James Bond Island, mango groves and the floating village

Phuket Travel Blog

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early morning view of our hotel

The final day of our trip! Although for me, I still had 10 more days in Bengaluru before I jet back to the United States....

Breakfast was bad as usual. Our trip for the day would be the James Bond Island. It's actual name is Ko Tapu or Khao Tapu, and is an island located in the Phang Nga Bay, Thailand. It has become a popular tourist attraction since it was featured in the James Bond movie The Man with the Golden Gun in 1974; for this reason, it is also often referred to as James Bond Island (the later 1997 James Bond film Tomorrow Never Dies also includes a scene in Phang Nga Bay, close to James Bond Island). Ko Tapu island is about 20 meters tall, and lies approximately 150 meters offshore of the two-islet pair.

En route to James Bond Island

We first went by a big boat to Ko Khao Phingkan and from there, went to the island using longtail boats. The islands are located within the Ao Phang Nga National Park. It was a nice albeit touristy experience. We got our photos taken around the james Bond island, and then went on tiny boats to a Mango Grove. I don't know what the point of this was, at the time it was fun but looking back, seems rather pointless. They take you through these narrow streams of waters in between caves, lots of kayaks and lots of tourists.

Our next stop was the Muslim Village of Paneyee. Now this was an interesting experience. I don't quite know the full story, but it's supposed to be a floating village, and it's inhabitated and wouldn't look out of place in one of India's Muslim neighbourhoods.

James Bond Island from afar
My mum did a bit of shopping here, I was just impressed by the narrow alleys, the house construction, it looks so well designed. People were very friendly except when haggling!

We headed back to the boat, they'd arranged lovely lunch for us. There were 2 families basically - us and a family from Singapore. We got the veg meal. From here, we were taken to another desolate island for a "walk"! We went by kayak, I actually kayaked myself so that was fun.

We then went back to Phuket. There was a lowtide so it was quite a mess getting down from the boat. It was slush and mud all over. Not that I had a problem, but my parents did.

We got back to the hotel by 7pm, had enough time to grab dinner and left the hotel by 9p to catch our flight back to Bangkok at 11pm.

The worst part was after we arrived - my GOD - the airport was a mess. Nighttime flights are the busiest, and our flight was at the unearthly time of 430am. My parents were tired, I was getting irritated, it's very annoying waiting in the airport for so long. I'm glad through the years that's one thing I've avoided. Our Indian Airlines flight back to Bengaluru via Chennai was delayed. It was just very frustrating. Don't even get me started on the service - horrible seats and oily food. Terrible experience, I've never flown with them ever since. God bless Jet Airways!

So, my Thailand trip report is done nearly 6 years after I visited it. I'm surprised at myself and my good memory! but it was a very good country and I do plan on going back someday for a longer time, see a bit more of northern Thailand. I found it a safe place to be in.

YantiSoeparno says:
Yes, you have a good memory, Vikram. You wrote this blog in details.
Posted on: Jan 04, 2009
YantiSoeparno says:
Not yet written? ;-)
Posted on: Jan 03, 2009
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early morning view of our hotel
early morning view of our hotel
En route to James Bond Island
En route to James Bond Island
James Bond Island from afar
James Bond Island from afar
Leaving the island
Leaving the island
Rafting through the Mango Grove
Rafting through the Mango Grove
Kayaking on an island nearby back …
Kayaking on an island nearby back…
Lunch is served! (aboard the ship)
Lunch is served! (aboard the ship)
Panyee, Muslim floating village
Panyee, Muslim floating village
The fish that were caught, still i…
The fish that were caught, still …
Panyee from afar
Panyee from afar
back to our boat...
back to our boat...
Last picture of my Thailand trip -…
Last picture of my Thailand trip …
Phuket
photo by: Aclay01