1. Maya Bay
Maya Bay is a famous beach that has been made famous in the blockbuster “The Beach” starring DiCaprio 20 years ago. It is probably one of the most popular tourist places in Thailand and maybe one of the most well-known in the world. This beach is located in Koh Phi Phi Leh, one of six islands of the Koh Phi Phi archipelago.
Known for its pristine shorelines, beautiful white sand and coral-filled waters, Maya Bay attracted a lot of visitors coming to enjoy the view and the sea every year, despite its only 250-meter length and 15-meter width.. Especially after the success of the movie, the beach suffered from mass tourism and had to host over 5,000 tourists per day during the peak season. This caused some severe environmental impacts on Maya Bay ecosystem such as soil erosion, coral reef damage and uprooting of trees and vegetation. It is reported that 80 percent of its coral was dead due to a large influx of tourists, which is an alarming number.
Therefore, authorities decided to close the beach since June, 2018 and failed to reopen it in early 2019 as planned. Now there was official announcement that the beach will remain closed until 2021 or longer to rehabilitate its natural ecological system. It is sad but a necessary move to protect this beautiful and iconic beach of Thailand.
2. Koh Tachai
Koh Tachai is an island in the famous Similan National Park in southern Thailand. Its beach is widely known for the stunning coastline, flourishing coral and so crystal-clear water that visitors can spot leopard sharks and manta rays in the clear waters.
Thanks to its beauty, Koh Tachai became a favorite destination for both local and foreign beach lovers. As a result, the beach can only hold up to 70 people but sometimes there were more 1,000 people here, and some even went on to Koh Tachai’s official website to complain about the overcrowded situation, especially at snorkeling sites near the island. This large number of tourists, along with food stalls and tour boats therefore caused the degradation of the environment of this island.
As an act to recover its natural resources, authorities reached the decision of closing the island indefinitely from October 15, 2016, wishing this bold action would help both island and the sea can avoid being disturbed by tourism activities before the damage is beyond repair
These are 2 beautiful beaches that have unfortunately been closed due to the consequence of tourism. If you are planning to get some vitamin sea this summer, make sure to avoid these 2 name and be cautious with some tour companies trying to sell trips to the islands.