Chill out on Lanta

Koh Lanta Thailand

Our time on Lanta didn’t consist of much more than seeing beautiful sunsets, a bit of motorbiking around, visitng the gym every day (a huge luxury for us these days when there is no gym nearby!  We’re gonna have to make our own in LNT!) and just generally relaxing and enjoying our time.

Koh Lanta Thailand

Food was a particular highlight this time – we found some amazing new restaurants, including a Greek place run by a lovely Greek couple, an Belgian place and also good pizza.

Koh Lanta Thailand

The one thing missing was Ben and Fafa, who were in France and who we managed to miss by only about a week, so we’ll have to go back to hang out with them.

We also found a new awesome place to stay, saw some cool birds, and spent time on the beautiful deserted beaches.  All in all we can’t wait to get back to Lanta at some point in the not too distant future.


Our first Songkran in Asia was really nice, and we were glad we stayed on Koh Lanta since it wasn’t too crazy busy.  Songkran is the Thai/ Lao new year water festival where everyone throws water on everyone else, everyone walks around with huge water pistols, and generally everyone gets really wet.  It is basically to welcome the rainy season, because by April the continent is ridiculously hot and so the rains coming are usually really appreciated to cool it down a bit.  This year it didn’t quite work that way in the south, since we got heavy rains a couple of weeks ago and the flooding from that is still receeding, but still, any excuse for a party!  The main celebrations are in Bangkok and northern Thailand and Laos, and we were quite glad we stayed in the sleepy south because although it is really fun for the most part, it’s also kind of annoying if you just want to grab something to eat but can’t do so without getting saturated.

The main reason we stayed on Lanta though, was because our friend Melissa who we met on Cat Ba Island in Vietnam told us she was coming to visit.  It was really fun to catch up with her again, and also her friend Heidi who she brought to Lanta.  We spent the evening on the beach watching the sunset and then had an awesome dinner at one of our  favourite restaurants, Sonya Restaurant.

We spent our last few days on Lanta riding around the island, visiting Patu our friend who is starting his cafe at the Old Town next season (and who has a location to die for, on the waters edge overlooking the limestone karst islands), and admiring all of the beautiful trees in flower at the moment.  Now we’re heading north again for more Lao adventures, and to meet Ben and Lauren our friends from Sydney, before that though we’re heading to Pai, in northern Thailand to meet up with Luke who we met on Lanta and check out the mountain town that we didn’t make it to last time we were in northern Thailand.  Apparently it’s chilled out and filled with hippies, so let’s hope it’s all it’s cracked up to be!

Shanti shanti

This post goes out to our awesome French friends Ben and Fafa!  During our time on Koh Lanta we have become really close friends with these amazing brothers who spend part of the year in their hometown in the south of France, part of the year  in northern India, and part of the year here in Koh Lanta running their shop Shanti Shanti.

What Ben and Fafa do, they do with passion.  Never before have we met people who put so much of their hearts and souls into everything they do.  Their ice cream is to die for.  After we visited Italy, Karen didn’t eat icecream anymore.  Because nothing compares, nothing tastes as good… until we tried Ben and Fafa’s ice cream, which is now, in both of our opinions, definitley the best in the world.  Each time we visited their shop, which was often daily, one of these boys would excitedly tell us their new flavour of the day – they would make new flavours every single day and all of them were outstanding, and original, or something someone had suggested the day before so they thought they’d give it a go.  Our favourite flavours are lavender (which is seriously like walking through the lavender fields of southern France with your tongue out!), mango chilli sorbet, cinnamon, apple cinnamon, basil, banana pineapple sorbet, ginger sorbet, tumeric, thyme and paprika, star anise… and yes the list does go on.

On top of amazing ice cream, they source cool clothes and jewellery from northern India, and also are DJ’s.  They used to host massive parties in France with more than 1000 people, and it really shows!  The parties that we went to with Ben and Fafa DJing was the coolest vibe, the coolest music and the best time ever.  They are just so passionate about their music and it shows.

Anyway, Ben and Fafa, we just wanted to say we think you’re awesome, and you’ll definitely see us again, whether you visit us in Laos, or we visit you in Lanta or India or France, or all of the above, we can’t wait!  Anyone visiting Koh Lanta definitely needs to pay these boys a visit – for ice cream and personalities you will never forget.

Life on Lanta

Firstly, we just want to say thanks to all the people who have contacted us out of concern or impatience because we haven’t updated the site for so long.  It’s nice to know that some people actually read this!  :-) Basically we have just been being lazy, or having fun, or spending time at the beach, rather than on the internet.

The past month we have been living in a little house on Koh Lanta, in south western Thailand.  It has been heavenly!  We have a huge room, all the mod cons such as a fridge, kettle, (Yay!!  Cups of tea and coffee in our own room, without having to go out!  The only other place we can do that is Luang Namtha.) cable TV, (with 3 movie channels!  OMG, it’s been 10 months since we’ve watched TV!), air con and a huge balcony overlooking heaps of trees including palm trees.  There are lots of birds and squirrels always in the trees so it’s quite entertaining to sit on the balcony for hours.  We are also a few minutes walk to the beach, (about 30 seconds on our motorbike) and our French friends Ben and Fafa live just across the road and we have spent a lot of time with them.

A typical day pretty much consists of:  get up and go for a run on the beach and then a swim, come home, Dre take scooter to fruit and food stall – Thai’s laugh at Dre for eating like a local, have the nicest mango and pineapple in the world for breakfast (seriously!) plus other fruits, sit on the balcony/read for a while, go to the gym at the resort across the road, go for a swim at the resort, laze by the pool at the resort, have lunch, visit Ben and Fafa for some out of this world homemade icecream/sorbet/talking/chilling, watch sunset and swim again, have a lazy evening at one of our favourite restaurants, watch a movie.  So, very domesticated!

We have visited the annual Lanta festival, been to many deserted beaches, and went to the most fun party of our lives (even better than Shapeshifter!!) hosted by DJ Fafa, we danced for about 8 hours and then showed our age the next day by pretty much not being able to do anything other than eat, sleep and swim.

We are starting to appreciate why many regions in south-east Asia so many people celebrate the coming of the rainy season, April is meant to be the hottest month and the past week has been SO hot.  High 30’s every day and then the  past few days this has been broken by rain for an hour or so in the late afternoon which is such a welcome relief.  It has made for some amazing sunsets and is awesome because it cools everything down for the evening and night.  Tomorrow we are off to Malaysia again because our 1 month visa is up already!  Our photos are here.