Krabi’s renowned Maya Bay once again reopened its shores to the public on Sunday, 1 October 2023, following a two-month annual closure aimed at natural rejuvenation and ensuring tourist safety.
Maya Bay reopens following two-month closure
Maya Bay, situated within Hat Noppharat Thara-Mu Koh Phi Phi National Park, is a globally acclaimed destination known for its stunning natural beauty.
However, the bay has faced significant environmental challenges in recent years.
Historically, Maya Bay attracted tourists from around the world due to its captivating landscapes.
However, the bay’s immense popularity led to issues of overcrowding, which, in turn, resulted in the degradation of coral reefs and harm to its marine ecosystem.
To combat these issues, Thai authorities took action.
Maya Bay was initially closed to tourists on 1 January 2019, following three and a half years of continuous visitation.
This closure aimed to allow the delicate natural environment to recover from the impacts of over-tourism.
Upon reopening in 2020, strict measures were implemented to manage tourist numbers and protect the fragile ecology.
The national park authorities introduced a daily visitor cap of approximately 4,000 tourists.
Swimming in the bay was prohibited to safeguard the sensitive marine life and coral reefs. Tourist boats were also barred from docking at Maya Bay, instead, utilising a pier at Loh Sama, which is within walking distance of the bay.
To further protect Maya Bay’s ecology and maintain its natural beauty, the decision was made to implement annual closures during the monsoon season.
These temporary closures serve a dual purpose: allowing the environment to recover and ensuring tourist safety. During the rainy season, strong waves make it challenging for boats to dock at Loh Sama Bay, which is the access point to Maya Bay.