Traveling to Southeast Asia: Kayaking, rock climbing and Monkeys in Railay

3년 전

I took my first ride on my own to the airport of Chiang Mai to catch the 50$ evening flight to Krabi, a city way down in the south of Thailand. From there I got into a minibus towards Railay and finally a boat to get on the peninsula. There are no roads from the mainland to Railay so there is no other way than to go by boat.

P9043474.jpgThe view from a tiny beach we found while kayaking around
1/2000 Sek. f/4 14 mm ISO 100

Around 10pm I finally arrived in Railay east, where I met again with my friends Moritz and Lena. Railay east is the part of the peninsula that is the most expensive and is stuffed with expensive resorts and bungalows. Luckily the rain season had already started so the main holiday season was over and the prices where way lower than usual. I got myself a nice little bungalow for about 10$ a night (which was one of the most expensive stays of my journey) for the time the 3 of us stayed in Railay.

Since it was my first time that year that I got to the sea and the beach was conveniently facing east, I decided to get up early and catch my first sunrise over the sea. It was a very peaceful experience. I got there about half an hour before the sun rose and was all alone on the beach. A few minutes later another photographer joined me and we marvelled at the spectacle of nature in silence. Bringing all my equipment I set up my phone to shoot a time lapse while I shot countless pictures with my Olympus using up a whole battery and more.

P9023198.jpgMy first sea sunrise of the year
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P9023178.jpgLots of fisher boats out and about before the sunrise
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P9023203.jpgRailay east lit by the morning sun
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I met up with Lena and Moritz around 9am and we spend the late morning on the south beach. After midday we checked out the princess lagoon. Its a lagoon, that is hidden away in between the huge rocks that separate the east and south beach. To get there you have to climb up a very steep and rock path, and then go down again on the other side. Most people we met tried climbing in flip-flops and ended up going barefoot over the sharp rocks. Fortunately my friends had already checked out the lagoon prior to my arrival so we came prepared with proper trekking shoes. The lagoon itself seems like a magical place, surrounded my high cliffs on every side with. If you look up from the middle of the pool the rocks seem to form and eye.

P9023228.jpgLots of monkey jumping around in the trees on the beach
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P9033382.jpg1/4000 Sek. f/4 14 mm ISO 320

P9023245.jpgOn our way to the lagoon we made a small detour to the viewpoint. Worth it!
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P9023250.jpgI did not manage to catch the "eye" from the shore, but let me tell you it was amazing!
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On our second day we booked a whole day of rock climbing. Railay is famous among climbers for it's great walls and Moritz and I are somewhat enthusiastic climbers.
Needless to say we spend a great day with our guide and the only other guy in our group. An Italian who lived in Australia.
Around midday we made a trip through a huge cave to get from the south to the west beach. The view on each beach was breathtakingly beautiful and the rappel down was a great add on.

P9033455.jpgLena conquering the rocks
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P9033304.jpgMoritz showing off his flexibility
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P9033388.jpgThese walls just begged for being climbed upon
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P9033263.jpgI also tried my best looking cool on the wall
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P9033343.jpgThe view from the cave on to the south beach
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P9033368.jpgThis picture of the west beach I shot with one hand while rappelling down the other side of the cave
1/1600 Sek. f/4,3 20 mm ISO 320

Our need for action and adventure was still not satisfied so we got ourselves a three-person-kayak for the last day and spend the whole day paddling around exploring several beaches. We also stumbled across a slack-line being mounted between two rocks in the sea. However the weather and waves had not treated it very kindly so it was not possible to walk on it, nonetheless Moritz tried his best hanging on it like a sloth. Lena was desperate to find a suitable boulder to jump from into the sea, but we could not find anything that was both possible to climb and had save, deep waters beneath.

P9043484.jpgMoritz on the slack line
1/800 Sek. f/5,6 135 mm ISO 100

P9043502.jpgWe found some great tiny beaches which where only accessible by boat
1/2000 Sek. f/4 14 mm ISO 100

P9023241.jpgNeedless to say our jaw was constantly in the downward position from the jaw dropping landscape
1/800 Sek. f/5 14 mm ISO 200

The sun was burning heavily upon us forcing me to wrap my shirt around my head like a turban. After a few hours of padding through the sea we finally found a rock that seemed perfect for cliff diving. I felt a little uneasy taking out my beloved camera on a swaying kayak in the sea, but the pictures where definitely worth it!
For lunch we stopped at a beach a few kilometres off Railay. It was as delicious as it was expensive.

P9043505.jpgLena being obviously happy about our find
1/2000 Sek. f/4 14 mm ISO 100

P9043525.jpgIf you time the picture right even an otherwise boring jump can look cool ;)
1/2000 Sek. f/4,1 15 mm ISO 100

The next morning my friends left for Bangkok to catch their flight back home to Austria. I left the expensive bungalow in Railay east and migrated to Tonsai beach, a place very popular among climbers and budget travellers. It could only be reached by boat or by foot from Railay, so I took the strenuous path through the jungle and up and down some rocks.
I spent two very relaxing nights in Tonsai doing nothing but reading on the beach and drinking some beer at one of the reggae bars.

LRM_EXPORT_20170902_223339.jpgAnd with this cute baby monkey this post is already over again
1/60 Sek. f/5,6 120 mm ISO 800

See you next week for some stories about the famous Kho Phi Phi island, a night in swimming bungalows and a huge lake full of dead trees.


All shots in this post were made with my Olympus OMD EM-10 Mark II with a 14-150mm lens in manual mode.

If you want to learn more about my travel through southeast Asia you can read the previous posts here:

There is a new chapter coming each Thursday

If you want to know more about me check this out:


Thank you for reading and feel free to upvote, resteem & follow me :)

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Beautiful photos as always! Looks like an adventurous trip with the slack line over water and rock climbing.

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Thanks! It sure was a small adventure! Especially the kayaking was great :)

Gorgeous post @bypaul. You have a great eye! The variety of photos and anecdotes you share have kept me captivated from beginning to end. I'm dying to go rock jumping now... it's so much fun!

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Thank you so much! I am glad you liked it so much :)

wow, Beautifull photographs, I love your post because I love Thailand too, Upvoted and followed ♥

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I am happy you like it :)
I also liked Thailand a lot! It's a great country to go backpacking.

And thank you so much for the resteem!

I recognize the beautiful viewpoint over Railay from my visit last year :) Did you also get covered it mud climbing down to the lagoon?

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Pretty much ^^
But we where better off than the people going barefoot, some of them slipped in the middle of the big mud puddles and bathed in the dirt :D

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It wasn't so bad barefoot though, at least better than in flip flops - I ended up leaving my flip flops half way and then picked them up on the way back. Guess I wasn't as well prepared as you :D

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Believe me I would have gone up with flip flops as well hadn't my friends told me to get my trekking shoes.
Props to you for still making the hike, those rocks where damn sharp!

Nice! love the work you put in and great pictures, upvoted! enjoy

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Thanks for the ongoing support :)

WoW! Really amazing shots you have taken. Very beautiful all of it.

I am a professional photographer and traveler so i started my blog here like you and so i hope you may like it.

Underwater photoshoot at Bali - A heaven on earth.

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Thanks a lot, this means even more to me if it comes from a pro :D

That was an adventure by photography @bypaul what a fantastic time you had exploring.

Came to visit from @qurator Friday photography to see the little monkey again and thoroughly enjoyed the visit.

Nice one again. Nicely written and wonderful pictures!

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Thank you once more for you support!

what a really wonderful images and what a really usefull post thanks for sharing love it

Your travel posts take me back to SE Asia and I dream about my house and life there ....I had !

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  ·  3년 전

Wow it looks so beautiful :3

Congratulations! This post has been upvoted from the communal account, @minnowsupport, by bypaul from the Minnow Support Project. It's a witness project run by aggroed, ausbitbank, teamsteem, theprophet0, someguy123, neoxian, followbtcnews/crimsonclad, and netuoso. The goal is to help Steemit grow by supporting Minnows and creating a social network. Please find us in the Peace, Abundance, and Liberty Network (PALnet) Discord Channel. It's a completely public and open space to all members of the Steemit community who voluntarily choose to be there.

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Fantastic blog, really lovely pictures, in particular the monkey(s). So much energy and vibrancy! Keep it up!

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Well thank you very much! I will certainly try to keep it up :)

Great pictures; I’m heading to Tonsai for my second time in a couple days and will be sharing my trip here on Steemit if you’re interested in more southern Thailand!