Phuket is rising in the eyes of those seeking bespoke travel experiences as it claims its rightful place as Asia’s emerging yachting hotspot and Thailand’s luxury travel hub.
The recent third Thailand Yacht Show, along with a host of bespoke experiential travel options in Thailand’s picturesque southern region, has raised Thailand’s yachting profile to a new level.
Thailand’s Southern region, and Phuket in particular, invites visitors to indulge in bonafide yachting experiences that are normally associated with the likes of Monaco, St Tropez, Cannes and the Caribbean, all considered to be the world’s most preeminent yachting destinations.
Many of the world’s most prestigious yachting brands who were represented during the Thailand Yacht Show 2018 also maintain representative or charter offices in Phuket to serve the ever-growing demand for unique experiences that are impossible to replicate anywhere else in the world.
Yacht Charter ‘Safaris’
Renowned for its many islands, Phuket’s impressive coastline is full of hidden beaches perfect for those hungry for a taste of tropical paradise. Phuket visitors can best experience ‘Castaway’ like deserted island moments to a quiet hidden beach by private yacht charter. Many combine cruise and drop anchor packages that include overnight stays at private luxury all pool-villa resorts around Phuket. Private yacht charter offers a one-of-a-kind opportunity to choose from a unique fleet of motor catamarans, yachts or classic sailing schooners. All are available for day charters exploring remote islands, limestone caves and secluded secret coves with white sandy beaches.
Hype Luxury Boat Club
Think of Hype Luxury Boat Club as a big, stylish luxury catamaran fitted out as a beach club on the sea, resplendent with sun lounger day beds and a spacious trampoline. The cruise offers a beautiful day on Phuket’s west coast, with gourmet food and drinks plus the DJ’s musical accompaniment providing a perfect groove that ends with a magical daily sunset.
Flying Hanuman Zipline Experience
Phuket’s Flying Hanuman Zipline Experience has no limits and offers nothing to fear but fun. It does expend a lot of energy especially for those who seek adrenaline-fueled fun in a jungle environment. Zip lines of course are an exciting way to cover great distances and fly above the terrain hugging the nap of the earth. Guests glide with great speed across the natural landscape just as easily as they can. This zip line experiential eco-adventure offers fun for all ages, with highly-trained staff happy to welcome guests from four to 80 years old. Expert guides are always on hand to ensure 100% comfort and safety for all customers.
Unseen Krabi: Laem Sak and Ko Klang
The Laem Sak, Krabi tourism community is rich in Thai local experiences, offering a unique blend of three seaside destinations inhabited by three Thai cultural communities: Buddhist, Muslim and Peranakan (ethic Chinese). These three cultures have lived side-by-side in harmony for over 100 years, surrounded on three sides by towering limestone monoliths and surrounded by the azure blue waters of the Andaman Sea on three sides.
Laem Sak’s limestone mountain range jugs out into the sea offering beautiful canoeing points throughout the region. It is also famous for its so-called ‘stone Bonsai plants of the sea’, which emerge clearly at low tide, while Nail Mountain reminds visitors of James Bond Island in Phang Nga Bay.
The marine biodiversity of the region allows for endless possible itineraries. One possible option is boat trip of Aoluk National Marine Park, observing and exploring the ecosystems and teaming marine life of Laem Sak. Many like to visit the local fishing villages and immerse themselves in the lifestyle, observing fish farms perched on floating wicker baskets or take part in germinating and replanting the exquisite wild orchids the region is famous for.
The Ko Klang community in Krabi is a traditional fishing community where visitor can see the living relationship between islanders and sea, observing daily life as tides rise and fall. Community members use ingenious means to capture fish, crabs and shellfish. The island is surrounded by pristine mangroves and offers great bird watching opportunities. In addition to experiencing nature and culture, visitors can also visit several community arts and crafts groups.
Locals here are renown for long-tail boat craftmanship and build authentic scaled models of Thailand’s famous longtail boats that are popular as gifts with tourists.
Southern food includes many of Thai gastronomy’s most popular dishes, including famous curries known for both chilli spice often mixed with sour tamarind. Many tour operators now feature village-based Thai cooking classes that include market shopping, cooking and dining in local homes hosted by southern Thai families. Southern Thai cuisine shares flavours from its neighbours, particularly Malaysia and Indonesia, with its large Muslim populace and numerous fishing villages, it is based around seafood and meats using heaps of lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves for flavour.
Between Phuket’s upmarket rise as a luxury travel destination and Krabi’s rich insights into Thai local experiences, Thailand’s southern region continues to reinvent itself with the diversity of its experiential-based travel options.