Is The Phi Phi Island Tour All It’s Cracked Up To Be?

by Jenna
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Phi Phi Don

Some people love Phi Phi Island and some people don’t, but there again some people don’t like chocolate and those people can’t be trusted.

We had heard a lot about the different Phi Phi Island tours and we ended up booking one that covered Phi Phi Don, Monkey Beach, Snorkeling in Loh Samah Bay and Maya Bay. It was around £70 per person and included food (which was pretty yummy) and hotel transfers.

The bus transfer from our hotel in Phuket was fairly long and the woman behind me spent the entire time snorting and chewing her gum loudly, luckily the views were pretty stunning so that made up for it.

Once we had helped ourselves to the buffet that was put on at the pier and accidentally stole two drinks from the shop we jumped on the speedboat and made our way out to sea. Our first port of call was Phi Phi Don, a beautiful long stretch of beach with a bustling town just behind, our tour guide told us where the toilets were and said that we had 45 minutes there. The toilets were 50 baht to use so I peed in the sea. I think everyone has to do a wee wee off Phi Phi Island… It must be how it gets its name.

Monkey Beach

We left Phi Phi Don and made our way to Monkey Beach, Viking Cave, Pileh Cove and the beautiful dreamlike Loh Samah Bay. Unlike the other five million tours that were at Monkey Beach, we didn’t get off the boat as the monkeys have gotten so used to the humans feeding them that they’ve forgotten to feed themselves and can get aggressive if you don’t give them food. We haven’t really evolved very much have we?

One boy from another tour gave a tub full of popcorn to a monkey and another was chewing on a water bottle; if you want to see the negative side of tourism then look no further than Monkey Beach.

 Snorkeling off Phi Phi Island

We jumped off the boat just outside of Los Samah Bay and went snorkeling which was truly beautiful and surreal. The photographer handed a piece of banana to me and suddenly all these little fishies came swimming over to get some of the fruity goodness. They even nibbled my fingers, cheeky buggers.

Maya Bay

Finally we arrived at Maya Bay, where The Beach was filmed, a film that I watched a week before going to Thailand so that I could get as excited about it as my girlfriend. It really was an incredibly idyllic beach, the white sand was the softest thing I’ve ever felt beneath my feet and the sea was so transparent and warm. God, it was bloody amazing. Maya Bay was definitely the best part of the tour for me, nothing will ever beat the way I felt when I walked through the warm white sand and into the crystal clear sea.

We got to the beach around 3 pm and there were more people there than there was at Trump’s inauguration, not that that’s difficult… The tour guide told us that this was the quietest time of the day, so I can only imagine the crowds at 12 pm, apparently there are so many people there earlier in the day that you can’t see the sand for the people, and if I’m being honest I hadn’t travelled all the way from London to Thailand to look at a ton of (very red) people.

Like most places us humans go, we leave rubbish and don’t bother to clear it up, even in this beautiful place. I saw a man going along the beach picking up litter and putting it into his plastic bag, but with so many people every day I’m guessing that he never reaches the end of the rubbish. At one point my girlfriend ran screaming out of the sea because she thought she saw a jellyfish, it was a plastic bag… Unfortunately, the beach is having to close for a few months in 2018 in order to reverse decades of damage that us tourists have done.

Back to Phuket

After an amazing day and one of the best tours that I’ve ever been on we jumped on the speedboat and travelled back to Phuket. With the sun beaming down and the wind stripping us of any heat we stupidly sat in the sun for the entire journey burning the hell out of our skin.

During the bus ride back to our hotel we passed a bike that had a baby being held tightly on top of it, said bike then cut us up at a roundabout: It really is driving at its stupidest, it’s like everyone is on a suicide mission and no one has taken their driving test.

If you’re heading to Thailand then I would definitely recommend going on a Phi Phi Island tour, I understand that it’s not for some people (due to the large number of tourists), but the crowds are definitely worth tolerating.

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