Hong Island Tours
The Hong Islands are a small group of tropical Islands a short distance up the coast from Aonang.
Island hopping in Krabi is what puts Krabi at the top of the list of Thailand travel destinations.
The Andaman is dotted with hundreds of small Islands of various sizes. Most of them have limestone Karsts at the center making them really quite unique. The Karsts are limestone mountains that have been formed over millions of years as softer rock around the limestone is eroded creating gigantic pillars of stone. The karsts are coated with a thin layer of soil that allows thick vegetation to grow on top and on all but the steepests of cliff walls. The water is usually a perfect swimming temperature and the most beautiful colours you can imagine. The beaches are white sand beaches lined with trees.
The Hong Islands have National Park status which thankfully means there can be no development, no resorts and certainly no private beaches.
The Hong Islands
Hong is the Thai word for room, so literally translated, it means Room Island. There is a very good reason for this as right at its center is a lagoon completely surrounded by cliffs. The entrance to the lagoon is quite narrow making the whole experience quite spectacular. The longtail and speedboats pass right into the lagoon. (There are occasions where the tide is just too low though to enter the lagoon by boat, but this is quite a rare circumstance.) Water in the lagoon is at about waist height at low tide, and perfectly calm. The lagoon is surrounded by mangroves with their incredible root systems.
When you arrive you will be dropped at the Hong Island artificial pier before the boats tie up. Its just a short walk down the floating pier onto the beach. The section to the left of the pier is just for the boats and to the right is a 200 meter section of pleasant beach. But If you walk a bit further along, you get to a beautiful sheltered cove with perfect sand beach. Being so sheltered it's a great place to snorkel and there is always a good variety of small colorful fish. The beach is lined by trees providing plenty of shady places to sit back and marvel at the view.
Hong Island is world famous for its amazing beach. The BBC recently called this "The Best beach in Asia" and wrote a report about it. Click on the title to have a read.
The beach is protected on three sides by rock cliffs with just a narrow entrance to the open sea. This makes it a perfect place for beginners and non-swimmers to snorkel, you can just stand in the water and be surrounded by hundreds of fish, with a mask and snorkel, you can get a glimpse of the underwater world.
The Hong group of Islands is about 50 minutes longtail boat ride from Aonang or about 25 minutes by speedboat. The boat travels quite close to the shore giving a great view of the coastline.
The water around the Island is crystal clear and perfect for snorkelling and swimming. The shallows are full of colourful fish. Please be aware though that at low tide there is some quite sharp coral sticking out of the sand so you should be careful where you put your feet when snorkelling and swimming.
You can snorkel off the beach even if you cannot swim. Just wear the lifejacket provided by the boat and float and enjoy the view, or just stand in the waist deep water and admire the marine life.
The Speed boat tour to Hong Island is a perfect combination of exhilaration and relaxation. Speed across the Andaman Sea and then spend the day snorkeling and sightseeing. You will have a tour guide with you the whole time.
The Longtail version is a more sedate (but still noisy) trip, but the feel of being on a longtail really does add something to the atmosphere that should be experienced.
At the end of 2013, the world cliff diving finals were held at Hong.
Please do help to keep the Islands beautiful by taking all litter away with you.
The Islands that make up the Hong Islands are:
Hong Island Lagoon - by boat right into the very heart of the Island to Hong Island's lagoon, an amazing lake with tree covered cliffs climbing up all around.
Hong Island Bay - beautiful beach with white sand, perfect for swimming and snorkeling. The bay is sheltered from the sea meaning the water is very calm and clear with good visibility for snorkelling. You won't see many big fish in the bay, but you will see hundreds of smaller fish.
Lading Island - traditionally this was a place the locals came to collect the valuable vital ingredient for bird's nest soup. Now, its one of Krabi's most amazing sights. There is a small beach but the stop here is more about the amazing rock formations and caves which you can see here.
Pakbia Island - a labyrinth of caves eroded into the cliffs by the sea. There is a small but very nice beach on Pakbia, on one side of the Island there is a rocky section in the beach shallows which is another great place for snorkelling and getting to see some fish. On the side with the boats parking, there is a longish beach with trees along the edge. Here is a great palce to just lie back and relax. If you have kids its also a good place just for playing in the water.
Daeng Island - This Island is famous for its coral reef which, at low tide, can be seen clearly from the surface. This Island is about half way between Aonang and Hong island. The Island does not have a beach, but as long as the waves are not too big, its a great place for snorkelling off the boat.
* Speedboat Option visits Hong Island, Hong Island Lagoon, Pakbia Island and Lading Island.
** Longtail Option visits Hong Island, Hong Island Lagoon, Daeng Island and Lading Island.
The order of Islands visited does depend on weather and sea conditions on the day. A packed lunch is provided on both speedboat and Longtail options.
If you decide to take the kayaking option, when you get to Hong Island, the guide will give you a quick lesson in safety and paddling, and then its off. First around the lagoon in the centre of the Island. Its a great place to paddle around and explore. The steep cliffs all around create light and shade at different times of the day and the accoustiocs in here are great. If the sea conditions are rough or windy, the park rangers will limit the areas where kayaking is allowed for safety reasons. Very occasionally, kayaking is not possible at all. If you have booked the kayak option and its not possible, we will refund the difference between the kayak and non-kayak option.
|Hong Island by Speed Boat||
|Hong Island by Longtail Boat||
|Hong Island Kayaking and Snorkeling by Longtail Boat||
Hotel transfers, Mask/snorkel, Life jacket, Lunch, Tour guide and Insurance, Fruit and water.
(kayak included with kayak tour - 2 person per kayak)
Note: For the Longtail options of this tour, there is a surcharge of 100thb per person for hotels and resorts in Klong Muang and Tubkaek and Krabi Town. No surcharge for speedboat options.
Note: ** National Park Fees are not included for Island tours. Fee for this tour is 300thb per adult, 200thb per child (3 and under free). Please make sure you have the Thai Baht to make the payment. Recipts issued by Ranger ** By order of the Government, every passenger must pay the National Park fee. It is not possible to take this tour without paying the fee.
Speedboat operators will not allow pregnant women or infants 1 years old or younger as it can be a bumpy ride. You might also want to think carefully about taking a speedboat trip if any of your group are prone to sea-sickness or has any serious back trouble.
Please take care of masks and snorkels and make sure you have them to give back at the end of the tour. Lost or damaged equipment will be charged for.
Transport to and from the Hotel is by Songthaew, which are trucks of various sizes with covered bench seating in the back.
Speed Boat or Longtail Boat
08:00 Pick up from Krabi town and Klong muang
08:30 Pick up from Ao Nang
09:00 Depart from pier by speed boat
09:30 Depart from Pier by Longtail boat
15.00 Return to Aonang
Hong Island Kayaking & Snorkeling by Longtail Boat
08:00 Pick up from Krabi town and Klong Muang
08:30 Pick up from Ao Nang
09:30 Depart from pier by Longtail boat
15.00 Return back to Aonang