Koh Yao Noi mtb tour
This is a tour for tourists who want to avoid other tourists. It’s lean and green for small groups looking for something different.
Koh Yao Noi is a small island off the east coast of Phuket, the local ferry takes 55 minutes to get there from Bang Rong pier in north east Phuket. The island has a small Muslim community of fishermen and farmers. There are a few resorts springing up but locals still seem pleases to see a foreign face in Koh Yao and smile as you pass.
The best way to see the island is by mountain bike and it you haven’t arrived in Phuket with your own two wheeled conveyance you can join a twice weekly day trip that will transfer you from your hotel Bang Rong pier, provide you with a good quality bike and guide you round the island.
Day trips run on Tuesdays and Sundays all year round. I joined a tour last month and thought that if was one of the best tours that I’ve done from Phuket. If Tuesdays and Sundays don’t suit you there are different day trips available on different days:
Wednesday and Saturday is to Thai Muang with deserted beaches, waterfalls and a turtle sanctuary. On Mondays and Thursdays there are half day trips around Phuket’s countryside in the quiet north east of the island. Overnight and longer trips are also available.
The photos below are from my trip to Koh Yao Noi. The island is pretty flat so anyone with average fitness can join although there is no support vehicle on this tour. We rode about 30km on the island with lots of stops for photos and food (there was a lot of food). Mostly we rode through rubber plantations, rice paddies, dirt tracks and single lane concrete roads. I reckon I saw 5 cars all day. There were a couple of hills, one of them was mildly strenuous, it came just before lunch and helped to built the appetite.
The bikes are loaded onto the local ferry at Bang Rong jetty, NE Phuket
The pleasant crossing from Phuket to Koh Yao Noi (via Koh Yao Yai) takes just under one hour. We had beautiful weather for September. The sea in this part of Phang Nga bay is always pretty flat.
After unloading the bikes we rode down the pier and on to the island and after a few hundred metres we were off road in the rubber fields.
Some trails were hard to spot, we needed a guide. He also gave us a quick lesson in rubber production.
Our 30km ride took us all around the island. We stopped at piers on both sides of the island for photos looking out to Phang Nga bay, Krabi and Phuket provinces.
We stopped for lunch at a picturesque little bungalow resort called Sabai Corner. I will definitely be coming back to stay here soon.
This is what Koh Yao roads look like. Almost no traffic, a few goats and chickens to avoid. No stray dogs on this Muslim island.
We stopped at a small house in the rice paddies to refresh with coconut straight from the tree.
The rice is harvested just once per year in Koh Yao, it was nearly ready when we rode through.
More Phuket Mountain Biking Tours: http://www.snorkelingthailand.com/phuket-mountain-bike-tours/