The grey skies and afternoon showers may have thrown us off guard, but the evenings were about as perfect as you can get. — low humidity and just warm enough to feel perfectly comfortable in shorts, a t-shirt, and sandals, which is a very good thing since I didn’t bother bringing anything else.
Railay isn’t known for its nightlife scene, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t one. You won’t find full moon raves or wet t-shirt contests here. What you will find are a lot of people lounging around on the beach or at a reggae bar, beverage in hand, enjoying paradise and the relaxed vibe, which suits us just fine — and even seems to suit our visitors, who, let’s be honest, bring the party wherever they go.
So, yeah, the first happy hour place we took Lori’s parents and family friends to was Skunk Bar, which is exactly what it sounds like, and exactly the type of place Noe feels right at home in.
A little unorthodox? Perhaps. But when very little about your life appears “normal” to the folks back home, I’m not sure what orthodox means or why it matters. What I will say is that we had a blast. I will also say that one of the elder four individuals of our group may or may not have spotted the pole in the middle of the dance floor and may or may not have started pole dancing — can’t confirm any details, but will confirm that, thankfully, all of us made it out of the bar without injury.
Just up the street from Skunk Bar, we stopped at Mangrove for some tasty beach seafood. Lori and I got the ginger fried fish. Yum.
On our third night in Railay, the grandparents and crew offered to look after Noe while Lori and I went out on a beach date night. We started the evening watching the sun dart from one black cloud to another from the beach bar — and by beach bar, I mean mats laid out on the beach where someone brings you drinks and you pay them. Such a simple concept, but I rarely see this anywhere else.
Our next stop? Back to the reggae bars on the walking street! This time, we chose the least baby-friendly one we could find, complete with lit candles sitting on straw mats and the unmistakable fragrance of “Bob Marley cigarettes” floating on the tropical breeze. Connect Four at every table rounds out the baby-unfriendly vibe. Ya mon.
For dinner, we found a nice little restaurant with an upper-level view looking out to the mangroves on Railay’s east side. For sure, Railay’s a pretty relaxed place, but this eatery took things to the next level.
It had been raining all afternoon resulting in a mountain of cushions brought in from the uncovered deck area. Our server waited patiently while we thumbed through the encyclopedic menu until we were ready to order. Guess her patience eventually ran out as we found her passed out six feet from us on the pile of cushions (look carefully, you might miss her).
We tried our best to grab her attention but our efforts proved futile. In the end, Lori went downstairs to place our order. It did not seem to surprise anyone that this particular server (or any server for that matter) had passed out on the job. We were, after all, pushing 8pm in paradise.
Above, the pathway to our bungalow at night. Below, one of the pools at Railay Bay Resort.
Our final evening didn’t bring a proper sunset, but a colorful sky, nonetheless. Powerful spotlights turn on at dusk, illuminating the dramatic karst cliffs on both sides of Railay Beach West.
Soon, it was off to the village for one last fun-filled night in Railay with Grammy, Grampy, and company.