About Ko Phi Phi beaches
The twin islands of Ko Phi Phi Don and Ko Phi Phi Leh in Thailand’s Andaman Sea together form one of the most dramatic resort getaways in the world. These islands offer the tropical island dream with starched white sands, piercing aquamarine waters, swaying palms and lush forest greenery. The islands were badly hit by the 2004 tsunami, but the villagers took the disaster as a chance to start again and have developed the main resort area in a lower key manner this time. All of the hotels are on Ko Phi Phi Don as Ko Phi Phi Leh is an uninhabited national park.
Ton Sai lies on a flat sandy strip between the twin beaches of Ao Lo Dalam to the north and Ao Ton Sai to the south, both of which have plenty of space for unfurling a towel, though Ao Lo Dalam is more popular as it does not have the ferry traffic. The best beach is on Ko Phi Phi Leh in the form of Maya Bay, which provided the spectacular setting for the Hollywood movie The Beach in 1999.
Beyond the beach:
There are plenty of activities to keep holidaymakers occupied on the islands. You can just snorkel off the coast or take a PADI scuba course if you want to learn how to delve deeper. More experienced divers are also catered for. Sea kayaking is also a popular activity, which opens up the islands’ remarkable limestone landscapes. For a drier outlook climb up to the viewpoint that overlooks Ko Phi Phi Don. It is signposted from Ton Sai, just up the hillside from town. The national park on Ko Phi Phi Leh is ideal for snorkelling and lying around on the sands.
Hotels can be a good starting point for finding things for younger visitors to do. Then there are the twin beaches of the main village on Ko Phi Phi Don. Day trips that cruise around both of the Phi Phi islands are also a good option with half the fun for younger holidaymakers found in bouncing across the waves on a long-tailed boat.
Ko Phi Phi Leh is the most popular day trip option for holidaymakers staying on Ko Phi Phi Don and with good reason. This idyllic island is a protected national park and even camping is not allowed. The choice is whether to go on an organised tour or just to hire a long tailed boat. The latter normally allows more time on the island so that you can head inland from Maya Bay and explore the island’s other lagoon, Pilah.
For a real treat romantic couples should stock up on their favourite food and some cold drinks and hire a long tailed boat and skipper for the day. This can be done on the waterfront in Ton Sai. The driver can take you where you want to go if you have a plan or recommend some special spots where you can relax away from the crowds.