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Old 06-07-2017, 11:13   #1
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Chartering with family in Thailand

A group of families is putting together a group family vacation in Thailand. Our tentative plan is to fly into Phuket and bare boat charter a catamaran there. Looking at the map of the area, there appears to be a no shortage of small islands to explore. Can any give advice on which ones are worth visiting (and safe for families)?
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Old 08-07-2017, 04:00   #2
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Re: Chartering with family in Thailand

The chart shows Phuket and Phang Nga Bay - many islands in the bay. They are interesting, made of karst (limestone) and many with caves, called hongs. They are stunning and some well known from movies, such as James Bond Island. The bay is very shallow and has some currant; and it's mostly very green and not so great for swimming. There is a pamphlet you can buy locally, that is a cruising guide on the various hongs. The area is very crowded with tourists during the day. Some of the best hongs are a bit south of Phuket, such as Ko Muk. If you have the time/inclination better swimming is found in the Surin and Similan island groups to the NW of Phuket.
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Old 14-08-2017, 04:22   #3
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Re: Chartering with family in Thailand

Phuket is a beautiful place.
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Old 14-08-2017, 04:42   #4
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Re: Chartering with family in Thailand

Use this website for charts and info on places to visit.

Yacht charter in Thailand with Siam Sailing

I've do a week bareboat charter on SV Nina. It was amazing. We basically did the 'North 7 days' loop as per the above website. Although we did not go all the way north as we were more interested in the clearer waters and better breezes in the souther areas of the bay.

I doubt the charter company will let you go to similan isalnds.

Even thought some areas are 'touristy', you will find that early morning and late afternoos, and all night you basically have the place to yourself. Even the famous Maya Bay - we stayed in there over night with just a few other boats.

Typically, the winds are not very strong.

have fun.
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Old 15-08-2017, 01:55   #5
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Re: Chartering with family in Thailand

Quote:
Originally Posted by junek View Post
Typically, the winds are not very strong.
Depends on the season.

The SW monsoon, from June to September, can bring strong W and SW winds to Phuket along with heavy rain.

The SW monsoon this year (i.e. now) has been surprisingly strong. Heavy rain squalls, low visibility, some strong wind. Strong wind and rain come in pulses of a few days length.

See for example:

Phuket on alert for flooding, landslides | Bangkok Post: news
Governor warning Phuket residents about more floods and storms - Phuket Gazette

For current surface wind (in a general regional sense), see the patch of W to SW wind hitting Phuket and Phang Nga Bay currently and for the next 24 hours (the wind and rain are expected to ease): Marine Forecasts | Surface Winds |

And the consequences of the low visibility, caused by rain, and the stronger wind and bigger waves? Here's a couple of examples: ‘Safety’ mayhem on Phuket’s waters - Phuket Gazette

The NE monsoon, starting from late Nov and stretching some years to late March or even April, is a different story. Phang Nga waters are usually calm, because it is in the lee of the Kra peninsula. That's the time for family cruising.
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