Hands down my favorite place on my journey throughout Southeast Asia. The beautiful beaches, water activities, nightlife and the people I met made me fall in love with the island.
I took a ferry ride from Ao Nang to Phi Phi, about 6 USD. I booked the bus ride to the dock and ferry at my hostel, one can book transportations at almost all hostels and resorts in Thailand.
I met two Germans from the hostel I was staying at in Ao Nang. They were both going to Phi Phi and riding the same ferry. We talked during the two hour ferry ride. We decided to grab lunch when we walked off the dock. I asked them if they wanted to split a room and they agreed.
Part of the island has many of the bars and many of the hostels are located near the bars. Our plan was to be close to the bars but little outside so when we went to bed we would not hear noise. We spent about thirty minutes looking around. We looked at The Rock, a very unique hostel. The hostel is located near many bars. The hostel itself had a bar and part of the hostel was shaped as a boat. We decided to keep looking around. We eventually found a place, on the beach, for 9 USD a night, per person. The room looked as an average hotel room, two beds, a lock, bathroom, A/C. The place was about minute walk from the beach nightlife, the place we stayed did not have name but they had about 8 rooms. The room was on the beach.
Picture above is the alley way where our room was and behind me was the beach, picture below.
First day we relaxed on the beach. That night, we went out to the bars and watched the USA/Germany World Cup match. We started the night on the beach bars, where it is always lively. Buckets, mix of different liquors and soda/juice, can be bought at bars and stores. The prices range from 5 USD to 12 USD. I recommend to be careful buying a bucket at a bar. The stores buckets, all the bottles have not been open and are in the original glass. Where as, bars, the bartenders will open the liquor bottles. One, you do not know what they are pouring into your drinks. I heard many stories that people had be drugged and when people are passed out, they get robbed or become victims of other crimes. Second, you do not know how clean the bucket is or if the bottles have been refilled, begging the question, are they clean? We went to the different bars, The Banana (my personal favorite), Breakers, Ibiza, Slinky’s, just to name a few.
The second day we venture up to the top of the mountain on the island. I highly recommend the walk. Half way up to the island, the cost is free, but if you want to go to the top, it cost about 1 USD. The view is amazing and if you want a good picture. From the top, you will be able to walk down the back side of the mountain, but the trail is dirt and you will want to wear close toe shoes and mosquito spray. The walk is about 30-40 mins one way. The beach was nice but in my opinion, not worth the walk. The beach around the hostels/resorts and bars are nicer. The way back down, we bought tickets for a snorkeling trip for the next day for Maya Bay (the island where Leonardo Dicaprio’s ‘The Beach’ was filmed). There are many tour companies for day snorkeling/island hopping trips. The companies all have around the same prices but some are a little cheaper and offer a little more, i.e. free breakfast, lunch, drinks, etc. I would shop around. That night we hit up the nightlife.
View from the peak.
The following day we woke up at 8 AM to meet at the docks for our trip. The trip was half day. Our destinations were Maya Bay, Monkey Bay and a lagoon to snorkel. Our guide offered us breakfast because we started our tour. We first went to the lagoon to snorkel. We spent about half an hour swimming and snorkeling. The water in the lagoon was warm and clear. The second stop was to Maya Bay. As we pull into the back bay of the island, we see a gap between two boulders with greenery with a rope ladder. The water in the bay was a little rough. One of the backpackers asked our guide “how do we get there?”, the guide replies “you swim”. Laughter erupts because, as Westerns, no tour company in our countries would allow anyone to swim in the water. The guide replies, “No, you swim.” Here is a link to the swim, this is not my video. After successfully swimming to the island we made our way to the famous Maya Bay. We spent about 45 minutes on the island. We had to swim back to our speed boat where we had lunch. Our final stop was Monkey Bay. The last stop was about 20 minutes of watching the monkeys and hanging out on shore. There are many signs that say, do not feed the monkeys. Which people do anyway. Please do not feed the monkeys. The monkeys end up becoming dependent on humans which leads to many problems. The few problems are humans can transfer disease to monkeys and vice versa, could lead to aggressive behaviors towards humans, contrary to stereotypes, monkeys do not eat bananas all the time in the wild and could upset monkey digestive system, monkeys being dependent to humans could hurt their survival abilities and upsets their habit from plants to other wildlife, females that are pregnant would be hurting their baby because it is not receiving the correct nutrition those are a few in a many reasons to not feed monkeys. After monkey bay we arrived back to the dock and spent our final night hitting up the bars with the people we met on our day trip.
Maya Bay (known from the film ‘The Beach’)
I had a fantastic time in Koh Phi Phi and Maya Bay. This is a small part in my Southeast Asia journey. If you have any questions feel free to ask below.