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This little island offers the accessible low key Thailand option. The ferries and speed boats drop off at the main pier and extension of the town's primary paved road. The little town offers all of the backpacker treats, including internet cafes, several food stops/bars, dirt bike rentals, a clinic with an English speaking nurse, an excellent pastry shop and place to read the paper, several general stores and more than a few beachside restaurants. The joy of this island is that it also offers a chance to get away from all of that. Several of the bungalow operations are only gauranteed accessible by boat or by foot. The sand and gravel roads leading to the out of the way spots tend to wash out early in the rainy season and stay washed out until well into the dry season. Even the courageous on large dirtbikes will find some of the roads unrideable. Hence, the challenge. Some of Thailands best snorkelling can be had in Koa Toa. Some snorkle tour operators bait the fish for a good show. Sometimes the fish show their appreciation by taking a little nip of the farangs (foreigners). These bites tend to be more startling than actually dangerous. Still, keep an eye out for trigger fish. My hands down recommendation goes to the Coral View Resort. This dozen bungalow operation is run by John, an Aussie, and his Thai wife. If one waits for the touts to clear, one can usually spot John waiting for the mellow customer. The Coral View offers dive instruction, a quiet beach, easy access to fantastic snorkeling and a view of Shark Island. A short conversation with John is all one needs to get a discount on his already low prices, especially on extended stays. Please give my best to Honee, an exceptional girl amoung the normally industrious Thai people.


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