later sells as documentary films to TV-stations. Frank and Hans, who also stay here in winters, tell me some facts about this island and they even give me some hints.
Koh Chang is a mountainous and wooded area. The ocean is crystal clear with a torquoise color. Small hotels line up the coast. The buildings must not be higher than three floors, beacause the are placed in a national park. We have rented a bungalow for our holiday in the Bonnja Resort.
At the place of Christine and her son Manuel it feels like family atmosphere. We enjoy the silence and serenity and we like to relax at the beach. My friends Natali and Patrick are staying hier as well and their place is not too far away from ours so that we meet quite often. A close friendship develops. At the beach my daughter surprisingly meets a friend from cologne, who is travelling with another friend togheter in Thailand.
A funny clique we are. We book a boat-tour for snorkeling and do some other things toghether.
I spend a lot of time with my daughter, which is good for the both of us. I am really happy about us beeing here right now.