Maya Bay reopens | VIDEOS

Thailand’s Maya Bay is now open to tourists and visitors after being officially relaunched on new year’s day. Visitors to Koh Phi Phi Leh will have to apply in advance and numbers will be capped at 4,125 visits per day and tourist numbers cannot exceed 375 people at one time. But visits will be limited to 1 hour and no swimming will be permitted within the bay itself. But the new wave of visitors will be able to stroll or relax on the famous sandy beach, popularised in the 2000 movie “The Beach” starring Leonardo DiCaprio.

The cap on total visitors isn’t much below the peak visitations when Maya Bay was besieged with daily visitors before being closed off in June 2018. But the new restrictions have been designed to control visitor movement and keep boats out of the actual Bay.

80 tour operators, guides and tourism officials from Bangkok, Krabi, Phuket and Phang Nga visited the island last Wednesday to go over the new restrictions, changes and procedures as the popular tourist attractions emerges after a 3 year hibernation.

Maya Bay reopens | VIDEOS | News by Thaiger

PHOTO: This morning at Maya Bay as tour boats scramble to take visitors back to the island – 5 Star Marine

Shaun Stenning from Phuket’s 5 Star Marine took their first boat load out to Maya Bay on the morning of January 1. It was already busy with almost perfect weather for the re-opening.

“We were there for the reopening and the National park rangers managed the access and new processes well. The pre-registration system still has a few wrinkles to sort out.”

“The Bay itself is stunning but we do have concerns about the number of people and boats that are on the rear pier access (watch the video). As they continue to roll out the reopening hopefully they will adjust numbers lower and create a better plan to manage the boats at the new pier.”

Maya Bay will now be open for visits every day from 7am to 6pm. All boats will have to access the island from the opposite side of the island from the Maya Bay beach.

Tim Newton goes over the new arrangements and a look at the new pier…

Maya Bay reopens | VIDEOS | News by Thaiger

PHOTO: First visitors back to Maya Bay on January 1, 2022 – 5 Star Marine

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Tim Newton

Tim Newton has lived in Thailand since 2011. An Australian, he has worked in the media, principally radio and TV, for 42 years. He has won the Deutsche Welle Award for best radio talk program (public radio Australia), presented over 11,000 radio news bulletins, 3,950 in Thailand alone, hosted 1050 daily TV news programs and produced 2,100 videos, TV commercials and documentaries. He also reported for CNN, Deutsche Welle TV, CBC, Australia's ABC TV and Australian radio during the 2018 Cave Rescue and other major stories in Thailand.