BootsnAll Travel Network

Ko Phi Phi, Thailand – Photos


 It is incredible how this place has changed since the Tsunami. When I last came here in 2002, all hotels were bungalow-type operations on the strip of sand that makes up Tonsai village. Coming in, you could barely make out the bungalows among the tall palm trees – the island was a lush paradise of palm trees, white sand, high cliffs and emerald water. It was the most beautiful place I had ever seen.

I was really disappointed coming back (Feb ’08). The palm trees are gone, wiped away either by the tsunami or the developers. The bungalows have been replaced by swanky 3 or 4 level concrete hotels and Tonsai village is now a mini-Phuket with massage parlors, bars, internet cafes, and tons of stores and restaurants. Backpackers have been replaced by young, package-tour travellers from Phuket – Tonsai village is PACKED. They even have a Muay Thai stadium! The scary thing is that only half of the isthmus connecting the two bays has been rebuilt, the rest of Tonsai is a barren landscape which the developers are only getting started on. Tonsai beach is no longer a beach between the new pier they are building – and it’s a big one – and the hundreds of longtail boats parked on the sand. What a pity.

Most of these pictures are from Long Beach which resembles what Tonsai used to look like. This is the place I would stay if coming back to Phi Phi – it’s quiet, has great views (that’s Phi Phi Ley in the background), a beautiful beach, some small family owned restaurants, and great snorkling!



More bitching and complaining ; don’t bother with the visit to neighboring Phi Phi Ley – it’s become a zoo. I remember the last time here visiting Maya Bay and thinking it was getting popular because there were about 10 other longtails in the bay at the same time. This is what Maya Bay looks like now…


Somehow, through it all, the Thais here are still friendly and smiling. Having been here twice before though, I felt dissapointment and even anger at the greed that has transformed this place. A rare piece of paradise has been ruined probably foreever and I’m just thankful that I saw it before. Shame!

Phi Phi Don before and after the tsunami:


Tags: ,

One response to “Ko Phi Phi, Thailand – Photos”

  1. Greg says:

    I was just on Ko Phi Phi in Dec and I was shocked at how much it had changed since my first visit in March 2006….still one of the most beautiful places in the world but unfortunately the word is definitely out.

    I enjoyed your photos, thanks.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *