Thursday, August 30, 2012

Up the coast

We've been enjoying ourselves a little too much as usual and with great enjoyment comes great length of time between blog updates! (that's my excuse anyhow...hehehehe)

After somehow managing to leave our favourite Thai island Koh Phangan, we rode (a little wet) north west towards Ranong. 

Notice the empty grog bottles to the left. Bikes hiding from them on the right.
We had a night in a strange little seaside town were we stayed in interesting lodgings. We ended up with a pretty ordinary sleep as the place sprung to life at 11pm with karaoke blasting at max volume all night. It seemed to explain the load of wine cooler bottles outside our room.

We left the small noisy town and headed over the center of the country to the western side. A gorgeous ride through the mountains. Ranong initially greeted us with its great mountain backdrop. Bald mountain could have been mistake for almost any old farm on the east coast of Australia. Attempting to ride up on the very slippery clay proved fruitless, almost falling off many times.

Clarissa dominated the scale model nearby on foot. The mountains were fantastic with their big long snake like waterfalls running down the side.

Without a center stand some interesting new methods are used for the servicing of the bikes. The center stand bangs around a bit too much and steals valuable ground clearance from the bikes.

'A border run town worth visiting' said our friends. With some great food and a great place to stay we enjoyed some time to work on the bikes in a peaceful place. After a phone call and some 'hand the phone to the nearest Thai person' we were guided to the Ranong Big Bike shop. This was to do our first service of the trip. 5000kms already... We also washed them! Wow. They looked amazing until it rained the next days ride...

Ranong Big Bike is the place to go for anything bike related. Give them a call if your in town. They went and grabbed all the goodies they didn't have within minutes and were very generous on the costs of lubricants. I managed to make the first oil mess in the new workshop!

'A' was the man behind the shop. Currently upgrading from his smaller shop in town to his own home. He had his own bike in pieces in the kitchen. Awesome. Customers bike's were in various states of rebuild in the lounge room!

We left Ranong with smoother running machines and having made some good new friends. Continuing on north we encountered the shark energy drink guys at the petrol station. Did some promo shots on the bikes and they gave me a freebie! Not having had an energy drink for well over 6 months kept me going throughout the rest of the day.

Including the hard time on the beach/mangrove having a rest. 

Clarissa is seen here enjoying ordering her first noodle soup. Noodle soup aficionado's will be shocked that it has taken so long before making the plunge.

Clarissa had the same sans fishballs. FISHBALL!

I put far too much chilli in my soup. Way too much. Holy crap. My entire face was on fire and beard  full of flaming lava!

The local girls except the young lass were impressed with Neil's attempt at eating a bowl of the sun. 

Clarissa cruising along the scenic route from Ranong to Prachuap Kiri Khan. Scenic route always trumps the highway so far in Thailand. Its so quiet compared to the hellish main highway to Malaysia.

This person with the white arm was quiet rude!

Wish we got better shots of the Ranong hot springs. Wow. This was an amazing place to spend a rainy day at.

Filling up on the way out of Ranong. Its nice to be able to jump off the bike and pop the fuel cap without having to loose the helmet/gloves. Very fast F1 style fuel stops.

Our new view! Its horrible! Prachuap Kiri Khan. What a great little town.

This is what happens after a couple of beers at dinner. Apologies for the offensive bits :)

We call it 'doodle wars'. Maybe it has an official name?

A new favourite dish 'fried pork with garlic and pepper'. Potentially not the best for you, but yum. I endured some horrible food poisoning from some oyster/chilli sauce with another dish. So simple foods have been on the go for a week or so.

You can see our place by the 'touch' of color. Ning's guesthouse was an awesome place to rest and recover after my second bout of food poisoning of the trip. Garry is an Austrian chap. Basically an Australian and visa-versa as a fair few people get us mixed up so far in south east asia.

Ning and Clarissa. Ning was very caring to us as she counselled us on the woes of Thai food and the western belly.

Crazy evil clown mannequin. A bit unnerving and not the best for selling clothes.

Temple. We have been slack on seeing temples thus far but we're about to go on a temple seeing rampage.

Some art on the side of a water tank at the Force 5 Airforce base. 33 hours after the Japanese landed in Thailand the amnesty was signed. The Siamese fought a serious resistance movement until they regained control of country near the end of the war.

A little strange.

Monkeys sitting on their likenesses. Also slightly strange.

This is the new monkey bike.

Just handing a monkey a banana, on a motorbike is not enough. They must be fed in exciting and challenging ways.

I'm keeping an eye on you, strange orange creature. Both Neil and the baby were thinking this at the same time.

Fishing boats at night from our balcony. This hardly gives it justice. There's a lot of them.

This was a bin. A tall foreign person had to really bend down to use it.

Most of the footage we have from the Ranong Aquarium is in movie format. This was really worth visiting. Very professional and excellent underwater things on display. Only 60 Aussie cents per person!

Tesco is a favourite for stocking up on goodies and when hungry. They always seem to sort us out for cheese at a minimum!

Clarissa relaxing in the sweet air-con at the Jolly Frog in Kanchanaburi.

So we're hanging around in Kanchanaburi for a week waiting for some mail to arrive with our GPS maps of Laos and northern Thailand. We will head over to Cambodia next week.

 We visited the WW2 war cemetery here on an extremely sad day today. Australians have lost five Diggers and more injured in Afghanistan. Let alone seeing all the lost Soldiers, Sailors and Airmen here at the cemetery. Our thoughts and prayers with their families at this immeasurably sad time.

Lest we forget.


  1. Thanks for the updates guys - and for keeping me inspired for next year!




  2. Hi Neil and Clarissa - thanks for the great update - it is always so good to read up your latest adventures - always eagerly devoured by us! Love the cheeky monkey bit. Sorry to hear you have had some tummy problems - surprising you don't have more with your gastronomical endeavors! Have fun and take care, lots of love from home.
    Lots of love.......


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