The Thai name for this island is Khao Phing Kan and means ‘hills leaning against each other’. In popular culture, this island more popularly called James Bond Island after it featured in two James Bond films The Man with the Golden Gun and Tomorrow Never Dies. It is a picturesque island. The island can be reached from Phuket by boat from Phuket Town and there are regular tours that run to and from the island on most days. When I visited the island, it was brimming with tourists and boats. That didn’t stop me from enjoying the island.
We booked an all day boat tour with Klook. The tour started super early in the morning and we had to rendezvous near a lighthouse in Phuket Island at 7:30 am at Ao Por Pier. Here, we were given a quick introduction to the day ahead and the opportunity to buy things like water repellent bags, e.g. for passports or documents. Before getting on, the group of people on our boat seem pretty excited. It was a mix of Americans, Canadians, Australians and Russians, in fact the Russians made up more than half of the boat. All our fellow passengers were nice and we enjoyed their company and their antics.
The boat trip was pleasant. We were well served with plenty of refreshments and scenes. We arrived at James Bond Island around 10:40 am. From our boat about 1 km away, we could tell the island was brimming with people. There were literally boats packed everywhere. As we embarked, I wondered how we were going to find our way around the island. But not before a vendor saw my Asian face and offered to sell his wares to me. (Sorry, I wasn’t keen on buying his scarfs… It was a hot and sunny day and I needed less layers.)
The island is super tiny. There is not much space to traverse around the island, however I was pleased to see that hundreds of tourists managed to create lines and traffic queues. It was organised chaos and it worked pretty well. Interestingly, there were plenty of shops and hawkers on the island ready to sell all sorts of things.
The island’s famous limestone rock, Ko Ta Pu, can be seen from a distance. It drew a lot of attention and happy snaps. (Like us. Hey.) We had a few people help us get some nice photos and we equally returned the favor.
I recommend walking around the whole island. There are limestone caves and interesting rock formations all over the place. Of course, take your time. There is no need to rush. We were given ample time from our tour operator that we could have done eight laps around the island at a steady pace.
We were lucky to visit on a great day. It was sunny throughout our time on the island and it didn’t rain at all.
We managed to fit this island a whole bunch of other activities in one day. I highly recommend during a day tour when you are Phuket. It’s heaps of fun and most tour operators make sure you are well looked after.
James Bond Island or Khao Phing Kan is located here and is much further north than Phuket Island: