Mu Ko Similan National Park

The Similan Islands in the heart of the Andaman Sea are indeed unparelled in their exotic beauty. If planning a visit, keep in mind that anytime between December to April is recommended, with the best month being March, because the monsoons are over and the water is clear.

The national park was established in 1982 and located in Ko Phrathong Sub-distreict, Khuraburi District, Phang-nga Province and covers 128 square kilometers, 80,000 rais, of area, 14 square kilometers of which is land composed of all the islands put together. Located along the western coastline of the Andaman Sea and in the Indian Ocean, rest these nine exotic granite islands created by upwellings of hot magma during the Teritiary-Cretaceous Period some 65 million years ago, then smoothed by glacial ice and the wave action of the sea.

Similan is really the Malaysian word for nine, as there are nine islands in the Similan group: Ko Bangu, Ko Similan, Hin Huwagralok, Ko Payu, Ko Ha, Ko Hok, Ko Miang, Ko Payan, Ko Payang, and Ko Huyong.

In 1998, the park boundary was expanded to cover Ko Tachai which is located further north of Ko Bon and the Similan group. Then the park area becomes 140 square kilometers.

This national park consists of numerous islands with high and steep granite mountain, beaches and rocks formation of many shapes. The shoreline of each islands are of inconsistent curves since they are situated in the outer part of the sea and are worn away directly by waves. Part of the water lies in the Andaman Sea and eastern side of the Indian Ocean while the shoulder of the continent borders the western shoreline of Phang Nga province and Union of Myanmar, paralleling the Nikobar Islands of India. There is no mud at all along the beaches, so the sands are very clean, white and very fine. Some islands do have hills in the area, which are usually quite tall with the highest top of 244 meters above mean sea level, while some islands are of flat area surrounded by sand dunes and coral reefs.

Ko Huyong (Huyong Island) Huyong Island or Island 1 is the closest to Phuket with the longest clean white sandy beach of all the islands, making it an inviting place for turtles to come lay their eggs. Huyong Island has the easiest dived at a depth of 10 to 15 meters. With hard and soft corals and an abundance of sea fans. The shallowness of the area allows sunlight to penetrate to the bottom resulting in a region teeming with marine life.

Ko Payang (Payang Island) Payang Island or Island 2, The area is full of rocky mountains with cliffs and rocks formation round the island.

Ko Payan (Payan Island) Payan Island or Island 3, The area is quite rocky with cliffs; there are no beaches on this island.

Ko Miang (Miang Island) Miang Island or Island 4 is the next largest island in size to Similan Island and is the site for the headquarters of the park. Here are two white powdered beached, the large beach, in front of the island and the small beach, which is about 20 minutes walk away through evergreen forest.

This is the best site for viewing wildlife and for an overnight stay in Mu Ko Similan National Park. By venturing further inland from the beach you may catch a glimpse of the Nicobar Pigeon or the hairy leg mountain land crab (Pu Kai in Thai, because it makes noise like a baby chicken). If all you want to do is snorkelling, try viewing off the beaches of Miang Island, in the channel between Miang Island and Payu Island, and also off Similan Island.

Ko Ha (Ha Island) Ha Island or Island 5, It's a small island but interesting location for diving. The main attractions and uniqueness for this island is Garden Eels (white and grey eels) can be seen stretching their necks from holes in the sandy floor. There are so many of the place called "Suan Pla Lai". Moreover, the area is also full of soft coral and stony coral.

Ko Payu (Payu Island) Payu Island or Island 6 has a very stunning snorkelling and scuba diving site on the eastern shore. Many divers prefer this site to any other because there are both hard and soft corals, sea fan and many species of schoolling fish. A minore site is found to the west, and another to the north has rocks covered with sea fans. The island has no beach.

Ko Hin Pousar Hin Pousar Island or Island 7 or Hin Huwagralok is the rock with the elephant head shaped-rock outcrop. Beneath this curious rock structure you will find caves, swim through and unique underwater formations to delight your eyes.

This island is a rock of approximately 30 metres in width with piles of rock around it at a depth of 20-50 metres. Soft corals can be found along the cliffs and there are many types of fish around such as rabbit fish and wrasse. Further away from the piles of rock to the south, there are many sea fans scattering around at 30 metres. Manta rays and sea tortoises can also be found a little deeper.

Ko Bangu (Bangu Island) Bangu Island or Island 9, is known for good scuba diving at the northwestern tip between some rock outcrops known to local divers as Christmas point. The water depth is between 10 and 35 meters and one can find many pelagic fish amongst the rock formations.

Ko Bon (Bon Island) Bon Island or Talu Island, there is a beautiful white powered beach on this island but no accomodation. The waters are suitable for scuba diving, and Whale Shark is often found here.

Ko Tachai (Tachai Island) Tachai Island is located at the northern most tip of the park. There is a beautiful white powdered beach on the island but no accommodation. The water are suitable for SCUBA diving, and Whale Shark is often found here.

Ko Similan or Island 8 Ko Similan or Island 8 is the largest island in the chain. The average depth of the waters around Similan is about 25 meters. Ko Similan has a very small bay on the western side where spiny lobsters rest in crevices and sea fans, plume worms and soft corals sway to the current. Above the sea, lies the huge symbolic rock of Ko Similan and its worth the hike to the top to enjoy a sweeping view of the sea.

National Parks - South Thailand
Mu Ko Chumphon National Park Chumphon
Hat Noppharat Thara - Mu Ko Phi Phi National Park Krabi
Khao Phanom Bencha National Park Krabi
Mu Ko Lanta National Park Krabi
Than Bok Khorani National Park Krabi
Hat Khanom - Mu Ko Thale Tai National Park Nakhon Si Thammarat
Khao Luang National Park Nakhon Si Thammarat
Khao Nan National Park Nakhon Si Thammarat
Namtok Si Khit National Park Nakhon Si Thammarat
Namtok Yong National Park Nakhon Si Thammarat
Ao Manao - Khao Tanyong National Park Narathiwat
Budo - Su-ngai Padi National Park Narathiwat
Namtok Sipo National Park Narathiwat
Namtok Sai Khao National Park Pattani
Ao Phang-nga National Park Phang-nga
Khao Lak-Lam Ru National Park Phang-nga
Khao Lampi - Hat Thai Mueang National Park Phang-nga
Mu Ko Ra - Ko Phra Thong National Park Phang-nga
Mu Ko Similan National Park Phang-nga
Mu Ko Surin National Park Phang-nga
Si Phang-nga National Park Phang-nga
Khao Pu - Khao Ya National Park Phatthalung
Sirinat National Park Phuket
Laem Son National Park Ranong
Lam Nam Kraburi National Park Ranong
Mu Ko Phayam National Park Ranong
Namtok Ngao National Park Ranong
Mu Ko Phetra National Park Satun
Tarutao National Park Satun
Thale Ban National Park Satun
Khao Nam Khang National Park Songkhla
San Kala Khiri National Park Songkhla
Kaeng Krung National Park Surat Thani
Khao Sok National Park Surat Thani
Khlong Phanom National Park Surat Thani
Mu Ko Ang Thong National Park Surat Thani
Tai Rom Yen National Park Surat Thani
Than Sadet - Ko Pha-ngan National Park Surat Thani
Hat Chao Mai National Park Trang
Bang Lang National Park Yala
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