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Phi Phi’s Maya Bay to be closed this June. Or maybe not…

Tim Newton

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Phi Phi’s Maya Bay to be closed this June. Or maybe not… | The Thaiger

According to AFP, Maya Bay is going to be closed in June this year.

“The once-pristine Thai bay which became a tourist magnet after the 2000 movie “The Beach” will be closed to boats for several months to prevent further damage to its coral, an official said Wednesday.

Hordes of tourists flock daily to Maya Bay on Koh Phi Phi Ley for selfies in front of the famed limestone cliffs and blue waters, leading to complaints of environmental damage to the water and sand.”

Story HERE.

Yes, it was the beach used in ‘The Beach’ (as the On On Hotel in Old Phuket Town was used as the gloomy Bangkok back-packer accommodation at the start of the film) and, yes, they’re right about the ‘hordes’. The poor beach is being raped daily by the onslaught of tourists, both on the beach and the hundreds of speedboats that either pull up on the sand or anchor in the bay.

But the Tourism Authority of Thailand has denied the story quoted in many prominent international media, saying…

“News in the international media today that Maya Bay will close to tourists is false news. There is no plan to close the bay or island. #Thailand #ThaiTourismNews”

News in the international media today that Maya Bay will close to tourists is false news. There has been no official…

Posted by TAT Newsroom on Wednesday, February 14, 2018

The media tit-for-tat will continue as news editors and TaT officials scramble for clarity on the matter.

Last September we published this story…

“Park officials say they’re going to close Phi Phi island’s famous Maya Bay from June for three months next year.

Officials of the Koh Phi Phi National park authority held crisis talks yesterday where they were told that the bay has been ravaged by too much tourism.”

This may be where the overseas editors have got their information.

Story HERE.

And just last month, this…

Natural Resources and Environment Minister Gen Surasak Karnjanarat said he agreed with restorative closure of the islands.

“If we close the island, people can’t come in and disturb the marine life, and we’ll have more time to get that restoration work done,” Gen Surasak said. “It’s not a question of money. Everything needs to be within a sustainable balance.”

Story HERE.

The question ‘is Maya Bay going to be closed in June?’ is still up in the air (but not according to the TaT). The question ‘should Maya Bay be closed?’ seems fairly cut-and-dried when it comes to a long-term plan to better handle the world attraction.

If the tourists still want to come and the money flow from tourists to tour boats to tour companies to… whoever keeps continuing its hard to see them killing off the golden goose.

The bottomline can probably be summed up in this exert…

“Had Nopparat Thara – Phi Phi Island National Park has officially reached the highest income among the national parks across the country this year with 669 million Baht.

The statistic were revealed by the Department of Nature, Wildlife and Plant Conservation (DNP) yesterday (October 9), when they released the profit generated by all 147 national parks across the nation from October 2016 – 2017; a new record of 2.4 billion Baht for Thailand’s national parks.”

Story HERE.

The commercial realities will over-ride any pressing environmental concerns, just about every time. If they actually do close Maya Bay this June we’ll be as surprised as the tourists who’ve already booked their trip to visit the iconic ‘The Beach’ beach.

Phi Phi's Maya Bay to be closed this June. Or maybe not... | News by The Thaiger



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Tim Newton has lived in Thailand since 2012. An Australian, he has worked in the media, principally radio and TV, for nearly 40 years. He has won the Deutsche Welle Award for best radio talk program, presented 3,200 radio news bulletins in Thailand alone, hosted 360 daily TV news programs, produced 1,800 videos, TV commercials and documentaries and now produces digital media for The Thaiger - Website, Radio, TV, Instagram and Facebook.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. fact not fiction

    February 17, 2018 at 3:09 pm

    Once upon a time, not that long ago, before the Chinese mass tourism hoards, you could visit Maya Bays & appreciate its pristine world class beauty. BUT THAT VISION IS DEAD!

    We, along with many others, used to moor our boats there in the afternoon once the 20 or so long tails or speedboats finally left for the day at around 4:00pm. On my last visit I stopped counting at over 100 speedboats alone. It’s simply dangerous & quite frankly why would you bother. It’s ugly, noisy & chaotic. Save your money, the hoards & their ferryman have raped pillaged & plundered it to destruction.

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Phuket

Phuket tourist decides hotel awning more comfortable than his room

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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Phuket tourist decides hotel awning more comfortable than his room | The Thaiger

PHOTOS: Rawai Rescue workers / Phuket Tourist Police

The Phuket Tourist Police have been notified that a tourist had jumped from a building in Rawai and ended up on a steel awning covering the bottom floor today. But that wasn’t, in fact, what had happened.

The local Tourist Police say the owner of the building told staff at the Tourist Assistance Centre that the tourist had checked into the room on February 13.

The tourist didn’t actually jump down from the building but had moved a mattress from his room on to the awning and slept on it (mosquitos!!) He was also drunk and damaged some property inside the room.

The man is a 37 year old Estonian tourist. He was staying at the room with a 25 year old male friend.

Chalong Police have charged them both with being drunk and damaging property. They have said that they will pay for all damages to the owner of the property. They are heading back home on February 26.

Phuket tourist decides hotel awning more comfortable than his room | News by The Thaiger Phuket tourist decides hotel awning more comfortable than his room | News by The ThaigerPhuket tourist decides hotel awning more comfortable than his room | News by The Thaiger Phuket tourist decides hotel awning more comfortable than his room | News by The Thaiger Phuket tourist decides hotel awning more comfortable than his room | News by The Thaiger Phuket tourist decides hotel awning more comfortable than his room | News by The Thaiger Phuket tourist decides hotel awning more comfortable than his room | News by The Thaiger

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Business

Thai exports fall 5.7 percent in January, year-on-year

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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Thai exports fall 5.7 percent in January, year-on-year | The Thaiger

Thai export results have dipped for the third straight month, falling more than 5.65% compared to a year earlier. The fall was a lot bigger than expected, according to the Thai commerce ministry.

Shipments contracted 1.72% in December, compared to a year earlier as well.

January’s export drop was due to falling shipments of rice, gold, electronics and cars, according to the ministry. Digging into the numbers, exports to the US rose 8.3% in the first month of the year, compared to January 2018, but exports to China slumped 16.7%.

The strong Thai baht, Asia’s best performing currency this year, has increasingly hit exports, particularly rice orders.

Checking imports for the same period, and the numbers jumped surprisingly 13.99% year on year, after sliding 8.15% in December 2018. Analysts say the surge in imports was partly due to imports of arms and military weapons.

There was a trade deficit of $4.03 billion in January, compared with a forecast surplus of $320 million surplus. December 2018 had a $1.06 billion surplus.

But the ministry says they are still forecasting export growth of 8% for 2019 after a 6.7% increase last year.

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Chiang Mai

American backpacker refuses to pay for girl he brought back to hostel, punches staff

Kritsada Mueanhawong

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American backpacker refuses to pay for girl he brought back to hostel, punches staff | The Thaiger

An American backpacker tourist, visiting Chiang Mai, had to be restrained after getting into a squabble with hostel staff after being asked to leave the premises.

The video of the altercation was shared on Reddit by ‘EatPrayFart’.

Following a night out, the backpacker brought a girl back to the mixed dorm room that he shared with nine other people. The report alleges the two had sex and were making a lot of noise.

The following morning the man was asked to leave the premises for breaking hostel rules. The staff also demanded he pay 200 baht for allowing the girl to stay in the dorm with him.

The man refused to pay and a fight followed, caught on camera, in the reception of the hostel.

In the footage the American man can be seen punching a member of the hostel staff before being restrained by another man. Some comments in the original post say that the man was also asked to leave by some of the other people staying in the dorm.

The report suggests the man was later taken into custody by Chiang Mai police.

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