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Thread: Maya Bay : jam packed with tourists

  1. #1

    Maya Bay : jam packed with tourists

    Concern rises as photos of jam packed Maya Bay with influx of Chinese tourists exposed
    Saturday March 21, 2015

    The influx of Chinese tourists to Maya Bay, the main tourist attraction of Phi Phi archipelago in the Andaman Sea, and the scene of the Hollywood film "The Beach" in 1999 is now causing serious concern of its natural charm and beauty among environmentalists and Thai people if no preservation action is taken by authorities.

    Concern rises after photos of the jam packed beach with thousands of tourists, mostly Chinese, were posted on the Facebook page of Niruth Darid Bannob on Thursday.

    The Facebook user wrote “we heard powerful people in Krabi said the selling points of Krabi are its serenity and untainted natural beauty. But what they are doing or trying to is totally opposite”

    “Why should they want it to grow so fast. It is not sustainable..visitors just come and go and it is the locals who have to live with the spoilt nature. Immense revenues from tourism could never help to buy back the nature.”.

    The posting of photos of the jam packed beach on Maya went viral on the social network with many questioning the marine park authorities for allowing so many tourists to the island even it was a normal working day.

    One said on any given day at any time there will be 30 or more speedboats and longtail boats on the beach, with large ferry boats carrying snorkelers and sightseers moored in deeper water.

    But what appeared on the beach was different, there was even no room to walk on the beach.

    A marine biology expert and member of the National Reform Council assistant professor Thon Thamrongnawasawat told Daily News that he was surprised to see so many tourist boats mooring on the beach despite the fact permission to the beach needed to be sought first from the park chief.

    He questioned if park officials had ever inspected the beach and how these boats anchored and whether coral reef had been damaged by these boats, in addition to garbages and uncleanliness.

    He also asked if these tourists visit the island using their own tour companies, their guides and their buses, “so what the country will earn from tourism boom that will bring in painful consequence in the future.

    Maya Bay is situated in Had Noppharat Thara – Mu Ko Phi Phi National Park.

    Maya Bay has become the main tourist attraction of Phi Phi since The Beach was filmed here in 1999. It was always very popular before the film but now people around the world who haven’t even heard of Phi Phi have certainly heard of Maya Bay.

    The best time to visit Maya Bay is between November and April during the high season when seas are calm and access to the bay is easy. Rough seas from May to October may hinder access but rarely deny entry.

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  3. #3

    hardly a pristeen NP , long way from a fair comparision .

  4. #4
    Thailand Lifer Delayed's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Ocean Cruising
    That is so sad yet so funny at the same time. Sad that the beauty of such a place can be overrun so easily but funny in that they look like a oriental flock of penguins ready to head out.

  5. #5
    Thailand Lifer peterplonker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Udon thani
    Luckily I saw the place before the film came out, it was in those days a pristine and beautiful place.
    It hurts to see it now to see it packed full of "oriental" tourists.

  6. #6
    Mar 27, 2015

    If someone can find us a positive story about Thailand tourism we’ll give them $20. Heck, make it $50, since we know we won’t have to pay up any time soon.

    — Jason Clampet

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Quote Originally Posted by peterplonker View Post
    Luckily I saw the place before the film came out, it was in those days a pristine and beautiful place.
    It hurts to see it now to see it packed full of "oriental" tourists.
    I passed through there during my dive training in 2004 and it was already attracting the hoards in speed boats. looks like it's gotten much worse now.

  8. #8
    Thailand's Maya Bay aka 'The Beach' to close due to overtourism
    February 14 2018

    Maya Bay experienced a huge surge in visitors thanks to 2000 film The Beach starring Leonardo DiCaprio.

    Maya Bay in Thailand, famed for its starring role in The Beach, will close to tourists for at least three months this year in a bid to reverse damage to the surrounding coral reef.

    The idyllic cove in the once little-known Phi Phi Islands has become a victim of its own popularity since Danny Boyle's 2000 movie adaptation of Alex Garland's novel about a backpacker's search for sandy utopia.

    Some 5000 people each day now descend on Maya Bay to live out their own beach fantasies, many on day trips from the tourist hubs of Phuket and Krabi.

    Leonardo DiCaprio (centre) in The Beach.

    Concerned about the damage to the local reef, Thai authorities have decided to close the beach for around three months during the summer low season, from June to September, to help it recover, The Telegraph reported.

    Maya Bay is just the latest spot in Thailand to face temporary closure because of the damaging effects of mass tourism. Thai authorities have previously banned tourists from parts of the popular Koh Kai islands and Koh Tachai.

    About 77 per cent of coral reefs in Thailand have been seriously damaged by tourism, marine expert Thon Thamrongnawasawat of Bangkok's Kasetsart University said.

    While the ideal solution would be to close such places to tourists permanently, the country's reliance on tourism makes this impossible, he added.

    In May 2016, Thai authorities announced the indefinite closure of Koh Tachi, saying the swelling tide of tourists had brought the island to the brink of irreversible damage.

    Overtourism has damaged the coral reef, a Thai marine expert says.

    "We have to close it to allow the rehabilitation of the environment, both on the island and in the sea, without being disturbed by tourism activities before the damage is beyond repair," Tunya Netithammakul, the director general of Thailand's Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation, told the Bangkok Post at the time.

    "In fact, Koh Tachai is preserved as a primitive zone, not a tourist site," said Thon, referring to a designation that Thailand gives certain particularly vulnerable areas. "If it's not closed now, we'll lose Koh Tachai permanently."

    It is hoped that the temporary shutdown will give the reef time to recover.

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  9. #9
    It is hoped that the temporary shutdown will give the reef time to recover.
    3 months , yep that'll do it

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  10. #10

    June to September ~Thailand’s Maya Bay, location for The Beach, to close to tourists

    The bucket-list beach on the island of Koh Phi Phi Leh became famous when it featured in the Leonardo DiCaprio movie, but environmental concerns mean it will close to tourists from June to September.

    It is one of the world’s most famous beaches, thanks to its starring role in Danny Boyle’s film of Alex Garland’s bestselling novel, and is often referred to simply as “the beach”. However, this summer Maya Bay, on the Thai island of Koh Phi Phi Leh, will be closed to tourists as authorities attempt to reverse decades of damage done to the region’s marine environment. The closure will take place from June to September, during the island’s low season, in order to give its coral reef time to recover. While similar measures have been introduced on other Thai islands – in 2016 local authorities closed Koh Tachai – it is the first time tourists will be forbidden from visiting Maya Bay.

    Maya Bay gets up to 5,000 visitors a day, with most tourists travelling by boat from Phuket or Koh Phi Phi. Much of that tourism has been spurred by the film The Beach, released in 2000 and starring Leonardo DiCaprio. It is a movie that, ironically, tells the story of a backpacker on a quest to find the perfect, untouched. beach. Almost 80% of Thailand’s coral reefs have been destroyed, according to Thon Thamrongnawasawat, deputy dean of the faculty of fisheries at Kasetsart University in Bangkok, with the primary causes being beachfront hotels, boat anchors and plastic waste being dumped in the sea.

    Speaking to Deutsche Welle, Thamrongnawasawat said that while temporary closures can help to an extent, the “ideal solution” would be for the bay to be closed permanently. Thon has long been outspoken about the need to protect Thailand’s marine parks and has warned about the risk from tourism. During a visit to the bay in 2016, he described the beach as being so densely crowded he was left speechless. Those familiar with the region are aware of overcrowding at the bay. Sam Clark of Experience Travel says the tour operator ceased suggesting its guests go on boat trips to Maya Bay “long ago”

    “While it’s a very pretty bay and recognisable from The Beach, visiting it with a flotilla of boats and hordes of other tourists rather detracted from the magic,” he said. “If the bay needs to be closed to allow for recovery time in the low season, I can only welcome that.” Clark added: “The Thai authorities have the benefit of seeing what unchecked development over a 40-year period did to regions of Spain and other places, so they can hopefully learn from that.”

    Luke Finch, 27, visited Maya Bay last Christmas, considering it a “bucket list” destination, not least because he counts The Beach among his favourite films. To avoid the crowds, he took one of the earliest boat trips, arriving at Maya Bay at 6.30am. Advertisement “By the time we were about to leave, more and more boats were streaming in and the noise levels beginning to grow,” he said. “I was pleased to be heading elsewhere, and it was only 7.15am. “I don’t think it’s drastic enough just closing it for three months. The numbers need to be permanently limited. I’m sure people would still go if they charged a premium to visit.”

    Kaushambi Bakshi, 31, a digital media worker from India, visited in 2013, and was also inspired by the film. “It was very busy, as I went during peak tourist season but my husband and I had prepared for a swarm of tourists, so it wasn’t that rude a shock,” she said. “The downside was that we did find litter floating around at many spots in the sea. But overall, the beauty was too breathtaking and made us slightly less bothered about the crowds.”

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