Visiting Maya Beach, Koh Phi Phi Leh
Maya Beach, otherwise known as ‘The Beach’ was made popular by being a setting in the film ‘The Beach‘ hence its direct nickname relative to the films title! Maya Beach is highly rated on Trip Advisor as #5 out 30 things to do on Koh Phi Phi Don.
Koh PhiPhi Leh is a located south of Koh PhiPhi Don and takes a short boat ride to get there.
We travelled by long boat, roughly 150 baht each and took about 20 minutes to get there. On the way I was amazed by the clear blue waters surrounding the island and its scenery; undercut rock cliff faces from the waves and the wildlife swimming below.
Once you arrive at the drop off location, which is not the beach itself, you have to jump out of the longboat and swim/tread treacherously to the rocky shore. After you will be greeted by a climbing net as your way onto the island. I would recommend you take some form of footwear in order to better navigate the sharp rocks below.
Cut feet, mixed with salt water, sand and trying to wear flip flops really isn’t pleasant.
Once you have successfully climbed, scrambled, and struggled your way to the top, you are then greeted with an entrance fee – yes you have to pay to enter an uninhabited island. I didn’t mind this too much, but I have no idea if the money was used to preserve the island or whether there were a few locals making mugs out of gullible tourists. Either way it was about 150 baht each to enter and I really didn’t care at this point.
From here it was a pleasant 8-10 minute walk through the island, walking with and past other travellers/tourists you got this sense of collective joy, at this point excitement is reaching peak levels. Eventually you pop out of the trees and plantation to this amazing beach!
This incredibly beautiful beach with it’s uninhabited land is a wonder to see. Not a boat insight (there was no boats the whole time we spent on the island) and no shops, kiosks, buildings of any sort or locals trying to sell you anything, it was bliss! People have complained about the fact that it is overloaded with tourists and is too busy, but it’s all dependant on what time of the year you are travelling. If you are there in the peak season then obviously it’s going to be busy so you will have to book/visit early or chance it, maybe even visit a second time?
Either way I put this on a must do/see list for Thailand as a whole. I hope the Thai government or local authority put in some measures to prevent this fantastic island from being ruined or damaged by mass tourism.
I put together a short video of our travels to Maya Beach which you can watch below: