Flight 86) Phuket (VTSP) – Langkawi (WMKL)

This flight was originally going to be from Phuket, all the way to Penang and I had plotted a route which took me over Krabi, Trang and the island of Langkawi, before landing at Penang. With just over an hours flight time I was considering this to be one of the shorter flights of the adventure.

Starting the day at 10:30 I soon completed all the necessary checks and procedures. Whilst this differs somewhat to a real life aircraft, ensuring that my Track IR equipment was working and that I had enough fuel for the flight were equally as important. The 64 gallons of fuel I had on board should easily be enough.

I was ready to depart from Runway 27 of Phuket International Airport by 10:45 although I was told to hold on the runway itself as I waited for another aircraft to land. Seeing a business jet appear over head only meters above to then touch down right in front of me was an impressive sight. Once the landing plane had taxied away from the runway I took off in my own Beechcraft Baron 58 and had “wheels up” by 11:00.

With light cloud sitting at rougly 4000 – 5000 ft I found myself either trying to dodge each cloud or simply hopping from one to another whilst seeing the odd lonely cloud hanging much lower. It wasn’t long before I was flying over the city of Krabi where I could follow the main road 4 Eastwardly on my way to Trang.

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Flying a lot lower I had some fun buzzing the tree tops perched on top of some small hills and watching out for any flocks of birds in my path disturbed by the engine noise. The clouds had cleared by now and I could easily see a range of hills from my window as I passed over Trang at 11:35.

I used the Maps app on my phone to follow the route and checked out Ko Sukon Island. Other tiny islands looked lost out at sea. Ko Taruto Island was a good bit larger and I learnt that this was home to the Taruto National Park. I’m sure it would be amazing to get to explore that island first hand.

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As I reached the island of Langkawi I was taken aback by how beautiful the place looked, both from my plane in the flight sim but more so from the images and videos I was seeing on my phone. At that point I decided that this must be a stopping destination and cancelled the last leg which would have taken me to Penang. I soon found the airport and runway on the Western side of the Southern shores and requested full stop landing clearence. I didn’t log the time I landed as I must admit I was too keen to see and learn more about this island.

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Langkawi – City Video Guide – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sj_lR_UTt-s
10 Fun Things and Activities to do in Langkawi – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lm_1RWjvw24
Amazing Langkawi. – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uHgXAQ_8LCw
Langkawi, Malaysia – What to do? – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q2f5VHo3Bls
Hostel Life In Langkawi, Malaysia – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ysLb3dSKGRg
Welcome to Langkawi Island, Malaysia – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IodeoJ7a4UQ

The Datai Hotel – Langkawi – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7zqV2kZ90jQ

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Flight 85) Bangkok – Phuket

Bangkok (VTBD) – Phuket (VTSP)

As the nightlife in Bangkok would dictate, I began this journey rather late in the day as the shadows were being to stretch themselves over the ground. At 16:45 the skies were clear and inviting although providing an added sense of urgency due to the fading light.

Today’s journey would take me 482 miles South as the sun set on a rather pretty landscape. I began the trip by following a huge “Global Freightways” Boeing 747 down the taxi route and watched it take to the skies before I followed suit and headed West towards the setting sun. I knew the flight would be mostly in the dark and wasn’t disappointed by the colours in the sky during the transition from day to night.

2017-2-7_17-12-0-163.jpgIt was nice to see the street lights below turn on and able to watch the stars come out, one by one. In the UK this week, I was able to see the International Space Station (ISS) pass clearly overhead on several occasions. Looking like a quickly moving star, it begins as a faint speck but gets increasingly brighter until there is no mistaking it for any other star. It amazes me that mankind has the knowledge and technical ability to launch a vehical and carry a number of passengers so far above the earth. I am certainly looking forward to seeing what the future holds when it comes to NASA, SpaceX and the progression of space exploration.

Below me I was expecting to cover some mountains which I had made a note of when looking at the map. As it turned out these mountains were no more than rolling hills although in the dark these could be dangerous if flying at low altitudes.

Upon reaching the South coast of Thailand, I flew over many islands varying in size. It was difficult to spot all of them in the dark seas. Eventually it became too dark for site seeing so I simply followed the pink GPS route on the Sat Nav until reaching the city of Phuket.

I learnt a lot about Phuket whilst reading up and watching videos about the place, including the correct pronunciation. I must admit that the Full Moon Party held on Koh Phangan beach is certainly an experience I would love to have first hand whilst on the alternative side, the many elephants being exploited for tourist entertainment really upset me. Whilst I am no vegan, vegetarian or animal activist myself, I hope that future generations of tourists will be more aware of the harm being inflicted on these wonderful animals whilst being held in these organisations and that the boycott of these places will mean the animals will be treated well in proper sanctuaries or better still, returned back to the wild where possible. It was comforting to know that there is infact a rather great elephant sanctuary doing the work so badly needed.

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Phuket, Thailand Travel Guide – Must-See Attractions – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZP2nKrhEU68
PHUKET – THAILAND , BEST OF PHUKET HD – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NSF5dqh94Y4
Phuket – A Quick Guide  – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3qU0HSvAFVQ
Amazing Thailand Adventure Trip 2015 : Phuket – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X9IxkrhGoAM
Still Dreaming? – Live Your Life – THAILAND – GoPro Travel – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4NAwwIMquqU
Thailand, Koh Phangan. DJI phantom – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yzv2IdjFgG0
Full Moon Party Video – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P-rdOPlsBkI