For 2013

January 23

There are now two crocodile shows on Koh Chang.  The first I mentioned last month, a truly awful affair with crocs kept in a dingy concrete shed with lino on the floor and very little light.  Aimed squarely at Russian visitors as they are the only people this could possibly appeal to.  However, there is now a new crocodile show, in  a purpose built ‘arena’ which is bright and airy.  This too is aimed at Russian visitors and whilst these type of shows aren’t really my cup of tea, if you are going to go and see one then this one is in far nicer surroundings for both spectators and crocs.  It’s also FREE.  As in no entrance fee.  If you don’t fancy seeing the show you can just go and photograph the ten ‘ Trained Siamese Crocodiles’ with no hassles at any time.  And after you have seen the show or taken a  few pics you can buy a wide range of crocodile leather gift items. Show time is 10:30 & 15:30 daily with an additional 13:30 show at weekends. Located at ‘ Ban Chivit’ on the road to Klong Plu Waterfall.  On your right about 800 metres after you turn off the main road.

Congratulations to Us:  It’s not often I win a prize of any kind.  So it was a very pleasant surprise to learn that our guesthouse was voted one of the Top 25 B&B’s in Thailand.  According to Tripadvisor and based on reviews from guests staying at thousands of places across the country.  Many thanks to our guests, without whom it wouldn’t have been possible etc etc.  Also in the Top 25, and representing Koh Chang, were Amber Sands Beach Resort ( again ) and Elephant & Castle.

baan rim nam tripadvisor

For Sale.  Now the ‘Peak Season’ rush is over, quite a few people seem to be interested in selling their businesses on the island.  Many smaller enterprises are based on the premise that you buy a business.  Make enough money to pay for a few beers every night for a few months a year. Close during the rainy season. Repeat for 2-3 years until boredom and/or alcoholism sets in.  Then find a sucker/investor to take the business over.

If you are looking for something on a scale that will give you a very good income and will keep you in gainful employment year round then here’s a 24 bungalow resort on a huge plot of land ( Around 6.500Sqm or so ) in the heart of Lonely Beach.   Established 8 years.   Yours for 17 Million Baht.  More info.  If that’s over budget, a 18 hut resort with sea frontage is also for sale for 4 Million and with very low land rent.

 Dining Out.  There are quite a selection of BBQ chicken and somtam restaurants on the island nowadays.  One of the best, and most popular, is ‘Bam & Tom’, in the centre of Klong Prao village – opposite Tesco Express.  They do some excellent chicken and the somtam, whilst not the best on the island as the signs proclaim, is very good.  Much cleaner than your average local restaurant and with plenty of Thai diners as well as tourists.  One negative is the two menu system that they have.  The Thai language menu has slightly cheaper prices than the multi-lingual English/Russian /Thai menu.  If you can forgive them for that, then definitely worth a try.

Battle of Koh Chang.  The usual remembrance ceremonies were held at Hat Yuthanavy in the far south east of Koh Chang and on the mainland on 17 January.  This commemorates a WWII naval battle in which the French navy ( then Vichy France under Nazi control )  sank a few Thai ships after heading down the coast from Vietnam.  The official version on most Thai and touristy websites is that the French withdrew after sinking the Thai ships as an acknowledgement of the toughness of the battle.  Hard to imagine that happening as it wasn’t a game of cricket, it was a real naval battle and, in such cases, the victor tends not to simply say ” Well played chaps. Righty-ho, let’s go home now, that’s enough fighting for me.  Wonder what’s on telly?” In reality no French ships were damaged and whilst they did withdraw from Koh Chang, they did so in the direction of Bangkok and not back to their base in Vietnam.  The Japanese, who were running Thailand at the time, then asked them nicely not to attack any more Thai ships as they were all supposed to be on the same side.  ( I do have some sympathy with the Japanese having to deal with both the French and Thais and keep them both from doing something dumb. Can’t have been easy.)

Siem Reap Scams.  It only costs 300 Baht to get from Lonely Beach to Siem Reap.  Do you think there might be a scam or two involved on the way?  Last week, an English couple uploaded a load of videos showing their experiences and how they were scammed.  I’ve selected the best for you.  Know what to expect in advance and you can have a (fairly) stress free journey.

 RIP.  It was the funeral of my partner, Mam’s, brother who died in a car accident following a night celebrating his promotion at work earlier this month.  He was a fitness addict who wanted to stay in shape to enjoy a long life and was planning to set up his own business.  There s still a few things I want to see and do before I disappear for good, time to make a start.

Finally, if this site is recommended by an overpriced airline then I must be doing something right.  ( On second thoughts, maybe that means I’m not )  Thanks to Julian for the photo of the magazine page.

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