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Trains, vans, and automobiles, along with a boat or two

Bangkok-Ban-Phe-Ko Samet

Taxi

Arose early and took a taxi to Mo Chit from my apartment, which cost 121 Baht

Minivan

Ticket to Ban Phe pier cost 220 baht and takes about 3.5-4 hours, you stop about 2.5 hours into the trip for a quick toilet stop and have a chance to grab a drink and some food if you want to. 

Once you arrive at the pier you have met with hordes of sales reps trying to get you to sign up to there charters.

This can be very confusing but basically, they sort out your boat trip to the island and return journey, as well as your return journey to Bangkok if you so wish (obviously for a small fee which they keep) 

Now as we were only stopping for 1 night, I thought it would be the best option as everything is paid for and we know where we are.

So handed over 1000 baht for two of us.

This includes travel on a speedboat as it was ready and if we wanted to go by ferry, we had to wait another hour before it arrived.

( as we had just had to wait 3 hours for a 2hour wait for a bus)

I decided that Thai times are slightly different from the UK so we went with the quicker option, not the cheaper one. 

Unfortunately, this is where it gets interesting!!!

Speedboat

The first speedboat was not going to where we wanted, which was Sai Kaew Beach (even though when I asked at the counter where they go, I was told they all go to the same place)  

Eventually, we got the next one and instead of getting off at the pier, as the boat driver didn’t think our hotel was on that part of the island, we opted for a wet landing and hit the beach. 

A Short walk in the wrong direction, as I obviously knew better than Google Maps, and another short walk back again and we found the place we were stopping at and could relax.

Your ticket to the beach

Things they don’t tell you.  

When you arrive either on the beach or when you go to the beach, you have to pay a small fee (this is for the upkeep of everything I guess) So Farang’s or Tourists have to pay 200 baht and Thai visitors pay 40 baht.

  TIP OF THE POST

“keep these with you as they check as you enter the beach area and will either turn you away or make you pay again if you do not have your ticket”

The Return

So coming back we found out that we’re not going back via speedboat but in fact, the smaller ferryboat, which meant waiting a while even though we were told to ring them 1 hour before we wanted to go back to the boat would account for us.

We even saw the speedboat driver who seemed as confused as we were regarding why we were going by Ferry.  

The bus ride was much the same and took the same time, however, we arrived in Ekkamal where instead of the taxi we got the BTS.

  The station is opposite the bus depot and quickly arrived at Victory Monument where I then grabbed a minivan to the area where I was staying.

BTS is the train and costs about 44 baht and it was another 30 baht for the minivan so on the whole slightly cheaper than a taxi, and Ekkamal has buses running to Bang Phe every hour whilst Mo Chit doesn’t.

The Boat back, along with supplies, bags and bags of recycling

Summary

Leave from Ekkamal rather than anywhere else, unless its the opposite side of Bangkok to where you are staying.

Based upon my own experience, try and refrain from getting sold a package and try and work your way to the buy one ticket to go to the island and then pay for your return when you want to go, back.  

Little sign next to a coffee shop indicates the pickup point for the minivan back to Bangkok If you can find it!

Two reasons for this is that first if you want to stay for longer why pay for a return when you will get to know the island better and can maybe strike a better deal.

I got told various prices when asking different people, so basically I believe that if someone tries to help you and takes you to the place you buy from they get a cut of the cost.

So hence the varying rates- understandable and it’s not a lot but it does get confusing.  

Especially when we found out that going back to Bangkok meant traveling on a different bus, from a different place and being made to wait for a later bus because you are not their customer but part of a package deal.

I was very lucky as I had a friend who speaks Thai with me and even they were confused by it all. There was also a guy on the bus with a Thai girlfriend and they had the same issue.  

So I worry if you don’t speak any Thai, you might end up with a very awkward experience. Some time leaving it to chance seems a better option 🙂

Rough costs bus to and from Bkk approx 200 baht each way, but may get cheaper if you find the right place Ferry cost return 120 baht speedboat one way 250 baht

TIP OF THE POST
 
“Take water with you, but as you are going to be sitting on the minibus for about 2.5 hours before you hit a toilet stop, don’t go mad the few hours before you start out unless you have a very strong bladder, and make sure you wear the seat belt as the drive in a minivan can be an experience, to say the least”

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