Natural history by sea kayak since 1983
Hong by Starlight
Lunch & Dinner : Round Trip Transfers
Enjoy an afternoon of sea cave exploring literally inside Phang Nga Bay’s marine geology, - including the caves and hidden lagoons John Gray found in 1989. Great nature and wildlife surrounds you...
Phang-Nga Bay : 2Days/1Night
A Week-End Getaway for regional adventurers, an overnight transfer to Krabi, or a night out of crazy Patong, the Expedition Express packs your brain with a minimum Twenty-Eight Hours of Top Quality...
Phang-Nga Bay : 3Days/2Night
Combine our Khao Sok Mini-Expedition with our famous Phang Nga Sea Kayaking Mini-Expedition for an excellent week of Thai mountain and sea adventure. Combine Khao Sok with our 7-Day...
What Others Say
The John Gray sea canoe Hongs by Starlight tour is an unmissable experience. The ecologically aware guides are genuinely concerned and want you to preserve this pristine environment; such an amazing experience. Our guides Mr Aew, Mr Nick (otherwise known as Morgan Freeman) Mr Tom and the entire crew obviously love what they do and take great joy in showing the wonders of Phang Nga Bay. They are informative, helpful, caring and very funny and really make the experience special for all. Our personal guide Da Da instinctively picked up on our interests and broadened our horizons through his knowledge. There was free time and fun with the crew swimming with an ever watchful eye to safety, There was plenty of great healthy fresh food cooked on board the boat, and an air of community when the guides taught us craft making for blessings and wishes on the water; so special. Lucy loved the colony of monkey families found in one of the lagoons, and I fell in love with the Sea Eagle's of which I have never before seen in such numbers; so majestic. This trip is a must do and fantastic value beyond money.
Lying flat in my kayak to float under the rock wall just inches above my nose, I couldn't help wondering how long until the tide would rise, trapping my fellow kayakers and me on the far side of the bat-filled cave we had just paddled through.
But after emerging into the secluded, pristine lagoon, with sheer limestone cliffs rising up to the blue sky above, and a family of macaque monkeys descending from the trees, I was in no hurry to leave.
At sunset we were on our private island beach (just the three of us and our two guides) with tents, a delicious hot meal, and a toasty fire. The sky was clear and Tee called this our, "million star hotel." Better than any resort! The bay was bioluminescent, and the plankton glowed much brighter than I had experience in Fajardo bay in Puerto Rico. The glowing moonlight swim was one of the best travel moments I've ever enjoyed. It rained pretty hard during the night, but we stayed dry and comfy in our tents. In the morning we were surprised to see that some monkeys were trying to join us for breakfast on the beach.
We have done the Hongs by Starlight tour FOUR times and have loved it more and more each time. The quality and integrity of John Gray's program is second to none. The pleasant, fun, informative, hard working guides make the trip extra special. They consistently went above and beyond our expectations. And the food is fantastic! I cannot overstate my recommendation for John Gray tours. The entire experience is extraordinary.
I have done plenty of excursion during all my times in Phuket and this one has been the best one! I can’t believe I haven’t done it before! The trip was relaxed and is not rushing you through all stops like all the other squeezed speedboat trips. You actually feel treated like a welcome guest and not a tourist. We were on a big boat with plenty of space and lovely people. They prepared lunch and dinner which was so good! They even have a Chef on the boat and are prepared for any allergies or food intolerance.The sunset and night canoe was my personal highlight during the trip!
There are not too many people in the world who would choose to call themselves “Ling Yai” - Thai for Big Monkey - or have their employees refer to them by that name. But John Gray is proud of the nickname.
He signs off his emails with it, even adding another nickname, “Caveman”, which was given to him by fellow runners in the Hash House Harriers. So John Gray is an unusual man. He’s also fascinating to talk with - a passionate, 24/7 environmental activist with a sense of humor to match his sense of mission.
John Gray's crew cares about you and about nature, they speak a decent to good English and will tell you a lot about what you are about to see and discover. Boats never get crowded and food on board is good. You'll be asked to respect Nature around you as much as they do, which means no touching, no loud talking and of course no smoking while you are exploring the famous 'Hongs' (enclosed lagoons, usually only accessible through a narrow tunnel when tides permit). They also try to avoid crowded places: a Hong with a hundred canoes in it is not exactly a great vision of nature at its best.
The original, still the most reputable and by far the most ecologically sensitive company on the island. Like any good brand in Thailand, John Gray’s ‘Seacanoe’ name and itineraries have been frequently copied. Located north of Phuket Town.
John Gray Sea Canoe is the best sea kayaking experience in Phang Nga Bay. It combines all that is good in Thailand, beautiful nature, enchanting culture and delicious food. "Hong By Starlight" is the ultimate in high quality low volume tourism pioneered by John "Caveman" Gray, a larger than life Hawaiian who first explored Phang Nga Bay by kayak in the eighties. Your John Gray Sea Canoe adventure starts with a midday pickup and a gentle cruise to Phang Nga Bay while enjoying a delicious lunch on board. Departing at this time means that you avoid the crowds and can enjoy an afternoon of exploration in a more tranquil setting.
Hong By Starlight draws rave reviews and is 5-Star on Trip Advisor, but many people are disappointed they didn’t book one of our multi-day sea kayaking trip. Hotels aren’t cheap, and most folks pre-book.
Don’t make the same mistake. If you are reading this, take a look at our 2- day and 3-day overnight trips in Phang Nga Bay. The camping is luxurious and comfortable, and the Nature far more stunning than Phuket or Krabi. We also have 3 and 4 day add-ons to Khao Sok and Tarutao.
John Gray's Sea Canoe
Why John Gray Sea Canoe?
John Gray's Sea Canoe has never compromised its approach for the highest ideals and quality of service. Read in nine short points the spirit that stands behind John Gray's Sea Canoe...