I really can’t believe that today was our last full day in Thailand! We were able to have a few adventures and some relaxing time to cap it all off. We decided to start our day kayaking. We have seen many people kayaking all week and have heard that there are a few caves you can explore, so we decided to check it out! The photos are a little blurry because they were taken through a waterproof case.
The morning started off very nice! There were blue skies and there wasn’t too much wind, so we were able to paddle through a cave and take a close look at a few of the limestone cliffs! However, after about a half an hour, the wind began to pick up and the clouds got really dark. Luckily we were not too far from shore, so we paddled in to wait out the storm. The wind was so strong! We were really not surprised about the weather- based on our past experiences on this trip, we really should have expected it:) Because the wind was so strong, the waves were huge! To pass the time, we all went for a swim! We got the waves we loved at Bamboo Beach back!
After about a half an hour, the skies became a little less dark and we decided that we just had to try get back to the other beach because it didn’t really look like it was going to get much better. We had to drag our kayaks across the beach to get closer to where we needed to go and got a few funny looks. The actual paddle wasn’t too bad! It reminded Laura and I of one of our Boundary Waters trips to “Brutal Brule” with about 5 miles of paddling in whitecaps. We were able to make it back to shore no problem, but our already sore arms from rock climbing were pretty tired.
After heading back to change out of our wet clothes, we went to check out an area of the peninsula that we just discovered today! It is a strip of restaurants and shops that the locals run! The food is more authentic and similar to street food. There were some souvenirs around, but all of the shops contained exactly the same things we have seen all over Thailand. If you have been to one store, you have been to them all. It was fun to look around and explore a part of Railay we haven’t see before. Beth and Paige went and got banana pancakes while Laura and I went to relax and read at our resort. It is pretty amazing that it was the last day and it was the first time we ever split up!
The waves were still really big, so Beth, Paige, and I decided to take one last swim! I love the ocean, so having the opportunity to swim in big, crashing waves one last time was awesome. I will definitely miss feeling the waves crash around me and the taste of salt while looking out at such incredible scenery. I am already looking forward to the next time I get to be at the ocean!
Unfortunately, Beth got stung by a jellyfish after about 20 minutes of swimming. On our first day, some people on the beach told us that some locals helped them after their jellyfish sting, so we approached them and they rubbed some leaf mixture on it. There was another girl that they were helping as well, but she had welts all over her body! It looked very painful. (No, nobody peed on it like the movies) Luckily, Beth’s welts went away pretty quickly. We were hoping to get through our last day without a medical issue, but no such luck.
After Beth got stung, we headed back to our resort to give it time to go down and read some more (yay!) If any of you know my mom or I’s reading habits, we tend to get very engrossed in the books we read. I never have time to read during the school year, so this has been such a treat! Game of Thrones is highly recommended.
After we had a chance to eat some of food, we decided we wanted to spend our last few hours of daylight on our favorite beach. It had been pretty cloudy all day, so we weren’t really sure if there would be a sunset, but would have been okay just sitting on the beach. There was actually a cave we heard about and decided to check it out! It was pretty cool! The limestone cliffs are so tall, they just tower over you wherever you go here! After climbing around for a while, we went to our favorite place to watch the sunset. It is in a little inlet or mini-cave and at low tide, it gives you your own private little beach!
The sunset was magnificent! Everytime you looked at it, it was a different color. It looked like a painting with the silhouettes of long tail boats in the distance and the beach on the horizon. The clouds were streaked across the sky and the limestone cliffs provided an interesting contrast to the beautiful colors. It was honestly the most amazing sunset I have ever seen and it was the perfect ending to our time here on Railay Beach and in Thailand. Watching the sunset gave us all a chance to have some closure and get lost in our own thoughts as we enjoyed the moment in content silence. We all appreciated having some time to just enjoy the peace and reflect on our crazy adventure. We all said later that we appreciated the that no one felt the need to fill the silence as it was really special to be fully immersed in the experience.
After sitting for a while, we walked up the beach a little ways and just stood in the waves to just enjoy them for a little while longer. Feeling the sand beneath my toes, the waves lap against my legs, and the breeze in my hair while watching such a beautiful sunset will be one of my favorite memories of this trip. It is not often that you get to feel perfectly content.
I am not a very sentimental person when it comes to objects, but I am very sentimental when it comes to memories. That is why this blog has been such a priority and experiencing moments like this one is so special to me. Reflecting on all of the crazy adventures we have had is almost overwhelming because there have been so many, and they have all been so unique and fun. It definitely hasn’t been perfect, and there were days when we were crabby, tired, and honestly just wanted to go home, but it was worth it, and we will come back with endless stories, thousands of pictures, and priceless memories.
Tomorrow we will begin our very long journey home. We will have about 48 hours of travel and will probably arrive back in Minneapolis very tired and in desperate need of a shower. We get to see Randy one last time tomorrow as we have about 8 hours in between our Chiang Mai flights. I will try post a few more times as we wrap up the rest of this trip, but hopefully our travels are very smooth and there is not much drama to write about. We have had more than our fair share so far 🙂