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Krabi

Islands in Krabi to temporarily close for restoration

Tara Abhasakun

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Hah island, one spot that will temporarily close, Youtube still.

Following last week’s announcement that Krabi’s Maya Bay will close from August to September, other national park tourist attractions in the province also plan to temporarily close for restoration. The Mu Ko Lanta National Park has announced in a legal notice that several islands under its control will close from May 16 to October 14.

The islands to close are Rok Nai Island, Rok Nok Island, Hngai Island, Hah Island, Hin Daeng Hin Muang, and Khao Mai Kaew Cave. Mu Ko Lanta’s legal notice says the closure will help with tourism management, as well as time for the islands’ environments and eco systems to recover. At least a bit. The park’s office will close from June 1-30.

Meanwhile on another Krabi island, Koh Phi Phi Leh, the famous, and hugely popular, Maya Bay will close from August to September, also to help recover its wildlife. The bay just reopened in January after closing in 2018, before the Covid-19 pandemic hit, because huge amounts of tourist visits had damaged the ecosystem.

The Minister of Natural Resources says that, even though the ministry had taken strict measures to limit the number of visitors to Maya Bay, over 3,000 visitors came every day during Songkran. The ministry allows 380 tourists per hour to visit the island, and requires them to book trips there in advance. The numbers of tourists visiting over Songkran exceeded these limits at times.

The ministry has banned swimming in the bay. Tour boats cannot enter into Maya Bay anymore and must enter via a new pier and bridge at the back side of Maya Bay.

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Maya Bay’s 3 year closure was successful at bringing back plant and animal species that had disappeared due to tourists overrunning the beach and adjacent areas. The boats entering the bay, and anchoring, also destroyed much of the natural coral. The most notable animal to return to breed in the bay is the blacktip shark.

SOURCE: The Phuket Express

 

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    A Thai-American dual citizen, Tara has reported news and spoken on a number of human rights and cultural news issues in Thailand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history from The College of Wooster. She interned at Southeast Asia Globe, and has written for a number of outlets. Tara reports on a range of Thailand news issues.

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