One of my highlights in Thailand was visiting Phang Nga Bay where James Bond Island is situated. There are more than 150+ islands in the area with James Bond being the most well known. We started our journey at Chong Lad Pier on Koh Yao Yai, after booking a tour through the resort we were staying at. Our guide, Bao, was spectacular and we had an amazing day out on the sea with him. Our trip was a day trip via long tail boat and most day trips which you book in Thailand follow pretty similar itineraries. From Koh Yao Yai to Phang Nga Bay was about an hour long and a very smooth trip on the day we visited. Here’s a peek at what we got up to in one massive fun-filled day out.
Our journey started off with some adventuring into caves. When we were told to take our shoes off and go in barefoot into a nearly pitch black cave, we were a little apprehensive. Most cave expeditions targeting tourists have footpaths and lighting and this one being so natural in its raw state was a refreshing surprise. We had no idea what was going on in here, our guide kind of kept it on a bit of a down low until we reached the end where the cave opened up to a gorgeous hidden lagoon. Apparently, there are many caves in the bay, but most of them can only be accessed at certain times due to the changing tide.
Kayaking around Hong Island
Hong Island was our second destination of the day. Our boat dropped us off so that we could get into one of the many waiting kayaks to take a little tour around the island and lagoon. We kayaked around for maybe 20 minutes going through some very low entrances to visit gorgeous hidden lagoons in the area. The best thing about kayaking here is that you have a guide who rows for you so that you can make the most of enjoying the sights here. It is here that we also saw ‘James Bond Island, #2’ as joked by our guide. It kind does look like an upside down version of the famous one!
Onwards to James Bond
The main attraction of the day trip, James Bond Island was next. James Bond Island is really just a small island where you can walk around and see the famous rock formation from afar. There are a zillion different viewpoints to take pictures from and a zillion people doing poses from James Bond movies which I had no idea about. I’ve never really seen a James Bond movie before, haha.
We hungry bellies, we stopped at a floating village to have lunch – and boy, was it a feast! They serve a set menu here for those who stop by on tours and between Tom & I, we were served six dishes and rice. Honestly, this could feed my entire family of four and more back home but somehow, we managed to polish the majority off.
After lunch went to the Mangrove Cave. this cave can only be accessed at a certain point of day because during other times, the water is so high that you can’t even get in! To get in, you have to walk through a dark cave with low water before reaching the mangrove trees. These trees look flimsy but are actually so so strong. We witnessed a guy climb to the top of the tree and hang off it. I thought he was going to die but the tree roots didn’t budge one bit!
Photography: Tom Debono & I