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John Gray's Sea Canoe
Ranked #6 of 212 Tours in Phuket Town
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: After 12 years designing and developing one of the World's most highly awarded Ecotourism companies, John "Caveman" Gray goes his own way by forming "John Gray's SeaCanoe" with 18 of his most loyal and experienced guides. "After 12 years in Phuket, the experiment ran its course and I was packing for Polynesia," says Gray, "but when all these guides showed up, I had no choice but to stay and do another start-up."
Reviewed January 21, 2013

We had a blast on this tour. It's on the pricey side for Thailand but you get what you pay for. The staff are very attentive and the tour is well executed from top to bottom. you get two meals, your own guide to navigate the narrow patongs, and the chance to make an offering to "set out to sea" at night. the hongs were amazing- something to see for sure. i highly recommend this tour!

1  Thank GalAbroad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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2,098 - 2,102 of 2,616 reviews

Reviewed January 20, 2013

This was sadly disappointing because we had heard such great things. Our main complaint was centered on the fact that they tout experienced guides and a first class experience. This is the reason that you should pay more instead of going to the other ones. Everything was fine at first but when we arrived at the caves we found out that we would getting guided by a local fisherman who seemed like a sweet guy but he as not in good shape and it didn't feel right to have him take us around. Also, he could not speak any English so he just canoed us around in silence. It was a weird experience. We were constantly the last people off the boat and the first people back on the boat so we didn't get much time to look around and when we lit our lantern he put it our almost immediately so we didn't get to enjoy it so he could take us back to the boat. We also weren't shown the phosphorescence in the cave at night or the bats. In the end when the fishermen were going they told us that it was now time to pay them... this was in addition to the 3900 baht (83 GBP or 130 CAD) that we paid for the trip.

In addition to this, the main guy in charge lied to me about there being egg in a rice dish. I asked him multiple times if there was egg in it and he said "no". There was in fact egg in it, I know because I am allergic, which I also informed him of when I asked the first time. It was not a pleasant way to find out that he was lying. The rest of the food was also very bad. The "light Thai lunch" was really back and very light. The main dinner was sparse and all of the meat was over cooked to the point of almost being inedible.

Bad bad experience John Gray.

3  Thank Alexis B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 17, 2013 via mobile

We did the Hong by Starlight tour yesterday and really enjoyed it. We booked the tour over other similar tours purely because of trip advisor reviews an were not disappointed. The tour provides a unique experience that was perfect for our family.

There are four of us so we had two guides, Rick and Mohammad. They were both lovely and very accommodating/understanding when one of us felt overwhelmed by a cave entrance and felt the need to return to the main boat. The guide was then happy to take the remaining passenger into the cave.

The caves themselves are worth seeing, Hong by Starlight features a traditional offering within the 'Bat cave' after sunset which was the most enjoyable aspect of the tour. Unlike the other caves it was alot less commercial with only our tour being present there. The experience itself was lovely , the offering gave it a special touch.

Great afternoon and night had by all.

Thank stephype
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 17, 2013

This trip is worth every penny...we started the day getting picked up by a taxi at our hotel, transported to the pier, and then we had a private guide for the whole day who explained the local scenery and paddled us through all the amazing cave formations...the lunch was beautiful, nothing like you get on the classic cheap tours, there was tom yum soup, spring rolls, curry's and great veggie, fish and chicken dishes. You had tons of space on the boat to move around at your own leisure, and the guides were genuinely interested in chatting and communicating with the tourists, not just because they were getting paid. We finished our day working with our guide to create a unique Loi Kratong offering, which we set off into the cave surrounded by bioluminescence as we made a wish for the upcoming year. Since we did the overnight excursion, we then got on a kayak and went to a private beach full of monkeys, where we played in the bioluminescence by moonlight on a beach inhabited by us and our guides only, and fell asleep surrounded by palms on the sand. In the morning we watched the sunrise and watched a full group of monkeys mate, groom one another and fight in the trees and rocks nearby. That day we visited a couple different caves where we watched the tides rise, allowing us to enter previously restricted caves, and play in the mangroves, and then we revisited caves we visited the previous day but this time we got to kayak ourselves. We went around the entire island and climbed inside the stalactite caves in between swims. We were able to set up our own time schedule and move with ease. Our wonderful guide Oop was so friendly and helpful, we just wish we had had more cash on us to tip him better. Definitely one of the highlights of our trip, we couldn't say a bad thing about this group. AMAZING TIME! Worth every scent.

Thank Micksterooni
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed January 16, 2013

What a great idea this turned out to be!
Very relaxing day with really helpful staff who all had great senses of humour!
My girlfriend and I were partnered up with Charlie, who estimates 1000+ trips in his six years of working there, my advice.., ask for Charlie! He was truly knowledgeable of the sites and even took flowers from his own garden to make our offering to the water gods the most beautiful of our crew! Great guy just wish I'd taken a bigger tip!
And the sunset buffet dinner was some of the best food we've had in Thailand, incredible!
Top marks!
Cam + Helen

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

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