News & Features
THAILAND'S SURIN & SIMILAN ISLANDS
The entire Surin archepelago covers a region greater than 320 km² and includes the picturesque island of Koh Tachai and sublime scuba diving at Richelieu Rock where the large pelagic favourites, Manta Rays and Whale Sharks, are often sighted.
The Marine Park headquarters are situated on the North island. They are tastefully designed, blending with the surroundings. Thankfully the National Park has not pushed the development of the island too far. Visitors can stay on the island and sleep at the camp site or in one of the bungalows.
DAY 1: PHUKET
Begin your yacht charter in Thailand at Patong Bay, Phuket and depending on your arrival time, head for the idyllic Similan Islands. The two main islands of Koh Surin Nua and Koh Surin Tai are separated by a narrow sandbar and each has hardily any flat ground beyond small pockets of mangroves. Nestled on the shores are little spots of paradise - fine white sand, surrounded by palm trees with crystal clear waters lapping the shores - perfect for relaxing away from crowds.
DAY 2: SIMILAN ISLANDS
Wake up at the Similan Islands and spend the day swimming and diving in the pristine waters. With the protected status, there is no fishing, collecting of shells or water sports like wakeboarding or jet skiing so you will have peace and tranquillity to appreciate and enjoy the stunning islands and their diversity. It is worth noting the marine park is patrolled and wardens do enforce the laws in order to protect the region's ecosystem and wildlife.
DAY 3: SURIN ISLANDS
Head to the Surin Islands and enjoy the island of Ko Surin Nuea and its many bays. Ao Mae Yai is the best-known and has the calmest waters, and Ao Luck has waters so deep the sea appears a tantalizing dark emerald green. It’s the perfect spot to catch a glimpse of stunning shallow corals, sea flowers and an array of tropical fish. Squeeze in a visit to Hat Sai En and buy some fresh fish for dinner from the Sea Gypsies, who are some of the oldest inhabitants of the Andaman coast.
DAY 4: SURIN ISLANDS
After breakfast, head for Ao Mai Ngam. Here you can enjoy a 2km walking path to explore the island's natural features and the stunning freshwater bay. Perfect for swimming and snorkelling, the beaches are adorned with palms and hammocks strewn between them and picture-postcard swings. Head north of Ko Surin Nuea to find Ao Chak a bay of unspoiled coral reefs. Aim for Ao Tao on the east to see an abundance of sea turtles and magnificent coral reefs. Or head to Ao Phakkat to the south of the island if you love to snorkel amongst unspoilt coral reefs.
KAW THOUNG - MYANMAR
Cruise to Kaw Thoung, the gateway to the Archipelago and Myanmar’s southernmost township and trading port. Relax on board and enjoy this longer cruise.
DAY 6: GREAT SWINTON
There are many beautiful beaches along the shores of Great Swinton (Kyun Pila) with one on the south side of the very western tip of the island standing out. Perfect for those wanting to snorkel and view the coral and tropical marine life or enjoy paddling the crystal clear waters in kayaks. For those more experienced, just offshore is the world-class dive site of Shark Cave amongst many others nearby. Look out for turtles, sharks, and dolphins below the waves with the chance to see monkeys on the beaches too.
Lampi is the largest island in the Archipelago at 20 nautical miles long and is a similar size to Singapore - although is uninhabited. The island is an area of outstanding natural beauty and a designated national park offering protection to its wildlife and endless white sandy beaches which stretch for 2km or more along pristine azure waters. Cruise through the Andaman sea back to Kaw Thoung. Tomorrow, it's time to leave your charter in Thailand and Myanmar.