100 Plastic Water Bottles to the Rescue

I’ve dreamed of travelling since I was in primary school. I’ve dreamed of sailing cruises all my adult life.  My Almost Circumnavigation of Phuket Cruise was all I’d ever dreamed of but much much better.

Sailing cruises to die for: Yana de Lys anchored off the Butterfly Bar, Kamala Beach
The stuff dreams are made of: Yana de Lys anchored off the Butterfly Bar, Kamala Beach

December and January are perfect for sailing cruises around Phuket Island, Thailand

Our perfect sailing cruise began with three boats and three fun families anchored off Kamala Beach for Christmas and New Years.
The weather was just right for a leisurely anchorage crawl in Yana de Lys starting at Yacht Haven at the north east tip of Phuket, sailing in company with two more yachts: Sweet Robin and Black Pearl.

The Butterfly Bar was our second home

When we first arrived at the beach in our dinghies the staff at the Butterfly Bar made us feel so at home we made it our second home. 
They watched our tenders (dinghies) when we went out exploring for the day.  More on Yana de Lys’s tender later. 
The bar staff took our laundry, ordered our ice and had them all delivered.  Gave us use of their simple shower.  Cooked fabulous local food, and sold us cold beers. 
Kamala Beach is all eye candy according to the boys.  Plenty of Russian ladies parading in G-string bikinis and high heeled bling sandals.  Even the babies couldn’t have been cuter if they tried.  What’s not to love? 


Sailing cruises highlights: The kids getting ready to launch a lantern on new years eve
The kids getting ready to launch a lantern on New Years Eve

Misfiring fireworks

Of course there were lanterns to launch and lots of fireworks for New Years Eve. That’s how it is in Thailand.
Just before midnight a rogue firecracker travelled horizontally along the beach rather than up into the sky.  Straight into our tender. 
Yep.  Out inflatable dinghy was blown up by fireworks. 
Sailing cruises: oopsie our dinghy was blown up by fireworks
Blown up by fireworks
Fortunately no one was hurt! 

100 plastic water bottles to the rescue

It took a month, but the owner of the bar where the bad firecracker came from compensated us. We ended up with a better tender as a replacement.

In the meantime nothing could stop the most perfect of sailing cruises.

We simply filled the ruined section of the disabled dinghy with over 100 empty plastic water bottles, wrapped up the hole with plastic garbage bags and a whole lot of gaffer tape and continued sailing up the west coast of Phuket and beyond.

Sailing cruises misadventures: Our tender didn't look pretty but it floated in a disabled kind of way
Our tender didn’t look pretty but it floated in a disabled kind of way

An eclectic soundtrack

After our Kamala Beach anchorage we cruised slowly slowly for another month up past Phuket to Khao Lak.  
Along with the lapping of the ocean, the soundtracks we fell asleep to varied vastly.  At Khao Lak there was a weird kind of stereo with Johnny Cash covers from the north and tribal drumming from the south. 
Just the sea was the lullaby at our most peaceful anchorage, Thai Muang. 

We had Fleetwood Mac covers at the chaotic circus that is Patong Beach.  

Sailing cruises: Our anchorage at Khoa Lak
Our anchorage at Khoa Lak

All perfect sailing cruises have to end some time

You can’t really circumnavigate the island of Phuket because there’s a bridge at the north end.  So after Khoa Lak it was time to head back south and around the island to our home mooring at Yacht Haven.  And start getting ready for our cruise to Borneo.

Now I’ve said this before, but it’s still true: If you like my post feel free to share it on all your social media, because sharing is sexy.

And if the sailors reading this blog really want me to include the anchorage points I can. Just let me know in the comments.


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I'm a sailing traveller floating around South East Asia on my boat Yana de Lys. I spend as much time as I can exploring the back streets and pretending to act like a local. Everything I talk about is simply based on my own experiences. (But hey - I'm open to sponsorship offers from five star hotels and stuff. Bring it on!) Get in touch with me on: +61 411 220 592 and +61 8 6255 5074 penny@sailingtravelblog.com

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