We started off early for our boat trip especially excited to see bamboo island and Maya beach the latter being where the movie The Beach was set.
We headed to the boat named Moas Dream, and set off around 1045am. The boat was full of French people and we felt a little out of place at times as there's wasn't much craic with them, they preferred to talk amongst themselves.
We visited various islands and beaches and coves, there was lots of time given and stops made for snorkelling but we were put off by the massive black spikey things on the sea bed. Our guide spoke little English and didn't really tell us anything about the areas - he also fed us the most disgusting meals - we couldn't eat them and so were starving most of the day. Bamboo beach was a let-down, it had a sewer smell and there's not really any bamboo in sight, plus a load of rubbish piles are dumped on the beach. We did notice some bamboo pieces in the sea bed and that the cliffs appeared to be stripped, Matt reckons it's damage from the tsunami.
The absolute delight of the day came in the form of Maya beach - thank god. It was gorgeous, you can see why it's a perfect movie set it's like a hidden gem, you enter through a cove and can see the white sandy beach with a beautiful jungle backdrop, the water is so transparent it is beautiful. We disembarked and walked through parts of the jungle where most of the movie shots would be taken, you can see how it was cleared back for the film and they've kept it intact. If you want to be extra fit, you can climb a netted rope on the other site of the beach up and over a cliff edge and then stroll down to the shore - we aren't fit so that didn't happen with us.
We didn't want to leave Maya, wishing we'd just hired a water taxi for the day instead and stayed longer rather than the dull trip to the dirty islands. As you are swimming in the sea, if you are lucky enough to get there before too many boats arrive it literally feels like you are on a desert island but surrounded by this canopied cove of cliffs - can't describe it, felt so amazing and relaxing we struggled to leave. Monkey beach was fun - we got great pics of the monkeys but once again it's spoilt by tourists leaving their crap everywhere on the beach. The monkeys know now they can get stuff from the stupid tourists so hold on to your drinks and snacks, if they're in arm's length they will get them from you and can be aggressive if you say no.
We headed back shattered watching the sun set, found what we thought was a fresh bakery, so the sign said. It was pure stale but we were starving. Early night to bed was had but Jacq was up and down a lot sick - not the best of days but sure you can't have it all, Maya was amazing!