A Boat trip to Bottle Beach

Well, we swam at Bottle beach but we really liked snorkeling at Khom beach and Kho Ma beach stopping for lunch at Chalok Lum beach. And

in case you wondered – all of them are your dream picture of a white sand, tropical paradise.

https://goo.gl/maps/k5qYdJqixH42

We chartered our very own longboat with boat-driver. The one in charge of the business had to go to the doctor for a routine check of her four-month pregnancy. The boat-driver was her husband. Congratulations all around.

We drove over increasingly high waves for about half-an-hour to Bottle Beach to swim. Very remote, calm and peaceful. I learned that there is a place too remote and peaceful even or me. Very beautiful, like all these bays.

We could not go to Thong Nai Pan Yai Beach, which Matan recommended — too much swell on the east side of the island. Next time.

Then we headed back for the best of the trip: snorkeling. At Haad Khom and Haad (which means beach in Thai) Mae. Just fantastic snorkeling, jumping straight from the boat. Lots and lots of species of healthy reef fish. Big schools of Rabbit fish. A school can cruise along, in tight formation, until there’s a signal (?) and most converge on a rock covered with coral and begin feeding. A ball of swirling yellow and silver. Fish are upside down, tilted sideways, washed by small currents, curled into tight curves. Smaller fish hover on the edges, feeding on the debris that the Rabbitfish have kicked up. Then the school swoops on.

An occasional Butterfly fish too. Incredibly bright Damselfish. A Parrot fish, showing off its iridescent greens and blues.

When we discovered a huge school of yellow and black striped fish, we followed them on their meandering after reef food. First it looks like they attack the coral all at once and then continue to the next spot in perfect orderly manner. We both were hypnotized completely mindless of time.

These too https://goo.gl/images/i9PAVD

I find that I come to exist completely below the surface. Breathing effortlessly with snorkel. Diving down every now and again, rising by natural buoyancy, breaking the surface only with snorkel to clear and continue breathing. I become a water-mammal. For a loooong time.

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