Hong Island which is located offshore from Krabi Town in the picture perfect Phang Nga Bay of southern Thailand, may not have yet attracted the attention of Hollywood directors and A list actors as other islands in Thailand have, but then that's exactly what makes this island so rare within southeast Asia and such a wonderful holiday destination.
A number of of Hollywood movies have been made within the land of smiles since 1974, after the James Bond film 'The man with the Golden Gun' was first filmed on Nail Island.
More recently Phi Phi Island became the back drop for Hollywood star Leonardo DiCaprio and his film called 'The Beach'. While each of these destinations are breathtakingly beautiful, their fame has meant that they are two of the most visited islands within the region.
On the other hand, Hong Island which is uninhabited is also breathtakingly beautiful yet you don't have to share it with so many other holiday makers as you do on Nail Island and Phi Phi Island.
Located approximately 1 hour north of Krabi Town by boat, Koh Hong or Room Island as it is also known is a small limestone island situated within an archipelago made up of several islands which form part of the Bok Khorani National Park which was formed back in 1998.
While Koh Hong is uninhabited and has only one beach to offer (known as Pelay Beach), along with a visitors centre with a kiosk and a restroom (i.e. toilets and showers) you might wonder if the island is worth visiting? The answer is yes! Pelay Beach has powder white sand similar to talcum powder and is surrounded by beautiful coral reefs and the best thing is you don't tend to get the crowds of the larger islands so it feels more like a deserted island paradise.
The island gets its name from an internal lake which is totally surrounded by limestone cliffs and a number of caves which are each located within the centre of the Koh Hong. This lake is connected to the sea via a small passage way which when the tide is right allows longtail boats to enter 'Room Island' (see second image from top).
Once you arrive at Hong Island you have a choice of a variety of activities including sightseeing, swimming, sunbathing, kayaking and snorkeling. It takes about 1.5 hours to kayak around the entire island depending upon how choppy the waters are within the surrounding Andaman Sea.
The island is also home to a number of lovely coral reefs which are inhabited by a vast array of colorful tropical fish including Parrot fish and many of the tour operators provide the gear for those engaging in diving and snorkeling.
The island also includes a nature trail which allows nature lovers to do a little exploration of the Koh Hong on foot. It allows you to see some interesting landscapes along with a number of boat wrecks which have been abandoned since the 2004 Tsunami which went right through this region of Thailand. The island is also home to a thriving lizard population which venture down onto the beach and can reach about 4 feet in length. There are also some very large butterflies and a variety of birds that can also been seen, and apparently the island is a popular place for Thai people to collect Swiftlets eggs which is a Chinese delicacy.
only way to get to Hong Island is by taking a boat from either
Phuket of Krabi. The
best way to travel to Krabi is by plane or bus. A number of airlines
including Bangkok Air, Thai Airways, and Air Asia have daily flights
between Bangkok and Krabi International Airport with flight time being
about 1.2 hours. I last traveled to Krabi in January 2014.
Daily bus services to Krabi depart from Bangkok's Southern Bus Terminal on a regular basis and the journey takes approximately 13 hours.
From the Chao Fah pier in Krabi Town you can take a charter boat or tour to Koh Hong Island. Boats depart daily with travel time to the island being approximately 1 hour from Krabi. Ticket and tour prices vary but expect to pay around 1,000 Thai baht per person to visit the island.