With news of the indefinite closure of Maya Beach widely reported around the world, the Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) has issued a statement to clarify that Phi Phi Leh island – where the world-famous bay is located – remains open to visitors.
Maya Beach itself is off limits, but visitors can still enjoy the views of Maya Bay – now sans people – from a boat. They can also enjoy snorkelling in the front of the bay. Diving and snorkelling trips around Mu Ko Phi Phi are also running as usual.
The Nopparat Thara Beach-Phi Phi Islands National Park has reported sightings of blacktip reef sharks swimming in Maya Bay last week, which it said was as a good sign of the improving biological system since Maya Bay was closed to visitors four months ago.
Yuthasak Supasorn, TAT governor, said: “For many years, the local community at Mu Ko Phi Phi has been undergoing a regular beach and underwater clean-up aimed at helping to preserve the marine ecosystem as well as the coral reef system, which are the reasons why tourists and divers return to the area year after year.”
“TAT is ready to support all stakeholders to work together to achieve common goals towards socially and environmentally sustainable tourism,” he added.