Koh Yao Noi View to Phang Nga Bay

Phang Nga – The most beautiful province in Thailand?

Phang Nga Province, nestled between the long coast of Myanmar and the island of Phuket, is arguably one of Thailand’s most spectacular destinations. This coastal gem, with its enchanting lagoons, unspoiled jungles, pristine white sandy beaches, and world-class diving spots, epitomizes the natural beauty of Thailand. Whether you’re drawn to its national parks, such as the renowned Ao Phang Nga National Park, home to the famous Phang Nga Bay and James Bond Island, or to its other diverse attractions, Phang Nga promises an unforgettable experience. In this blog, we’ll explore the wonders of Phang Nga, showcasing why it’s considered by many to be the most beautiful province in Thailand.

Introduction to Phang Nga Province

Phang Nga, pronounced ‘Pang Na’, is the province’s and capital town’s names. There are several national parks here, the main one being Ao Phang Nga National Park, which is where you will find the world-famous Phang Nga Bay and James Bond Island.

Phang Nga is less than 100km from Phuket, so it is perfect for a day trip but also ideal as a holiday destination in its own right. It’s also the next province along from Krabi, so a handy next stop for anyone travelling from there.

The four most famous attractions of Phang Nga Province are the Khao Lak, The Similan and Surin Islands, Phang Nga Bay and James Bond Island, which is also in Phang Nga Bay. We’ll describe these and eight more attractions below.

Four famous attractions of Phang Nga Province

1. Khao Lak

Nang Thong Beach, Khao Lak, Thailand
Nang Thong Beach, Khao Lak, Thailand

Khao Lak refers to 30 km of coastline, with dozens of excellent 4- and 5-star hotels across its white sandy beaches. It is a peaceful, family-friendly place and is the perfect destination for beach lovers who want to eat in excellent restaurants and do a spot of shopping but also want to avoid any dodgy nightlife. Read more about Khao Lak in this blog.

2. Phang Nga Bay

Phang Nga Bay

Phang Nga Bay has a comparable beauty to Halong Bay in Vietnam. Huge, lush green limestone cliffs soar out of turquoise water, making a dramatic visual impact. It is a geological gem with islets, lagoons, mangroves, caves and sunken caverns. The bay is sheltered and ideal for sea kayaking all year round. You can also see some 3,000-year-old rock paintings. Phang Nga Bay is the province’s main attraction and gets busy with day trippers from Phuket, so we recommend you visit early. There are many boat trips that can take you to all the key highlights, and we highly recommend sea kayaking through the area too.

3. Similan and Surin Islands

Similan Islands

The beautiful island groups of Surin and Similan are both uninhabited national parks and are renowned for their unspoiled beaches, clear waters, marine life and coral reefs. Similan Islands and Surin Islands are some of Thailand’s most famous diving sites. Near the Surin Islands is the famous Richelieu Rock, one of the best dive sites in the whole of South East Asia. The best way to see these islands is by taking a day trip, or if you want to dive, then a liveaboard is the best option.

 4. James Bond Island

James Bond Island

James Bond Island (Ko Tapu) is a famous photo opportunity. It is a limestone karst tower featured in the 1974 James Bond film, The Man with the Golden Gun, and after that, it became very famous. It is always part of any boat tour you choose to take in Phang Nga Bay and is one of the most photographed attractions in Thailand.

More attractions in Phang Nga Bay

 

Ao Phang Nga National Park

Ko Hong Lagoon

Phang Nga Bay and James Bond Island are part of this national park, which covers 400 square km and contains 42 islands. Over 80 % of the park is covered by the Andaman Sea, including islands such as Maprow Island, Boi Noi Island, Boi Yai Island, Rayaring Island, Phanak Island, Hong Island (with its famous lagoon) and Phing Kan Island.

Ko Panyi – Sea Gypsy Village

Also in Ao Phang Nga National Park is Ko Panyi a Muslim Sea Gypsy village built entirely on stilts in the ocean. It used to be an authentic homestay experience but is now more of a tourist attraction rather than an actual glimpse into real Asian Sea Gypsy Life. Most of the alleyways that are open to tourists are lined with overpriced trinkets, and real village life happens elsewhere.

Tham Lod (Lod Cave)

Tham Lod is a large cave in Phang Nga Bay about 50 metres long, with beautiful stalactites and stalagmites inside the grotto. You can normally see this cave when you go sea kayaking.

Khao Khien

Khao Khien is an opportunity to see rock paintings on the cliff of animals which are at least 3,000 years old.

Attractions outside of Phang Nga Bay

 

Lam Ru Waterfall – Lamru National Park

Lam Ru (Nam Tok Lam Ru) is a pretty five-level fall that flows throughout the year. A small path trail leads to the top of the waterfall and it is a very pretty walk with lots of nature to see along the way. Lamru National Park is an ideal place to trek and to go rafting.

 Ton Chong Fah Waterfall – Lamru National Park

Ton Chong Fah Waterfall is a five-level waterfall that flows year-round. It is about 10 minutes east of Bang Niang Beach in Khao Lak and is a beautiful walk through quiet nature.

Raman Waterfall Forest Park

Raman Waterfall Forest Park features a nature trail with a medium-sized multi-tiered waterfall with water flowing all year. The tiers of the waterfall result from the different elevations of the area that the stream flows by.

Best places to stay in Phang Nga Province

We recommend staying on one of the beaches of Khao Lak, or if you really want to get away from it all, you can stay on Koh Yao Noi Island. Khao Yao Noi is only 30 minutes off the mainland and is very quiet and unspoilt. The featured image of this blog is the view of Phang Nga Bay from the beach at Koh Yao Noi. Stunning!

Phang Nga – Beacon of Beauty

To wrap up, Phang Nga Province stands out as a beacon of natural splendour in Thailand. From the serene beaches of Khao Lak to the awe-inspiring vistas of Phang Nga Bay and the untouched beauty of the Similan and Surin Islands, this province offers an array of stunning landscapes and experiences. Phang Nga is not just a destination; it’s an escape into a world where nature’s artistry is fully displayed. Whether you’re seeking adventure, relaxation, or a deep dive into Thailand’s natural wonders, Phang Nga is a destination that should be at the top of your list. Remember, the true essence of Phang Nga’s beauty lies in exploring its varied attractions and immersing yourself in its captivating natural environment.

Images courtesy of Flickr.com

Featured image by Jason Wesley, Nang Thong Beach by Kullez, Phang Nga Bay by Jeff Gunn , Similan Islands by Andrew K Smith, James Bond Island by Carrie Kellenberger , Koh Hong Lagoon by Steve Cornish , Sea Kayaking in Phang Nga Bay by Jeff Gunn.

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