Koh_Samui_Airport by marcusjames

VIEWS: 13 PAGES: 2

									Title:
Koh Samui Airport

Word Count:
735

Summary:
On the small tropical island of Koh Samui off the eastern seaboard of
Thailand there exists what has got to be the quaintest little airport on
the planet.

Why is that? Well, for starters every building on the airport complex is
entirely thatched over with palm leaves and not many airports can claim
that can they? In the main public areas the exterior walls have wide-open
sides for the ocean breezes to waft through keeping it at a nice cool
temperature. The smiling staff wh...


Keywords:
koh samui, koh samui villa, koh samui villas,


Article Body:
On the small tropical island of Koh Samui off the eastern seaboard of
Thailand there exists what has got to be the quaintest little airport on
the planet.

Why is that? Well, for starters every building on the airport complex is
entirely thatched over with palm leaves and not many airports can claim
that can they? In the main public areas the exterior walls have wide-open
sides for the ocean breezes to waft through keeping it at a nice cool
temperature. The smiling staff who work there are ever-helpful and polite
and greet every new-comer as though they have just come from outer space
– which to those on this remote island is exactly how it must feel to
them. It’s the opposite when you leave because the islanders really hate
to see people depart from their island, they figure: having spent ALL
that money to get there why would anyone want to leave? And it makes you
wonder who really is nuts - the smiling islanders or the grinning farang!

When they gently direct you to Terminal One with pride in their hearts –
you really have to chuckle because of course it’s the only terminal they
have! There are no gate numbers to rush to, as all passengers arrive and
depart courtesy of a clean and modern air-conditioned shuttle bus, which
covers the distance from the plane to the main building or vice-versa in
about two minutes flat. There is no carousel except the one going around
in your head. There are no loudspeakers and no information screens. Just
people cheerfully carrying out their tasks with absolutely no hustle or
bustle on their minds. Time has almost stopped still.

There is only one single arrow-straight runway to handle both incoming
and outgoing planes, which total no more than about twenty flights per
day between 6.30 am when the airport opens for business at sunrise and
when it closes at sunset exactly twelve hours later.
Playing the ace green card, Bangkok Airways, who built and own the
airport (International Airport Code - USM) have attempted a truly unique
experiment and one of which they can be proud. The actual buildings,
which were finished in 1984, are not only pleasing to the eye but work
hand-in-glove with the island’s natural environment. It is, in itself, a
compelling advert for greenness in all its forms. The vast Bangkok
Airport (BKK) may be the newest and flashiest airport in the world but
I’ve never seen anyone standing around taking hundreds of photos of it
like they do of Samui Airport. This airport almost seems to be smiling at
you – wanting its photo taken. And for sure no other airport replaces its
roof with fresh palm leaves every two or three years like they do here.
The fact is, once upon a time, little Samui was the world’s largest
exporter of coconuts and palm trees are one commodity they still have
plenty of. Its what they have used for centuries on the roofs of their
villas and bungalows and the ubiquitous salas that abound everywhere – so
they figure; why stop there? Why indeed?

As the plane starts its gradual descent approach towards the narrow
jutting peninsula on the northeast sector of the island you will now get
a fantastic bird’s eye view of Samui and all the other outlying islands.
You’ll see the surf breaking on the beaches and trace the wakes of small
fishing craft as they criss-cross the incredibly green-blue turquoise
sea. Then as you get closer you can make out the coral reefs growing
beneath the dappling clear water. And if you look harder still you might
even see a pod of dolphins jumping and dodging around the fishing craft
waiting for the friendly fishermen to throw them a morsel. Phew, what a
sight for sore eyes!

Frankly, the whole experience is just too much for the human soul to
contemplate and you really cannot wait to land to check that it really
wasn’t a figment of your imagination. Maybe the airport workers are not
that wrong – because it certainly feels like you’ve just come from outer
space - as surely nothing on this planet awaits the visitor more
pleasingly than this tropical hideaway located in the balmy Sea of Siam.
Jet lag? Well, you can’t get jet lag in paradise, but I bet you didn’t
know that either did you?

								
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