Ko Lipe, Adang-Rawi, Thailand

Koh Lipe or Ko Lipe is a small island in the Adang-Rawi archipelago of the Andaman Sea, southern Thailand. The Thai name means ‘Paper Island’. The island is located at the border of the Tarutao National Park, to the immediate south of the larger islands Koh Adang and Koh Rawi, 50 km from Koh Tarutao. The original population of the island are the Chao Leh, also called Sea Gypsies who still live on the island. They have dark skin and are very typical. They often live in a rudimentary way in the center of the island. We find three main beaches: Sunset Beach, Sunrise Beach and Pattaya Beach. With its clear and calm water, 25% of species of tropical fish of the world are in the region, there are wide varieties of fish in the coral just meters deep near the beaches. For a long time, only a few adventurous tourists came to the island. Today, tourism is becoming a mass that threatens the area and assumes tourist constructions and projects.

Tips

The island is accessible only by ferry from Langkawi Pulau or Pak Bara. There is no pier so the ferry drops anchor near the beaches and you must reach the coast on foot or by long-tail boat.
On the island there are no cars and the only modes of transport are walking and motorcycle taxi. As the island is small, it is possible to walk around on foot in just over an hour.
If you like scuba diving, there are several sites and dive shops and people that organize boat trips.

Snow Jade Cave, Fengdu, China

Located about eight miles from the new county of Fengdu, the Snow Jade Cave is rated as China’s most beautiful by Chinese National Geography. Discovered in the mid-1990’s, the cave is over 1,022 miles long. Because of its uniqueness and beauty, it has become a popular scenic spot along the Yangtze River as well as serving as a research site for the study of caves. Most of the stalactites in the cave are white and pure as jade, hence its name. Stalactites grow quickly – thirty-three millimeters in one hundred years in fact. In contract, in other such kinds of caves, the average stalactite only grows one millimeter in a century. It houses many spectacular and unusual karst formations. These include a waterfall; stone hair; shields; coral and animal shapes. Tourists have 725 miles to visit. You will see the so-called ‘Four Wonders’; the coral tower in the cave is the largest of its kind in the world; the glittering and transparent King Stone Flag at 26 feet high is the world’s tallest and thinnest stone flag; the stone shield at 13 feet high is also known as the Snowy Jade Penguin; some groups of stalactites resemble goose necks, some as much as two yards long.

Tips

You can go there by car or boat or you can take a bus at Chaotian Gate bus station to Fengdu.
The best time to visit the region is in winter or spring.
You must take some warm clothes to enter into the cave. Another possibility is to rent warm clothes there.
It’s recommended not to visit the cave alone.
If you make a trip along the Yangtze River, the cave is one of the usual tourists stops.

The Tiger Temple, Thailand

The Tiger Temple is a Buddhist place of worship located in Thailand, northwest of the city of Kanchanaburi. The monks practice breeding different animals including tigers. It is open to tourism. Tiger farming began in 1999. According to the monks, they received the animals directly from people who had them as pets or they were young tigers that were brought after their mother had been killed by poachers. The temple opens from midnight to 16:00. In addition to the monks, there are international volunteers and local staff who take care of the animals. You can go there from Bangkok or Kanchanaburi. The tourists are accompanied throughout the visit and the monks are always close to control them in case a cat fuss. There are many controversies about this because many people think that tigers are drugged but the people who work there say they are quiet precisely because they have just finished eating before the visit of tourists. There are urns where visitors can make a donation as they plan to open another space, Tiger Island, where the felines could stay in a more natural environment and where they would have the opportunity to learn to hunt in order to a possible release in nature.

Tips

The best way to visit the temple is to do it on a guided tour. There are several options for combining the temple with other nearby attractions. In full day tours, lunch is included.

Do not wear red or pink or you must buy clothes before entering the temple. The only ones who can wear these colors are the healers. Women can not have their shoulders uncovered, but short-sleeved shirts are accepted.