-information from February 2016-
|# number of routes: 100
# grades: 5 – 8a // 5.10 – 5.13
# majority of the grades: up to 7a+ / 5.12-
# type of rock: limestone
# rock quality: good
# bolting: good, mostly titanium bolts
# is it polisheded: not at all
# time to climb: morning & afternoon
# approach: 20min drive + 15min walk to ‘The Mitt’ or 20min walk to ‘HD Tree’
# coordinates: 8.178223, 98.636576
|Koh Yao Noi is a great place to escape the crowds. Especially as everyone is thinking that the climbing was forbidden in January 2016. But it is not! It was just about one crag, ‘Greatful Wall’. We stayed at Namtok Bungalows, which is the cheapest option in the Tha Kao Pier Area (and probably on the Island). They have three different types of bungalows, starting at 500 THB. But, as always, you can get a better deal, if you stay longer or get there in low season. The basic bungalows have everything you need. A good matress, clean bathroom and a terrace with a hamock. There is also a common area to hang out and relax in one of the hamocks there. You will get free water and free coffee and there is a big fridge you can use. Motorbikes are 200 THB per day. Getting to the crag is quite a drive. After leaving the small village at Tha Khao Pier you need to take three right turns and then follow the dirt road towards the Paradise Resort. But do not enter their premises! To see where you have to turn right, just have a look at the short video we made. The route, shown in the map above, starts at Namtok Bungalows and ends where you park your motorbike. The last few hundred meters are along a fence with concrete pillars. You park right next to the yellow pillar and then follow the trail. Walking downhill first, turning right and then walking along some crags until you see the signs indicating ‘The Mitt’ and ‘HD Wall’. The climbing is fun, and the routes are not polished at all. There are a few hard climbs up to 8a/5.13, but the majority of the routes are up to 7a+/5.12-. The best area for climbs up to 6c/5.11- is ‘HD Tree’ and for climbs in the 7’s/5.12 go to ‘The Mitt’. And watch out for bees before you enter a route!
The best restaurant in town is The Pier Restaurant, right at the Tha Khao Pier. If you fancy some european style sandwich, go to the green Coffee Shop, which is somewhere here. To buy groceries you need to drive tot he other side of the island. There is a 7-Eleven, but also a cheaper local store just a about 100m further. And the local store is the only one selling beer.
To get to Koh Yao Noi from Phuket, you have to take a longtail or speed boat from Bang Rong Pier, hourly from 7:30 till 17:30. There is a shared taxi leaving from here to Bang Rong Pier, 50 THB per person.