Mr. Chui is a real character, fierce looking, always with a bandana around his head, sunglasses, and the typical wrap-around the waist skirt. He loves his motorbike/s, he has complete control on how many beers we are drinking (almost too much though, because he seems to count more beers sometimes) and he loves to joke. Mr. Chui had survived the 2004 tsunami by climbing high up into a tree. All his bungalows were destroyed by the tsunami, but since then he has built many new ones. Simple bamboo huts with running cold water, toilets, beds, mosquito nets, and electricity available between 6 and 12 pm. The restaurant serves excellent breakfast, lunch and dinner, and the cook made whatever dish we asked for. Many vegetables come directly out of her own small garden, and the fish and shrimps are brought in directly by the fishermen.
The sand beach is about 100 m away from the bungalows and stretches over several kilometers north and south. Few tourists find their way to Phra Thong Island, which means an almost empty beach, just one tiny place for Thai massage, a few fishing boats, a few exclusive bungalows further away and Mr. Chui’s place being the center of interest for everyone staying on this side of the island.
The sunsets over Phra Thong beach are gorgeous and the animal life on the beach at low tide is amazing. Crabs of all sizes build small holes, feed on the sand and roll it into tiny balls. Eremite crabs carrying heavy shells stroll along the beach, all sorts of burrowing animals leave their traces and the waves and the receding water create beautiful sedimentary structures. Walking along the beach at low tide is better than any sedimentology textbook.