Wednesday, November 16, 2016

A SUMMER STORY THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN: FULL MOON PARTY

A SUMMER STORY THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN: FULL MOON PARTY

Chaos and one hell of a party.  That is the very impression I get on what we are about to experience at the Haad Rin Beach of Ko Pha Ngan, Thailand one summer. A one-year in the making plan which started from drinking spree conversations proposed by Jerik in Manila backed-up by supportive airlines providing seat sales.

Lessons learned from travellers and friends who went ahead of us served as our guide.  Drugs, sex, thievery, harassment and all sort of vices came as a warning.  But we made it through in a fun and clean excursion. 

Just when I thought I have already graduated from the rave parties (wild I should say), this one is too hard to resist especially that I’m with my favorite and trusted travel buddies.  And this one makes the difference why we all went home safe and filled with memories to cherish.


EN ROUTE

Kirk, Elal, Darwin and I spent a night at Kuala Lumpur from Manila to meet Marx.  From there, we’ll be meeting other friends the following day at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport - Christian and Carla whom I was with at Langkawi, Malaysia weeks before this trip and Rodel from Singapore.


A SUMMER STORY THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN: FULL MOON PARTY

For one hour and 30 minutes, we took the Kuala-Lumpur to Surat Thani flight.  Surat Thani is the largest southern province of Thailand.  This is my second time to be in Thailand and it feels good that I don’t have to worry about school examinations, as the first one was in Bangkok and I was a student back then, traveling in the middle of my final exams.


A SUMMER STORY THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN: FULL MOON PARTY

At the Surat Thani airport, there are ticket kiosks at the ground floor opposite the exit.  We chose the most convenient ferry company, offering both the bus and boat tickets at approximately 500THB.  We took the bus in a 1 hour and 30 minutes travel time to Donsak where the ferry terminal is located.  From Donsak to Thong Sala Pier (Koh Pangan’s main port town) the travel time was approximately 3 hours.




A SUMMER STORY THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN: FULL MOON PARTY

We were not able to anticipate such a long journey which made me so hungry and eager to rest at our transient home in Haad Rin Beach.

PANTHIP MARKET

Upon arrival at Thong Sala, we went direct to its night market to feed ourselves for dinner from that long journey.  Known as the Panthip Market, there are a variety to choose from and of course authentic Thai cuisine in the likes of curries, noodle soup, fried chicken and sticky rice, barbequed pork on sticks, spring rolls and more as options.  Western style food are likewise available.


A SUMMER STORY THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN: FULL MOON PARTY

A SUMMER STORY THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN: FULL MOON PARTY

A SUMMER STORY THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN: FULL MOON PARTY

A SUMMER STORY THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN: FULL MOON PARTY

From Thong Sala is our last transport leading to our destination – the Haad Rin beach.  There are taxis and pick-up trucks waiting to take passengers around the island holding up placards and signages with destinations.  Price is fixed to Haad Rin Beach at around 100-150 baht (I forgot the exact but on that range).

WHERE WE STAYED

Since we only had one intention why we are at the Haad Rin Beach, that is, to experience the Full Moon Party, I highly recommend the Funny Moon Hostel. It is just across the police station and a clinic surrounded by convenience stores, eateries and beside a souvenir shop, not to mention a walking distance to the beach – nearly beachfront, where the Full Moon Party will take place.


A SUMMER STORY THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN: FULL MOON PARTY

As we came in large group, we occupied almost the whole room with double-deck beds, air-conditioned and with a common bathroom and toilet.  Security issues were nil in our case.  The owner/caretaker is kind as well which makes the stay truly accommodating and secure.

PRE-FULL MOON PARTY

The Sunrise Beach is where the Full Moon Party takes place.  We dropped by one of the original beach bars in the long stretch of the beach – Drop-In Bar – the night before the anticipated beach party.  A fire dancing show took place which drew a number of crowd including ourselves.  Jumping ropes of fire were part of the entertainment, which some of my friends tried.


A SUMMER STORY THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN: FULL MOON PARTY

A SUMMER STORY THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN: FULL MOON PARTY

It was a whole night of dancing and drinking beer on the side.  For whatever happened that night, I can just smile and keep it within us.


A SUMMER STORY THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN: FULL MOON PARTY

SUNRISE BEACH

As if nothing happened, the crowd disappeared the following day. It was the usual tropical beach scene.  But with topless women and tourists from all over the world lounging on the sea shores and for us, having an afternoon drinking spree.


A SUMMER STORY THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN: FULL MOON PARTY

A SUMMER STORY THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN: FULL MOON PARTY

The Sunrise Beach has been featured in films like the famed The Beach.      


A photo posted by John Marx Velasco (@marxtermind) on


A SUMMER STORY THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN: FULL MOON PARTY

A SUMMER STORY THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN: FULL MOON PARTY

FULL-MOON PARTY



By the strike of twelve midnight, we all woke up.  It was a feeling as if we’ve awakened to celebrate the New Year’s Eve.  Water-based paints were provided by our hostel owner and for some in the group they exhibited their skills in the arts with the Philippine flag as the prominent design.


A SUMMER STORY THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN: FULL MOON PARTY

A SUMMER STORY THAT WILL NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN: FULL MOON PARTY

Our hostel being strategically located to the location of the Full Moon Party, we could see tourists pass by - both sober and drunk.  Some carried on stretchers and dropped at the clinic for the ambulance to pick-up.

A photo posted by Kirk Acebron (@kirkacebron) on


Our research and stories heard from friends gave us the impression that there is the possibility of being too much intoxicated and drugged because of the buckets of alcohol sold on stalls at the vicinity of the beach party.  With that, we ordered alcoholic drinks from a nearby convenience store and consumed the same at our hostel and some on our way to a portion of the beach where the original Full Moon Party took place – the Paradise Bungalows.  Neon colors for the night.



It was one hell of a party.  The crowd goes wild coming from different parts of the world, some even raising their flags, as if there is a summit with national representatives.  The difference is – no suits or corporate attires but naked and sweating all over.  We had the best vantage point then.  A rave party it is.  The ledge of the Paradise hotel became our dance stage and other tourists came to join us.

Until we went on our own directions, partied until the wee hours and the sad part is – converge again to pack our things to catch the first ferry going to Krabi.  Whatever happened to each one in the group, one thing is certain, everyone has a story to tell for this summer affair.

THE END

A photo posted by Christian L. Sangoyo 🇵🇭 (@lakadpilipinas) on


Tourists lying on the sidewalks. Highly intoxicated.  Others floating and still in dreamland.  But us – we have to move on, leave the island and board on the ferry together with other tourists wearing blank faces – some as if asking, What the hell just happened?

A photo posted by blissfulguro (@blissfulguro) on


They say no two experiences are the same.  Our full moon experience is something I will never forget.  The benchmark of a beach party has definitely been raised after this.  This is one summer story which experience will never happen again.

1 comments :

  1. That sounds like a scene from the Hangover movie Haha

    ReplyDelete

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