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“stunning islands vs unprofessional tour”

Similan Islands National Park
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Full-Day Similan Island by Speed Boat from Phuket
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Full-Day Speedboat Snorkeling Tour to Similan Islands from Khao Lak
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Useful Information: Bathroom facilities
Singapore, Singapore
Level 4 Contributor
45 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
“stunning islands vs unprofessional tour”
Reviewed March 25, 2014

We booked a 2 day Tour at Similan Islands with Pucket tours direct.
The tour started with the Pick up at the Hotel, than departure with Speed boat to the islands.
starting from the boat, yes it was fast but was way too small and not enough seat for everyone. we spent together with other people 1 and half hour under the sun, frying like chickens.
a woman even felt sick and was nearly fainting because of this.
Hardly recommend to consider this especially if you are travelling with young children or elder people.
The tour said it would have provided Breakfast but did not mention that would have included only Biscuits, only one type, with instant Coffee.
From 6 am, time of the pick up, till 1 am you will only be served Biscuits!

Instead of reaching the Main Island first..check in your "Accommodation" etc. you will have 3 snorkeling stops..basically starving and with you having to search for towels in your luggage.

Do not stay overnight unless you are really really adventures and used to Tend.
Unfortunately this was my mistake as I would have imagined how uncomfortable would be to sleep in a tend and having to share bathrooms.
However the service there is very poor and you will not be able to sleep in the heat of the tend..

beach and sea was Amazing instead! and will almost make your forget about the bad things..

Make sure you book a Professional Tour even if you have to compromise the cost

Visited March 2014
1 Thank BenedictaC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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San Francisco, California
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Beautiful islands, pick the right tour”
Reviewed March 16, 2014

We took a day tour with 2 sisters tours. The islands have some of the most beautiful beaches and highest underwater visibility we have seen yet. Despite the bleached coral we saw plenty of colorful fish. We recommend using a different tour company however, since the food they offered was not very good. They were also not very professional in the way they handled a money dispute in route with another guest. The rest of us had nothing to do with it, yet they were threatening to dock the boat until they payed. The fact that they did not settle business before embarking was very unprofessional. They time allotted for snorkeling was too short. It might be the nature of a day tour so we would suggest doing an overnight or using a tour company that focuses more on snorkeling. If we had to do it over we would go diving instead. FYI If you are pregnant inquire about speedboat tours before you book.

Visited March 2014
1 Thank Aurelio-traveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bangkok, Thailand
Level 5 Contributor
55 reviews
31 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
“Find out a quiet time in Similan !”
Reviewed March 8, 2014

Similan means 9 in local language as there are total 9 islands in the area. The most common way to reach there is by speed boat which take 1.5 hrs. Unlike others islands in Thailand, Similan opens for tourists only 6 months a year -- November to May, then closed for 6 months for natural recover and research purpose. So, during the touristic period, Similan is always crowded ! Island #4 is the only place where tourists allow to stay over night in several tent camps that operated by the Office of the National Park. Only a few bungalows provided but always full. Anyway, bathroom and toilet are enough for all campers. Though inconvenient, but highly recommend to spend a night there, as from 3 pm --most of the day tour groups will travel back to the main land. Then the beach, the sand and the sea are all belong to you, and time to enjoy the beautiful scenery and breathe the fresh air. This quiet period will last till 11.00 am of the next day, when a massive of another day tourists come. If you took a day tour, like other reviews, you suppose to spend most of the time in the van and the speed boat. About the pricing--when you book a tour, make sure the pick up and send back to your hotel is included in the price. Or if it is not, to get a reasonable price, the pick up cost from Phuket is usually 4-5 times of from Kaolak.

Visited March 2014
1 Thank Tussnai K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edlesborough, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
105 reviews
59 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“Turquoise sea, white sand, amazing snorkeling and flying fox bats!”
Reviewed March 2, 2014

Booked a 2 day tour with Phuket travel company - loved it. This is the first company I have traveled with in Thailand (I live here) who truly seem to get being green, recycling and collecting litter. The snorkeling included seeing turtles both days. Loads of big fish and variety of species. Food and drinks plentiful. Camping behind beach was incredible although bats were noisy - do it, don't let this put you off. Sunset sail cruise was an unexpected addition which was such a cool way to end the first day. 2nd day = more snorkeling and beach time. The beach is amazing but gets busy in the afternoons. If you stay overnight the beach is all yours after 3:15!

Visited February 2014
Thank Ashley C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bengaluru, India
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Horrible experience”
Reviewed February 28, 2014

The Similan Islands are fantastic (one of the most beautiful places I've ever seen), but this tour was awful. They crammed way too many people onto a small speedboat. There was barely any snorkeling time. We only had 2 30 minute snorkeling periods in the whole day. We had to sit in a car for 3.5 hours, and on a boat for 3 hours, only to get an hour of snorkeling in (and 2 hours of "beach time").

I had requested vegetarian food a week in advance. They had acknowledged the request and said that there would be vegetarian food. Before we got on the boat in the morning one of the people at the dock said that there would be vegetarian food available. Of course, when I actually went to the lunch area, there was none.

On the plus side, I did get to see a turtle on the first snorkeling stop :)

If you dive, I would highly recommend going diving at Similan Islands instead.

Visited February 2014
6 Thank gopalkrishnaps
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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