The Surin Islands is an archipelago of five islands in the Andaman Sea, about 60 Km off the West coast of Southern Thailand. Administratively, the islands are part of Tambon Ko Phra Thong, Amphoe Khura Buri, in Phang Nga Province. Since July 9, 1981, the five pristine islands were declared national park and named "Mu Ko Surin National Park", where "Mu Ko" means cluster of islands in Thai language. The park covers an area of approximately 141.25 square kilometres of which 80% are ocean. The main islands of archipelago are Koh Surin Nuea and Koh Surin Tai, which are separated only by 200 meters of shallow sea, at low tide can walking from one to other. The other three small islands are rocky outcrops, which just protrude from the ocean with some dwarf trees. They are: Koh Ree, also known as Koh Chi or Koh Satok, Koh Klang aka Ko Pachumba and Koh Khai aka Torinla Island. The two largest islands have many bays with white sand beaches and the typical vegetation subtropical. Limited areas of mangrove forests are located in the brackish waters of Mae Yai Bay in Koh Surin Nuea. The Park Headquarters on the mainland is located in the small village of Ngan Yong in Tambon Khura, along the coast of Khura Buri District the nearest access to the Park. The reception house of Park HQ on archipelago is in Ao Chong Kaad on Koh Surin Nuea, where the boats arrive and depart. Two small ethnic minority communities Moken, also known as Chao Ley, or sea gypsies, live on Koh Surin Nuea and Ko Surin Tai. The population of this particular ethnic group is about 150 people.Read More
Features of Surin Islands
The crystal clear waters of Surin Islands are full of marine life. Its stunning coral reefs and the surrounding waters are home to almost all marine species in the Andaman Sea. The insulation offshore of islands and the presence of large shoals of plankton and baitfish make the Surin Islands centres of attraction for fishes and invertebrates. Beautiful colourful anemones, sea fans and coral provide shelter to Clownfish, Damselfish, Anemonefish, Surgeonfish, Harlequin Rasbora and Seahorses. Between cracks and crevices there are a huge variety of invertebrates like Octopus, Crabs, Shrimps, Lobsters, Zigzag Clams and Oysters. The reefs are a perfect habitat for Nubibranchs, Glassfish and other baitfish, which it is why you will see so many predators here, such as Lionfish, Scorpionfish and Moray Eels. Near the reefs swim Turtles, Flying Perch, Ornate Ghost Pipefish, Butterflyfish, Cuttlefish, Squid and Emperor Angelfish. Near the seabed are resident large Groupers, Leopard Sharks, Black Tip and White Tip Reef Shark. In the surrounding waters swim in circle large shoals of pelagic fish, such as Amberjack, Dorado, Napoleon Wrasse, Barracuda and Trevally. In the Surin Islands there are frequent sightings of Dolphins, Black Marlin, Kawakawa Tuna, Dogtooth Tuna as well as two of largest pelagic species of the oceans, the Whale Shark and the Manta Ray. Aside Richelieu Rock, which is a submerged limestone rock, the coral reefs of the Surin Islands are mostly constituted by large granite boulders covered with a huge variety of corals and anemones. Underwater the scenery is really fantastic with beautiful gardens of colourful anemones, barrel sponges, gorgonian sea fans, soft and hard coral in the most varied forms, like deer staghorn, leaves and mushrooms. As well as for the Similan Islands, the impact of the 2004 Tsunami on the Surin Islands was much lower than expected; only a third of the corals were heavily damaged. Consequently there has been no significant change in its coasts and coral reefs.Read More
- Address Park Office: Tambon Khura, Amphoe Khura Buri, Phang-Nga
- Telephone: +66 7649 1378, +66 7649 1582
- Website: www.dnp.go.th
- Admission fee: 200 THB for adults and 100 THB for children
Koh Khai aka Torinla Island
Koh Khai is located few hundred metres to the south of Koh Surin Tai and it is just a rocky outcrop that juts from the sea surface. Also known by divers as Torinla Island, it offers several places to dive and snorkelling around its rocky coasts. In the east side of Koh Khai there is a vast beautiful reef covered with hard and soft corals, staghorn corals and sea fans. Its shallow part located in the small bay at southeast corner is considered the best place to snorkel in Thailand. Here also snorkellers can swim among Cardinalfish, Napoleon Wrasse, Emperor Angelfish, Ornate Ghost Pipefish, Green and Hawksbill Turtles.
Koh Ree aka Koh Satok
Koh Ree is the smallest and northernmost island of the five which make up the Surin Islands. The islet is just a rocky outcrop, which just protrudes from the ocean. Also known as Koh Chi or Koh Satok, it is located about 2 Km north of Koh Surin Nuea and it is an interesting dive site.
Koh Klang aka Ko Pachumba
Koh Klang, also known as Koh Pachumba or Koh Mungkorn, is a very small island 1 km to the west of Koh Surin Tai. The small rocky outcrop not has beaches, coral reefs or any other attractions.
Get to Surin Islands & Weather
All along the west coast of southern Thailand, where lie the Surin Islands, the best weather conditions exist from November to April. A cool dry period, characterized by a constant sunny weather, the average temperatures are between +27° C and +33° C, the surface conditions are generally calm and the water temperature is between 26° C and 30° C. The speedboat tours and dive cruises to the archipelago run daily from 1st November until 1st May. During the monsoon season strong winds swell the surface of the Andaman Sea making the navigation very dangerous, and therefore the Park is closed for safety from 15 May until 15 October, but dates may vary each year.
Surin Islands sit in open sea off the coast on Andaman Sea, about 60 Km from the west coast of Phang Nga Province. A few kilometres north there is the Myanmar sea border and about 100 Km south is the Mu Koh Similan National Park. The nearest access to the islands is Khura Buri, a small coastal town 90 km north of Khao Lak, the famous tourist resort in Phang Nga Province. From Kara Bhuri's pier departs all daily excursions organized by tour operators to Marine Park, the trip take about 70 minutes by speedboats. Instead, the multi-day diving cruises to Surin and Similan Parks usually depart from Thap Lamu, a small fishing village located just 15 km from Khao Lak. There is no regular boat service for single travellers to Koh Surin from Khura Buri. However, there are a few choices available to reach the islands independently. Among these the cheapest is a place on the deck of fishing boats, about 1,000 THB for a trip of 4 hours. Some tour operators offer also the simple round trip on speedboat for a cost between 1,600 and 2,200 THB. This price includes only the boat passage is instead excluded anything that offers the package tour, but it is a good option for those who wish to see the islands independently. There is also a boat owned and operated by the National Park, a trip that takes 4 hours and costs 1,500 THB. It leaves each day at 09:00. The streets of Khao Lak, Phuket or Krabi are full of tourist agencies and kiosks selling the tour packages offered by many authorized operators. Beware and compare rates before choosing between them, considering not only the cheaper price but also the quality of the proposed service. The majority of these tours provide the transfer by minivan from your hotel with departure at about 06.00; arrival to Khura Buri Pier at 08:30 and departure with the speedboats; arrival to Surin Islands at 10:00; two stop around the islands to enjoy snorkelling and swimming; a long stop for lunch buffet and relax on Koh Surin Nuea; the visit of Moken Village in the afternoon and another stop around the islands to enjoy snorkelling and swimming. The departure time from the Surin Islands is at 15.30; the arrival time at the hotel is between 19.30 and 20.00. The cost of daily excursion from Khura Buri range from 2,800 to 3,500 THB depending on the company and eventual options chosen, and include refreshment on board, the lunch buffet, snorkelling equipment, tour guide, insurance and National Park admission fee, 500 THB for adult and 300 for children. The round trip is performed by large offshore speedboats with engine powers which are close to 750 hp.
Find the best Hotel in Phuket at "Lowest Price"
Find cheapest airfare to Thailand
Southern Bus Terminals and Schedules
Reach Phuket & Move Around
Phuket International Airport, IATA code HKT.
Drive Around Phuket and stop to every single beach, or enjoy the freedom...