My husband and I stayed at the Ton Tuey Floating Raft house for one night in January 2013. We booked our "adventure" through our Khao Sok resort (Cliff and River Jungle Resort). There must be a dozen different floating raft house places on the lake, and they differ in quality, but we were not given a choice and ended up at Ton Tuey. Let me start by saying this two-day trip was the best and worst of our month in Thailand. I can't imagine our honeymoon without the incredible time we spent in the jungle, but parts of it were utterly terrifying.
Ton Tuey is pretty ramshackle and I'll admit I was a bit shocked when we first arrived. The huts and floating walkway were pretty run down...but this i rather expected. The smell of stale pee i was not expecting but having spent a night there i can see why men might not climb in the dark to the toilets and just find a nearby place to relieve themselves. And since it sure seems like the toilets run into the lake, it might make no difference anyway. The toilets were pretty scary....you have to walk across a rickety path to the land behind the huts and up the stairs to the toilets. Upon opening the door on the first day i found the stall filled with bees. i learned to take the spray hose to get them out however. I wouldn't have been surprised if i'd found other creatures hanging out in there and i always made a point of looking around before entering....you know snakes, spiders, monkeys. Who knows?
The food was pretty darn good and our guide was superb. We had a day safari to a cave, a night safari on the lake, an early morning safari on the lake and a second day safari to a second cave. I'll be honest....after the first cave trip (walking through the jungle, picking leeches off our shoes, being shown every last big spider and the poisonous bamboo) and sat out the second cave trip. Especially since our guide made a point of saying the first cave was nothing, "tomorrow. BIG hike. BIG cave. Dangerous. Swimming up to your neck in a dark cave for an hour." no thanks. My husband went with the rest of our group of 6 and they all returned looking like they'd seen a ghost. Not for the faint-hearted!! They indeed had to scramble on rocks, hoping not to slip into a raging river below, guide themselves through neck-high water using a rope over head. Boy was i glad i skipped that activity!
So far nothing here is horrible. In fact the early morning jungle sounds were phenomenal and really made you feel like you were somewhere so special. The early morning safari, likewise. We watched a monkey swim across the lake, meditated on the mist rising off the lake, kept our eyes open for kingfishers. on the night safari we saw yellow-hornbilled birds, an owl and a wild cat (type forgotton but our guide knew what it was). We seriously had the best guide who spotted EVERYTHING worth seeing!
No, what really was terrifying was the fact that we saw not one, but TWO, king cobras. The first was on our way to the cave on day one. It was in the river and we were in the boat. It was facing off with a monitor lizard that was on shore likely guarding its eggs. We did not see a battle, but we waited a number of minutes just in case. They just kept on squaring off. Of course, seeing that deadly snake meant i slept not a wink that night, thinking it might swim into camp. But then the next day.....it DID!!! the group had returned from their second cave adventure, we ate lunch and were getting ready to leave. A new group had arrived, and some folks were swimming in the lake. One of the Thai guides started yelling, first in Thia, then "Get Out of the Water! Get Out of the Water!" Sure enough, King Cobra was swimming straight for camp!! Everyone ran onto the rickety walkway to get a look...uh...as it was swimming straight for them! the guides started throwing things at it to get it to change course. It didn't and swam right under the floating cabins, probably trying to get to shore.
So, in conclusion, kinda amazing, kinda horrifying. Given how absolutely deadly the King Cobra is, not likely an experience I feel i ever need to repeat.
- Also Known As:
- Ton Tuey Floating Raft Houses Hotel Surat Thani
- Ton Tuey Floating Raft Houses Thailand/Surat Thani