WANT A TRIP TO THE FAMOUS JAMES BOND ISLAND? THIS FOUR ISLAND DAY CRUISE WAS BETTER THAN I COULD EVER OF EXPECTED AND WAS INCREDIBLE VALUE!
IN A NUTSHELL
- BIG BOAT DAY TRIP TO 4 ISLANDS IN PHANG GNA BAY
- 1,200 BAHT – NOTHING MORE TO PAY
- CAVE KAYAKING
- SIGHT SEEING
- ONBOARD BUFFET LUNCH
- ALL TRANSFERS
- SUPER VALUE
WHAT’S ON OFFER
|Locations:||(5 / 5)|
|Boat Comfort:||(5 / 5)|
|Family-Orientated:||(5 / 5)|
|Staff Service:||(5 / 5)|
|On Board Buffet Lunch:||(5 / 5)|
|Entertainment:||(5 / 5)|
|Available-Transport:||(5 / 5)|
|Canoeing-Hotspots:||(5 / 5)|
|Available-Refreshments:||(5 / 5)|
|Price:||(5 / 5)|
|Average:||(5 / 5)|
I was wanting to take a day trip, cruise boat to Phang Nga bay and James Bond Island before the end of my stay on Phuket in 2013.
It just so happens I was in the right place at the right time for once, when I stopped at a little travel agent shop in the middle of Old Phuket Town.
I walked into the shop just to pick up some broachers, when the owner, a little old Chinese-Thai guy, came out and wanted to help, I usually brush sales guys off as I don’t like the hard sell you encounter sometimes with travel agents.
After a while his persistence broke me down and we started talking, as it turns out he was born in Phuket Town and lived his entire life in the shop house where his business was.
He was able to put me at ease and I began to trust him and his advice. He swore black and blue that he had the best tour for me and my girlfriend. ‘This is the best’ ‘Don’t look at these one’s’ he said!
I took a chance and bought 2 tickets for the next day costing 1,200 Baht each, I gave him my hotel details and we continued on our merry way hoping for the best.
The day cruise package included –
- Insurance in case you are hurt during the trip
- Minivan pick up from hotel to Ao Po pier
- English speaking hosts
- Entry fee’s to Phang Nga National Park
- Canoe hire and personal canoe guide
- 4 Island stops
- Transfers by longboat to James bond Island and back again
- unlimited soft drinks and water for the day
- All you can eat buffet lunch on the cruise boat
- Minivan transfer back to hotel
Sounds pretty good.
THIS IS THE RECORD OF THE TRIP.
TIME LINE –
7 AM –
We got up and packed a backpack with stuff we might need –
- Sun glasses
- Spare cloths
- Bits and pieces
- Phone camera
7:45 – waited in the foyer of the hotel for the minivan to arrive at 8 a.m.
8:10 – minivan arrives and we pick up other tourist.
8:35 – we have all passengers and we head to Ao Po Pier
9:10 – we arrive at Ao Po Pier and are dropped off and told to wait while our minivan drive parks his van.
9:20 – our driver turns up and gives us a colour coded sticker for our group.
9:30 a lady turns up and directs other groups of tourist to a bus that drives them to the boat along the long pier.
9:50 – our turn comes and we are taken to the boat by bus
9:55 – we are shown which is our boat and we go aboard.
10:00 – The Cruise Boat is large, spacious and comfortable.
10:15 the engines fire up and we start to move.
10:20 – we are on our way
10:30 – our English speaking guide give us the rundown of the days coming events and safety procedures.
10:35 time to take in the fresh air and views of Phang Nga Bay.
The Phang Nga Bay bay views are awesome!
So far so good.
Got a really good feeling about today, great scenery.
The waters are crystal clear
11:15 – We arrive at the massive ciffs of Panak Island
These limestone structures raise straight up out of the water 100 + meters and reach for the sky.
We spot the other tourist boats and it looks busy
The excitement starts to build on board as we get closer.
We drop anchor and get ready to join the others who are already kayaking around around the cove and through the caves.
We head to the cave entrance to secret lagoon
We paddle closer for canoe trip into secret lagoon
The cave entrance is a lot bigger than I thought.
We see the first cave monkey looking for food.
I think he wants to come with us, sorry buddy, no hitch hikers.
11:25 we have a canoe guide and a canoe who paddles us through the limestone cave formations and into and around secret lagoon.
We maneuver under a low hanging rock and arrive into secret lagoon.
Our kayak guide, doing a great job.
Everyone seems to be smiling.
Monkeys everywhere, the guardians of secret lagoon
Lets go have look around
Bit of a traffic jam
We break away from the group
This tree caught my eye, it seemed out of place
This place really is exceptional.
One epic scene after another.
Everyone is enjoying the experience.
Does sight seeing get any better than this?
Your going to love it inside Secret Lagoon.
Time to go back through the cave.
Duck your head, it’s a tight squeeze.
The light at the end of the tunnel.
Back to the out side world
One last look behind to the cave entrance.
12:15 – we go back to the boat and get ready to go to the next location.
Waiting for the last of the stragglers.
12:25 – We are on the move again, the rich – doing it in style!
Truly beautiful locations
12:45 we arrive at Hong Island
We drop anchor and get ready to explore.
What can you say about this place – awesome!
Staff get the canoes out again to explore the limestone caves and cove
The staff – working hard to make it all happen.
The fishermen are here as well
The guides man the canoes and wait for the tourist to hop in.
Our turn to get into a canoe.
Getting amongst it- up close and personal with Hong Island.
First look inside Hong Island.
How can you not be impressed when inside Hong Island
I can think of worse things to be doing.
The rock limestone formations on Hong Island are even more impressive than the ones around Secret Lagoon.
Kick back and enjoy the view.
A local fisherman shows us some of his bounty.
An up side down version of James Bond Island
So many caves in Hong Island
Inside a cave – looking out
And this is what’s waiting at the other end of the cave.
Another passageway to another lagoon
And another cave exit – how many are there?
It’s a tight squeeze through here.
This guy gives it the thumbs up rating
Inside the cave is a lot bigger than you think.
I’m lost – where are we again?
Oh yeah, now I remember.
The double archways – Mc Donald’s drive through? I’m hungry.
Is this the way out? Its nearly lunch time.
Yep – back out into the sea near the boat.
1:30 we go back to the boat and get ready for lunch to be served
1:45 buffet lunch is served and the captain fires up the engines and we start to move on to James bond Island
2:25 everyone has finished eating and are happy and satisfied, we drop anchor a couple hundred meters from the main Island called – Khao Phing Kan.
And wait for a long boat to arrive to take us to the small pier.
2:40 our long boat arrives and we all get aboard and are ferried to the Island – Khao Phing Kan. Look at that engine!
We are told to hurry around the Isand as we only have 30 minutes to look around before we have to go back to the cruise boat
2:45 – We make our way to Khao Phing Kan by longboat
The jetty is busy and we have to wait for a spot to open up.
Our turn comes to dock.
Now we can get off the longboat and look around.
we step on the main Island called – Khao Phing Kan – which means in Thai – ‘hills leaning against each other’ – this is why –
Being on a time limit, hurry off to find James Bond Island, around the corner and there it is, the first sight of James Bond lsland.
the island is very small and there are already many tourist here already and it can be difficult to walk around the narrow paths as there are so many people coming and going.
James Bond Isand’s real Name is Koh Tapu, which in Thai, means ‘Nail Island’ and it looks as if it’s been hammered there as well.
We wait for a chance to get a clear shot of James bond Island.
We look around the rest of the Island just like everyone else.
Nice spot, would have been a good to relax if we had time.
A small beach on James Bond Island
3:15 worried about being left behind, we rush back to the small jetty and wait for the last of our group to come back
One last photo from the jetty, nice.
Goodbye Khao Phing Kan, goodbye Koh Tapu.
3:30 all are present and accounted for, we head back to our boat
3:40 we are on our way again to our last island stop, we head east across Phang Nga Bay towards the mainland.
4:20 we drop anchor at Ko Chong Lat for a swim and a canoe paddle
4:50 we are all on board again and start our journey back to Ao po, we go around the top of Ko Chong and head down the east side of the island, we turn back towards Phuket at the south end of Ko Chong and head south west and pass the north tip of Ko Yao and back to Ao Po.
5:50 we arrive back at Ao po
6:00 sun is going down and we get into the min van for the trip back to Phuket town.
6:35 we get dropped off back at the hotel, what a day!
Zoom out to see the greater Phuket area or zoom in for more detail and click on map markers
After being a permanent resident in Thailand for over 7 years when I look back on all the good times i have had, this day sticks out as one of the most memorable; it was simply an awesome day.
The funny thing was that the trip was centered around the idea that James Bond Island was the best part of the trip, it turned out that, it was the least special part of the day.
The staff of the boat really made this a fantastic day and we really got lucky when we got put on their boat.
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