Day 1 – Welcome to Koh Phi Phi!
After an amazing 9 days on Thaintro it was time to continue the adventure on the other side of the Gulf of Thailand. We left Koh Phangan at 6AM and began our 8-hour journey (ferry-bus-ferry) across to Koh Phi Phi.
Koh Phi Phi Island is the highlight of many travellers when they go to Thailand. The Phi Phi Island group is known for it’s tropical beaches, stunning rock formations, turquoise waters and colourful marine life – it has something for everyone! In the year 2000 it become famous off the Leonardo DiCaprio movie “The Beach” which was set at Maya Bay. Phi Phi Island is only a 45-minute speedboat journey from Phuket making it an easy first destination to visit after many people step off their international flight.
The stunning Phi Phi Islands.
We arrived just after lunch and were met at the ferry terminal by our new Thaintro guide, Whitney. The first thing I noticed when arriving at Phi Phi was that it reminded me slightly of Gili Trawangan Island in Bali. There are no paved roads (or a very limited number of them) on the island, and the streets are lines with shops, restaurants, dive shops and bars. It is well known as one of the biggest party islands in Thailand – very similar to Gili T’s reputation in Bali. Phi Phi is truly a backpacker’s haven, and I could definitely see why.
We checked in to our accommodation, Kinaree Hostel and had the rest of the afternoon to our leisure. Whitney has been living on Phi Phi for over a year and knows all the hidden gems of Phi Phi, so she wanted to take us to a secret little spot that overlooked the island. It was a cliff-top pool bar, which showcased Phi Phi island’s stunning sunset.
We met up as a group in the evening and headed to Unni’s Restaurant for dinner and some drinks. After a long travel day many people took the night off and had a chill night, while others decided to venture out into the town for the evening.
Day 2 – Bamboo Island + Monkey Beach Sunset Boat Cruise
Bright and early a few people in our group decided to get up to see the sunrise from the Phi Phi Island lookout point. It was a short 45-minute walk up-hill – but it was bloody worth it! Once you arrived at the lookout point you were treated to stunning panoramic views of Phi Phi Island.
Well worth the hike!
Later in the afternoon our group gathered for departure on the boat trip to Bamboo Island & Monkey Beach. The weather (as expected during rainy season) was not great today. This was one of the only days of the 12 that we received “typical rainy season weather.” Lucky for us!
After returning from our afternoon on the boat we met at Acqua Restaurant in town for some happy hour cocktails (80 baht = $3 AUD) and dinner.
Day 3 & 4 – Check out & Maya Bay Overnight Sleep-aboard
Today we checked out of Kinaree Hostel and had the morning to explore Phi Phi before departing on the overnight Maya Bay sleep-aboard trip. My morning consisted of a delicious breakfast, some market shopping, a watermelon fruit shake and some sun-tanning.
Ready for the Maya Bay Sleep Aboard.
The sleep-aboard boat visiting Maya Bay is a main highlight of many visitors to the Phi Phi islands. Our boat cruised out of the bay and headed past the Viking Cave and anchored at Blue Lagoon for a couple hours. At Blue Lagoon we had the chance to do some snorkelling or kayaking out around the bay. The snorkelling around the boat was breathtaking. Schools of fish would swim right around your face and the reef was beautiful.
Later in the afternoon we cruised around to the entrance of Maya Bay. Due to the water being so rough surrounding the area we were unable to enter the bay the normal way and had to get a bit more creative.
En route to Maya Bay!
At Maya Bay the water was crystal clear, the sand was so fine and it was everything you could have imagined and more! I now understand why it’s so famous and so commonly visited. Another highlight of the overnight sleep-aboard experience is that when the horn goes off for all the day boats to leave the beach to head back to Phi Phi, we were able to spend another hour at the beach and get our photos without anyone else around! We had the whole Maya Bay to ourselves!
After dinner, we had the option to head out to a secluded beach for a beach party and bonfire or go swimming with the plankton off the back of the boat. One of the most unique experiences I have ever had was swimming with the plankton. Once you get in the water and turn off your torches – you move your limbs against the water and light up like a star! The plankton lights up in the water due to it’s bioluminescent nature. Following the swim, we spent our night sleeping on deck, having views of the beautiful stars in the clear night sky.
In the morning we had another chance to visit Maya Bay and get those last minute photos we missed the day before. We cruised back via Monkey Beach to Phi Phi Island arriving just before 10am.
The beautiful Maya Bay.
When we arrived back at Phi Phi Island this was where our Thaintro trip ended. Everyone in our group was headed to different places; many were staying longer in Phi Phi, some were going to Krabi, Phuket or flying back to Bangkok.
The rest of my time in Southern Thailand following Thaintro was being spent visiting Phuket, Koh Tao & Koh Samui. I had made some life-long friends during my time on Thaintro that I would be connecting with again during the rest of my travels. To follow the rest of my Thailand and South East Asia travels – check out the rest of my Asia blogs!
To read more about my trip in Thailand (Bangkok – Khao Sok NP – Koh Phangan) click HERE.
For more information on booking a holiday with Thaintro you can find their website HERE.