A Krabi trip to end 2014 and start 2015

My friends and I typically meet every two months, if we're lucky. Some of us have kids, some are single career-focused ladies and then there's me who is a married workaholic married to another workaholic struggling to keep everything in order at home when we ARE at home.

When we girls meet (I have two main friend groups- school mates and college mates), we try to choose somewhere "fancy" with the perfect ambiance for photography purposes (I save the "gerai" trips for hubby).

During the last makan session with my school besties, J and SD, at The Daily Grind, Bangsar Village (they've been open for years and we finally got a chance to pay a visit), while stuffing our faces with the delicious patty and fatty fries, we remarked how fun it would be if we could do something special for New Year's.

I'm not one who celebrates New Year's (or anything festive, really!) but the idea of travelling with the girls excited me. It's been about 5 years since we made a trip together (we went to Singapore the last time). Regrettably, two of our friends work overseas and wouldn't be able to join us but we decided to make sure this trip happen, anyway.

We had three weeks to plan something. We contemplated visiting the nice white sandy beaches in Johor or even Tioman Island but alas it was the monsoon season, so one night while browsing Agoda's and TripAdvisor's websites for resorts that would be approved by our slightly more fussy friend, SD, we decided on Krabi's Pavilion Queens Bay Resort. SD's older sis, SD2, decided to join us, too! The more the merrier!

Christmas came and went (we enjoyed SD's home cooked meal with her family) and two days before we were due to fly, news of Indonesia's AirAsia crash filled our Facebook newsfeed. We squashed whatever fear and doubt filled our minds and decided to go ahead with this trip.

30th December

J and I met up at KL Sentral and took the Sky Bus to KLIA2. The trip took us just 45 minutes and KLIA2 knocked our socks off when we reached. The new airport looks like a really posh shopping mall filled with eateries and places to shop and even supermarkets! Great for frequent travellers who need to pick up their groceries on their way home.

We were early so we had the most expensive "roti telur" I've eaten in my life and coffee while waiting for SD and her sis. We joked that she had her own special lane near the Gate as she messaged us to say that they just left their house while we were checking in. SD travels a lot for work so we know that she knows how things are at airports and is not as panicky as J and I.

While we made our way to the gate a few minutes before departure, SD and sis decided to stop for coffee so we met them at the lounge. SD must have some control over the pilot as the flight was a little delayed.

The flight went without incident though even the slightest turbulence had me praying very hard. We reached Krabi airport just under two hours.

Our hotel pick up was waiting for us and after a 30-minute ride, we arrived at Pavilion Queens Bay after passing the beach and the shopping district just down the road.

Upon arrival, the reception informed us that our booking was inclusive of a New Year's eve dinner for two pax as J had booked for two pax instead of four. Since we were there and had no real plans, we decided to add two more pax even though it cost us a bomb. They promised good entertainment and dinner and we had high hopes.

The hotel is not new and has an 1980s feel about it. We were lucky to have nice and clean rooms (our priority when selecting hotels) and reliable enough WiFi which we promised ourselves we would not use for work.

The hotel is a walking distance to the Night Market which offered plenty of food choice. Many Muslims live in the area so Halal food is aplenty. Krabi is more a family-orientated place compared to party islands like Phi Phi island so everything felt more relaxed here.

After freshening up in our rooms, we went down to the pool for snacks. Everything was well priced and delicious (our bill inclusive of pizza, pad thai noodle, cocktails and coconut water came to less than RM70)  and we were happy campers.


Looking rather cool, aren't they?



After filling our tummies, we strolled down the street passing the many stalls selling beachwear and souvenirs. We spent about two hours walking (SD and SD2 squeezed in an hour's foot massage) and settled at an Italian restaurant for dinner. Why Italian? Beats me but they served Tomyam that had me crying and left me feeling relieved that I ordered iced milk tea to sooth my tongue.



We walked a bit more after that and retired for the night at about midnight.


The tall can of Coke that SD had


The huge Coconut water that J had















We got up early the next day for breakfast at the hotel rooftop. SD and I caught a view of the rainbow in the sky, a sign of a fabulous year ahead! (Sorry, my phone camera isn't good enough to capture a photo of the rainbow so here's one of the hotel rooftop instead- credit to TripAdvisor)



After breakfast, we waited at the lobby for our pick up to bring us kayaking at Ao Thalane, 30 minutes ride away.










We spent about an hour on the water and I must say, SD2 is a really good kayaking partner! Despite us not having any training or on my part, any exercise, we kept a pretty good pace with the rest of the kayakers (about 20 kayaks in total in our group).

Sure, we got stuck in some sand dunes with waters which reached our knees but that's all part of the fun!

They served complimentary coffee and tea while we waited for our ride back to the hotel and someone from another group had an eye on J but alas, he didn't make a move in time before we were ushered back to our truck.

After our morning exercise, hunger came, and we were recommended to go to Wang Sai, a seafood restaurant 15 minutes away from the hotel, which also arranges trips to close by islands. We quickly showered and made our way there.

The place proved to be popular and affordable. Most tables were taken up by families but we managed to get one with a nice view. The waitress promptly came to take our orders and got them all right despite our language differences.



We were all feeling really sleepy after all the morning action and super yummy late lunch, so we made our way to a massage centre 5 minutes away from our hotel. For RM40 I received an hour's worth of back and foot massage...bliss!

I've not been for a massage for ages and the lady masseuse commented I was all "tight". Each prod and pull was accompanied by cracking sounds but it felt great!

We were so tempted to take a nap after that but the New Year's Eve dinner was going to start at 7pm and it was already 6ish. We had time to shower before going to the roof top.

At the rooftop, we were served welcome cocktails and mocktails before being ushered to our table. We were feeling pretty excited but oh so sleepy!

The hotel hosts had put a lot effort in providing us with entertainment which included Thai dancers and singers and games but we could hardly keep our eyes open. After trying most of the items at the buffet spread (and SD2 winning a bottle of wine in a game she took part in ), we hung out at SD's room and played some games that SD and J brought till it was almost time for the countdown.

As we were on the rooftop, the hotel didn't have to have their own fireworks. We had a great view of the fireworks from the hotels around us.


Notice the Benedict Cumberbatch lookalike above?




We had a nice time ushering the new year in. I'm thankful to have been able to spend it with wonderful friends, on a smooth-sailing trip. As I get older, I want thinks simpler, and I want to spend time with those I love and this trip provided just that.

SD and SD2 had bought earlier departure flight tickets so they left at 11am the next day after breakfast while J and I walked to the market for some last minute souvenir hunting for the men (her family and my hubby) and had another pizza for lunch. What can I say? They make good pizza!

We found a tour agent which arranged for our van ride back to the airport at a fraction of what we paid to go from the airport to the hotel. RM15 per pax is really a bargain.

The driver picked us up from the hotel lobby at exactly 3.30pm and picked the other guests up staying in other hotels along the route. He had no time to waste as the traffic was building up along the beach road and there was no chance of turning back for late customers (thankfully, everyone was punctual) though there was a bit of drama when one of the guests realized that she had left her phone at her hotel. Luck was on our side, though, as the driver's daughter rode on her motorbike to retrieve it from the hotel and caught up with us to return it to the owner.



We reached the airport with an hour to spare so we ended our trip on a happy note.

What did you do for New Year's and what are your travel plans this year?

Comments

  1. Looks like you had a great time, the greenery, the beaches and the shopping in Krabi all look awesome...

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    1. We enjoyed the market and the food. Beach not so much as we didn't get the chance to go island hopping. Perhaps next time!

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  2. It's really nice to take a break off motherhood and go for short trips with your friends. Although some might miss their kids halfway through? Luckily, with technology, communication is so convenient now!

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    1. None of us who made this trip are mothers so it made the trip guilt-free. We tried to disconnect from technology as much as we could and just enjoyed being where we were

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  3. Quite a trip! Seems so enjoyable. Specially when you're with friends. I'm set to travel to KL this August, and reading posts like this makes me even more excited! Good trip indeed! Striking the balance between work, family and leisure is a challenge! But it's a good thing you managed to have this kind of trip with friends! Thumbs up!

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    1. It was truly a wonderful end to 2014 and start to 2015. How many days will you be in KL? I can recommend some places to visit :)

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  4. The photos speak for themselves. You have a great time. Ao Thalane is a nice place to visit.

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    1. We did! It was relaxed as the people there are very laid back and there was no need for us to rush for anything

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  5. The Krabi trip must have been an amazing experience, the nature seems so beautiful and the sights are amazing, I would like to try that large coconut drink as well, and the market looks so colorful!

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    1. The coconut drink is perfect for the hot climate!

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  6. That trip looks exciting! I'm getting hungry just by seeing all the food!

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    1. I love the food there! You can good Asian and Western food at affordable prices

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  7. A friend of mine was just telling me about her diving trip to Krabi, and now I see your blog showing pictures of it! Now I get the whole picture.

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    1. They have beautiful islands! Just do a little homework so you know how much these island trips roughly cost before deciding which tour agency to go with

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  8. They do have a lot of wonderful natural attractions in Krabi. It's also nice that there's also nice shops and food places.

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  9. One of my top destinations this year. Looks like you guys had a blast! :)

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  10. A great place to be with family and best buds :)

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  11. What a fabulous getaway, I can tell you had such a fun time and great food. I loved your photos too.

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  12. It looks like you had a great time spending NYE with your girls and a great view. I wish you put more photos in between the long paragraphs though, because I had difficulty continuing.

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    1. Sorry about that! I didn't take any photos prior to reaching Krabi!

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  13. this looks so fun! i want to go kayaking one time

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  14. Krabi is awesome. I'm so in love with Emerald pool. :D

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  15. Once in a while we need to travel and explore places with our family, friends or special someone. Great activity to end the year 2014 - KarenT

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  16. The moment I scrolled down and saw food. I began to feel the hunger. The food looks great.

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  17. Going on a trip with your girlfriends is always a fun experience! I'm glad you girls get to enjoy and the photos show how much excitement and joy you had.

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  18. Wow! This was a very detailed post on your escape with your friends! It simply shows how much you enjoyed and paid attention to all your activities.

    Sometimes, it is much more fun to tour or spend the vacation with friends rather than family, right? For some reason, it just feels good. Hehe.

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  19. I have no idea about the place. Thanks for posting this. Maybe this can be the next destination for me and my friends.

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