The number one province in Thailand that I find myself and I hear many others recommend for their bucket list selection is Phuket, you may wonder why is this and what is the charm that makes Thai people and travelers alike so attracted to adding Phuket to their bucket list?
For myself, the first reason I can think of is the crystal clear sea and beautiful sandy Phuket beaches. I know I’m not alone as this can be seen by the sheer amount of people visiting the islands over the years to come and relax, going swimming and snorkeling to explore the beauty of the blissful underwater world that can be found here in Phuket’s waters. Altogether, this combined with the food and wonderful nature spots it makes Phuket become a very suitable pick for a yacht cruising trip in Southeast Asia and ideal for your bucket list.
There’s another province in Thailand near Phuket, called Krabi which is also a great place to visit as it offers beautiful and extremely clean beaches with that iconic white powder sand you are expecting plus it’s less crowded when compared to Phuket. After November until April, the weather is just perfect for traveling and exceptionally good when cruising in a yacht or catamaran because there is far less rain, and weeks of unspoiled sunny days and acres of blue skies to enjoy endless miles of sunshine with friends and loved ones, aboard your yacht.
Of course, once you are in Phuket you must visit the Phi Phi Islands, these are as close to a paradise island that I’ve ever visited myself, and ideal for a bucket list - these are the kind of destination that many people dream of visiting (at least) once in a lifetime!
Phi Phi Islands are a group of islands found in the Andaman Sea and because of this the waters and natural wildlife are stunning as they are outside of the Thai Gulf, and are exposed to a truly gigantic expanse of marine life that spans practically the entire south of the Asian continent. Phi Phi Islands consists of two main islands with many adjourning small islands to be found nearby, so there are lots of beaches and jungles for exploring.
Phi Phi Don is the largest island which is also conveniently found at the center of the whole group of Phi Phi Islands, here you will find excellent accommodation, restaurants, cafes and also many shops. If you buy a half-day tour by speedboat or yacht, this point is usually a resting spot for lunch. You may be familiar with the pictures of the island with two large bays, which are Ton Sai Bay and Loh Dalum Bay, which have plains in the middle.
The Things to Do on Phi Phi Don Are:
Snorkeling: Ko Phi Phi Don has many interesting diving spots to see coral reefs near Yong Kasem Bay, where there are large coral reefs found just under the sea level. You don’t need to dive deep as you still can easily see the beautiful coral reefs from onboard due to the clear transparency of the waters. Due to this Phi Phi is certainly very suitable for beginners who want to see beautiful nature underwater without deep diving.
Another interesting point is the area located on the Eastside of Long Beach, near Ton Sai Bay. There are many types of corals, such as branch and brain corals.
Water activities: Loh Dalum Bay has a wide beach. Due to how the bay acts as a natural wave breaker, the water is very still and also not very deep. Here is suitable for water activities including kayaking, playing on a banana boat, swimming or just having a relaxing time laying down on the beach sunbathing and reading.
Loh Dalum Bay is quieter than Ton Sai Bay so you will feel more relaxed for sure here. If anyone likes to relax with a more secluded scene and some privacy, then you simply must visit Loh Dalum Bay.
Going to play and take photos with monkeys at Monkey Bay: Monkey Bay is a bay with clear blue sea and white beaches next to the steep mountains that are packed full of sprawling jungle overgrowth and large trees. These lush jungles and tropical forests are home to where wild monkeys live, these groups of monkeys often come down to play with tourists to ask for food, and also to scavenge for dropped food left on the beach.
Because people have visited the area for decades the natural friendliness and tame nature of these monkeys now make Monkey bay become one of the highlights in Phi Phi Don, although be warned that these are still wild animals and do love to grab and climb on people - so if you don’t like the sound of that, don’t get too close!
View on the Phi Phi Don viewpoint: Another point that should not be missed is a short walk up the hill from Ton Sai Bay to Phi Phi Don Viewpoint to see the beauty of Phi Phi Don and the turquoise sea contrasts with the beautiful green island. Especially if anyone wants to go to see the sunset, we guarantee that you will get so many beautiful pictures here. By walking up to the observation deck, it's not difficult at all.
There are signs provided throughout the route there and you can walk from the bay area up to the viewpoint in about half an hour. The cost of entry is only 30 baht per person, which is used to keep the area tidy and protect wildlife.
Phi Phi Leh Island is another important island in the Phi Phi Islands. Although the size of the island is not very large. Most areas are limestone mountains with cliffs that almost surround the island. This is mostly because of the beautiful Maya Bay, which was used in the 1999 Hollywood movie ‘The Beach’ starring Leonardo DiCaprio and has made Phi Phi Leh become on of the most frequented tourist spots.
Also, there is Pileh Bay, a beautiful peaceful bay hidden in the middle of the cliffs. This makes the seawater very clear without waves, besides this another interesting spot on the bay is the Viking Cave which is found near the sea and has many natural swiftlet birds nests that are used in traditional Chinese medicine.
Things to do on Phi Phi Leh are:
Take a boat to see the Viking Cave: Viking Cave is a cave in the sea in the limestone mountains. Inside the cave, there are many paintings, most of which are boat paintings that look like Vikings which has resulted in the assumption that it may be a painting of a Viking sailor who had entered this area.
Interesting activities here are cruising around the area of the Viking Cave, which is great for photography, with it's beautiful and unique look. You will need to stay on the boat because the Viking Cave currently has a private company that has received a concession for exclusivity, so tourists are not allowed to walk in the cave. Nearby Viking cave, the boat can make a stop here for you to go snorkeling also if you are lucky, you will be able to find a squid and baby shark!
Experience Tranquility and Peace at Pileh Bay: Pileh Bay is a large bay surrounded by limestone cliffs. This makes you feel like you were in a lounge with the sea as the floor, and sky as your ceiling. The seawater in Pileh Bay is relatively still and calm because it is hidden inside a cliff. When the boat reaches the bay area, the engine will be shut down so you can feel more relax and listen to the sounds of the waves. Besides Pileh Bay also has beautiful diving spots to discover the beauty under the sea. Here you can dive in both very deep and more shallow waters. This area is suited for divers who want to avoid the hustle and bustle of mass tourism and still enjoy the sea breeze.
Take a photo on the boat in front of Maya Bay: This is where the spectacular Maya Bay can be seen. Although Maya Bay is now temporarily closed for rejuvenating the natural ecosystem under order by the Thai government and will be closed for the next 2 or more years you can still take a photo from a boat in front of the famous beach.
Without a doubt, Phi Phi islands are really best seen by private charter rather than on a group tour. Because of this, there are now many yacht and boat charter companies that provide a tour to Phi Phi and there are also many boats for you to choose according to your group's capacity and budget. However, bear in mind that sailing catamarans are not able to go to Phi Phi due to its slow speed so you are better off selecting either a luxury speedboat, yacht or a motor catamaran. Chartering a voyage with Hartt Voyages provides a unique boutique experience where the entire trip is tailored for one all-inclusive price - gourmet meals, drinks, massage, insurance, crew, and fuel are all included.
The main advantages of using a yacht charter for your bucket list trip are of course the route customizations, onboard amenities, activities and dining options. Obviously, when you are the captain of the ship - you don’t need to follow the tour schedule and wait for other people, there’s no need to compromise.
Also, you can enjoy not being rushed and taking more time to explore the places that you would love to stop by, while alternatively, you can choose to skip the places that you are not interested in.
Moreover, there are many islands that you can stop by before/after Phi Phi islands, for example, Khai Island which is suitable for swimming and snorkeling or Rang island for relaxing and pearl farming. There’s also Bamboo island which is also a great place for escaping from the crowds or enjoying an unforgettable romantic moment with its unique heart-shaped island.
If you are interested in visiting Phuket and are planning for your bucket list trip feel free to give us a call or email to discuss your ideas in more detail and figure out what will be the perfect itinerary for your voyage and budget. Your wish is our command. To contact by phone our number is +66 82 636-4222 or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org we look forward to hearing from you!