Koh Mook – Another island worth a visit

If Koh Kradan was oreo then Koh Mook would be something like 50-50; sweet and salty. My next stop was Koh Mook which was another wonderful island, larger an island than Koh Kradan, but still Koh Kradan is just wonderful. Koh Kradan is just like the lazy river of that amusement park you visit. The only thing you need to do is snorkel and laze around. Unlike Koh Kradan though, there are quite a few things you can do on this island.

Long pier at Koh Mook

The name of the resort I had to check in was ‘Koh Mook Nurse House’. This is around 20 mins walk from the pier where the long tail boat drops you. Located in the middle of fishermen’s cottage, this place looks less like a resort. For a second, I wondered if I made the right choice booking the resort. I had no reason to complain though, the stay was cheap. The room was small, bathroom was not that great and location was not in favor either for this place.

Koh Mook Nurse House

 

 

 

 

 

But in fact I really took a liking to the place. The people running the place (also run a restaurant next to the resort) were amazing. The food was above average but the hospitality was mind-blowing. I really felt at home.

Meeting Alphons and his family was another wonderful experience for me. They were a couple from Vienna, Austria who ran a family restaurant, now on their annual vacation. I spent a lot of time chatting with them.

Getting there:

If you are coming straight to Koh Mook, then you may use tigerline ferry services or any of such agencies to get you there. If you are island hopping, there are long tail boats from one island to another for as much as 300 THB/person.

Where to stay:

There is charlie’s beach resort which is nice. Most of the tourists on our boat were going to Charlie’s beach resort. It’s also expensive. From the pier, it’s 50 THB/person for taxi to take you to Charlie’s beach resort ie if you are going from Koh Kradan to Koh Mook. Tiger line ferries stop near Charlie’s. They have their bookings also from the long tail boat station which is next to Charlie’s beach resort. Enough of Charlie, moving on there are other good resorts like the Sivalai beach resort which is also nice. The sunset view from their private beach is just amazing. The other places to stay are Mookies Bungalow, Coco lodge, Koh Mook Nurse house and so on.

Things to do:

One cannot miss the Emerald cave. It is just one of those places you would love. If you are staying at Charlie’s beach resort, rent a Kayak and go on a treasure hunt. This cave has a narrow tunnel and one has to swim through it.

Emerald caves (gopro image)
Gopro image, Emerald cave from the outside

I tried the Emerald cave (Morakot cave) half day tour which includes snorkel around the corals, then swimming to Emerald caves, gazing star fish and a round of the entire island. In the process you also see Big cave and couple of other beaches.

During the night time, you can go to Ting Tong Bar which is close to Mookies Bungalow. I spent my evenings tasting variety of food.

Also you have the option of renting a scooter to roam around the entire island. English is not widely spoken here and communication can be a bit of hassle if you are staying in the local communities like I did.

Best time to visit:

Same as Koh Kradan, November to March would be the best time to visit.

Things to carry:

Sunglasses, Sunscreen, Mosquito repellent, GoPro (maybe), swim suits. If you are snorkeling, you may rent the masks and fins.

Sunset at Sivalai Beach, Koh Mook

 

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Chapter 2 – Bodensee

From waking up to having our cup noodles to getting ready, it was 8:30 am. Angela and her husband were great. I asked a few things about Germany, also we had breakfast in their garden. Angela was our host from Airbnb.

Where am I off to?

A castle and then directly to Lake Konstanz. This was the plan.

Lichtenstein Castle was the nearest castle. So we decided to give Burg Hohenzollern a miss. Lichtenstein Castle is also called as Fairy tale castle. It is rightly named so. Cinderella can sit in the balcony and comb her long her, drop her tied hair for Valentino Rossi to climb up or whatever.

Pic credit : Google search. Credits to respective owner
Pic credit : Google search. Credits to respective owner

 

The GPS doesn’t have a clue about road works and usually there are a lot of road works. In case you encounter one, you need to take deviations and GPS doesn’t help much. We were driving around lost for sometime due to the road-works then finally saw a indication to Lichtenstein, and we took that route. After much hassle of getting down, asking people, driving and again getting down, asking people we finally saw a board which showed the route to the castle. Not knowing German was a big disadvantage.

After reaching there, we parked our car and the ticket costed 2 Euros. Wiping our tears, we walked up to the castle. Amazed!!! Wonderful view from the outside, we clicked a few pictures. After entering the gate, we went to the ticket counter. It was 7 Euros per person. To go inside the castle, you need a 7 Euro ticket and a guided tour. Well, the 7 Euros are for the guided tour but the tour is in German. English tour needs to be booked in advanced and costs a bomb…say some 100 Euros. We opted for the German tour and we got a English manual of the tour ie the description of whatever the guide says in English. That was good enough for us.

Once the tour started we read our manual and walked along with the group. Any doubts we asked the guide after she was done with speaking about the particular topic. Pretty helpful guide, she did explain everything what we asked for very patiently. The castle was maintained immaculately. No one is allowed to touch or feel anything inside. Even a crack on the glass made by a bullet shell was so live as if it happened yesterday.

We were taken through the armor room, chapel, hunters party room, the royal bedroom, dining hall. The guided tour lasted for good 30 mins. Once we were done with that we came out and took a few pics of the castle and roamed around in the adjacent garden. Photography is prohibited inside the castle. Entry to the garden is free; it’s not a proper garden but the outside of the castle with a few structures.

Here are a few pics from Lichtenstein that I took….

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The route to the castle
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Country side
The castle from outside
The walls of the Castle

 

The castle stands on a cliff
The castle stands on a cliff

 

View from one side of the cliff
View from one side of the cliff

 

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The castle itself, from the front
The castle itself, from the front

 

Another cliff view
Another cliff view

 

Dream fulfilled, drove along the countryside roads. Way up the castle!
Dream fulfilled, drove along the countryside roads. Way up the castle!

 

The castle from the side
The castle from the side

 

Escape route from the castle. During the guided tour they show the entrance to this escape route.
Escape route from the castle. During the guided tour they show the entrance to this escape route.

 

They had cannons inside this building
They had cannons inside this building

 

The building with the reception...Half the building I mean
The building with the reception…Half the building I mean

 

Maids room? Not sure
Maids room? Not sure

 

To keep the post short, I’ll post the remaining half of this day as another post. Probably a bad idea to write my travel as a big story.  😥


(To be contd…)

Guess!!! Sun or Moon!!!

 

Hey folks,

Before I share my pic, let me be brutally honest with you all. I am bribing you all to suggest me a good theme which is

a. free

b. allows uploading bigger size picture, unlike my old theme

c. allows bigger and better font size, unlike this theme.

Please enlighten me with your knowledge, so that I can have a good permanent theme for my blog. phew!!!

 

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A little about this pic. I had taken this pic for a competition but I haven’t heard anything from them yet so guessing that’s over. This was edited to make it look like the end product in Adobe LR ie this picture is heavy on post processing… because it was shot before when I was getting used to Photography and may be I gave in to the fact that post processing is essential for any competition. I don’t know, but some say the best shots are processed in the cam itself. I love the natural bokeh due to the light, which I never tried for.

 

EXIF is as follows

Exposure : 1/60 secs at f/11

Focal length 66 mm

Iso 100

Flash : Did not fire

Cam n lens : Nikon D 5200 with 18-105mm kit lens.

Did my bribe work? I love this theme but fonts are the only concern. If I don’t get anything better, I might stick with this, ruining mine and your eyesight equally 😀