The first few months of our trip had been planned around being in Koh Phangan for 22nd November full moon party to coincide with my birthday.
Chiang Rai to Koh Phangan
Annoyingly we had 14 hours worth of travelling ahead of us, which consisted of taxi to Chiang Rai airport, flight to Bangkok, flight to Surat Thani, bus to Raja Ferry Donsak Pier, ferry to Thong Sala and a crammed Songthaew (10 people and 10 large bags on the roof-rack) to our hotel in Koh Phangan.
I didn’t think this would sit well with Kelly especially as our first flight was an hour delayed due to poor weather conditions, but surprisingly we both got through it and it wasn’t all that bad – until we got to the other end, we were absolutely exhausted. Luckily our accommodation was the best we’ve stayed in so far on the trip…
Where to stay in Koh Phangan – Cocohut Beach Resort & Spa
This was a birthday treat for me, from Kel, and it was an absolute dream. Kel only paid £93 for 3 nights (somehow I found this great deal on booking.com, boyfriend points!), which actually worked out just as cheap than the majority of hostels we looked at. Plus there is a 3 night minimum stay policy for most places in Koh Phangan because of the full moon party.
The resort itself was absolutely paradise. After walking up a steep hill we were greeted by a porter who took our bags to our room. We were also met with cold flannels and a cold drink which was a lovely touch.
As we entered the air conditioned room, we were welcomed by two towel elephants and display for my birthday on the bed – it was spectacular and must of taken some time to put together. Thank you Cocohut Resort!
The room was large, spacious, clean and had all the mod cons. It boasted a balcony with sea facing view.
We had breakfast buffet included which had a large range, but I topped up on fry ups for 3 days straight!
Other than that, the resort had a beautiful pool and it’s very own private beach which was pristine.
Oh, and the night of the full moon party we even got free food and free cocktail drinks between 7-9pm, I’ll have 8 ‘sexy man’s’ please! I’m not sure if this is something they do every full moon or because of the Khathong Festival, but it was a lovely touch. And saved us money on pre drinks!
We also got to take part in the Loy Krathong festival where we got to light our own lotus shaped rafts and send them out to sea. Again, a nice little experience.
Haad Rin Beach
Full Moon Pre Party
We checked out the beach the night before full moon on arrival. To find that drink prices were pretty high (we’re use to northern Thailand prices!). However the buckets were cheap at 150 baht each and lethal (we found out the next night).
We found one of the many 7 elevens and grabbed a large Chang beer each, and of course a toastie! But even these were hiked up in price slightly….
Changs were 67 baht, rather than 56 baht elsewhere. Still much cheaper than on the beach!
We strolled along the beach, had a little boogie and watched a few of the fire shows. The music was still very loud and the place was fairly busy, but nothing on the next night…
Full moon party
Full moon party gear on, face paint complete, topped up on free cocktails and looking sun kissed from a day sunbathing at our private pool/beach, we headed over to Haad Rin Beach for the full moon party at 11pm (we researched this was a good time).
At this time the place was absolutely heaving. Some lightweights were being stretchered home by friends, or maybe strangers, who knows!? And everyone seemed to be in a very good mood, partying to the several beach bars blasting our different genres of music.
Me and Kel shared a drinks bucket, to which I drunk most of! And we wondered in between the bars watching the fire shows and singing along to old school classics.
Not being Kels sort of thing, I walked her home at 1pm and decided to head back out solo. Anyone that knows me, will know that I tend to party until the end, and that I did. Plus I had been looking forward to this party for a while!
I had my process of getting a large Chang from the 7 eleven (5 min walk away), dancing away at a beach bar, then joining the queue of lads (and females) using the sea as urinals. This is something I’m not proud of, but with toilet prices at 15 baht (38p) a time, it seemed sensible.
It really seemed to work, and meant I had a very cheap night. I could have done this with the buckets, but I think I may have found myself on the floor.
Several Changs later, I found myself (again) at the 7 eleven for a toastie (again, cheaper than street food here) to support my walk home at 5.30am.
I arrived back to an unimpressed and tired Kelly, but I think she understood that I really wanted to experience this party. I almost stayed for sunrise, but was worried Kel was worrying. So I showered my face paint off (fines for stained bed sheets!) and scrubbed my feet, which were black. The beach gets disgusting! And I was up at 9am for free breakie, don’t ask how!
I then laid in the sun, in the hope for evil Mr. Hangover not to hit me – and it didn’t, surprisingly.
Haad Rin Beach – The Day After!
We visited the beach the day after and it became apparent why my feet were so dirty. It was about 3pm and clean up process was still going!
The sand was disgusting – full of empty bottles, glass, cigarette butts and the rest I’ll leave to your imagination. The edge of the beach was lined with full black bin bags and the smell was dreadful. Not the beach you want to spend your afternoon sunbathing on!
Where to eat cheaply – Moon Paradise Restaurant
We found ourselves eating here 3 times during our stay in Koh Phangan, partly because the food was the cheapest we found, the juices were delicious and it was the closest restaurant to our resort.
Not only that, the staff were so friendly and accommodating. We booked our transport to Thong Sala pier for only 200 baht (300 cheaper than our resort) with them. 5 star review.
Koh Phangan was certainly worth the visit, although if you’re not there to party, then you’re probably wasting your time. Thankfully we were staying at a 4 star resort, as I think Kel would have wanted to leave as soon as we arrived!