James Bond Island, Phang Nga
Joining a James Bond Island tour and cruise the Phang Nga Bay is the second most popular activity in the region. The area is situated 25 km north-east of Phuket. It consists of numerous dramatic limestone cliffs rising sheer out of the waters. The most famous one being James Bond Island with its needle formed limestone rock which featured in the James Bond movie “The Man with the Golden Gun”. The Muslim fishing village on the island Koh Panyee is another popular spot to visit. Canoeing through limestone caves into mangrove forests is included in the tours.
Before 1974, the island was a rarely visited indigenous area. However, it was chosen as one of the locations for the 1974 James Bond movie The Man with the Golden Gun as the hideout for Bond’s antagonist, Francisco Scaremonger. After the movie release it turned into a popular tourist destination that has gradually contaminated Khao Phing Kan with household litter.
In 1981, the island became the most famous part of the newly established Ao Phang Nga Marine National Park. Since 1998, it is forbidden for tourist boats to approach Ko Tapu. This measure aims to stop erosion of the limestone rocks on and near the islet that might eventually result in its collapse.