What a wonderful island Ko Phi Phi is. Located on the South-West coast of Thailand, cradled within the marine-rich Andaman Sea, the island of Ko Phi Phi is full to the brim with some serious scenic abundance!
How Do I Get to Ko Phi Phi?
Getting to Phi Phi island couldn’t be easier. If you’re coming from Bangkok then you can get a train down to Surat Thani, which will take about eight hours, then get an air conditioned bus from Surat Thani across the country to Krabi. The bus journey will take about three hours and is usually quite comfortable. Once you get to Krabi, you then hop onto a ferry for a two hour journey that will take you to the little island of Ko Phi Phi.
The entire journey from Bangkok will cost you roughly 1,000 Baht (£23/$35) and you can book the whole route in Bangkok at the train station. Once you splash down onto Phi Phi you will also have to pay 20 Baht (£0.50/$0.80) to enter, so just make sure you have change handy.
What Is There To Do on Ko Phi Phi?
Alongside the beautiful scenery, the island has a wide variety of activities that you can enjoy. This includes sampling some of the famous Phi Phi nightlife, taking a trip to the Muay Thai boxing, hand-feeding some wild monkeys and plunging into the marine-rich bays surrounding the island. Needless to say, you’re not going to get bored!
To make things easier, I’ve put a short list together of the best things to do during you’re stay in Ko Phi Phi:
- Go on a boat trip over to Monkey Island and feed some of the wild monkeys that inhabit it. We managed to feed some of the little baby monkeys bananas by hand and it was a pretty surreal yet amazing experience.
- Visit the Reggae Bar to watch the Muay Thai boxing. This really cool bar has a unique aspect to it in the fact that there is a Muay Thai boxing ring in the middle of it! You can watch the fights all night that typical consist of a mixture of drunken Westerners pitting against each other, and really skilled Thai men fighting. You can even get in the ring yourself in exchange for a bucket of alcohol – I wouldn’t necessarily recommend it though!
- Take a day trip over to the beautiful island of Ko Phi Phi Leh. Ko Phi Phi Leh is the island where they filmed ‘The Beach’ and it really does take your breath away when you get there. The sand is so soft that it doesn’t feel real and the water is so warm that it feels like you’re getting into a hot bath. A definite bucket-list item.
- Dive down into the bays surrounding Ko Phi Phi and do some snorkelling in amongst some of the most amazing and diverse marine life in East Asia. You can arrange a boat trip that will take you around all of the best bays around Phi Phi as well as a trip to both Monkey Island and Ko Phi Phi Leh. This will set you back around 400 Baht (£10/$14) and includes lunch – definitely worth the money.
- Get a massaman curry from Papaya. Through all of my time in Thailand, the best meal that I had eaten was a massaman curry from Papaya restaurant (opposite the Reggae Bar). It was so good that I went back the next night as well. The prices in Papaya are slightly above the island average but you can still get a full curry with rice for around 150 Baht (£3.50/$5.50).
- Watch the sunset at High Bar, nicknamed ‘the highest bar on the island’ for a number of reasons. If you want to experience a great atmosphere alongside some beautiful scenery then this could be the place for you.
This is just a handful of the things that you can do during your stay there but I would definitely recommend a trip to Ko Phi Phi Leh as being the activity that is top of your list. It’s truly beautiful and unlike anywhere else I have ever been in the world.
Where Should I Stay in Ko Phi Phi?
There are loads of places to stay in Phi Phi and they can suit a variety of different budgets. Due to the small size of the island there aren’t many large resorts there; however, the general quality of accommodation is pretty good.
In my opinion, one of the best places to stay is Jong’s Guesthouse. This is in the middle of the island so it is close to everything (not that anything is far away on the island anyway!) and it is really reasonably priced in comparison to other places in Phi Phi. You can get a double a/c room there for 1,200 Baht (£30/$42) a night and there is free WiFi, which is always nice.
If you’re looking for somewhere a bit more budget then you can check out Harmony House. This place has a lot of bad reviews on Trip Advisor but my time spent there was great. We paid 1,000 Baht (£23/$35) for a double a/c room but you could also get a fan room for 800 Baht (£19/$28).
Final Thoughts on the Island
I have to say that Ko Phi Phi really was one of the most unique places that I have ever visited. You can walk from one side of the island to the other in around 15 minutes, wade out into the sea for about 200 metres and still only be waist deep in water and you can snorkel in amongst some incredibly exotic fish. What more could you want?
About The Author: Matthew Barby runs the Melted Stories travel blog that gives travel advice, stories and some beautiful photography from his time backpacking around Thailand. You can get in touch with Matt through Twitter or via Google+.