The Unseen Andaman
Story & Photos by Ocean Adventure
Andaman Sea may sound familiar to many of us, both Thais and foreigners, because it is the most beautiful and most abundance ocean of
the world. It has a marine karst island that is listed in the top 3 island of the world! All year long, Travelers around the world are hoping to
experience the charm of Andaman Sea.
Did you know that Andaman Sea is a part of Indian Ocean? Andaman Sea covers 700,000 square kilometers of area, from Bay of Bengal of
Myanmar to Southern-east part of Thailand and territorial waters of Sumatra Island in Indonesia. Its enormousness which consists of
numbers of islands and wide area of sea attracts many wanderlusts to explore and unfold its treasures.
Ranong is a lovely beach town of Thailand and it is prominent for its beautiful nature. The coast of this province is as long as 109 kilometers.
There are 3 main islands including Koh Chang, Koh Payam and Koh Kam, from north to south respectively. As each island has many to offer,
24Life needs to pick one at a time. And in this issue, we are going to take you to the “Koh Kam” Islands.
First thing first, what you need to know is that the high season at all islands in Ranong is between November to April because there will be a
lot of rains since May. It is known among frequent visitors that even in low season period, it doesn’t rain every day and the price of the
accommodation costs half the price in high season. And most importantly, it is not as crowded so you can fully relaxed and enjoy your trip.
Until these days islands in Ranong are charming as always. The nature here is considered as peaceful and pure, comparing to those other
crowded destination like Phuket, Krabi, Trang, Phang Nga, Satun, etc. Therefore, to experience the beach and sea in Ranong for at least
once can make you overwhelm by purity of the natural, absorbing the ambience of Andaman Sea. By coming here, you will realize the word
“unseen” suits this province the best.
At the Laem Son National Park in Kapur District, there is a port transporting visitors from island to island. You will see various long-tailed
boats with Muslim steersmen offering a one day trip ride. Before you take departure, it is suggested that you prepare food and drink as well
as a life vest and diving equipment. This is because we are in the reserved area of the national park. There will be no accommodation to
stay and a few convenient stores. The more early you depart, the nicer the weather is going to be and the wave will not be so strong.
Moreover, you will have more time to travel around than those sleepyhead.
When everything was ready, we headed out to the sea and our trip started here. The water splashed from both side of the boat as it started
to speed up. The warm sea breeze touched our faces like she wanted to greet us from a far. Fortunately, the weather was fine that day so
we took only 40 minutes to Koh Kangkao. It was a small island in north part of Koh Kam Islands. Koh Kangkao can be described as the oasis
in the middle of the ocean for its stunning, and pure, and peaceful environment. The bright sunlight reflected the pure white sand on the
beach, you will thank yourself for bringing a pair of sunglasses. The sand was so soft and the whole area was so clean. This was really an
unseen place to visit. We were all lured by the pleasant scenery that we saw.
There were trees all around, making the island even more pleasant. There was a swing hanging from a big tree. It became a popular spot to
take a photo. Hanging around Koh Kangkao has drained out our stresses and worries away. We just enjoyed the scenery in front of us and
forgot other things for a while. Let the sea charged our energy.
You can walk along the beach and climb rocks to enjoy different views and take some photos to show your friends. There were various
different views to enjoy from the white beach, interesting rocks to the beach which is formed by dead corals.
After a memorable trip to Koh Kangkao, we then headed south to Koh Yee Phun, another interesting small island. The island’s name, which
means Japan Island, is named after the discovery of Japanese-like kitchen. It is 15-20 meters far from the shore. The construction is not
confirmed whether it was owned by Japanese soldiers back in World War II or Japanese pearl farmers. If you prefer swimming, you are
going to love this island as well. The sand on the beach was really soft and the water was crystal clear.
We had a great time on Koh Yee Phun for quite a while, before going to the highlight of this trip. We headed south-west, passed Koh Kam
Nui. Then turned north again so to finally arrived at Koh Kam Yai, the biggest island among all Koh Kam Islands. When we were close to the
port, the boat was slowed down to let us enjoy the lush scenery around. We then arrived at Aow Khaokwai, a crescent moon shaped bay
(some say it looks like a buffalo’s horn). There, you will see separated sea connecting the bay to the other island close by. There were line of
pine trees being blown gently by the wind. Another wonderful picture to remember for today.
Many years ago, you can come camping at Koh Kam Yai. Unfortunately, after Tsunami hit in 2004, it is not allowed anymore. You can only
have a day trip here. Pine forest is a great spot to hang around as well. You can walk through the pine forest to reach the other side of the
island in a short time. The weather was really nice and fresh. There was an open shed for visitors to cook lunch as Koh Kam Yai is where
every tour groups have their meal. The guide prepared all ingredients and made a little barbeque party. After the meal everyone had to
neatly clean up everything.
After the cleanup, our favorite activity was sightseeing. We had to climb up the rope to get to the high spot. From up here, you will be able
to see the best panoramic view of Aow Khaokwai. But if climbing is really not your thing, you can enjoy other activities, including swimming,
wandering on the small sand ridge of the separated sea to the other island and may be enjoy the sunset scenery.
Such an unexplained impression to these unseen islands that we want you to invite you to visit for more than once.
More info :More info : Tourism Authority of Thailand Chumphon Ranong โทร. +66 (0) -7750-2775-6, +66 (0) -7750-1831
A Sailing Trip to the Islands among Emerald Sea of Phang Nga Bay
Giving a present to yourself by becoming an adventurous sailor, travelling through Phang Nga Bay where it is called as the Halong Bay of
Thailand. What is special about this destination is that not many people had experienced the wind, the wave and the sunlight in this
heavenly beautiful bay. So, you can boast you have gone off the beaten track coming here.
Sailing on a junk ship is a slow travel which is popular in other countries. If you are interested in a slow travel like this as well, there is a day
trip around Phang Nga Bay, starting from 7:00am to 6:00pm. The trip begins from Yacht Haven Marina port in Laem Phrao, Phuket. You will
be sailing on a June Bahtra junk, middle sized ship that can carry around 20 passengers. There are buffet meal for lunch and offer free
drinks throughout the trip.
After an hour, we arrived at the first stop: Koh Panak and Koh Hong. Kho Panak is a large limestone island. Magnificent by its beautiful
caves, sharp stalagmites, stalactites hanging down to the sea and colorful texture of the rock cliff including white, black, grey and orange.
This island is also a good spot for kayaking.
Another island is Koh Hong. It is a limestone island as well but inside, there is an emerald green lagoon! The island looks like a room with
one entrance which is where you can ride a kayak into the lagoon. It is kind of exciting to paddle the kayak in there. When you are at the
middle of the lagoon, look up and you will see high cliff circles the sky, just like you are in a hidden chamber.
When finished lunch on the June Bahtra, we have to continue our journey by a long-tailed boat so to get to our next destination which is
called Tham Lod, a very plentiful mangrove forest. The mangrove forest in Phang Nga is known to be the largest mangrove forest in
Thailand. Its area is as large as 400 square kilometers. When we passed the forest, we will go through the dark cave in the middle of the
sea! Not so long, we were out at the other side of the cave where a big stalactite almost blocks the way. It was an amazing sight.
Out of the cave now, we are heading to the highlight of this trip which are Koh Ping Kan and Koh Tapu and. We had to walk to Kao Ping Kan.
It is a limestone mountain which was eroded by wind and sun through time, making it collapsed and leans against the other rock cliff. We
an even walk through the hole between these two rock cliffs. Then we walked for a while to meet with Koh Tapu, the famous island which
is a giant rock sticking into the sea. It has an awesome nickname as James Bond Island for it was really one of the locations to film James
Our last stop was the Koh Panyee. It is Thailand’s biggest fishing village! Hundreds of years ago, Muslims from Indonesia had migrated by
ship to find new home. They agreed that if any ship can find a good island to live, people in that ship will have to put a flag on that island so
others can see and come live together. Turned out, they discovered a perfect island and named it Panyee, a Yahweh language which means
Almost everyone on Koh Panyee are Muslim, living peacefully together. They mainly make a living as a fisherman. The island welcome
visitors all year with their unique way of life. There are houses, a mosque, a school and a floating football field! The kids in the village love to
play football together there every evening. You can walk around the village, greeting with villagers and shopping for pearl which cheaper
than other places. You can spend the night in a homestay and learn about their lifestyle and food.
More info : June Bahtra Cruiser
Tel. +66 (0) 8-3540-9529, +66 (0) 8-8809-7047, +66 (0) 8 1496-4516