What? 1,237 steps to the top of the of the Tiger Cave Temple in Krabi, Thailand? It couldn’t be that hard, I thought to myself. Our tour guide gave us an hour and half to go up and back so it seemed quite doable.
Unfortunately I was very wrong! Even my friend, the exercise addict, started dragging and complaining a quarter of the way up. We had picked the hottest day of our time in Thailand to climb these steps and they were a real challenge. Armed with the bottle of water provided by the tour guide (that should have warned us!), we trudged up the steps, which varied in width, length, and steepness. Some flights of steps, more like ladders, requiring hugging the banister to climb up!
We were thankful for the few toilet stops spaced along the way, but not for the obvious reasons. Using the bucket of water for “flushing” the toilet to drench ourselves, we cooled off, but only briefly since it was so hot that our clothes dried almost immediately.
So up and up we went!
Each time we thought we were near the top, we found yet another flight of steps! All markers along the way were in Thai so no way to tell how close we were to our destination!
At the top about 45 grueling minutes later, we emerged to the sight of golden Buddhas and an altar, including Ganesha and two other figures.
The breath-taking views made it well worth the climb, though the antennas next to the Buddha just seemed out of place!
See for yourself!
On the way down, I passed many monkeys and blissfully laughed at the screams of the nearby Japanese girls. Later I found out that the monkeys love to take shiny objects and have been known to bite! (Lucky me to still have my camera!) They seemed so cute at the time, especially the mother and baby monkey. Don’t they seem harmless to you?
What a strange mix of the modern and the ancient, the civilized and the wild!
My legs finally recovered after a week, but the memories will live on for a long time!