Another “real time” update before I publish the last few blog entries about our stay in the fascinating and beautiful Andaman Islands.
Our trip from Phuket to Langkawi started off reasonably enough with a good sail to Koh Lipe. The following day was a different story. We had a big swell on our way to Koh Lanta and then as we approached the island, we were hit by squalls that went on for 40 minutes with winds gusting at 30 knots.
The rain was so hard that there was a complete white out and all we could do was go round in a small circle. Our instruments told us we wouldn’t hit land but we were concerned about hitting another yacht or a fishing boat.
It was the right thing to do – only days later a fellow yachtie was caught in a similar storm outside Koh Lanta (but worse, with gusts up to 50 knots) and found four fishermen in the water after their boat had broken up and sunk, quite possibly after being hit by another vessel. He heroically saved their lives but that’s another story and his to tell.
We eventually anchored at Koh Lanta once we could more or less see where we were going. Once again, bad weather stopped us going ashore at Koh Lanta. Sadly we seem destined never to visit the place, a shame as by all accounts it is a lovely island.
The next day was better and we had a good sail in big seas to Koh Muk. We were looking forward to going ashore there and around 5.30 headed into the beach on our dinghy. We were less than half way there when the wind started to get up, the grey clouds above us started to look angry and a low growl of thunder rolled around us.
We turned back to the boat and arrived back just as a huge electrical storm erupted. Thankful we hadn’t ignored the signs we bunkered down for another evening on board.
There was still some rain about the following day but nothing compared to what we had experienced during the previous two days and despite a little rain had a great sail.
Koh Tarutao was our last stop in Thailand before reaching Langkawi. The north eastern anchorage (not in the pilot) is just beautiful and we would have gladly stayed another night but we were on a mission to head south well before the 2 July start for the West Kalimantan rally.
We motored sailed to Langkawi in glorious weather and anchored in Telaga Harbour once again. We have done this so many times it felt almost like coming home.
It was such a pleasure checking in at Telaga – it took precisely seven minutes, including the walk from the Harbourmaster’s office to the Customs/Immigration building. Polite, welcoming and not the least bit officious this has to be our favourite border control administration ever!
That night, there was a fireworks display on one of the two man-made islands that shelter Telaga – and we had fabulous front row seats.
Thanks for the excellent welcome Langkawi!