The sun was peeping over the eastern hills of Khao Lak when our day trip’s minivan growled into our hotel car park. Soon, we were heading north to the port of Kura Buri – the closest point of departure for Surin Island. At the port, day trippers of various nationalities were getting sorted out with snorkels and masks and dipping into the coffee and tea facilities and we didn’t have to wait long before we loaded up into three-engine speedboats and were heading out due west.
It was thrilling to feel the acceleration of the three motors once we hit the high seas and when it was announced that it would take an hour to reach Surin – some 60km away, it didn’t take a mathematical genius to figure out just how fast we were going. Captain ‘Bird’ anticipated local fishing boats’ wakes and skillfully turned diagonally into them before getting straight back on course.