What to Visit and Do in Koh Phi Phi ? – Page 3

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Maps – Orientation

Map 1 : Koh Phi Phi

Map 2 : Koh Phi Phi Center

Map 3 : Interactive Map

  1. Points in Red : Transport
  2. Points in Blue : Tourist Attractions
  3. Points in Green :  Beaches

What to Visit and Do in Koh Phi Phi ?

3 Viewpoints on a hill

See location of the viewpoints on the Maps above and on Google Maps : Viewpoint 1, Viewpoint 2, Viewpoint 3.

This attraction is “a must” in Koh Phi Phi. The 3 viewpoints are on the same hill. The distance between the viewpoints is about 400 meters.

First you need to climb some stairs. The stairs start in the “center” of Koh Phi Phi. See location of the stairs on Google Maps.

There is an entrance fee of 50 Baht (price at the time of writing).

You arrive to viewpoint number 1. There are some decorations here for the photos.

There are some explanations about the Tsunami that happened in Koh Phi Phi in 2004.

Then you climb about 400 meters and arrive to viewpoint number 2.

The view is over the “center” of Koh Phi Phi.

There are drinks and ice creams to buy. The more you climb in altitude, so the price of the bottle of water increases.

Viewpoint number 2 is the favorite spot to watch the sunset. People wait here patiently for the sunset

From viewpoint 2 to viewpoint 3, you need to walk again about 400 meters and pay 20 Baht. Note that the viewpoints are in a Muslim area so they forbid to bring alcohol. It is a sunset without alcohol.

Viewpoint number 3 has the same view as 1 and 2, but from a slightly different angle.

This cat is sitting in a strange posture in viewpoint 1.

A Boat Excursion

Another must in “Koh Phi Phi”. It is very common to do a boat excursion in Koh Phi Phi. Much more common than in the nearby touristic islands Phuket and Koh Lanta. You will see a lot of publicity for that. There is almost no difference of price between the travel agencies, they all offer the same boat operators.

Most of the boat excursions are done with a speed boat.

In the past it was done with a slow boat with 2 floors (today only the divers are using these boats). The advantage of a speed boat is that it is fast, so you spend more time on the islands and snorkeling and less time on traveling. The boat is quite comfortable and it can accommodate about 20 people.
An alternative, is to do the excursion with a long tail boat. It is slower and cheaper.

The price for a day excursion with a speed boat is about 1500 Baht (price at the time of writing). The price includes the entry price to the natural reserve area. Some zones in Thailand are defined as “natural reserve” and an entry ticket is required. In most cases the entry price for foreigners is significantly higher than for Thais.

There is also an excursion with a “pirate boat”.

It is a cool boat. The idea is to have fun and drink alcohol.

A typical itinerary

The excursion begins in the morning at around 10:00 and terminats at around 18:00. The idea is to watch the sunset. There are also half day excursions.

The boat makes a tour around Koh Phi Phi and later makes stops in the tiny “Bamboo island” and in the island “Koh Phi Phi Lee” where “Maya bay” is located.

Before entering the boat, the passengers take off their shoes.

The first stop is at “monkey beach” in Koh Phi Phi.

The guide is asking not to touch the monkeys. Apparently there have been incidents. There are a lot of monkeys in the touristic places in Thailand and it is common that tourists interact with the monkeys, but here it is a group travel and the guide doesn’t want to be involved in problems.

Our guide was a Batman

A Batman that can also dance.

The guide usually tries to make a fun ambience for the day trip. There is also a fridge compartment on the boat where the travelers can store beers (to be drunk at sunset).

The next stop is a pause for snorkeling.

Great, you feel like a professional diver for a moment.

If you can’t swim, there are lifejackets.

There are very beautiful fish in the water, also sharks, but not dangerous ones. The guide led us to see a Nemo fish (orange and white, like in the famous movie).

The next stop is at Bamboo island. the sand is very white here

You then note that your group is far from being the only one on the beach. There are many other groups doing the same itinerary and stoping exactly at the same places. You then think about the effect of mass tourism and a second later realize that without mass tourism you would not be at this wonderful place (only rich people could afford it), so you stop thinking and continue to enjoy the trip.

Bamboo island is the place where groups are making a lunch pause (the excursion includes a meal). As a vegetarian I received this. It is not always easy to be vegetarian.

Next stop : Viking cave on the island of Koh phi Phi Lee.
The tourists don’t enter into the cave. The boat stops in front and the people just admire it from outside. The cave is famous for 2 things :

  1. It has paintings made by ancient sailors
  2. There are nests of Swiftlet (birds) that some people use to eat.

Next stop : Pi Leh Bay. The bay is simply beautiful.

As always, you are not the only group in place.

Next stop : Maya Bay. The bay is beautiful and it is famous because of a movie called “The Beach” with Leonardo DiCaprio, from year 2000. It was filmed in this bay.

The boat doesn’t stop at Maya bay but at a nearby artificial pier.

The tourists then walk a little bit.

An evacuation sign for a Tsunami case, reminds you that there was a devastating Tsunami in Koh Phi Phi in 2004.

And then you arrive to the bay (with many other groups).

In order to preserve the bay, it was decided that visitors will not swim in this area.

If you are lucky, you can find a moment with less people in this bay

Next stop : After sunset, there is snorkeling in order to see lights produced by marine organisms. It is called Plankton.

That’s it, the boat returns to the pier and you can go to a restaurant after a long day.

Beaches at Koh Phi Phi

There are 2 beaches in the center of Koh Phi Phi. These beaches are nice. If you want more exotic beaches, you can travel with a long tail boat to remote beaches around Koh Phi Phi or to beaches in nearby islands.

Look at Map 2, above

Beach 1 – Loh Dalum

This is the main beach of Koh Phi Phi. At night there are the beach parties here and during the day it is a place to swim without too many boats that disturb.

Of course that you can drink a smoothie on the beach.

Beach 2 – Ton Sa Beach

The main pier of Koh Phi Phi is located on this beach, so there are a lot of boats.

Still, it is possible to enjoy swimming at the edges of the beach.

Diving course

Koh Phi Phi is with Koh Tao, the most prominent places in Thailand for making a diving course.

The diving instructors are coming from all over the world.

In one diving school I saw the sign : “we speak English, French, Spanish, Portuguese, and German” and I thought to myself : why don’t they open a language school ?

Nightlife – Beach Parties

Koh Phi Phi is the second biggest place in Thailand for beach parties. The first biggest place is Koh Phangan (Haad Rin beach). Some will say that Koh Phi Phi is better. It is more intimate, doesn’t involve driving vehicles (and it is more expensive).

As always, where there are beach parties, there are buckets with alcohol.

At the time that I am writing, cannabis is legal in Thailand, so it is part of the party in Koh Phi Phi.

The main focus of the beach parties are plays with fire and especially the challenge to pass below a bar of fire with the knees first and the head last. In this photo : the correct way

In this photo : incorrect way. She may be drunk.

The bar is lowered each turn. The participants who pass correctly the bar of fire usually receive a free “shot”.

There is also some dancing on the beach.

If you don’t want to play with fire at night, you can walk on the beach. The tide is low

If you don’t want to move at all, you can sit and drink and watch the happening around you

Except the parties at the beach, the little streets in the center are full with activity. There are bars and restaurants. Note that Koh Phi Phi is a popular place to do a Tattoo.

There is even a Muay Thai show (Thai boxing) in of the bars.

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