The beautiful and safe waters off Phuket, on the east coast of Thailand, offer some of the best cruising and chartering opportunities in the world. The scenery in this exotic part of the world can be stunning, with towering limestone cliffs, secluded coves, pristine white-sand beaches and a mix of uninhabited islands and resort nightlife. The scuba diving and snorkeling are simply spectacular.
Cruising there, in the Andaman Sea, is easy; navigation is usually line of sight. You’ll need to keep an eye on your charts and GPS to avoid the coral reefs, and the tidal range can exceed eight feet. But chartering is well within the range of captains who have a basic competence in coastal navigation. The anchorages are both scenic and secure; the people are welcoming and friendly.
Once you’re there, you’ll find an unspoiled tropical paradise. South of Phuket are the Phi Phi Islands, considered the jewels of the Andaman Sea. There are more than 130 islands in Krabi province alone, and offshore marine preserves protect the area’s bird and sea life.
The best time to visit Phuket, Thailand’s premiere resort island, is from the end of October until May. Monsoon season is from mid-May until mid-October, although mainland Thailand blocks many of the monsoon rains.
For a world-class charter, The Moorings offers seven nights on a four-cabin, 514 power catamaran for seven nights starting Saturday, Nov. 2, for $8,820. Read more: