Phang Na Bay

I didn’t take this picture. I used it in a Facebook post from November 6, 2016. I wrote:

“Today, I took the first step of a grand adventure.

I bought a plane ticket to Phuket, Thailand. My departure date is Dec. 5 and my return date is May 25, 2017. I plan to spend 6 months living in Southeast Asia and exploring it as much as my funds will allow. There are places that I’m thinking of visiting; Cambodia, Laos, maybe Bali. But, I’m really going to try to go where the moment takes me.”

Map of Southern Thailand – Click to enlarge

I don’t know the name of the photographer who took the picture (If you do, please let me know), but it was what was in my head when I thought of coming to Thailand. Thanks to my friend, Paul Batmantis, I was finally to visit the place where the photo was taken: Phang Na Bay.

Phang Na is actually not on the island of Phuket, but is a 1 1/2 hour drive north to mainland Thailand.

I had always envisioned going to Phang Na in a private, long tail boat. When Paul said he wanted to go there, I investigated and found that we could get a private car from Phuket to the dock and back, and a private boat for 6000 Baht, or about $173 dollars. It was so great to be able to have the boat captain stop and maneuver to take pictures, move easily around the boat and not have to wait for anyone else. Recommend highly.

Unfortunately, we couldn’t buy better weather. It started out slightly rainy in the morning and was overcast for a large part of day, which included a trip to Khao Phing Kan.

The iconic “nail” formation of Khao Phing Kan.

Khao Phing Kan is also known as James Bond Island, from it’s appearance in the the 1974 film, “The Man with the Golden Gun”.

There are thousands of amazing pictures of Khao Phing Kan, so I didn’t feel bad that the weather didn’t co-operate. For me, just being there was enough.

It’s a life goal for many other people as well and although you usually don’t see it in most pictures of Khao Phing Kan, behind the camera, are crowds of tourists and a vendor village selling James Bond Island stuff. There are also caves and our driver’s son playfully posed for some pictures in them.

The floating village of Koh Panyi

After Khao Phing Kan, our driver took us to lunch on Koh Panyi, a small island with a floating village. Our restaurant served the freshest fish possible. You order, then someone goes out to the water and plucks your fish from floating cages outside. Viewing Khao Phing Kan from a short distance, you can only really see three things, the massive stone mountain, the floating village and the gleaming tops of the islands mosque, as all the people who live there are Muslim.

After lunch, the sun came out, so one our way home, I was able to take some nice shots with those beautiful Thai clouds. Thanks, Phang Na Bay, for letting me take your picture!


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