This review is part of the 'Siam adventure' trip report – see below for the trip report index.
During my stay at the Sheraton Krabi I also booked a speedboat tour of the nearby islands.
The speedboat fleet at Ao Nang pier is impressive and there we at least 20 newish looking, high powered speed boats at the pier. This should have been a warning sign!
The trip to Ko Phi Phi started off with the usual choppy ride for these boats – most passengers looked pretty sick after a rough shakedown for 45 minutes.
Now I have been to Ko Phi Phi Leh and Ko Phi Phi Don about 10 years ago – just a year before the Tsunami hit and I loved it! It was a backpackers dream spot with clear waters, simple properties and no crowds. I did expect more people this time but I wasn't prepared for what unfolded that day.
Maya Bay is the bay used for Leonardo Di'Caprios 'The Beach' and it was as pretty and almost deserted 10 years ago – now at 9AM in the morning 25+ speed boats anchor there at the beach Each tour stops for just 30 minutes. So it's 200+ boats with 10-30 people that come to a spot the size of a large subway platform. And that's how it feels like…
I was equally surprised by the crowds on Ko Phi Phi Don (the main island) – it now has a port with ferry after ferry and hundreds of speedboats. The once small alleyways are tacky shopping streets with aggressive vendors now. I'm sure there are some quiet and beautiful parts of Ko Phi Phi left but they hide very well these days.
It's still a great spot to see for its natural beauty and there are some corals and fish left but the speed of ' tourist destruction' that happened here. is breathtaking.
The ride back got the boat flying and everyone holding on for pure life.