Piece of advice: never take directions from a gay Austrian. If only I'd followed it. After spending this morning once again chilling on Moondance beach, today I tagged along with my friend Robert, who wanted to show me the next beach along on the island, where he claimed there was nice swimming and a great restaurant. Only problem was, Robert thought he could take a "shortcut" up the hillside, and onto the main track that leads to this beach. And as anyone (named Murphy) can tell you, a shortcut is the longest possible distance between two points. Several steep cliffs, spiky ferns, bulging ant-nests, enveloping spiderwebs, and thick bush-clumps later, the truth of this rule was quite thoroughly proven. Although our intensive bush-bashing did eventually pay off: at long last, we finally found the road that we were looking for. Nice views along the way, too.
On a scenic rock: if you're willing to navigate through an entire mountainside of jungle, you can enjoy the vista too.
In our attempts to find the road, we got a little bit lost, and we bashed through a little bit of nasty stuff. But really, we were never terribly far from anywhere (like I said, Ko Tao's a small island), and none of the jungle overgrowth that we encountered was unmanageable (although a machete really would have helped). Robert, however, seemed to think that we were in the deepest-darkest depths of the Amazon: he screamed in fear at the spiders, he shrunk nervously from the spiky ferns, and he wailed despairingly at the lack of a visible path. I was stuck "outback" with a gay Austrian: and as such, I had to pull out the croc-hunter Aussie from deep inside of me, and keep plodding on and telling him "no worries — should be there soon." Robert may be able to party all night long to über-funky house music; but I'd hate to be with him in a real survivor-esque situation. As he remarked later: "lucky there was an Aussie around." :P
We ultimately found the road that we were seeking, and from there it wasn't too far to the beach that Robert had in mind. This place is right in the south-west corner of the island, and it's a beautiful spot: the beach is small, but the water is calm and crystal-clear; and the resort and restaurant there is top-notch. We met a whole bunch of friendly French and German people there, as well as a Swiss guy whom Robert once worked with. Lovely lunch that they served up for us, too.
Restaurant at the remote beach: hot French chick and Robert.