There are only a few natural landmarks in the world that owe their fame entirely to a single film, and the cost of visiting James Bond Island makes this sight worth seeing.
All James Bond-loving movie buffs know this island by sight, although there is no real radar antenna sticking out from the top of the island. He was, of course, made famous in the 1974 film ‘The Man with the Golden Gun’, starring Roger Moore and Christopher Lee.
The island’s real name is Khao Ping Kan, but it is known worldwide by its nickname and was included in Phang Nga Bay tours shortly after the film’s release.
Surrounded by natural splendor
There are several reasons why this island is worth visiting. With many tour companies vying for tourism in the Phuket area, the cost of a James Bond Island tour is remarkably affordable. A full day island excursion on a large, comfortable boat can cost as little as THB 1,400 or around US$44. The tour includes ground transfers from your accommodation, a meal and soft drinks, a morning of canoeing (life jackets are included) and visits to local sites, plus personal insurance.
But the main reason why this tour is worth taking is the natural beauty of the islands in Phang Nga Bay. James Bond Island itself pales in comparison to some of the islands around it. Sure, it’s fun to see an iconic location in the flesh, but if the film producers had shown more of the surrounding area, the area would have been flocking to visitors since the film was released.
The tour operators are also happy to show the other islands. On your way to James Bond Island, you will stop at Panak Island to do some canoeing and explore a local bat cave. You will also visit one of Thailand’s most pristine marine national parks, Hong Island, and enjoy more canoeing around this paradise.
After the morning of exploration surrounded by ancient natural beauty and turquoise waters, you will partake in a gourmet lunch on board the boat as the boat heads towards James Bond Island.
Prepare your cameras
Once you get close to James Bond Island, you’ll be dropped off at the nearby beach, which was used as a shooting angle in the film. You’ll get the exact view of the island that the film showed, so make sure you don’t forget your cameras.
You’ll be joined by other tourists, some of them, no doubt, replicating the poses of Roger Moore and Christopher Lee on the same beach in 1974.
End the day with a swim
There is still time to swim in the afternoon before returning to Phuket at the end of the day. Snorkelers would be well advised to bring your snorkel gear with you on the tour. The visibility of the calm waters surrounding these islands and the abundance of colorful marine life will serve to cap off a great day out.