Asia, Thailand

Koh Samui – Buddha Statues, Temples, Seafood Feast

Congee, noodle, buns, dim sum, and tropical fruits for breakfast? What a better way to start the day than this? Since our tour starts at 10 am, we slept in our beautiful villa and then hop on the buggy to Zest for our extravagant breakfast. The congee station was great, I love the sausage to put in my congee….only if the congee is boiling hot then it’ll be perfect!

Next, buns and shu mai (pork dumplings).

Of course, Western items like bacons and sausages too.

An omelette station with fresh ingredients.

And a lot more hot dishes like stir-fried flat noodles, chicken, etc.

I think Zest designed perfectly for breakfast! The wall of fruits as I called it….so many choices!!!

Smoothies, juices, yogurt wahhhh what should I pick?

They looked so good!

One interesting thing that brought back home memories: hot soy milk with fried dough (they called it Chinese croissant lol). It’s a traditional Cantonese breakfast item!

This looked like a bakery itself!

My first round of food: fried flat noodle (like pad kee mao yummy), shu mai, congee with salty egg york and sausages!

Jason got fried rice, shu mai, soy milk with fried dough, and congee.

After the wonderful breakfast, we got picked up by Mr. Samui’s brother for the private tour of Koh Samui island. Weather was bad that day; it was raining on and off but nothing major to disrupt our plan. First stop was Namuang Waterfall….you know after Iceland, other waterfalls were hard to impress us!

Urg a lot of Coke Cola cans, were those part of the offerings for worship?

The waterfall…..not impressed 😛

Then it poured and Mr. Samui’s brother (sorry don’t remember how to spell his name) came with an umbrella for us and we left. He showed us Thailand’s famous durian, do you see the durians on the tree?

Next, he brought us to a local market to show us the daily lives of locals. The swinging “fan” to keep flies away, how brilliant 😀

First time I heard and seen purple mangosteen!

Wonderful bird cage in the local market.

The machine that makes coconut milk:

Curries, soups, soup base, you name it.

BBQ meats:

Different types of bananas:

Cooking ingredients:

Spices and herbs:

He said this type of herb is used to cure cancer!

Curry pastes: red, orange, green curries!

After the market, the weather was getting better and the sun actually got; it was humid and hot!

We visited the Big Buddha of Koh Samui (Wat Phra Yai); one of the famous site. They closed the stairway because it was wet so the tiles were very slippery 🙁

What type of plant is this?

Luckily, the sun quickly dried the tiles so they opened the staircase to access, yay!

Woah the golden Buddha!

The view was nice up there as well!

I love the colors of Thai temples.

Next, he brought us to the nearby Wat Plai Laem, another beautiful Buddhist complex.

The “Happy Buddha” 😀

And the surrounding temples on the lake were beautiful!

A closer look to the details under the base of the Buddha statue:

We walked around temples from temples and perhaps the bad weather earlier that it wasn’t crowded at all!

Love the golden, red, and orange colors!

Next, we went in the temple to pay our respect.

It was very colorful inside with photos telling the story of Buddha.

Photo of us worshipping 😀

The 3-dimensional cravings on the doors were a masterpiece by itself!

Next was the “thousand hands Guan Yin” but it was closed.

Dress code sign thus my cardigan even though it was hot out!

Too bad it was closed so we placed our lens through the hole on the gate for a photo:

After the Buddhist complex, it was time for lunch and we did some research on the famous seafood restaurant – Mit Samui Restaurant. We asked Mr. Samui’s brother for recommendations and he also recommended Mit Samui. But before the restaurant, he made a stop at the mall where we got some excellent dried mangos and dried durian (durian wasn’t good so not recommended). Also, I got Beauty Buffet cleaning milk (love the smell of milk), sleeping mask, and scrub. I almost used up my Thai baht so it was perfect timing to get cash out of the ATM at the mall to prepare for our seafood feast LOL. We arrived Mit Samui and it was hardly anyone there…not a good sign right? I guess we were just too early 😛

The live seafood is priced by weight and then you can decide how to cook them…..grilled, stir-fried, etc.

Others are fixed price such as the delicious basil spicy clams, I love the Thai flavors!

The waitresses there speak Mandarin due to the majority of the customers are Chinese tourists, it could be crowded I heard but when we were there, it was rather quiet.

The crab meat fried rice was good although not the best we ever had.

The black pepper crab OMG it was sooooooooooooo good! This was our first time we had pepper crab and was shocked how good it tasted, the level of black pepper was perfect not overpower the fresh taste of crab meat. The crab was from Sri Lanka and it was very meaty!!! I would visit Sri Lanka just for more of this type of crabs! Can I have more white rice please? I can have a meal with just the sauce and white rice!

The grilled jumbo shrimp, we should’ve stir fried it instead because grilling lost its juice.

The seafood feast was 1650 Baht around $53 USD for the amount of seafood we ate!

Usually, it was hard for us to be full with just seafood but we were full this time that we couldn’t even finish with the fried rice! Mr. Samui’s brother brought us to their office at Crystal Bay Hotel and showed us around. They have their little stretch of beach, it looked like a cute boutique hotel.

 

Those rocks reminded me of Seychelles again!!!

Continued on with our tour, we went to Hin Ta Hin Yai known as the Grandpa and Grandma Rocks……..the name came from the two rocks representing the male and female reproductive parts xD.

The Grandma Rock was covered by water with high tide….use your imagination hehe.

Too bad the weather wasn’t nice otherwise, photos here could be postcard perfect!

At Hin Ta Hin Yai, another must is to try their homemade coconut ice cream.

They come with very nice decorations 😀 It did taste as good as it looks, the creamy and smooth coconut taste was refreshing and not too sweet!

The road to Hin Ta Hin Yai is filled with souvenir shops and this one caught our eyes! The lady there is very creative, she made all those hermit crabs by melting glass and stuff inside beautiful shells. Those were unique souvenir so we got two! We bargained down to 250 Baht ($8 USD) each and she carefully wrapped them in bubble wrap and boxed them for our carry-on.

When we were on our way from the airport to the hotel, we passed by a “Guan Gong” statue so we asked Mr. Samui’s brother to take us there. He said it was built recently by Chinese.

It was more than 6 hours and he has no rush to get us back to the hotel, instead, he brought us to a temple on the beach. He drove through the local way and he said he never tried this way before. We even passed through trees that they made rubber of. It was a nice tour around the island with a good mixture of local scenery, local lives, temples, seafood feast, and some souvenir shopping!

We got back to the hotel for another chance of viewing the sunset but no luck 🙁 I have to take a photo of the hotel slippers, they are the most comfortable and high-quality slippers ever and they even have two different sizes, they really pay attention to guests!!! I couldn’t resist but to bring them back home for our next trips!!!

Remember this brand of dried mango, they tasted so good! I mean natural mango taste and not loaded with sugar and preservatives. Once I had this, I don’t think I’ll ever find anything as good in the US 🙁 The dried durian on the other hand was disappointing.

I patiently waited for the sun to set and hoping that the clouds will clear out…..

The sun did break through for a few minutes and I said to Jason, picture time!

But soon the clouds rolled back in again and it started to rain! By dinner time, we called a buggy to bring us to Zest again for dinner. So first dinner, it was shrimp chips with shrimp sauce. The second dinner was shrimp chips with sweet and sour sauce. The third dinner was shrimp chips with both the shrimp sauce and sweet and sour sauce LOL they need to be more creative!

I ordered the pineapple shrimps and the portion was on the small side…even the pineapple was smaller than the ones I see at supermarkets.

Jason ordered a seafood spagehetti and he regretted it. The portion was so smaller, not much seafood, and expensive! The Western entrees at the Conrad is much more expensive than Thai dishes. The unfilling dinner cost us 1648 Baht which was only 2 Baht less than what I paid for our seafood feast at Mit Samui urg!

The whole night was pouring so we couldn’t do much but stay in our lovely villa to just relax and pack up as our departure was the next day 🙁

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