MERGUI ARCHIPELAGO


Exploration cruise in Andaman sea – Myanmar (Burma)

7 DAYS/ 6 NIGHTS DEPARTURE FROM KAWTHAUNG 

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The Mergui archipelago

Located in the south of Burma, on the borders with Thailand, the archipelago of Mergui with more than 800 islands opened to the foreigners at the end of the 90s. This archipelago, also called Myeik, is sparsely populated: only a few islands are inhabited by Moken, a nomadic people of fishers.

Only a few dozen tourists do this trip in this remote paradise every month. The Mergui archipelago is one of the ultimate “virgin” territories of our planet. Its white sand beaches and its crystalline waters make it really precious.

 

Meeting with “Sea Gypsies”

The traditional inhabitants of the Mergui Archipelago are Moken. They live off sea resources. It is from them that Kama Bay buy cuttlefishes and fresh fishes. This minority ethnic group, sometimes called “Sea Gypsies”, leads a traditional, semi-nomadic lifestyle, by harvesting sea cucumbers, fishing or bartering.

A few years ago, relationships between the Mokens and the central authorities of Myanmar were quite difficult, recently. Nowadays, the relation has improved and Mokens are less difficult to meet. We will have the chance to visit one of their villages where you will enjoy their traditional cooking and perhaps watch the building of traditional pirogues as Mokens do for dozens of thousand years.

 

An ideal cruise

Travel among islands with paradisiac bays wherever your curiosity leads you. Mergui is free from mass tourism and offers a protected, generous and welcoming nature. Adventurer of these unreal lands without compromising on either comfort or safety for you and your loved ones, take advantage of this unique journey between discovery of an unexplored area, authentic meetings and ultimate comfort aboard Kama Bay.

The Mergui Archipelago is flanked by tropical waters. The temperatures remain hot and pleasant: from 20 to 23°C for the minimum and of 28 in 34°c for the highest. You will appreciate lounges and decks of Kama Bay where air circulates soundless. At anchor, Kama Bay can run without generator and is equipped with iBOSE systems. Kama Bay also offers air-conditioned areas.

 

Diving in Mergui

There is no dive trips organized on Kama Bay but we have a compressor and buffer tanks on board (for package tours organized by diving clubs).

 


PROGRAM

D1 – Sunday: Kawthaung – Dunkin Island

Kawthaung (1) is located in Kawthaung bay near the Thai border. This cosmopolitan city is inhabited by Burmese, Thai, Chinese, Indian and Malaysian communities. Established on the southern tip of Myanmar, it has been built by the English who called it “Victoria Point”. It is the entry point to Myanmar from the border city of Ranong in Thailand. When you arrive in International Phuket Airport, there is a 4 hour transfer by car towards Ranong and a 30 min trip across the bay with longtail.

Departure in the late morning after visa formalities done aboard Kama Bay. First cruise (4 hours of navigation) to the southwest towards Say Tan Island alias Dunkin Island (17). This quite small island offers an ideal anchorage for the first night, in front of a white sand beach where groups of monkeys looking for food, can easily be seen.

 

D2 – Monday: Horse Shoe Island – Cocks Comb Island – Border Island or Stewart Island

In the morning, we leave Kama Bay to discover two islands in a dinghy. The island of Horse Shoe (18), called Myin Khwar Island in Burmese, suits well its name: it looks like a horseshoe, unspoilt site around a magnificent bay of white sand. It shelters the biggest birds cave of the archipelago. You can stop there to climb its rock where the sight is amazing. The second island is Kyet Mauk, or Cocks Comb Island in English (20). Its lagoon is as big as a soccer field: You can kayak or do snorkling among of fishes and coral reefs.

In the afternoon, departure towards the Border island (19) or Nga Khin Nyo Gyee in Burmese (3-4h of navigation). This circular island bordered by bright beaches has huge rocks hidden in quite small bays. Snorkling there is amazing. It is the ideal place to spend the evening on the beach and swim under the stars. Alternative: according to weather, sea and your wishes we can sail towards Stewart Island (4) located 1 hour from Border Island.

 

D3 – Tuesday: Kyun Pila Island (Great Swinton) – Clara Island or Wa-ale Island

Morning time, departure from Border Island to Kyun Pila alias Great Swinton (8) (3 hours of navigation). Gt. Swinton shelters a small waterfall on the oriental coast and a beach of golden sand around the island. After lunch, departure towards the area of Lampi island (#5-6-7-13) (2 hours of navigation). 32 km long from north to south and 16 km wide from east to west, Lampi is one of the wonderful islands of the Mergui archipelago. It belongs to the National park of Mergui which protects its stunning beauty and its biodiversity. It is possible to sail up the rivers of the western coast in canoe at high tide, but the central forest is impenetrable.

We shall be at the anchorage in the island Clara (11) or in the island of Wa-ale (13) on the west of Lampi. These small islands are very popular among the divers because of its transparent waters and coral reefs. Wa-ale is also known for its unspoilt beaches where wild life can be observed (animals, birds, fishes and other aquatic creatures). Program: snorkeling, sailing dinghy or canoe and visiting ashore.

 

D4 – Wednesday: Lampi Island (Bay of Ter Yak)

In the morning, departure for a small cruise (2 hours of navigation) towards the bay of Ter Yak on the island of Lampi. Along the way, we will go by the island of Salet Galet (7). This small and quiet island, located between Lampi and Wa Ale, is inhabited by some groups of Moken (nomadic fishermen) with birds as sea eagles. If the weather allows, we will approach this island in Tender to greet the nomads of seas.

In the afternoon, from our point of anchorage in the bay of Ter Yak (6), we explore the oriental coast of Lampi. This place is a real heaven on Earth with a very old mangrove swamps with numerous species of birds (kingfisher, egret of cliffs, rhinoceros hornbill, sea eagle, heron) and an endemic flora (trees sometimes achieving up to 30 meters high).

 

D5 – Thursday: Nag Mann

Departure towards Nag Mann island (16) (2-3h of navigation) where we will anchor all day long. We really appreciate this island and its white sand beach. Its crystalline waters and coral reefs make this site magic: we will stay there for the night. The next day, we will walk, do snorkelling or sail dinghies in this extremely beautiful area.

 

D6 – Friday: Pulo Beda – Russel Island

Departure towards the island of Pulo Beda (15) (1 hour of navigation) or Nyaung Wee in Burmese. Surrounded by a belt of small islands, Pulau Beda is inhabited by the Moken fishermen, the “gypsies of seas”. A stunning river crosses the island and invites us to observe birds and flora along banks. In the afternoon we leave towards the island of Red Monkey or Russel Island alias Myauk Ni (9) (2 hours of navigation) where we will spend the evening and the night.

 

D7 – Saturday: Russel Island – Kawthaung

Russel Island is also known under the name of Red Monkey Island because of tree-dwelling monkeys with red hair. This will be for us the opportunity, one more time, to enjoy sand beaches, to meet Moken, to do snorkelling among coral reefs or to walk in the island forest and observe birds. Then we will take the way of Kawthaung (1) where we will arrive after 3 hours of navigation. Landing in Kawthaung harbor and visa formalities done before your transfer to Ranong and Phuket.

 


Remark: Islands, sites and visits proposed can evolve according to the weather situation or the governmental authorizations.


 

We also organize short cruises 5 days / 4 nights in extension of a ground circuit.

To know more about it, contact us.