The recent opening of The Pulse in Repulse Bay is yet another reason to head down to the Southside of Hong Kong Island: now, aside from soaking up the sun on the beach, you have plenty of beachside restaurant options to choose from. I was especially intrigued by Meen & Rice as a simple Chinese food lover that was looking for a bit more of a modern take on your classic cha chaan teng. Thankfully, Meen & Rice did not disappoint with its unique decor and inviting environment, and Cantonese favourites littered throughout the menu.
After you’ve done a 4 Island Tour on Koh Lanta and have spent a bizarre evening at the night market, you should take some time to explore the island and just relax. Koh Lanta has various beaches along its west side that are all unique from each other and worth at least a half-day trip. If you’re not in the mood to bask in the sun for the day, you can travel back up to the north of the island where the ferry pier is and have lunch or dinner at one of the local restaurants on the water. Just be sure you head to Long Beach to catch some killer views of the sunset before you leave the island!
This is the third island hopping tour I went on during this trip to Thailand and it was by far the best. The first island hopping tour I went on was in Aonang/Krabi and it was far too touristy. The next was in Koh Phi Phi, which was much better, but still not as great as it could have been. Thankfully, the best was saved for last, as the Koh Lanta 4 Island Tour was not only absolutely breathtaking and with far less tourists on the islands we stopped at, but it was a much higher quality tour than the previous ones we went on. This was largely due to the fact that we paid extra for us to go on a speedboat, but it was totally worth it.
The majority of people who travel to Phi Phi Island are young backpackers ready for a good party. While it’s true you will likely have some wild nights (think fire dancers, music vibrating throughout the island, and dancing on the beach until the sun begins to rise), Phi Phi is also an absolutely gorgeous little island that is best appreciated during the day with (mostly) sober vision. Besides bumming out on some lounge chairs on the beach, perfecting your tan by the pool, or aimlessly wandering – and inevitably getting lost – the alleyways filled with restaurants and shops, you hands-down need to climb up to the Phi Phi Viewpoint!
If you find yourself in Krabi/Aonang, it’s likely that you’re en route to a different island and are just taking a break from your tedious journey from point A to point B to explore the small town for a day or two. It’s also likely that you’ll want to get away from the town, which is surprisingly crowded and has a less-than-stellar beach, and go on a tour of the outlying islands. One of the most popular tours on offer is the 4 Island Tour in Aonang. As the name blatantly suggests, you’ll be heading on a full day tour to see -you guessed it- 4 islands that are only a short boat ride away from shore. I’m usually a huge fan of island tours, since they’re a great way to explore a range of nearby islands (like the incredible ones I went on when I was in El Nido, Philippines), however I really would not recommend this tour to anyone. Here’s why..
El Nido allures travelers with its stunning island hopping tours, diving, and serene beauty. After you have scratched these off your to-do list and are looking for something a bit more adventurous to do, you should look into climbing up one of the mammoth limestone cliffs that surround El Nido town proper. The only one I know of is climbing up Mt. Taraw, El Nido. Before arriving, I had read about others who had done the climb and saw how breathtaking the views were. Afterwards, I knew this was something I had to do while I was here.
El Nido island hopping tours are one of the main attractions in this charming town. When you head there, one of the biggest decisions you’ll have to make is which tour to go on. Fortunately, I was able to go on two incredible tours: Tour A and Tour C. If you’ve read up on island hopping in El Nido, you’ll probably know that Tour A is highly recommended if you can only do one during your stay. If possible, you should try to get around to going on both tours.
As I mentioned in my last post, El Nido is a must-visit destination with its incomparable beauty and small town charm. When you visit, you will undoubtedly go on an island hopping tour, as it is one of the main things to do here. There are four tours you can choose from, cleverly named Tour A, Tour B, Tour C, and Tour D. These tours are a great way to explore the islands of El Nido and take in all of its rare visual appeal. Tour A and C are the most popular tours, which I was lucky enough to have been able to do both. However, if you can only squeeze one tour in during your stay, I would recommend doing Tour A.
Devil’s Peak hike is great if you live east on the island or Kowloon, as it is one stop across the harbour from Quarry Bay on the purple line. It’s also ideal if you’re looking for a quick hike; you want to get up a mountain, get some exercise in, see some great views of both the island and Kowloon skyline, and then get out. I mean, your schedule is booked solid from now until your last days in this city that never sleeps, so you need to squeeze in as much as possible every single waking moment of your time here. Am I right, or what?
Like I mentioned in my previous post on stopping over in Puerto Princesa, there isn’t that much to do in the city center. If you have a day to spend wandering about the city, there are a handful of tourist attractions you can visit during the day and some great restaurants and bars to check out at night. They are all within walking distance, unless you’re incredibly lazy or are on the verge of heatstroke and can’t bear to walk another step. If that’s the unfortunate case, there are plenty of tricycles haphazardly about the streets that will take you to any of the locations below for a nominal fee.