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Similans re-open with tight new restrictions

The Thaiger & The Nation

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Similans re-open with tight new restrictions | The Thaiger

by Pratch Rujivanarom

The number of visitors to the Similan Islands will be capped at 3,850 people per day as part of new tourism management reforms to preserve the pristine natural beauty of the islands and promote sustainable eco-tourism.

When Mu Koh Similan National Park reopens today, tourists will discover some changes on the islands; they will find more tranquil beaches but also tighter enforcement of rules by national park officials to make sure that both tourists and the picturesque natural beauty around them will be safe.

Mu Koh Similan National Park chief Ruamsin Manajongprasert says the new tourism management plan has been revised to deal with two major challenges that the national park had been facing – excessive tourism and ecosystem degradation.

“Since Tachai Island is closed to all visitors due to environmental damage caused by tourism activities, the Similan Islands are the destination where the mass groups of tourists are diverted to,” Ruamsin said.

“Therefore, the National Park, Wildlife and Plant Conservation Department [DNP] decided that it was now time to come out with tougher tourism management rules in order to ensure that tourism activities at Mu Koh Similan National Park will be sustainable and cause less harm to the fragile ecosystems of the islands.”

He said starting from this tourism season, every tourist boat will have to notify the national park and get permission first before entering the islands. No more than 3,325 visitors will be allowed per day for one-day trips and 525 visitors per day will be allowed on scuba-diving tours at Similan Islands.

There will be no overnight stays at the islands.

“I am confident that our national park officers are now ready to perform their duties to look after the tourists’ safety and preserve the islands’ rich ecosystems, which will ensure that our next generations will have a chance to appreciate the natural beauties of our national parks,” Ruamsin said.

Similans re-open with tight new restrictions | News by The Thaiger

Prof Dachanee Emphandhu, a lecturer at Kasetsart University’s Faculty of Forestry and a researcher on tourism management and carrying capacity of Mu Koh Similan National Park, said if the measures were successful, the tourism management reform at Similan Islands would become an inspiration for other marine national parks to emulate.

“This is not the first time that the DNP is trying to limit the number of tourists and enforcing tighter rules to preserve natural resources and the ecosystems of the national parks. But this time it is different, as the officers of the DNP and the Mu Koh Similan National Park are very determined about tourism management reform, because the existence of our unique and priceless marine ecosystems are at stake,” Dachanee said.

However, tourism business operators arn’t happy with the reforms at Similan Islands. They regard the national park’s new tourism management rules as too radical and also too suddenly enforced, hence most of the operators are unable to adapt to such extreme changes and will unavoidably suffer severe damage to their business.

One of the tour operators in Mu Ko Similan National Park, Torphong Wongsathienchai, revealed that due to the significant adverse impacts to tourism business from the new tourism management rules at Similan Islands, he was forced to lay off 120 employees in order to keep his company operational.

“I have no choice but to ask many of my staff members to resign and put their families in financial uncertainty,” Torphong said.

“We totally support sustainable tourism management at Similan Islands, because the picturesque nature of the islands is a goose with golden eggs for us, but we want the change and enforcement to be gradual so that the tour operators can adapt.”

Similans re-open with tight new restrictions | News by The Thaiger

SOURCE: The Nation



Read more headlines, reports & breaking news in Phang Nga. Or catch up on your Thailand news.

Phang Nga

Italians, Thais and Burmese arrested for illegally fishing in Phang Nga national park

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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Italians, Thais and Burmese arrested for illegally fishing in Phang Nga national park | The Thaiger

Two Italians, three Thais and a Burmese man have been caught fishing illegally in the Mu Koh Similan National Park area off the Phang Nga coast yesterday. Private fishing is illegal inside the marine national park area.

The head of the Mu Koh Similan National Park Ruamsin Manajongjaroen says that officers were notified that the boat had been spotted catching fish near Koh Yuyong or ‘Island 1’ inside the national park area.

The speedboat ‘Nikola’ was located in the national park area. Officials found 46.5 kilograms of fish along with 29 fishing rods and other fishing equipment. Items and fish seized were valued around 2,107,000 baht, including the boat.

Six people have been arrested including two Italians, Claudio Bonfatti and Mario Vincenzo Biccai, both 70 years old. Three Thais were the boat captain, 35 year old Prasert Klasueak, 35 year old Prasert Guansamrong, a tour crew for the fishing company and 52 year old Wichart Damyod. The other person on board was the Burmese boat crew.

They were all taken to Kura Buri Police Station in Phang Nga for further legal action.

Italians, Thais and Burmese arrested for illegally fishing in Phang Nga national park | News by The Thaiger Italians, Thais and Burmese arrested for illegally fishing in Phang Nga national park | News by The Thaiger Italians, Thais and Burmese arrested for illegally fishing in Phang Nga national park | News by The Thaiger

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Phang Nga

Man charged after stabbing Australian tourist in Phang Nga

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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Man charged after stabbing Australian tourist in Phang Nga | The Thaiger

A man has been charged after stabbing an Australian tourist who sustained serious injuries in Phang Nga yesterday.

The Khao Lak Police were notified that the Australian man sustained injuries after being stabbed at a bar in Takua Pa, Phang Nga last evening.

The injured man is 44 year old Australian tourist William Mark Wayne. He was rushed to Takua Pa Hospital where he is now recovering after doctors were able to stem the bleeding. He is currently in a stable condition.

Police say that Mr Wayne was drinking at a bar with male and female Thai friends. The suspect name Chanin ‘Tiw’ Innarong parked his car in front of the bar.

He walked straight up to one of the woman and told her that he wanted her shirt that she was wearing. (The reason for his demands are not clear at this stage)

She told Chanin that she will give it him later as she couldn’t take it off at the time. Thanin insisted that he wanted the shirt. A scuffle developed as the man tried to pull the shirt off her.

Mr Wayne thought that Chanin was violently attacking the woman and tried to jump in to protect her. Chanin was angry and hit out at Mr Wayne, according to the police report. He used a knife to stab Mr Wayne on his right and left arms, stomach and collarbone. After that Thanin sped away.

Police soon after arrested Thanin at a night club in Khao Lak. Police have seized the six inche knife. He was taken to Khao Lak Police Station where he is facing charges of  intent to kill and carrying knife in public without reason.

Man charged after stabbing Australian tourist in Phang Nga | News by The Thaiger Man charged after stabbing Australian tourist in Phang Nga | News by The Thaiger

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Phang Nga

Dolphins playing off Phang Nga – VIDEO

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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Dolphins playing off Phang Nga – VIDEO | The Thaiger

VIDEO/PHOTOS: Wow Andaman

Lots of dolphins have been sighted near the Koh Similan group in Phang Nga.

The Wow Andanman tour manager says, “the tour was on a speedboat with tourists yesterday morning near Koh Similans yesterday. They say they sighted lots of dolphins which were playing around the boat.”

Those dolphins were heading to the north at Koh Tachai and Mu Koh Surin. This was the third time this month that we have sighted these wonderful marine creatures. Last time we sighted a False Killer Whale and Bryde’s whale.

About ten killer whales have been sited off Koh Similans in the Andaman off the Khao Lak coast this month.

Read more HERE.

สดๆๆ!!! 16-04-19 😱ถ้าสดกว่านี้ ก็คงต้องลงไปถ่ายในทะเลแล้ว🐬🐬 กับฝูงปลาโลมา นับ 100 ตัว ย้ำ นับ 100 ตัว ออกมาโชว์ตัวก่อนถึงเกาะสิมิลันก่อนจบฤดูกาลท่องเที่ยวฝั่งทะเลอันดามัน ใครบอกว่า มาตอนใกล้ๆจบซีซั่น อากาศไม่ดี ไม่จริงๆๆๆ ดังนั้น เก็บเสื้อผ้าใส่กระเป๋ายังทันน๊าทันผู้ชม มาๆๆ เที่ยวทะเลก๊านๆๆๆ ขอบคุณวีดีโอสวยๆจากไกด์ อาร์ตี้ แห่ง ว้าว อันดามัน #wowandaman #similan #หน่วยงานสร้างความสุขนอกชายฝั่ง

Posted by Wow andaman on Monday, April 15, 2019

Dolphins playing off Phang Nga – VIDEO | News by The Thaiger Dolphins playing off Phang Nga – VIDEO | News by The Thaiger Dolphins playing off Phang Nga – VIDEO | News by The Thaiger

 

 

 

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