Phang Nga Bay & Koh Panyi
Phang Nga Bay
Phang Nga bay is the large area between the east coast of Phuket and mainland coast around to Krabi. The whole bay is peppered with islands and islets and most of the water is comparatively shallow making anchoring an easy prospect. The islands and the islets are simply spectacular, tall limestone pinnacles covered in jungle and surrounded by green waters.
Many of the islands have extensive cave and sinkhole systems as well as the "hongs", cave systems where the top of the cave has collapsed, leaving a steep crater in the island which is often only accessible by kayak or by feet. Wandering along dark tunnels until you get to the collapsed roof and see the open sky is an experience you should not miss! This amazing landscape was used in the filming of James Bond movie "The Man with the Golden Gun" and one of the islands is now well-known as James Bond island.
Located in Phang Nga province, this fishing village was built in the late 1800s by Muslim fishermen. There are under 2000 residents in the village, consisting of around 200 families. The first structures to be erected were a freshwater well and a mosque, which were constructed using the income generated by the community with the advent of the tourism industry in the area. The mosque which neighbors the settlement has now become one of the main socializing hubs of the predominantly Muslim community. Basic supplies like clothes, toiletries and medicine are available at a local market. The Koh Panyi village also features a co-ed school, a football field and many seafood restaurants which serve freshly caught local seafood.
Since most tourists only visit during the months of November to April, Koh Panyi continues to derive most of its income from fishing.