Island Safari

Island Safari, Phuket: Address, Phone Number, Island Safari Reviews: 2.5/5

Island Safari
2.5
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2.5
275 reviews
Excellent
24
Very good
47
Average
53
Poor
38
Terrible
113

SimbasPride
Chester, UK130 contributions
Dreadful Tour Company - very unprofessional!
Feb 2020 • Couples
As most others have said, this is not a good tour company at all to see the James Bond Island.
Firstly it has to be mentioned that the staff are really unprofessional. The two that collected us by mini bus were dreadful - 1 slept all the way there and then both sat snacking and playing on their phones the whole time. Both fell asleep on the return journey. They are paid for doing nothing??
We met up with another tour company for the speed boat and he seemed to be directing thing and talking to his group of tourist, providing information about the places we visited. The two we had did zero.
The humidity was unbearable and we should have been given water more than just once on the return journey home.
Secondly, it looked as if at one point we were not going to have a speed boat out to the James Bond Island as one engine wouldn’t start. They fiddled for some time with the boat (you would think that they would have prepared in advance?!) and we were standing for a long time with no seating or water provided, waiting for them in extreme heat. Eventually a long boat was brought round, and we were told we would have to tell the booking agencies to get a refund for the difference...yeah right... try proving that one!! Then suddenly out of the blue, they repaired the engine and we were off.
The James Bond Island is a tourist trap and full of people - very small too. We had about 35 minutes there before taken to where canoeing could be done, if you wanted to.
From there the floating fisherman village - Koh Pan-Yee and again these two members of staff did nothing. We listened to some of the conversation we heard from the other tour rep who was saying the village survived the tsunami due to the large rock behind it breaking the wave. The pair we had didn’t tell us anything!! We were rather hassled by people living there to buy their tourist products as they really do live poorly there - sad to see really.
We were then taken back to the mini bus and taken to a place called Island Safari for lunch. The food nearly blew your head off - never tasted anything quite as hot before and the whole table were reaching for water after one mouthful!! Dreadful! So we ate the pineapple & melon to cool our mouths!!
This place was upsetting - a poor elephant was chained to the floor there by one foot. It was heartbreaking to see. The leaflet said nothing about taking us there for lunch as I think perhaps we would have avoided this tour if we knew about this.
We then went to the Suwankuha Temple and to see the monkeys. Interesting to see.
Then another 1.5 hours back again.
Waste of money really and nothing like the leaflet describes. In fact it wasn’t even the same company described on the leaflet. NOT Recommended! Avoid at all costs!
Written February 10, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Chris
8 contributions
Distressing
Nov 2019 • Solo
Was there November 2019. Rude, abusive elephant handlers demanded money from tourists before would let them off elephant ride. Told AUS gold coin "not enough". One elephant had deep gash on trunk, another a huge lump on rear LHS. If you don't buy their bananas, told you are depriving elephants of food. Whip used on oxen pulling cart. Whole experience sad and depressing with concern for animals.
Written November 18, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Mike B
36 contributions
absolutely shocking
Oct 2019
Firstly we have done this kind of trip before so was extremely disappointed to arrive at this shambles of a place. And 500 Bhats extra to get in, to be rushed around and mistreated by moody, unhelpful staff. The monkey show was awful poor animals tied to ropes and shouted at, and was guided with a cane poor animals looked bored. Then we where rushed on to 'food' which was fresh fruit and water but not enough time to eat or drink and we had to go on the elephants.
We passed 3 elephants on the way who where chained up and rocking back and fore through sheer boredom, we really didn't want to continue with this trip. The trek was 30 min long and as tedious as it felt again forced to pay 100 Bhats for rotten banana's to feed the poor elephants. We were not allowed to take photos as we would get a 2,000 Bhats fine yet others did as they please.
The company took 2 pictures of us on the tour and wanted 500 Bhats extra for the privilege. We had to wait over an hour for the lift back to hotel in 40 degree's heat with no water offered and no communication as to what was happening, unpleasant driver and such a let down of a day.
It was all about getting people in and money in, not the welfare of the animals at all or care of customers.
Oh how could I forget the Elephant 'bath' which consisted of a baby elephant in a pool with a man shouting while trying to scoop poop out, we had no idea the 'show' had started till we had to leave.
Written October 22, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Jennifer C
Brooklyn, NY11 contributions
Avoid if you care about animals!
Jan 2019 • Solo
Be careful when booking with a tourist agency on day trips that includes elephant rides, ATV rides, and fish spa. It looked great on paper but was not. The elephants do not look like they are treated well; chained and made to do tricks. ATV was fun, but short and someone, who also rode ATV before, said these were slower and not that fun compared to other ones. It was a cheap price, but not worth the quality. Better to spend more money on places that are better maintained and animals are treated better.
Written June 27, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Rachel F
1 contribution
Don’t do it - full of lies and false promises
Jun 2019 • Friends
To start the sales assistant at the shop in Phuket Karon high street lied to use about the weather. She said it would be sunny and would not rain. If it did, it would only rain for a few minutes which was far from the truth. This was straight after we reconsidered doing our tour as our weather maps said weather was bad. Out of good faith we believed her, which was our first mistake. She promised us that there would be no safari tour or canoeing. We were also told on top of our James Bond island and floating village and buffet lunch that we would go to the monkey cave, fruit garden and a fruit buffet. All three we never saw, this was extremely disappointing. When we did visit the islands they were times, we were literally on and off, and it felt very rushed. Then when you visit the locations all they try to do is get you buy things and are very persistent (too much). Our tour guide was friendly, but she was rushing us a lot. Part of our group bought the elephant riding part and also the canoeing (we did not) we probably spent in total about an hour and a half just waiting as we had to wait till they finished, which is appealing as everyone should be doing the same trip not different ones. The elephants and Minkeys were kept in horrific condition. The elephants were chained up by their legs and it was so short they couldn’t even move. It was painful to see. There was also an awful ‘monkey show’ where the trainer seemed bored and also he had him on a lead around his neck and it was clear he was forced. Other monkeys were connected by their necks with shackles.

All in all really disappointed. Never believe the sellers always look at trip advisor first if they are on the streets

Lady in Phuket high street in Karon beach avoid! She is a liar and poor sales women
Written June 7, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Neha M
1 contribution
AWFUL
May 2019 • Couples
I booked a trip online for ATV, Rafting ZIP lining, and Fish Spa, which was a really great price. Whenever we got picked up the tour guide explained to us our itinerary for the day, and stated it was for elephant trekking, monkey cave, and rafting. I explained to her and showed her my voucher and she said she will call the office. Mind you, there’s a huge language barrier. We went to the Island Safari which was an hour away from phuket. When we get there she says we can do the ATV instead of elephant trekking, which was great because they keep there animals in chains. I went to an elephant sanctuary the day before (Elephant Jungle Safari, highly recommend because they don’t abuse their animals.) not just the elephants, there were Ox there as well and they were chained up. Monkeys were kept on leashes. From the safari jungle location we went to another for zip line and rafting. We were served lunch buffet style which was decent. But we had a 2 hour lunch break which was extremely unnecessary. After that we did the zip lining and were told there would be another break for 45 minutes because about her family is joining us. The 45 minutes turned into an hour. It was 3:00PM at that point and we hadn’t even started the rafting. The rafting was a terrible experience, there was no water a bunch of rafts just stuck together not moving, the tour guide called my husband and i fat. They made all of us get out of the raft and wait by the road to get picked up bc there not being water in the river. A waste of money because we were in the water for maybe ten minutes. And afterwards more waiting. This trip has now been extended by 2 hours and I had to cancel my next tour due to this. I will never use this company again. Also tour guides make you tip and keep asking for more. This place is trash do not use them to book anything.
Written May 27, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Kayla
Calgary, Canada9 contributions
Terrible DONT GO
May 2019
Such a bad day. Couldn’t wait for it to be over. we booked 2 days of excursions with an excursion company at the Bangkok airport which was our first mistake. We booked one day for the James Bond island, canoeing and then after atv riding. The drive was so long on the bus and made multiple stops, once we got to the Pierre we had to wait around doing nothing until another bus of people came, then on a boat to James Bond which we stayed for 30 mins nothing really to see there then it was time for canoeing which we found out you don’t even do yourself there’s a person who does all the paddling for you.. wasn’t what we expected be ready to tip the guy because he will ask for money. After the canoeing which was no more than 15mins you go to a floating village which I saw no point of we literally just walked through this village of peoples homes and children begging you to buy stuff then you get back on the boat. Then lunch back at the island safari place where food was cold and you had to pay for drinks. Then the last straw was when we saw elephants and monkeys on Chains it was disgusting and so upsetting knowing we gave our money to such a place, we had to walk by these poor animals on our way to ride atvs. Atv wasn’t good either it was like a 15min track you had to follow. There was also 2 workers riding on atvs one in front of us and one behind us so it was pretty lame. Our second day of excursions was supposed to be phi phi island and snorkeling. Myself and my boyfriend decided not to even bother going because our first day was so horrible. 3 of our other friends decided they would still go but bus never even showed up even after the hotel called them the bus kept pushing back the time so our friends also just gave up and didn’t bother waiting.
Written May 16, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Birmanhu
London, UK27 contributions
Horrible service unorganised
Mar 2019 • Couples
We went for the James Bond Island pack with elephant riding. First of all they late around 20 minutes from the schedule pick up. The bus is dirty driver doesn’t care for the passengers. Speed boat is same dirty like a bus. Staff is not so friendly. The elephant park just a pulling off your money! Poor poor animals! I hope someone closing this place!
Written April 1, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

JustynaD
6 contributions
Tour that never happened
Mar 2019 • Couples
Please avoid this company.
We paid 3,200 THB for a tour to James Bond Island.
We wete collected at 7 30 from hotel and after 45 min of driving they have put us to a dirty and non air conditioned bus after standing on sude of the riad for 20 min in 35 degrees heat.
We spend 2,5 hours driving with no acess to water.
Then stopped in Safari Island where main group went to ride elephants.THAT WAS NOT EVEN IN PLAN OF TOUR !!! We were put in another van with a strange guy who had no English at all who drove us to see some monkeys.Gave us 10 min and then dropped us back again to Safari Island.No water and no shelter.we waited 30 min for a bus to take us back to the hotel.and dpeny another 1,5 hr driving back.
They are thieves and to be avoided.
Hopefully we will be able to get sone refund as we paid by Pay Pal.
Disgrace.
Written March 12, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

TayC08
Columbia, SC273 contributions
Hmmm...
Apr 2018 • Couples
I enjoyed the experience until it was time to ride the elephant. I started seeing one the riders beat an elephant pretty badly, and it greatly disturbed me. And they kept asking for money for bananas, but we didn't have any local currency, and because we were unable to buy bananas, the elephant seemed to get a little agitated. I wouldn't do this again.
Written January 13, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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