I was sat at my desk finishing up an edit for an upload to the Bowl YouTube channel when I received a message from a Russian friend of mine called John who owns a yacht charter business in Chalong. Within this message John wrote, “Hi James, I’m picking up several families from Chalong Pier in an air-conditioned catamaran this Sunday and we’re heading to Racha Yai (Yai meaning big or large) Island just a couple of hours Southeast of Phuket. Do you want to join us? I thought, well I’m not doing anything else this Sunday, why not.
Having lived local to Chalong Pier for many years, I’m familiar with doing diving courses, fishing trips and island boat tours. I was surprised at how much activity there was at the pier given the global health concern and thought it would be quieter, however, there were plenty of tourists around which pleased me.
I met with John, found our vessel, boarded and introduced myself to the other guests who were all as excited about the trip as I. Following a quick tour of the lounge and cabins on board everyone put on their life jackets (a temporary measure until you leave port) and got comfortable for the journey. Once you leave port and the cluster of other boats near the pier it’s not long until you approach the satellite islands on route to Racha Yai. I remained on deck with my trusty camera and stayed out the scorching sun. You could not have asked for better weather but with that comes the ever present danger of burning so I stayed under cover until after 14:00.
Once we arrived in the first bay of Racha Yai our guests went either for a swim, snorkel or canoeing. The scenes were holiday fun par excellence. Following a good lunch buffet consisting of Kebab sticks, Fried rice, pasta Bolognese, Curry, Salad and fresh fruit we navigated our way into another bay where we could take a dingy to shore for ten minutes. I took up this offer and got to talk with a local restaurant owner about how there appeared to be a lot of tourists and that the Phuket Sandbox was helping a little. The owner appeared optimistic and that was a good sign.
The final bay we visited was home to the Racha Hotel which occupied the whole beach. This really was a sight to behold and the perfect retreat for anyone wanting to get away from it all without fear of being seen. After an hour or so in this bay we stated heading home to Chalong and got to see one of the greatest sun sets I’ve ever seen. I could not begin to describe the colours, however, I think I did it justice in some of the photographs and video.
Thank you to John and Thai Charters for an incredible day.
To make inquiries or to book a yacht with Thai Charters please contact:
Russian and English speakers
Phone number: +66-87-647-5988
To watch the video that supports this article please use the media viewer below or go to the Farangbowl YouTube Channel.