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13 miles from Koh Lanta Lighthouse

KOH MUK WEST. 7° 22.128N, 99° 16.963E

This anchorage is our pick of the group. Anchor in the northeast monsoon only in 6-8 metres between the two towering cliffs and off the very small beach. The shoreline north and south is honeycombed with crevices and caves, making for excellent dinghy exploring. The beach leads to a small freshwater creek.

A few hundred metres south of the anchorage is the entrance to Tham Morakot − the “Emerald Cave” − easily recognisable by the mooring buoys with ropes leading into the entrance of the cave. The entrance is an 80-metre pitch dark passageway leading to a completely enclosed circular, cathedral-like ‘hong’, with a diameter of 60 metres.

The walls are draped in lush foliage above a tiny patch of grey silica sand beach and an ethereal glow makes it seem as if you were encased inside an emerald, looking out. Access is possible at most tides by swimming or canoe.

Do not use your dinghy outboard as there is a delicate bat population living in the ceiling of the very narrow passage. Do not try to go through the passage without a reliable waterproof torch.

Never mind the untidy lines, moorings and jostling day boats at the entrance. This experience will remain etched in your memory for the rest of your lifetime. Awesome!

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While every effort has been made to ensure that the information contained in this book is accurate, the charts of anchorages are based on personal experience and satellite imagery and are intended as a guide only. They should not be used for navigation. Please refer to Official Hydrographic Charts of the respective countries.

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