File:Nai Yang Beach, Phuket (4448621322).jpg
Andy Mitchell from Glasgow, UK, Nai Yang Beach, Phuket (4448621322), CC BY-SA 2.0

Phuket, in Thailand’s south, is the very definition of a gorgeous tropical island. The beaches, of course, take the spotlight, but there’s more to Phuket than just the beaches. The island is also home to a wondrous collection of lush forests, and one of these is the Sirinat National Park.

Sirinat is a protected marine national park that lies about 1 hour’s drive away from the Phuket City, the capital of Phuket Island. Though it is a bit out of the way, it still manages to attract many tourists. And because of this, finding a budget or luxury Phuket hotel near the park is not a hard task. There’s one just lying on the skirts of the park, called the Anantara Mai Khao Phuket Villas. You will need to pay a small fee to gain entrance and it costs 200 Baht for adults and 100 Baht for kids.

Originally called the Nai Yang National Park, the Sirinat National Park got its current name in 1992 after plans were made to expand the park. Now the park covers an area of 90 square kilometres which includes a 13-kilometre coastline that features four connecting beaches. These are named Hat Nai Yang, Hat Nai Thon, Hat Mai Khao, and Hat Sai Kaeo. The park also holds a rich mangrove forest of 320n acres. This is the home of an interesting collection of fauna such as the monitors lizards, mangrove snakes, the collared kingfisher, the white-bellied sea eagle, and turtles. The latter is said to visit the park’s well-preserved beaches during the months between November and February to lay eggs.

If you’re a fan of snorkelling, you’ll be delighted to know that the Sirinat National Park is described as being the most accessible coral reef in Phuket by TripAdvisor. The colourful coral reefs of the park lie submerged in the marine section of the park at a distance of 2,300 feet to 3,300 feet off the shore. Some of the many corals you will be seeing include soft corals, plate corals, sea fans, and sea anemones.

Auburn Silver is a travel writer who has a passion for fashion and a deep interest in admiring new and exotic attractions around the world.