Phuket is a tropical island paradise that attracts millions of travellers each year. While this can mean having to contend with crowds during peak seasons at inland attractions, its expansive surrounding waters of the Andaman Sea offer a wonderful opportunity to discover, access, and explore the region’s natural wonders through yacht charters.
With 32 smaller islands off its coastline and many attractions just within its shoreline, opting to sail through its waters does make this the best way to vacation in Phuket. Here are some of the top destinations you should consider adding to your itinerary when arranging for a yacht charter around Phuket.
This bay is wondrous to behold when travelled to from the seaside direction. It features sheer limestone karsts that jut out of the emerald green waters while resembling unfinished clay vessels. This imagery adds that touch of mysticism that the area is linked to through folklore about pirates and sea-gypsies.
Phang Nga is also famous for its James Bond Island where the franchise’s films including The Man with the Golden Gun and Tomorrow Never Dies were set.
You can enjoy many water activities here including kayaking, canoeing, fishing or simply cruising through its calm waters. You may also want to find tour guides that will escort you through the stunning and extensive cave systems set against a background of lush jungle vegetation.
While this province does have some amazing beaches, its key attraction lies underwater. The waters around the islands of Koh Rok are home to some of the most beautiful and flourishing coral vistas that are well worth the effort of diving. The province also has an abundance of craggy and dramatic cave systems, with Skull Island or Koh Talabeng being noteworthy for its distinct façade.
You can also opt to drop anchor and travel inland for a tour of the Thung Teao Forest Natural Park which is home to the Crystal Lagoon and rare bird species. If you are more culturally inclined, be sure to visit Wat Tham Sua, the Temple in a Cave. Secluded beaches like Tonsai, Pra Nang, and Laem Tong are also great for enjoying some sunbathing and swimming away from the crowds.
Krabi also includes the six-island archipelago named Phi Phi Islands which is famous for being the setting of the Leonardo DiCaprio film ‘The Beach’. Though its popularity does make it a bit crowded with an abundance of hotel developments and a vibrant party scene, it does have several remote and idyllic beaches where you can comfortably sunbathe, swim and snorkel.
Located on the west coast of the Andaman Sea within the Krabi region, Koh Lanta island hosts several stunning beaches set against the backdrop of lush jungle forests. Make a stop at Klong Nin Beach, Bamboo Beach or Kantiang Bay. Kantiang Bay is famous for its stunning viewpoints. Made up of the two islands of Lanta Yai and Lanta Noi, it is a popular destination for those that like a more laidback holiday experience. Lanta Yai is the larger and more developed island, while Lanta Noi remains undeveloped and unspoiled.
Located to the east of Phuket is the tranquil isle of Koh Rang Yai. It is a peaceful haven where visitors can indulge in some water sports like kayaking and snorkelling. You can also comfortably stroll or bike along its long sandy beach without worrying about encountering vendors. The shoreline is tree-lined so any outdoor excursion should not leave you overheated.
There are also some good hiking trails further inland that you may want to explore. It is also home to a pearl farm that you can visit for a tour and pick up souvenirs. You can also head a little bit to the northeast to its sister island, Koh Rang Noi. Though undeveloped, it also has a lovely small beach you may want to visit.
Located in the southwest region of Phuket, this grouping of 9 islands is surrounded by some of the clearest shimmering waters you will ever see. the area is largely undeveloped, which may have helped preserve the natural environment and allowed marine life to thrive. As part of the Marine National Park, you will find a rich coral reef and many marine animals during exploration. An ideal spot for those that enjoy snorkelling and scuba diving.
Made up of five islands within the Mu Ko Surin National Park, the Surin Islands are famous for being one of the best diving sites in the world. Some of the most popular sightings include great barracudas, leopard sharks, green sea turtles, and blue-spotted ribbon tail rays. With an abundance of coral gardens and white beaches, it is a nature lover’s paradise. The two main islands are Ko Surin Tai and Ko Surin Nuea. These neighbouring islands have a narrow and shallow corridor that is ideal for novice snorkelers. The islands also have two campsites next to the beaches where you can enjoy some respite from sailing.
Another prime location for snorkelling and scuba diving, Racha, or Raya, Islands are located on the southern shores of Phuket. This laidback destination has plenty of sandy white beaches and idyllic scenery to enjoy. Racha Noi and Racha Yai are the most popular diving spots where you will easily encounter schools of fish. You can also enjoy some dolphin watching and game fishing off your boat here. If looking for a more secluded area to relax and explore, visit Ao Siam Bay.
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