Thailand: Tropical bay from 'The Beach' reopens

By TIN Media | Asean News Published 8 months ago on 5 January 2022
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THAILAND:

A Thai bay that was made famous by its appearance in the film The Beach starring Leonardo DiCaprio has been reopened after more than three years.

Maya Bay, on the island of Phi Phi Leh, was closed in 2018 after officials said a sharp rise in visitors had severely damaged the environment.

But now tourists are being allowed back due to the ecosystem recovering.

A maximum of 375 visitors will be able to visit at a time and swimming will be prohibited, for now, officials say.

"The sharks have come back, coral reefs are regrowing, and the water is clear again," Yuthasak Supasorn, the governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand, told the Reuters news agency.

"These things show that nature will heal if we give it time, and we have to work to keep it that way too."

Boats will only be permitted to dock at specific locations to avoid damaging coral reefs, officials have said.

The beach featured prominently in the 2000 film of that name, and tourism saw a sharp uptick in the following years.

In 2008, there were around 170 people visiting per day. But by 2018 the number had grown to around 5,000 and most of its coral died as a result.


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