Meet the sea residents
Published/Last edited or updated: 1st February, 2016
You might get lucky and spot them while swimming anywhere in the area, but those who want a better chance of encountering these playful animals should arrange a boat trip.
Especially if you can speak a little Thai and prefer to do things independently, it’s possible to arrange a boat trip on your own. Head north out of Khanom town on Route 4150 and, after around 10 kilometres, take a right towards the northern end of Ao Thong Ching. At a pier located on the small peninsula that looks back over this small bay from the north, longtail boats can be arranged for 1,000 to 2,000 baht, depending on how far and long you want to go. Morning is the best time to spot dolphins, followed by late afternoon.
Alternately, keep north past Ao Thong Ching and you’ll find a second pier on the Laem Prathap peninsula. Boats from either place can take you to (hopefully) see the dolphins while also cruising you to a “Pancake Rock” and around the uninhabited islands of Ko Wang Nai and Ko Rap, among others, which are located between Laem Prathap and Ko Samui. Snorkelling may also be possible. After the boat trip, you might head a few kilometres inland to check out a chedi made out of coral at Wat That Tharam.
Toon’s Tour is a good option if you prefer to let someone else take care of the planning and transport. With an office near Aava Resort on the beach road in Khanom, English-speaking Toon leads dolphin-spotting boat trips that include lunch and a stop at a natural fish spa. Toon also arranges sightseeing and outdoor adventure tours to Nakhon Si Thammarat, Khao Sok National Park and Surat Thani. He can be reached at (088) 819 7055, or through his website, www.toontours.net.
David Luekens first came to Thailand in 2005 when Thai friends from his former home of Burlington, Vermont led him on a life-changing trip. Based in Thailand since 2011, he spends much of his time eating in Bangkok street markets and island hopping the Andaman Sea.
These tours are provided by Travelfish partner GetYourGuide.