Sail and Dive the Similan Islands National Park
The 9 Similan Islands are located about 65 nautical miles or one nights sail from Phuket.
The islands are a paradise for scuba divers and are considered to be amongst the ten best dive destinations worldwide. During the last few years this chain of islands has also become a favorite destination for sailing yachts who sail there for the crystal clear water and the beautiful scenery. Made up of huge granite boulders they look very different from the usual limestone islands found in the Andaman Sea.
On charters going to the Similan Islands we usually set sail some time early afternoon cruising up the west coast of Phuket past the deckchair and umbrella littered beaches of Kata, Karon, and Patong. Leaving behind the bustling crowds of these beaches and keep sailing north until about 5 pm when we look for a quiet bay in the north of Phuket where we anchor for a few hours to watch the sunset while enjoying a cold sundowner. In the meantime the chef aboard our sailing catamaran is preparing the first delicious meal of your charter. After dinner and cleaning up Nakamal’s crew usually try to get a few hours of sleep before they hoist the sails again around midnight to continue the cruise towards the Similan Islands. Of course the guests don’t have to stay awake. Unless you want to enjoy night sailing you can sleep happily in your large and comfortable cabin on sailing yacht Nakamal. Nevertheless, it is worth getting up early before sunrise to see the islands appear in the mist of dawn, one after another, a delight full sight. While still sailing breakfast is served so you have time to digest before reaching the first dive spot on the Similan Islands.
Having been impressed by the stunning beauty of these Islands, which is comparable to the scenery found in the Seychelles, you will be even more amazed once you jump off the dive deck and enter the third dimension for which these islands are famous.
Be careful not to drop your regulator when your mouth opens up in awe as you glide down into an underwater world teaming with fish who live in these wonderful coral reefs. Below the the surface you find a great variety of dive sights which differ very much from each other.
On the western side you find the same impressive granite boulder as above water going down to 50m plus. They are covered in clourful soft-corals and create a magnificent play ground for divers with good buoyancy control who like to dive through overhangs and canyons. With visibility at 20-40m you can easily watch larger fish like tunas, sharks, barracudas, king mackerel, napoleon wrasses, giant trevallies and even manta rays and whale sharks passing by further out in the blue. Also many species of turtles are a common sight here.
Scuba diving on the east side of the Similan Islands is totally different. There you find large coral gardens sloping down gently to 30-40 m. Here you find massive schools of tropical fish of all colors. Many gentle leopard sharks inhabit this part of the islands mostly resting on sandy patches in the reef.
Of course there is not only diving and snorkeling in the Similan Islands. There are many great beaches to take a stroll or lay down for some sun bathing. There are also many paths criss-crossing the islands. A walk on the island up to the lush rain forest. Climb up over the huge rock bolder and reward yourself with a spectacular view after you have reached the top.
Depending on the length of your charter we might also sail further north to Koh Bon or Koh Tachai which can be reached in 3-5 hours sailing. Both places offer great diving and are famous for the many manta rays seen there. Please contact us for inquiries or for a personal sailing itinerary for your private yacht charter in Phuket.