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Which tour operator is best to go island hopping with?

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Ao Nang, Thailand
posts: 594
reviews: 26
Which tour operator is best to go island hopping with?

Can fellow TAs share good/bad experience about your 4 islands / phi phi island/ hong island tour with your tour operator?

NSW
posts: 157
reviews: 6
1. Re: Which tour operator is best to go island hopping with?

I did phi phi and snorkeling with andaman adventures and I thought they were great. I'm pretty Sure they do do island hopping with hong island as well. I'm booking them to do kyacking at hong island in October

Stockholm
posts: 658
2. Re: Which tour operator is best to go island hopping with?

Andaman Camp and Cruise is good too. We always just go without tour operator - much cheaper and much better than organized tours. Then you can set your own schedule, stay as long or as short as you feel like it etc! Longtails around Ao Nang are like buses at other places - just go down to the nearest the station and catch the next boat to wherever you want to go! (Except don't buy a one way ticket; the return ticket could sometimes be expensive!!). The main longtail cooperative has 4 island tours as well, cheaper than tour companies but typically excluding lunch (which is OK, most destinations has restaurants)

Edited: 9:08 am, June 05, 2012
Melbourne, Australia
posts: 25
reviews: 6
3. Re: Which tour operator is best to go island hopping with?

Andaman Camp and Cruise are fantastic. They will take you wherever you want to go via longtail boat and you will be the only guests on board. So much better than being crammed into a boat with other people.

The only problem is that longtail boats are a lot slower than speedboats so it limits the amount of places you can see.

Ao Nang, Thailand
posts: 594
reviews: 26
4. Re: Which tour operator is best to go island hopping with?

I do agree with hiring your own longtail boat but for first-timer or those who would like to have everything planned for them, a good operator is much welcomed, especially so for some of us who do not like to be crammed with loads of people on the same tour. Haha!

I think standard operators can offer competitive prices but I often see tours filled with people. One example is Barracudas Tour which have a large longtail boat which accomodate 30+ people on a single trip. There are comments about poor lunch too but I suppose you get what you pay for.

The reason for this post is find out whether there are any reasonably good operators based on fellow TA's personal experience so I could recommend them to my guests in the future when they visit Ao Nang. :)

Singapore, Singapore
posts: 7
reviews: 8
5. Re: Which tour operator is best to go island hopping with?

I am also looking to do island hopping starting from Ao Nang in first week of August. Interested for a good advice.

Kuala Lumpur...
posts: 2
6. Re: Which tour operator is best to go island hopping with?

I just come back from aonang yesterday, I was book thru TA(Pink Tourist) near beach, there offer me good price at about 500bath for 4 island tour on longtail boat...The tour guide was very funny and nice, he beings alot of things there such as jugle treking,cave trekking as well...just ask for connecting tour coz alot of difference tour operate there.

Vienna, Austria
posts: 1
7. Re: Which tour operator is best to go island hopping with?

Hi there, we have tried the orchid company, it could have been better and also the paisan company which is kinda scam, here the story:

Two days ago me and my girlfriend did an island tour around ao-nang with the orchid company visiting phi-phi and bambo islands. There were several things that we didn't really like about it, first of all the transport from the hotel was kinda rough, the bus was jammed with tourists and the driver was driving as if he had some cows on the back.. The tour guide on the boat was friendly, but he kinda made up the route on the fly and we have visited 3 islands instead of 6 that were mentioned on the brochure. We have visited first the bamboo island, very lovely, where we stayed for one hour for swimming and snorkeling, then the maya beach and phi-phi lee, which were very scenic to make some pictures and after that to the phi-phi don to have the lunch. The lunch was not good at all, the chicken was very hard, the bolonese sauce the worse i've had for a long time etc. Then we went to some place near PP for snorkeling, we jumped out of the boat and it was nice, there were many nice fishes to see, and after one hour snorkeling we headed back to ao-nang.

Since we were not really satisfied with this tour, and we did like the bamboo and PP islands, we went to another tourist information, this time andaman charisma travel & tour, and asked for a good tour. The lady there said, yeah, there is another tour by company paisan which is much nicer, they have good cars for transport, better restaurants for lunch and everything has a higher quality. She made us an offer for 1500 baht per person and we went for it. Today they fetched uns from the hotel with a bunch of other guys from other hotels and bring us all first to the eastern part of ao-nang beach, we jumped off the car but the organizer asks us to go back to the car after asking our hotel name. First i thought, maybe other guys are visiting other islands but when the driver brings us to the orchid boat, i see there is something fishy. We ask the driver to bring us back to the eastern part, the young organizer there begins to make many calls like 15 minutes and then coming with excuses like the boat is full today etc. I saw it is just a waste of time and asked for a refund. He says, we can get our money back but we should go to the tourist center where we have booked the tour. They bring us there and we got our money back.

At the end i think, it was kinda deal between the tourist center and the paisan and orchid companies, fetching us with a better vehicle to the beach so that we think, the quality is better but at the end the same boat and same programme as before.

Phuket
posts: 4
reviews: 1
8. Re: Which tour operator is best to go island hopping with?

i heard good things about Andaman Sky , dont know their website tho , should be easy to find its a big company

Singapore, Singapore
posts: 22
reviews: 52
9. Re: Which tour operator is best to go island hopping with?

This looks like an old post but somebody just bumped it. Anyway just my five cents..

Visited there 26 april and took below tours on 27 and 28.

1. Orchid company - Phiphi speedboat

Paid a little bit more than other companies, said it was good. On the day they packed around 70+ppl in 5 engine speedboat, which they said able to fit 90+ ppl. But we squeezed like a tuna fish there. Even worse my gf squeezed hard by one guy everytime there was a bump. But the guy (local tourist) felt bad till he try to stand everytime the boat hit a wave. The tourguide was nice, and this tour will skips some places to avoid crowds. They skipped stopping at maya bay for sure as big the boat is quite hard to park there, so we just visited there for less than 15 minutes then move to next spot for snorkling. I guess eknv has mentioned before. You can go to the resort itself to book this operator, but you will pay around the same like other travel agent.

2. Ao Nang Speed Boat - HongIslands speedboat

Pick this tour as we felt paying more for orchid is not that worth. This one cheaper and you can get almost in every tour agent. The next day they packed about 17+ ppl (including kids) to a 12 seater boat (one engine). They said can fit up to 17 ppl. Again... like sardines.

This tour will stop in every spots mentioned in the brochure no matter if it's crowded or not. Good and bad. the good is you get all you paid for, the bad thing is that you will have to spend time there even tho you don't like it.

3. Didn't take this tour but saw a paisan company (Chok Paisan?)

Seems like their boat is limited, and there were not so many ppl on the boat when visited phi2 island. But not sure if this true. seems like eknv had bad experience with them.

Cheers

10. Re: Which tour operator is best to go island hopping with?

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