Christmas & NYE - Full Moon Parties (1990) on Haad-Rin Beach, Ko Pha Ngan, Thailand.
I was 19 when i first read about Haad Rin beach in the August issue of i-D magazine in 1990. It featured this story that caught my imagination it was entitled 'Are you ready to discover paradise?' - about this magical island called Ko Pha Ngan in Thailand. 2 months later i was there..
Here are some extracts from letters i sent home at this time to my sister:
“We were asked where we were going, we said Haad Rin. We were guided to a small boat, i had feelings of nervousness and apprehension we were finally approaching the place we had read about, but at the same time knew nothing about”
“It was difficult trying to get to grips with this place at first. It was so mellow, so quiet, i almost had difficulty breathing - i could feel my heart rate slowing down to keep in line with the pace of life on the island”
“I’m staying at the ‘Black and White’ bungalows on Haad Rin beach and paying around 50 baht a night (£1.25). On the island there is electricity, but it only comes on from 6-10pm at night. Walking around at night reminds me of that Petersfield rave we went to, with its music, lights and people dotted up the side of the mountains, jungle and beaches. Things couldn’t be better, I’m sitting on the beach listening to my personal stereo (mixed dance tape) watching the tide come in and checking out the clouds and moon”
“I’m writing this and my hand is shaking and my stomach is rumbling of the buzz i getting just sitting in my bungalow - its raining outside, i feel so content and happy”
The Beach is a 1996 novel by English author Alex Garland. Set in Thailand, it is the story of a young backpacker's search for a legendary, idyllic and isolated beach untouched by tourism. In 2000 made into a film by Danny Boyle with Leonardo DiCaprio.