August 2nd

We started our trip to one of the most beautiful beaches in the world with a three hours drive and a speed boat ride. The salt in the air was so strong that you could taste it before we were even sprayed with our first wave. Approaching the island was beautiful, but it was nothing compared to the island itself. Koh Samed is by far the most beautiful beach I have ever been to. Despite it's obvious tourist attraction, locals wondered the beach selling food off of racks on their shoulders. This included, fruit, chicken (which they cooked when you ordered it), and soups. The sand is white and powdery, like flour almost. The most amazing part was the water. It was the warmest and saltiest water I have ever swam in. It was even pretty clear to the point that as long as it was calm you could look down and see your feet. However, there are a lot of rocks by the shore or marked with rope. We rented some inner tubes to relax on the water, which was great, until we realized the current had pushed us to the side and we couldn't swim back since the water had gotten choppy. We were washed up on some rocks. I got away with a few light scrapes on my feet but my roommate was a little less lucky and had some deep gashes on the sides of her feet.

The island is really small and it doesn't take much time to walk from one end to the other. The beach is entirely hotels, bars, and restaurants. Though these are all fun, it is great to rent a motor bike, mo-ped, or ATV and drive around the island. We tried to rent and ATV but no one would give us one past 4 pm, so we rented a mo-ped. It was fun but a little scary since neither of us had ever driven one before. We took a random back road over to the other side of the island and got to a cliff side that was beautiful. The water was a bright emerald green and you could see a series of islands to the right along the length of Koh Samed. We weren't able to go any further due to time but it was definitely worth the cost of renting one. I would suggest not staying at the hotel and beach the whole time you're on the island.

At night there are multiple bars open, one was particularly fun. We also saw two fire shows. The first one was done by three boys, who were really good given that they were 8, 9, and 10 years of age. The second show contained about 10 guys and was amazing. They did a series of routines, including a finally that involved sparking sticks instead of flames. Be warned though, they are great to watch and you want to be close. But I was in the second row and could feel the gasoline they were using hit my face. Also, though they are good there are mistakes. At one point a ball of fire flew to the front row of the crowed shortly in front of me. Lastly, one or two of the sparks in the finally hit me. It was amazing and definitely worth seeing, but think when choosing your seat. There is also fire limbo that takes place on the island. Something I suggest anyone try, within reason. You can always fall in the sand like I did when the flames seem to close.

Another amazing part of the island is swimming at night. Without going too far out we swam lightly in the water, until the waves got too big. It was relaxing to float when it was calm but once again be careful because large curls came out of no where and it took a bit of time to recover when we weren't being pounded.

We took the speed boat to leave the island. It was funny but very choppy and rough due to the incoming storm.