Published: July 19th 2009June 25th 2009
Since neither of us can drive a car,or anything that has an engine and wheels, and we wanted to see more of Phuket, we decided to take a tour. There are so many to choose from, but we finally decided to go on the 4-1 Safari Tour. We got a pretty good discount on it, and it included pick-up from our hotel, a visit to the James Bond Island, a Muslim fishing village, elephant riding, and an elephant and monkey show.
The morning was cloudy and pretty cool for Phuket. Great, since we still had major pains from our recent sunburn. The thought of the sun, made my stomach turn and my tush hurt :) We were picked up from out hotel and greeted by a lovely,lively tour guide. We then drove to Phang-Nga Bay where after puting on some dirty lifevests, we took off on the noisy longtail boat heading towards James Bond Island. I enjoyed the ride to the island more than the James Bond Island itself. I haven't seen the movie, and I'm not a fan of the James Bond movies, but it was still very beautiful. The rock fomartions, and little tiny islands were just stunning.
James Bond Island
The cliffs were steep and seemed enormous, as we looked up at them from the bottom. After spending about 30 minutes on the James Bond island, our next stop was sea-kayacking.
This was the highlight of the tour. We made our way, on the kayack, through caves and "water forrests." Our guide even sqeezed us through a little opening in a rock wall, into a tiny cave, which was scary but totally worth it. The day was still cloudy but the sun came out ocasionally and made the rocks sparkle like diamonds. It was so peaceful. Not a single noise except the paddle hitting the water, birds chirping, and trees rocking in the breeze.
For lunch we stopped at a Muslim fishing village, which looked more like a tourist attraction than an actual village, but I guess people do live there.It is sad that most authentic places in Thailand, and everywhere else in the world, get turned into tourist money "wringers" as soon as someones realizes that quick cash can be made. However, we had a lovely lunch there. The food was delicious and fresh.
On our way back to Phang-Nga Bay, we sat the the very
Overpriced "Goodie" booths on James Bond Island
end of the boat, right next to the engine. It was so loud, I had to keep my ears plugged all the way back! I don't know how the people who actually steer the boats do it. I hand it down to them :)
On our way back to Patong, we stopped to watch an elephant and monkey show, as well as 15 minutes of elephant trekking. Even though it was fun, we both felt sorry for the poor animals. They seemed pretty miserable to be stuck in a 'zoo'. Elephant trekking was fun, but somewhat uncomfortable. :) 15 minutes was plenty of time. It was also amazing to see the things a human can teach an animal! The elephant did some pretty cool tricks and the monkey was just adorable.
Even though I hate going on tours, this tour was worth the time and money. Nothing too exciting but cheaper than doing those things on your own.
There are more photos below