We crossed the bridge and we were on the Island of Phuket, Sun, Sea, Sand and Surf here we come, we headed first for Patong Beach, but we soon found that the Hotels were either full or to expensive for us, so we moved on to Kata Beach about five miles further down the coast, here we eventually found a hotel that provided reasonable safe parking for the bikes and had a clean room with air con and a fridge for 700 Baht per night, a bit more than we wanted to pay, but after a while you get fed up with looking a rooms and trying to haggle the price down, Anyway to put it in perspective 700 Baht is about £10.50 for a room, try getting one in Clacton.
The Beach was pretty good, clean soft sand, the only problem being that the sand gets so hot that its best to over come any vanity problems and just run down to the sea, this is infinitely better than walking slowly and then as your
feet start to burn, getting faster before you really make yourself look daft by breaking into a Fhuket this sand is hot, hop. The water is a warm 28 degrees, but this is several degrees cooler than sitting in the sun.

One of the first things that we did when we arrived in Phuket was to check out the Diving situation, This was easy as there are dive shops everywhere, most of them are just agents though, but after going into seven dive shops we found one that actually ran there own Dive boats, and the price was better so we booked a three dive day at the Phi Phi Islands and at a place known as Shark Point !! The next day we headed for the beach and after spending some time watching the fish we decided that we were fed up with the Fit everyone except you masks that we have previously rented and went looking for a couple of new dive masks and snorkels, There is loads of dive gear available here so it only took a couple of hours to find and buy what we wanted !!

The Phi Phi Islands, those two little ones on the right is where we actually went diving
The next day we joined a load of other people on the bus provided to get us across the Island to Phuket Harbour where we joined our dive boat, then it was three hours sailing time to the Phi Phi Islands where we were to do the first two of three dives, We had our breakfast as we sailed out to the dive site, this passed some of the time but three hours was a bit on the long side, once we were kitted out and in the water the long boat ride seemed not to matter, The diving here is very very good, much better than of Koh Chang, There is loads of different soft and hard Coral and the fish are both colourful and plentiful, After the first dive we were both very pleased that we had decided to come here, as we had been thinking of passing Phuket to save some time, During the first dive a Leopard Shark swam by, we saw fish that were all the colours of the rainbow and big blue Starfish, on the second dive we saw even more and a Shark sleeping on the sea bed !

We returned to the boat and had lunch as it sailed to Shark point for our third dive, here we were hoping to see some Sea Horses and Ghost Fish, but as the dive master we were with tried to show us the sea horses several other divers barged their way in, It was like opening time for the January sales, after getting hit on the back of the head by someone else's air tank I decided that I'd had enough, as to what the poor Sea Horses thought I can only wonder, I will refrain from writing my thoughts as it involves a lot of expletives and the removal of most of the human race from the Planet. This situation was made worse by the fact that Shark point is only a small Reef, but also very interesting, there was certainly plenty to see, but the dive was spoiled by there being to many divers on one boat all hitting the dive site at about the same time.

We would love to go back again and do some more diving, but we would try and find a smaller dive boat to go with, maybe ten other divers, this would probably be more expensive but it would be worth it.

On the way back to Phuket, I was about 8 o Clock by the time we got back to the Quay side, so it was a long but good day out
After spending the next day Snorkelling around the rocks at the end of the beach, (there is loads of colourful fish in just a few feet of water) it was time to leave Phuket and head for Malaysia. So the following morning we loaded up the bikes and headed for the mainland. Unfortunately we did not get very far, Jenny decided that she wanted to go first today, so off she went leaving her brain back in the hotel, we had only done a few miles when she went up the outside of a queue of traffic at a set of traffic lights. Normally this is not a problem, BUT as the lights changed Jenny opened the throttle and off she went, again no problem if there is no one turning right. Unfortunately there was a swarm of Scooters waiting to do just that, it was a bit like watching a bowling ball hit the skittles, (only a lot more worrying as there is nothing that you can do except watch and hope that she gets away with it). There was Scooters going in all directions as she tried to plough her way through - it almost worked as well, but the last one got his legshields hooked up on the left pannier, this sent him and his Scooter pirouetting through the air and sent Jenny off at a 60 degree angle and heading for the traffic Island (which the road builders had thoughtfully protected with a huge kerb, this she hit at an angle and down she went, Most Unladylike). Fortunately the bike gear did its job and she suffered only a lightly bruised shoulder and hip, the poor sod on the scooter however was wearing only a pair of Flip-Flops, so he came off a bit the worse for wear - wear being the operative word here, as he had worn quite a bit of skin off his foot as a result of his unexpected 'Get-Off'. The whole episode cost us two thousand Baht (about £ 30) for the damage to his Honda, but we did finally have a use for the first aid kit that we have been carrying for the last 20,000 miles. He was bandaged and plastered like a dummy - think Jenny was doing the "god I am so sorry a bit too much" and becoming Florence Nightingale - using the roll of plaster tape around and around and around his foot. Mind you he seemed Quite happy with his bandages and I'm sure he will have been showing it off and making the most of the sympathy that he undoubtedly will get from his mates.

Having got him on his way we then had to address our own problems. These included straightening the bent pannier which had been ripped off in the accident, so we rode about half a kilometre back into Phuket and found the Phuket Bike Art Shop, with a little assistance from the guy's in the shop we straightened out the pannier and the mounting frames, Superglued the indicator back together and straightened the Handlebars and forks out. Apart from a couple of extra scratches on the bodywork you would never know it had happened, oh and we straightened out the crash bars which have done there job on several occasions now and are getting to the point where you can bend them rather to easily !!

Despite all this we still managed to cover over 200 miles in the day and made it to Trang where we found a hotel for the night. The next morning we set off for the Malaysian border which we managed easily, before heading
on to Alor Setar in Malaysia for the night, The Picture above is in Malaysia, here the signs on the motorway show the bridges as shelter for motorcyclists when it rains, and it did rain for about five minutes so we stopped for a smoke !!
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