Phi Phi Islands from Phuket – Krabi – Khao Lak
The Phi Phi Islands
Koh or Ko means island in Thai language. Koh Phi Phi is an island group located in the Andaman Sea, resp. in the Strait of Malacca, between Phuket and the mainland. The Phi Phi archipelago consists of 6 islands with an impressive architecture of limestone structures that rise into the sky in the middle of the ocean. The whole area is a marine national park. The main island, Phi Phi Don is very well developed for tourist. There are countless accommodations, restaurants, bars and shops along the narrow promenade. Surrounded by the jungle, the white sandy beach and the turquoise blue sea you feel truly like in paradise. The famous viewpoint can be reached on foot via a short but steep path. Up there you have a fantastic view over the bay with its two famous crescent-shaped beaches (Tonsai and Loh Dalum Beach) only separated of a small piece of land. Furthermore, Phi Phi Don has a beach called monkey beach. The name has been given by the resident monkey’s. These long-tailed macaques are a tourist attraction and they usually feed mussels, craps which are located in the surge on the rocks. To enter this beach is no longer recommended due to several incidents caused by the animals fed. One of the most popular attractions of Phi Phi Island is called Maya Bay. It is located at the uninhabited neighboring island Phi Phi Leh, which became extremely popular through the successful Hollywood film “The Beach”. The picturesque lagoon is indeed a film-ready landscape scenery and exerts its own, indescribable magic on the visitors. Equally impressive is the Pileh Lagoon. As the boat travels slowly into the small lagoon, you get an overwhelming view of the jungle, rock formations and crystal blue waters. It goes without saying that a jump into the water is an unforgettable experience. On the journey the boat passes by the large, submerged limestone caves, called Pileh Cove. In the caves a specific species of swallows are resident. The nests are harvested after hatching and are especially in Asian countries praised as very expensive delicacy.
Not to forget the two other islands called Bamboo Island and Mosquito Island which are as beautiful as Phi Phi Don and Phi Phi Leh. A stop at Bamboo Island is perfect for snorkeling along the imposing rock wall. The often clear water is home to intact hard corals and a variety of different fish and other marine life. Mosquito Island is a small island as from the picture book with a slightly sloping white sand beach and and just perfect to access the water. In addition to swimming and sun bathing, a small exploration tour can be undertaken through the jungle. The two other islands of the Phi Phi archipelago are Koh Bida Nok and Koh Bida Nai, which are particularly attractive for divers.
For snorkeling, there are some nice reefs and rocks in relatively shallow waters, mainly covered with hard corals with many different fish and other marine life. In some places, there are regular sightings of the harmless black-tip reef sharks in depths of just 1-2 meters. The visibility depends entirely on the prevailing conditions such as wind, waves, surf and currents.
Conclusion: A day trip to the Phi Phi Islands is definitely worth it. The combination of sightseeing, snorkelling, white beaches and swimming in turquoise clear water makes it a perfect day in a tropical paradise. However, tour operators should be carefully selected. Very cheap tours are often mass processing and don’t allow any flexibility in terms of the itinerary.