This is geographic extension of the karst sea-mountains of Phang Nga, reaching south into deeper, clearer waters and thous offering fine snorkeling and diving. In the northeast monsoon season anchorages here are protected, thought the region is completely exposed during the southwest monsoon. First discovery by cruising yachting and backpackers in the 80s, there are now several 5-star resorts and many excellent restaurants. Yet in Ao Nang budget bungalows still exist.
Krabi Town, with provisioning of a similar standard to Phuket available, can be accessed from Phra Nang by long-tail boat or dinghy, or by road from Ao Nang.
The Phi Phi Islands lie approximately 18 miles south of Krabi, the largest and most developed being Phi Phi Don. If you plan to spend several days here, Ton Sai Bay is the most convenient for shopping or transport back to Phuket, Krabi or neighboring island. Now well established a southern Thailand’s most popular destination, the islands are encircled by water so clear you can almost see the seabed from the surface. The main island of Phi Phi Don is geologically two islands joined together by a sand spit just above sea level, with a large expanse of fringing reef in the northern bay.
Despite the roughly north-south orientation of the islands, the 2004 tsunami wave wrapped around the western cliff-faces to flood both the north and south bays of the low isthmus, causing incredible damage and great numbers of fatalities. Phi Phi has bounced back to cater to the thousands of tourists who flock there each year.
The honeycombed cliff-faces rising from crystal clear waters, together with the laid-back ambiance, will always attract many visitors from the neighboring tourist hubs of Phuket, Krabi and Phang Nga provinces. Approaching Phi Phi from the south take care to avoid both Hin Bida approximately 3 miles southeast of Koh Bida and Hin Klai 2 miles east of north Phi Phi Le.
The sheer-sided sea mountains that rise vertically out of Phang Nga Bay form some of Thailand’s most spectacular scenery. Images of Phang Nga have travelled the world and shaped perceptions of southern Thailand, and the boating experience to be had here.
As a result the cruising may en-country many tour boats with sea canoes during the middle hours of the day, but tranquility does return bu late afternoon. While the bay itself is not so large, the number of islands, inlets and mangrove channels to be explored ensure that no matter how long a yachtsman spends here experiences will always be nearby.
Much of the joy of sailing in Phang Nga , after all, lies in discovering the unvounted creeks, caves and coves for yourselves.
Most islands are uninhabited, offering secluded anchorages under soaring cliffs fringed with jungle, as well as fascinating dinghy expeditions to hidden beaches , caves and creeks not shown on charts or maps. The famous features of this bay are the ‘hongs’ – Thai for ‘room’. Theses shallow-water fully enclosed lagoons open to the sky are only accessible through caves at certain stages of the tides. If you’ve seen the movie “The Beach” … that Hong was CGI generated. These ones are spectacularly real.
Three rivers run into the head of the bay so the water is silty, thought otherwise clean, forming a milky green backdrop to the striking scenery.
Since a large part of the area north of Koh Yao is shallow (less than 10 metres), it is possible to anchor virtually anywhere in north Phang Nga Bay.