We are invited by Khun Ying Suthida Uengboriboon Phisan, the Director of Southern Market - Tourism Authority of Thailand to go and experience the unseen Phang Nga during 14 - 17 November.
We are going to Koh Kho Khao Island, go snorkeling at Mu Ko Surin National Marine Park, visit Moken Village, visit the unspoiled Ao Khoei Beach, see Crinum thaianum-an endangered species of wild fauna and flora at Khlong Ta Lian, and go bamboo rafting at Khlong Lam Ru.
As you can see, some of the places listed above we haven't heard or known about it at all so let's go and see these unseen places in Phang Nga.
(These three foreigners love Thailand so much. They have been to Thailand once a year for the last five years and stayed one month each time. They love to stay in the tents at Mu Ko Surin National Marine Park Office.)
Mae Pranorm always fly with Air Asia because we live near Don Mueang International Airport where Air Asia is based.
It is not long at all then we have arrived in Phuket, we should be going to have lunch at Khao Lak as the program scheduled and then going to take the boat to Koh Kho Khao Island straight away. However, Khun Ying is afraid that we will be too hungry so we stop by Ping Nga restaurant first to have some Dim Sum for breakfast on our way to Khao Lak.
Not bad at all and at reasonable price and if I am not mistaken it is 15 THB per dish.
Very cute little restaurant.
I have slept after the breakfast the whole time and waken up right after we have arrived at Khao Lak. We have lunch at Casa de La Flora Hotel, the hotel has prepared a special complementary lunch for us. (I think they would like us to see how special and attractive is the hotel and it works well I book the room with them right after this trip ends)
We have lunch here at La Aranya, the only restaurant in the hotel but wow! the ambiance is so good with a view.
But I am not that hungry yet because we just had breakfast like an hour ago so I decide to walk around the resort first to see what do they have to offer and if it is good then we might come back.
Let's go and have a look around!
Wow! This is a very beautiful spa. (it is a pity that we do not have a chance to have the treatment this time)
The guestrooms are all pool villas.
This is The Duplex Pool Suite, a 2-storey villa. There are a bedroom and bathroom on the 2nd floor and a living room and private swimming pool on the 1st floor.
Aww! their strategy works so well I really want to spend a night here already but the villa is quite expensive and over a budget a bit.
I have checked the room rate during the low season and it is around 9,301 THB after tax and service charge.
This is our lunch .
After lunch we are now heading to take the ferry at Baan Nam Khem Pier
to Koh Kho Khao Island.
Koh Kho Khao Island is a perfect choice for those who like a place for weekend getaway and want to escape from the chaotic bustling city. The nature on the island is still untouched so you will experience an unspoiled natural beauty. The island is also surrounded by a very beautiful white sand beach for kilos and you are able to swim here too.
There are only about 6 resorts, bungalows, and restaurants altogether on the island.
It is about 20 THB per person for the long-tail boat and 150 THB for the ferry and twice as much after 06.00 PM to get to Koh Kho Khao Island.
And if you would like to take your car to the island as well it will be 150 THB per car but make sure to arrive before 05.00 PM (If you stay overnight on the island, it is better to take a car with you)
These are the long-tail boats and ferry to Koh Kho Khao Island.
Once we arrive, Khun Rungsuriya Piyathamrongrojjana - the owner of C&N Resort and the President of Koh Kho Khao Island Club has already prepare some refreshment for us before going to take us around the island and back to the resort for the dinner when the sun set.
Look at this calm and peaceful beach! It is just perfect for a total relaxation.
Let's go to the kitchen and see what we will have for dinner tonight! Wow! fresh seafood from the daily catch.
Khun Rungsuriya then take us to the small ancient city on the island called "Baan Tung Tuek".
The important historical site on Koh Kho Khao Island is located at "Tung Tuek" or "Muang Thong". The reason why people call this place as "Tung Tuek" is that there are 3 ancient remains here.
Moreover, Indian silver coin graven image base, scrap gold, and golden sand powder were found on this site but they were all destroyed. We are able to see only the ruins nowadays.
Koh Kho Khao Island's historical site or Muang Thong was inspected in 1935. A 55 meter long, 27 meter wide, and 1.8 meter high brick ancient remain, potsherds index in Tang Dynasty ( AD 618–907) from China, and Persian glassware were found.
These ancient remains should be during the 13th - 14th Buddhist century and from all ruins which are quite many, this historical site might use to be a central trading of Srivijaya
His tour is too much fun and very informative.
There is a lot of monkey cups all around the island.
Another amazing unseen thing on the island is that a lot of hermit crabs love to climb the tree and locals still wonder why they love to do that here.
But you got to go to Hapla beach only to see this, amazing!
Click here for the VDO version
And it's time to go back for the dinner with the sun set!
Baked Lobster with Butter, the lobster is not that big so it is mixed with Tiger prawns and it is 500 THB.
This Baked Lobster with Butter is not available every day so if you get a chance to try, I highly recommend.
I am not sure if it is this cheap so I double check with the menu and there it is. The food here is pretty reasonable. Moreover, the bungalow in the resort is not expensive either. It is about 1,000-2,000 THB per night.
And this is our dinner.
This is one of the best dish, fried silver sillago only 80 THB.
There are 3-set of these food and it is about 3,800 THB after 15% discount for Tourism Authority of Thailand.
I also have some photos from the resort to show you.
And it is time to go back to the mainland.
And this is our whole group of people.
We stay at La Flora Resort & Spa Khao Lak tonight.
This is how the room looks like.
The room is spacious but unfortunately we don't have a chance to spend a lot of time here because we are leaving to another island early tomorrow.
Let's check the room rate!
We go to Kuraburi pier in the early morning to be able to catch the ferry at 09.00 AM.
We are going snorkeling at Mu Ko Surin National Marine Park and will spend a night there too.
We take the Green View Tour which is about 2,500 THB.
There are some tea, coffee, and fruit juice provided at the registration to get the snorkeling equipment.
Let's take a photo with Khun Ying, the Director of Southern Market - Tourism Authority of Thailand who has invited us to join this trip!
The first stop for snorkeling.
Wow! what a crystal clear water!
After getting back on to the boat, we can see the list of things that we have seen down there.
Then we head to the island where we will be staying tonight and go for lunch right away.
The buffet restaurant on the island, 130 THB for breakfast, 250 THB for lunch, and 260 THB per person for dinner.
But we are having lunch with the Green View Tour today because it is already included.
This is the list of the fee on the island such as admission fee to the park, accommodation fee, equipment fee, etc.
Tents on the beach, what a perfect location!
In case you prefer to stay in the bungalow then you have to accept that it is not right by the beach, and for us we think the tent is better.
While the rest of the group go snorkeling again, we prefer to treasure our time on the island.
I wish I could describe how beautiful the beach is but I guess you got to come and see yourself.
This rock looks like a turtle, no?
And a hen?
At the end of the day, we now go to see the sun set at the best point on the island at Krating Bay.
Sun set at Krating Bay.
This is where we stay.
Everyone on the island is so ready for dinner.
Let's see how is the dinner buffet, I would say pretty good though.
Even it is a buffet, this fish as an example that we get to share it with 4 people including myself.
People relax and do whatever they want because there is only one TV on the island at the restaurant and there is only one Wi-Fi zone on the island.
Some people play cards.
Look at how unspoiled the nature on the island is, we even get a chance to see thisl.
Wow! I am so lucky to have a chance to try this Red Frog Crab for the very first time and they were just caught.
We come and visit this Mai Ngam Beach in the morning. You can also stay overnight here too, there are some tent service, however; the service will start on 5th December.
This beach is just too beautiful.
There is this Mu Ko Surin National Marine Park's Navy rescue team taking care of us today too.
And we are now heading to do snorkeling.
I can't swim but I am well-taken care by this rescue guy, thank you very much! I have so much fun.
Next stop will be the Moken Village at Bon Bay.
Moken is a local fisherman tribe who still live like in the old time. They live on boats and respect Red Indian graven image carved on wood.
Mu Ko Surin National Marine Park Office has built 40 permanent houses for them and Ministry of Interior has given 150 locals to officially have Thai as their nationality. Moreover, some fishing ships were also given to use in their daily fisherman lives.
They were also taught to make a Moken fishing ship model and other souvenir to be sold to the tourist to make money and not going back to work illegally like sell turtle shells or corals.
So don't forget to buy some souvenir once you are here.
Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn has built this school for Moken's children too so they get a chance to study.
The first and only Moken who get Bachelor degree.
And she is now a teacher.
And it's time to head back for lunch now.
Another buffet lunch at the restaurant on the island that we stay.
As same as dinner you can get everything refilled but not the fish, you get to share and can't ask for more.
And back to the mainland, we stay here at Kuraburi Greenview Resort for tonight.
Very nice view and surroundings.
And this is our room.
And the room rate here is not expensive at all as I have checked.
And our dinner in the hotel.
Wow! The food here are all so good and cheap, I highly recommend.
And for those who spend a night here, don't forget to look up in the sky. You will be surprised with all the stars you are seeing.
And today we are going to see Crinum thaianum, an endangered species of wild fauna and flora at Khlong Ta Lian.
“Crinum thaianum or Plub Pleung Tharn called by locals"
is a water plant found in Thailand. They are found in the stream and rivers in Kuraburi district, Phang Nga and Suk Samran and Kapurdistrict, Ranong. Plub Pleung Tharn is comparable as a dedicator of how clean and how good is the quality of the water because Plub Pleung Tharn can't grow in a low quality water.
Plub Pleung Tharn blooms from the end of October to December normally.
Because the flowers of Plub Pleung Tharn are very beautiful and very hard to see so it is named as “Queen of the River"
Ta Lian grandpa is the owner who have been taking a very good care of Plub Pleung Tharn as an endangered species of wild fauna and flora.
Once you are there you can call him and he will show you around and explain everything for free.
This is the fruit that people used to use it to color the lips like a lipstick in the old days.
So when you are in Phang Nga don't forget to stop by and visit Ta Lian grandpa and the Plub Pleung Tharn.
To get there:
You can go directly to Khlong Ta Lian at Kura village Moo. 7, Kura, Kuraburi district - Phang Nga.
or contact Tourism Coordination Centre, Phang-Nga Province Telephone: 0-7648-1900-2 for more information.
And it is not far from Khlong Ta Lian to get to Ao Khoei Beach. Ao Khoei Beach is not well-known among the tourists, there is no bar, restaurant, or store, etc. Therefore, the nature at Ao Khoei Beach is like untouched and unspoiled.
Very calm, quiet, and beautiful, don't forget to stop over!
We have lunch at Mr. Kosak restaurant, Kuraburi.
Fried fresh Mantis shrimp with black pepper only 500 THB.
And this is our lunch.
Khun Ying and I highly recommend this restaurant.
And now since we are full, let's go for Bamboo rafting!
Bamboo rafting at Khlong Lam Ru is a new activity organized by Komol's Corner. (Contact: Dr. Komol call 089-7273021 or Khun Kate call 081-0852389) Bamboo rafting is available all year round for you to enjoy the greenery and the fruit garden along Khlong Lam Ru river and you can even swim in.
Location: Ban Lam Kaen, Thai Mueang district not far from Khao Lak at all
It is only 400 THB for Thais per one Bamboo raft and 700 THB for foreigners. And one Bamboo raft can accommodate up to 2 passengers.
Open from 08.00 AM to 05.00 PM.
And this is one of the new activities, Buffalo riding.
Actually, I suppose to be in the carriage on the back but I want to try this for fun and they are kind enough to let me do this.
This is the last activity before going to the airport.
We fly back with Air Asia. And guess what! there is Nong Amp (a friend from facebook and the big fan of Mae Pranorm). She has been waiting for us even she has done her shift like 3 hours ago already, thank you very much.
After check us in she also send us off until the last minute before boarding.
And the trip ends here.
Lastly, I would like to thank to
Khun Suthida Uengboriboon Phisan, the Director of Southern Market - Tourism Authority of Thailand who invited us to join this amazing trip
Nong Boat, Nong Tong, and Nong Todd, Tourism Authority of Thailand team who have been taken care of us so well.
And Nong Amp who has been waiting to check us in for the flight even she has finished her shift likw 3 hours before and send us off
Thanks to those who always support and follow our travel reviews.
I will try to make my travel reviews better and better.