Thailand is seeing a rapid tourism boom with no signs of slowing down. With that comes an influx of visitors to one of the most beautiful and accessible island groups in the world, Koh Phi Phi. Despite what you’ve heard, it is worth a visit, even in the busiest times. There is always plenty to do and see in the archipelago that fits every style, from party-going backpacker, to the luxe relaxation-seeking travelers. While the concentration of shopping and restaurants reside on the isthmus of Koh Phi Phi Don, peace and indulgence can be found on secluded parts of Long Beach, Laem Thong, and other areas of the main island that are only accessible by private longtail boat. Even in the midst of the crowd, nothing outshines the translucent waters, pearl white sandy beaches, and panoramic views of the stunning limestone karsts. It is indeed, one of the most beautiful places in Thailand.
Koh Phi Phi Don was nearly wiped out in the devastating tsunami of December 2004, but the redevelopment was swift, and new building regulations limit the height of infrastructure so as to not obstruct the spectacular island views. Only two seasons exist on the archipelago: the hot season from January to April, and the rainy season from May to December. The latter season doesn’t completely halt island activities, so travelers need not worry about low season shutdowns of businesses and activities as in other parts of Thailand.
While most of Thailand is of the Buddhist belief, Koh Phi Phi has its own eclectic mix of Thai-Chinese, Muslims and even traditional sea gypsies. The majority of the population is Muslim, but the entire community lives harmoniously. This melting pot of cultures and faith means there are abundant celebrations year round. Visitors can take part in traditional festivities such as the annual boat-launching ceremonies of the sea gypsies, or numerous longtail boat races. The island also heavily celebrates westernized holidays such as Christmas and Valentine’s Day, making it a perfect location for holiday getaways for people from all walks of life.
Koh Phi Phi Don remains an exotic escape, and can be customized to any travel style. Not to be forgotten is the plethora of activities available for the active visitors, or those with families, some of which are unique to the region. It is a hub of romance, excitement, liberation, and tranquility. Wherever you are on Koh Phi Phi, you will find what you are looking for.