With its bleach-white sands surrounded by a fortress of 100m tall karst mountains and a narrow entry point that opens to crystal clear water, Maya Bay is among the most stunning beaches in the world. Made famous in the movie ‘The Beach’, starring Leonardo DiCaprio in 2000, Maya Bay’s meteoric rise in the ranks of Asia’s most iconic sites was both a blessing and a curse. On one side, it highlighted the incredible natural beauty of Thailand. On the other side, it opened the doors to mass tourism. Over the years, the wear and tear on Maya Bay had begun to show.
Recognising this, in 2018 Thailand made the bold decision to close it down from tourism and allow the bay’s delicate coral reefs and environment to rebound. In that time, it is said that reef sharks have returned to the bay which is now teeming with life; proving the resilience of nature.
After nearly 3 years of rest, Maya Bay is now open to visitors again. But rather than making the same mistakes of the past, the number of visitors will be strictly regulated to 375 visitors at any given time, and swimming will be prohibited. Additionally, boats and visitors will only be able to access ‘The Beach’ through the island’s back entrance to avoid inadvertent damage to reefs by boats coming into the bay.
This balanced approach will help to preserve the incredible ecosystem of Maya Bay while allowing visitors to responsibly enjoy it for decades to come. We can’t wait to show you this incredible gem…responsibly!