Where does rubber come from? How do you know which coconut is a good one? And most importantly, always remember to park your TREK mountain bike far enough away from the water so it does not fall into the sea! These were just a few questions that were answers and things we learned when we cycled through and around jungles, rubber tree farms, rice paddies, and fishing villages of Koh Yao Noi Island with Amazing Bike Tours.
With our eight bicycles attached to the top of the boat, we piled into a long wooden boat with some of the locals and headed to the island. After about an hour we made our way off the boat, paid 5 baht to go to the bathroom (toilet paper not included) and we were off on our adventure.
We rode through a rubber tree farm and learned where rubber comes from. It appears to be a lot of hard work for rubber tree farmers. Our tour guide, Manup, explained that it is harvested at night when it is cooler so that the rubber flows easier. Each night, the farmers cut the bark again on all their trees which takes a few hours. Then they collect all the liquid rubber from the cups that are attached to the trees. After riding through the rubber tree farms, we headed to the rice paddies. It is interesting to see how rice is planted and the hard work that goes into seeing that it is planted properly, and then harvested. Riding through the rice fields landed us on a little farm where we took a break and had some coconut water. The farmer picked just the right ones with plenty of coconut water inside for each of us. Normally, a monkey can easily choose the right coconut, but since there were none available, we had to rely on the farmer’s expertise. I tried cutting the coconut, but it was not as easy as the farmer’s son made it look!
After our break, we rode to the pier noticing all the floating homes along the way. This is where we learned a valuable lesson! DO NOT park your bike close to the water’s edge because when the wind blows your bike WILL fall in, consequently, the location of your pre-determined dive trip scheduled for the next day will be relocated, and you will be searching for a bike at the bottom of the sea instead of inspecting beautiful coral and fish!
Luckily, someone was close enough to grab the TREK mountain bike before it plunged to the depths of the Andaman sea. So the dive trip was saved!! After the bicycle rescue, we were treated to some tasty little sticky rice with fruit wrapped in bamboo leaves. Well, this is my best description of what we were given. Anyway, they were very good!
The bike ride continued along the coast where the scenery was breathtaking. We stopped for lunch at an outdoor hut where we lounged in hammocks and went for a swim after dining on some fabulous Thai food.
When the ride came to an end we met the boat, our bikes were loaded onto the top and we headed off to pick up some more of the locals before heading back to the main island. Along the way, we stopped and picked up bags and bags of coconuts and live lobster, which needed transport to the main island. The coconut and lobster farmers paid the boat guy to take their goods to the island, and we were off once again.
With just a short ride back, we made it to the van just before it started raining. The ride was pretty easy so it is recommended for anybody who is up for an exciting, fun filled ride with good people. Our guide was very professional and James, the managing director of Amazing Bike Tours is extremely nice and works well with the public.
Though, I do wonder what would have happened had the bike gone into the sea!!!
Give Amazing Bike Tours a try, not only do they assist with booking bike tours, they can arrange dive trips and elephant safaris as well. We did them all and loved each one.