Thailand / Malaysia
Tigers and Travesties
The border formalities at Poipet (Cambodia – Thailand) are easy and quick. The Thai custom officer is too busy with his lunch. So we have to fill in our carnets and then he will stamp and sign it. He is also not interested see the bikes. Good. Could not be al the border crossing like this? Back in Thailand we go to Ayutthaya, the old capital until 1767. Nowadays there are still a lot of ruins to see from that period, like Wats and Buddha´s.
Heading south the landscape changes from rice paddies into palm oil and rubber plantations. The rubber trees are standing in line and have a little bowl attached at about 50 cm above the ground. They cut open the bark above the bowl and the white rubber juice is dripping in the bowl. We ask a men who is working at a plantation why our tires are black if they are made from white rubber juice? Confused he looks at us but don´t know the answer...
In KhaoSok National Park we pitch our tent along a river and we try to remember when was the last time we camped. It seems weeks ago, too many hotels and guesthouses. We make ourselves a dinner and some coffee and go to sleep. With the sounds of the jungle as background music we fell asleep within minutes.
The next morning we get up early to make a hike. There are tigers living in this park and we hope to see one. Khao Sok N.P. has one of the last remaining tropical rainforests in Thailand. It is warm and humid and within 30 minutes walking we are soaking wet. A narrow trail winds through the dense jungle. Some parts are very steep and we grab the roots of the trees to pull us up. We hear ribbons screaming and butterflies are circling above our heads. Harald find a leach on his leg but he has already eaten. He torch the bloodsucker with a lighter. After a long day of hiking we saw only some lizards, a snake and a lot of ants. Then the next morning we see a tiger. It is on the tiger balm that we use on our legs to diminish the muscle pain...
The island Phuket is famous for its beautiful beaches and is therefore very touristic. On a deserted beach we find a spot to put up our tent. At night we make a nice campfire and dream away with the waves in the sunset. In the morning two fishermen pass by and catch our breakfast.
camping on the beach
The beach cities are packed with hotels, souvenir shops, restaurants and bars. Macho beach boys with their sun-BBQed bodies and fresh tattoo´s try to impress the Thai girls. Only dressed in shorts and slippers they make wheelies with the rented motorbikes and try to make burnouts. When we stop they make fun of us because we wear our helmets, motorbike jackets, gloves and jeans. But when we cruise along the boulevard of Kata Beach with our mud covered and fully loaded DR´s we have much more attention than the show offs. We are cool!
We stay here a few days to relax on the beach, do some sea canoeing to the limestone rocks and caves and make a boat tour to Koh Tapu, better known as James Bond island. This typical shaped limestone island became popular when they shoot the Bond movie "The Man with the Golden Gun" here.
In Kata we meet our Danish friends again who are also traveling around the world. The first time we met them in Leh in India and later in Nepal. We go out together to a bar and share our adventures. Than a beautiful waitress comes to us and asks with a heavy voice "What do you want to drink?" Astonished we look up and than we see that it is a travesties. When we study the other waitresses we see that they all are travesties. This is also Thailand...
On the road to Malaysia we pass through a dramatic landscape. From the dense green jungle, white limestone rocks rise into the air, like big zits. When we ride close to them we feel little. We cross the border to Malaysia in a fart. Over a 13.5 km long bridge (the longest in S.E. Asia) we arrive in Georgetown on the island Penang. A few days we are busy to look for a freight company that can ship our bikes to New Zealand. Then we need a whole day to clean the bikes to get rid of seven months dust and mud. The next day we go to the forwarder and crate our bikes. In four hours time we take of the aluminum boxes, front wheel, steer and manage to make a package that stays within 3 cubic meters. In three weeks it will arrive in Auckland, New Zealand. Until than we take a deserved holiday... But we will miss our mates...
Ready to ship to New Zealand