We’re in the town of Ao Nang, described by the Lonely Planet as an “uninspired link in the transport chain”. Fat sunburned tourists amble the main strip at night, mingling uneasily with the aggresive tailors and tuk tuk drivers.
If you want to get an “I’m with Stupid” t-shirt, this is the place. And don’t worry if the local businesses frighten you, there’s also a McDonald’s, Burger King, Starbucks, Subway and 7/11.
It’s easy to get claustrophobic in a place like this and want to catch the next boat out. But tourists are like swarms of ants- they tend to cluster together and stay on the same path.
As soon as we left the main strip we found a quiet bungalow in the jungle. Giant limestone cliffs frame the views, and the beach sunsets here compete with the best of them.
It seems odd to feel like I’m in a tranquil corner of Thailand, but know I’m still within easy walking distance of a Big Mac.