Koh Phi Phi
Koh Phi Phi islands are a group of islands situated between Phuket island and the mainland coast. The group of islands is made up of Koh Phi Phi don and Koh Phi Phi leh.
Made famous by Leonardo Dicaprio’s film The Beach, Phi Phi is now one of Thailand’s most popular islands. It is known for its curved white beaches, stunning scenery and party vibe.
The closest airport to Phi Phi is Krabi Airport, from there you are able to arrange a bus and ferry straight to Phi Phi.
We were travelling from Surat Thani port on the eastern side of south Thailand and so took a mini bus for the 3 hour journey to Krabi pier. Once there we got a ferry to the island.
Our ticket cost 1,100 baht, but this included an overnight ferry from Koh Tao as well.
We weren’t sure of our plans in Thailand so we left booking our accommodation fairly last-minute. With it being December close to Christmas this meant our options were limited.
There were only 4/5 hostels available at the time of booking and voyages came out top for us (the rest had terrible reviews).
Don’t get me wrong if you had a bigger budget you could easily find a lovely hotel, but at £15 a night for a dorm bed in a hostel it was already fairly expensive for Thailand.
I’m not going to lie to you the beds were hard and the room was pretty cramped with limited to no storage. But the hostess, Yui was an absolute star.
Yui was so welcoming, friendly and helpful. She always had a smile on her face, laughing and joking with us but also making sure the place was super clean. Honestly she didn’t stop cleaning!
She helped us book a boat tour and ferry tickets, taking time to talk to us making sure we got the best experience. On check out she also got us a little Christmas present and asked for photos.
Yui is voyages biggest asset!
Exploring Koh Phi Phi
Koh Phi Phi is a fairly small island and everything is located very close to each other around the pier area.
You are easily able to walk between places amongst the small cobbled streets, which we really liked. It meant we were able to be a little more spontaneous and wonder around finding somewhere to eat or something to do rather than planning in advance.
Nearly everyone that comes to Koh Phi Phi wants to do a boat tour of some kind. This has resulted in demand being met by the locals, there are literally hundreds of boat tour companies offering services in Phi Phi.
The style and length or your tour is what dictates the price. There are party boats, speed boats, family boats and big boats all offering different levels of class.
We decided to go somewhere down the middle choosing a big boat that stopped at all our desired spots for 700 baht (plus national park fees payable to the government of 400 baht).
Our boat experience
The day started at 9 am at which point we got picked up (by walking there’s no cars) from our hostel. We made our way to the meeting point where we were given a safety briefing.
Due to rough seas they explained it may not be safe to snorkel everywhere but that they would do their best.
Briefing done everyone boarded the boat. There was around 40-45 people on the boat, which was large and comfortable.
I was actually thankful we choose a big boat when I saw the speed boats jumping over the waves along the way. I would have definitely felt sick in one of them.
Our tour visited the following notable spots:
Maya bay (where the beach was filmed)
+ other nice snorkel and kayak spots
Everyone had hyped up Maya bay as this stunning beach you couldn’t help falling in love with. Personally I didn’t feel that way. It was over crowded with hundreds of tourists and boats blocked most of the sea view.
To get to Maya bay our boat stopped on the other side of the island, we had to swim from the boat, climb up a net and walk over to the bay (that was actually more fun than actually seeing the bay).
We honestly stayed in Maya bay for a maximum of 10 minutes of the allotted 60 minutes and instead returned to the boat to jump off the board.
Not even sure this is worth a mention, nothing to really see.
A really pretty looking beach, with monkeys as you would expect. Charlie Ann is obsessed with monkeys so this was a big highlight for here and it was cool to see her enjoying to so much. We kayaked here and messed around is the water.
In my opinion way prettier than Maya bay and a lot fewer people.
Here we kayaked, snorkelled and watched sunset. It was good fun we saw lots of fish, and a stunning sunset.
Food on board
You were provided with free water, fruit and lunch which consisted of chicken and rice. It was actually pretty tasty considering.
All in all, we really enjoyed the day, despite being pretty shattered at the end. Swimming, snorkelling and kayaking really takes it out of you!
Though I would highlight how overrated Maya bay is and how we actually preferred the less popular locations!
Going out in Phi Phi
Phi Phi is renowned for its party atmosphere and it didn’t disappoint. There are tons of places to drink the night away and we definitely explored a few of them.
Ibiza pool party
Situated right on the beach is the Ibiza pool party. We hadn’t planned on going here, but whilst we were laying on the beach we heard the fireworks music and decided to check it out.
The drinks were expensive but entry was free and the atmosphere was a lot of fun. We ended up spending all afternoon/ early evening here.
The beach is lined with bars offering fire shows, cheap buckets and everyone gets involved covering themselves in neon paint or bands.
I don’t know the names of where we went party because the bars seemed to merge amongst each other with the volume of people and party because I was having too much fun to care.
Reggae Reggae bar
This bar is really well-known in Phi Phi, it has a Thai-boxing ring and customers are invited to fight in the ring against each other.
There are also professional Thai boxers who fight during the night, who are actually insane by the way! How on earth they manage to get up after the beating they take it’s beyond me.
If you take part in a fight you are given a bucket and after a few drinks it’s surprising how many people decide to give it a go.
Though I would add most that choose to fight had clearly had some boxing experience. I do not recommend giving it ago if like me you have never taken or thrown a punch in your life.
It was a really fun night and I recommend visiting, even if only the watch a couple of fights, show starts at 9pm.
We took a taxi boat to long beach from the pier and spent the day chilling there. It’s really pretty, the waters are clear and there are lots of fish to look at. They especially love it if you feed them.
Eating in Phi Phi
There are a lot of nice places to eat in Phi Phi, but I recommend trying these places:
Amazing breakfasts, I loved the avocado toast. The dinner was also pretty delicious too, though it is slightly pricier it’s definitely worth it.
Really popular always busy, I enjoyed the middle eastern options but they also had Thai and western too.
A lovely Indian right near the pier, good
service and nice location.
If you fancy reliving your early teens then why not get a braid. Charlie Ann persuaded me to get one for 100 baht.. it’s actually really pretty!
We really loved Koh Phi Phi and actually regret only staying 4 nights.
I liked how everything was so close together and easily accessible.
The nightlife is some of the best and the beaches are stunning too.