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Koh Racha
Written by Administrator    Saturday, 27 March 2010 10:13    PDF Print E-mail
The Twin Gems of Racha They’re close, they’re beautiful, but they are islands and you’re going to need a boat to get there

Big Racha and Little Racha islands (also called Raya islands in local pronunciation) are close enough to see from the south end of Phuket, but they are very different to Phuket, with almost no development, few people living here and only a limited numbers of tourists visiting.

There are only a three beaches between the two islands, but those are spectacularly beautiful.Many people find it worthwhile renting a boat for the day to take in the Racha experience. Racha Yai (Big), the close one easily seen south of Rawai, has only two beaches. Both are on the northern end close to Phuket. One is deep and makes an excellent anchorage during the high season. The other is shallow, allowing only small boats to enter, and none at low tide. The rest of the island shoreline comprises rugged boulders reminiscent of those in the Similans. So in the high season, while relatively few people are in these two islands, most are concentrated right in this northern beach where boats can anchor in safety. In the monsoon season the bay is fully exposed to the high seas, and the place is virtually deserted.There are about five sets of small, very basic bungalows at the top of the beach, starting at about 500 Baht per night. There is one better quality, though still fairly basic, set of bungalows on the East coast called Racha Home. These offer great sea views from a coconut plantation on a hill, though they have no real beach. They have an active diving operation here. One can walk all across the top end of this island on a network of foot tracks, from these bungalows to the two beaches, since all flat land is under coconut plantation.

The smaller of the two islands, Racha Noi, is considerably further south and is visited only by a few dive companies for it’s a long trip across open waters that can rough up quickly if winds arise. It has only one tiny beach and no human structure whatever. The shoreline is rugged and rocky.