The thing about trekking is it can get exhausted like you’re being punch a hundred of times but still love that fist blowing off your face it feels masochistically sweet knowing you’ll get rewarded in the end. It’s like climbing up all the way to Ang Thong National Marine Park in the gulf of Thailand in Koh Samui. We took the boat arranged by tours which we negotiated for 1300 baht including the 200 baht entrance to the marine park. It was off peak and when we hit Surathani province it was raining non stop but when we reached Samui the heat was on, it was like we were endowed with divine favor from Helios and bestowed us the bright blue sky and scorching sun rays we hoped for. We were with a couple of tourists sun bathing on board as if they’ve been trapped in the dark for ages never having the chance to see the sun like vampires finally out to feel the sun with their mystical lapis lazuli ring.
On board breakfast includes coffee, cokes, bread, bananas and more bananas. Glaring at the bananas like it has a signage “Banana a day keeps the leg cramps away” made me think that bananas were there to warm us up for the upcoming trek. Not that i hate bread and bananas but it’s just not my kind of brekky thing. So I had my usual unhealthy breakfast, the breakfast of champions my mom would never dare to serve me – Black Coffee and Mr. Marlboro Red.
We sailed at a slow speed which could be boring if I was traveling solo. With two colleagues on long boat rides playing Pinoy Henyo with absolutely no mechanics, Filipino riddles and joking around never felt better. Its true time flies by when you’re having fun. We didn’t even recognize we were in Ang Thong already. We were advised to go snorkeling and trekking during the entire stay in the Island. We opted to trek first before snorkeling after all we’re up to the view point while others especially with kids along with them went for snorkeling. It was a moderate stroll but totally grueling. There is only one rope to hold on to and the rest of the trail can be a bit tricky with all those rocks which serve as an obstacle to meander on the evergreen forest, Nevertheless, the first 200 meter view point is gratifying. It gave us the inspiration to move forward and see the second lookout. It was indeed amazing! We kept going and every view point we reached was all worth it.
I halted and took a deep breath. The lady who just came all the way to the top smiled at me and told me “Atop is a breathtaking view. It’s really beautiful out there so it’s gonna be worth it”. When we reached the third view point, the two guides told us we can’t climb all the way up due to limited time but we still have time, we can ditch snorkeling. We were there for the trek. I was disappointed! That feeling you’re almost there and someone will tell you that you can no longer proceed because you are in a tour and you have no choice but to follow what they say. We never get to see the top. Never!
Dissatisfied, we moved at a snails pace back to the beach, we missed the snorkeling part since we only have limited time to explore the island. We really don’t care about snorkeling anymore. We weren’t on the mood for kayaking as well. We just laze on the beach and time stops there. We had buffet lunch on board; it wasn’t tasty pretty much like eating for the sake of it. I noticed some tours, they had lunch on the beach while were stuck on the boat. It’s like they’re on hurry or something. Later that day, I felt like dozing off.
While on the boat, I can’t help but wonder, that trek to Ang Thong National Marine Park was the only trek I had in my entire life that I didn’t reach the top view. What’s the point of trekking if you can’t make it to the top? Ugh, it felt like I didn’t get what I paid for. First time ever! To my disappointment I had a couple of Mr Red sticks. We headed to Mae Koh Island to trek the Emerald Lake. This time, the climb is effortless. There were stairs made of steel which makes it easy to reach the Green Lagoon. You have to climb a series of ladders to see the top view and go down to view the wonderful preserved lake. The Talay Nalai or Inner Lagoon reminds me of Kayangan Lake. Its pea green Lake is naturally gorgeous. I love how the lake is being protected by sheer lime stones. The Mae koh beach however is commercialize and overcrowded. In fact, the beach is also congested but what the hell, we need to swim. Cold drinks are available for purchase on the beach. At least we weren’t in a hurry at that time. In fact, while waiting for the guys who went on kayaking, people start jumping off the boat. I envy kids who can jump off freely never afraid of the deep waters.
I realized it really doesn’t matter if there are people out there. No matter how overcrowded the place is. What matters is that you meet some of the most amazing people on board or even during trekking. The fact is that the place is breathtaking. No wonder why many people visit the island. I love it there despite the unbearable fact that I wasn’t able to reach the top view of Mu Ko at least; I was able to see the most amazing hidden lake. I highly recommend going down to see the emerald lake. Nothing beats nature at its best!