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“Khao Sok: interesting but not recommended tour”

Paddle Asia - Private Day Tours
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Paddle Asia is a family-owned business specializing in small group self paddle kayaking, jungle survival, mountain biking, and outdoor adventure travel tours to remote and unspoiled destinations in Southern Thailand focusing on getting away from other visitors. It is our mission to offer you something completely different from what other tour operators in the region offer. Your eco adventure tour is designed for first-time paddlers and novice travelers, and children are more than welcome! Experienced kayakers and adventurers are, of course, also welcome. All staff are certified to international first aid and safety standards.
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities, Activities for older children, Activities for young children
Reviewed April 30, 2014

We planned a 4 day trip to Khao Sok to enjoy kayaking and wildlife with PaddleAsia. Interesting wildlife but stay in "bungalows" was disastrous and unpleasant with boardwalk sinking into water in places; 2 of us got food poisoning, the kayaks were sub-standard. We would never recommend this trip that way it is advertised!

Thank w s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BillyFisch, Owner at Paddle Asia - Private Day Tours, responded to this reviewResponded May 4, 2014

From our Khao Sok page on our website, "These accommodations are not up to normal PaddleAsia standards but is what is provided for us by the National Park and the government under contract." I completely agree that the bungalows are disappointing. Some people accept them, while some don't. It's understandable. All of the various floating bungalows operated by the national park are this way, in constant need of repair, yet not getting it. From our perspective it is extremely frustrating.

We have not had guests get sick from the food before, so I don't know what the bungalow staff (not Paddle Asia staff) did to cause sickness.

About our kayaks, we have recently replaced some of the older models with new ones. There were new ones available during this trip. They are 'recreational kayaks', not touring kayaks. We buy kayaks for Khao Sok for their stability as watching wildlife is the focus and stability is key. The majority of our paddling guests in Khao Sok are first-timers or beginners. That influences our kayak choices.

Khao Sok is all about the wildlife and jungle. We 'put up' with the bungalows as the price to pay to be in such a stunning setting... one that is simply not available elsewhere.

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Reviews (97)
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85 - 89 of 97 reviews

Reviewed April 20, 2014

We were picked up from the hotel and taken to a conservation area on Phuket (stopping to buy food on the way). It was just myself, my wife, my 7 year old son and Dave, the owner.

Dave equipped up with backpacks, knives (including my 7 year old, with our permission), a GPS and a machete. We had a very sweaty hike of a couple of kms through jungle. There was a hairy moment when a couple of dogs started barking at us as we walked near a house. But it didn't come to anything (I'm glad I had the machete though!).

Dave showed us how to:
-make a fire (which took a while, as it had rained heavily the night before)
-boil water in bamboo
-identify edible plants
-make cups, plates and spoons from bamboo
-tie knots

We also got to play with some harmless and rather cool millipedes.

Obviously there is a limit to how much you can do in a day. But it was very interesting and practical. No Bear Grylls style TV heroics.

The only downside was providing a feast to the local insects (despite wearing loads of DEET and long sleeves and trousers). I guess that goes with the territory though.

My 7 year old loved it.

Thank AndyBInWiltshire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 2, 2014

We loved our kayaking adventure. We were thankful that there weren't any other tourists around while we were kayaking. We paddled into a lagoon area that was so peaceful and quiet. "Run" was the nickname of our tour guide and he was fantastic. He went out of his way to make sure we were having a good time. The tour was expensive but I'm glad we did it. Yao Noi Island was super chill and we loved exploring the island on our scooters.

Thank jjnicol
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 1, 2014

We chose to go with Paddle Asia as it was the only tour we found which guaranteed single kayaks which we paddled ourselves. In typical fashion we left it to the last minute to organise but Dave was very efficient replied to e-mails within a couple of hours ensuring we got what we required. We chose this trip because we wanted to kayak rather than be paddled by a guide also we were attracted by the fact this company goes to the quieter parts of the bay. I can't guarantee you won't see another tourist but I will guarantee if you enjoy kayaking you will have a fantastic trip out, it is one of the few times on our travels we've said we wished we did plan things in advance as we would have liked to have gone for longer than the one day we had. Unfortunately, as this trip was over 3 weeks ago I can't remember the name of the guide but he was excellent (Dave if you read this we did a one day trip on the 9th Dec please say thank you) if we come back to this part of the world we'll definitely do a longer trip wit you.

Thank maltontraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 15, 2013

I have arrange 3 trips for the last 3 years with Dave Williams at Paddle asia. He guides a trip of 26 students (aged 14-17) and three staff into the jungles of Khao Sok National Park. he makes all the travel, accom and food arrangements and also leads many of the activities we do during the week. he has a great approach with the kids but is non-interventionist unless safety is involved. this is a great way for our kids to grow and develop confidence. In three years we have had no injuries beyong the expected nicks and grazes one would get on any hiking/adventure trip. This is now a staple annual trip at Canadian International School of Hong Kong and one of the most over-subscribed ones we run. I fully recommend Paddleasia to any individuals looking for a great experience and a great company director overseeing things. We will certainly be back.

1  Thank RobAldridgeOxford
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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