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PHANG NGA PROVINCE

Phang Nga province lies to the North and NE and Phuket island and stretches along the Andaman sea all the way up to the Phra Isthmus or Burma border, and east over to Krabi circling the wonderfull Phnag Nga Bay and covering tropical rainforests of the magnificent Khao Sok National Park and the estuaries and mangroves that line both the western ocean side and its southerly Phang Nga bay border. Diverse, rich in natural resources, protected by large swathes of national parks and by tougher development codes than Phuket it will be a natural wonder of Thailands for generations.

One of the worlds truly most magnificent natural coastal reserves that borders Phuket’s Eastern fringe this 400 sq km bay incorporates emerald isles, dramatic limestone cliffs, underwater caves and mangrove preserves with one of the worlds prettiest boating locations.

Since 1981 it has been protected as the Ao Phang Nga National Park, and declared a Ramsar site (no 1185) of ecological significance in 2002 although unchecked tourism, poor tour company management and lack of policing has led to stresses that need to be undone and current actions that need changing.

Phang Nga Bay is a shallow marine reserve incorporating 42 islands and intertidal forested wetlands. At least 28 species of mangroves dot its borders with seagrass beds and coral reefs important conservation areas.

There are at least 88 species of birds, according to Wikipedia, including the Malaysian Plover and Asian Dowithcher, as well as 82 fish species, 18 reptiles, three amphibians and 17 mammal species.

These include the Dugong, white hand gibbon, the endangered Serow and the black finless Porpoise.

Archaeological caves have paintings over 1,000 years old who must have marveled at this untouched natural wonder. Ian Fleming immortalized the area in his movie the man with the Golden Gun, the 9th James Bond movie and starring Roger Moore in his second Bond role. The villain, Scaramanga, had a private island that was his lair in the heart of Phang Nga Bay and is now a famous tourist destination.

Shot in 1974 James goes on to hunt Scaramanga who has a solar based power generation system that he was going to franchise, forcing the oil based western world to pay him hefty fees to keep his technology off the market. Given today’s looming oil crisis James Bond should have become an eco entrepreneur and launched the franchise system for Good, not Evil and the world would indeed be a better place.

Nearly 40 years later we still have not heeded the obvious that was obvious in the 70s. SEEK hopes to do its bit to help educate and help people to change their ways to ensure that we have a future.

On the Eastern side of the bay is Krabi province and Krabi town, which has a 212 sq km river estuary that is also a protected Ramsar site.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ramsar_Site

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Ramsar_wetlands_of_Thailand

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