Phi Phi Island (pronounced “pee pee”) is the popular name used for Phi Phi Don, the largest & only inhabited island in the group of 6 which bear its name.
The islands became part of a protected National Maritime Park in 1983 thus ensuring that the fragile balance of the regional ecological systems are kept in check.
Widely recognised as being one of the most naturally beautiful islands in the world, this southern Thai paradise lies some 50 kilometers south-west of Phuket in the Andaman Sea, with the only access to the islands being by a two hour boat journey.
Phi Phi Don Island covers a total area of some 28 sq kms (17 sq miles) being 8 kms in length and 3.5 kms at its broadest point. The island was originally inhabited by Muslim fishermen plying their trade in the abundantly stocked seas around the islands.
The island later being used as a coconut plantation, until it was discovered as late as the late 1980’s by the most ardent backpacker travellers, which inevitably lead to the island being developed into a tourist resort!. Countless travelogues,tourists & Honeymooners have sung the praises of the Phi Phi Islands and first-time visitors are almost never disappointed, the islands have also become very popular destinations because they received so much exposure from Hollywood for movies such as James Bond -“The Man with the Golden Gun” and more recently, “The Beach” ,that starred Leonardo DiCaprio.
On the 26th December 2004, Phi Phi Don, along with much of Phuket was devastated by the Indian Ocean Tsunami . There were an estimated number of 10,000 people in Phi Phi Don at the time. Around 70% of the buildings were destroyed & many lives were lost.
Island redevelopment has been very swift, by December 2005, around 1,500 rooms were available on the island & the Thai government had installed a tsunami early warning alarm system in the Andaman Sea to hopefully prevent the disaster from happening again.
Today, Phi Phi Island life is completely back to normal,there are a wide range of Places to Stay from budget up to high resort standard, there are no roads, cars or lorries & very few motorbikes, most people either walk or use the many water taxis that abound the island. The two main beaches on the island are next to the main town – the curving bays of Ton Sai and Loh Dalam.
There are only really two main seasons on Phi Phi Island, November-May has the best weather, June-October the officialRainy Season sees some rain & windy days leading to high waves & rough seas, but as a tropical island do not also be surprised by sudden short & sharp showers any day of the year, they typically only last a few minutes, with the sun returning immediately.
Getting There – all access to Phi Phi Island is by boat, whether it be ferry, speedboat, yacht or small cruiseliner, with the main points of contact with the island being from Phuket and Krabi .
If you have been to Phi Phi Island or spent time there before, and have really great memories of places to stay, visit, or just fun things that happened, please share your Phi Phi Island Memories here.