16 Top Things To Do in Phi Phi Islands in 2024: Travel Guide

In this ultimate travel guide, we list and describe all the top things to do in Phi Phi Islands in Thailand, what you need to know before visiting, from the best time to visit and how to get there, exciting activities, as well as best areas to stay in, including accommodation options.
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Top things to do in Phi Phi Islands, Thailand - Travel Guide

About Phi Phi Islands

Phi Phi Islands are a world-famous top tourist destination in Thailand, and its popularity has only grown since The Beach, the 2000 movie starring Leonardo Di Caprio, showcased the beautiful Maya Bay on Phi Phi Leh.

Through the years, Phi Phi Islands have become a must-see destination for almost every traveler to Thailand

But while everyone claims that Phi Phi Islands are so famous because of that movie starring Leo, it’s simply only one of the reasons. The natural beauty of these stunning islands would be “discovered” sooner or later.

Maya Bay, the top attraction and the top thing to visit in Phi Phi Islands
Maya Bay in Phi Phi Islands

Even Maya Bay, the top tourist attraction in Phi Phi Islands, would quickly become what it is now, even without that movie. Of that, we are sure! The setting of the pristine white sand beach in a protected bay is just something out of a dream.

Phi Phi Islands are a group of six stunning islands with crystal-clear waters, white sandy beaches, and spectacular limestone cliffs in the Andaman Sea off Thailand’s Krabi province.

Exploring pristine beaches, must-do in Phi Phi Islands

The Phi Phi Islands are about the same distance from Phuket and Krabi, the two most common starting points for tours and island visits.

While there are six islands in the island group, only Phi Phi Don is inhabited, and it’s the only island where you can stay overnight. It’s also the only place with restaurants, bars, and a whole town catering to the needs of countless tourists arriving to experience the Phi Phi beauty.

Enjoying a sunny day at the beach of Phi Phi Islands - must-do

FUN FACT: Phi Phi is pronounced as Pee Pee, not Fee Fee.

There are plenty of options for things to do in Phi Phi Islands; from exploring pristine beaches and enjoying water activities like snorkeling and diving to hiking through lush jungle paths and discovering hidden caves, there is something for everyone here. 

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Phi Phi Islands Travel Tips

Before we jump into the top things to do in Phi Phi Islands, let’s cover the travel essentials and tips to help you have a more fun, enjoyable, and safer trip to these remarkable islands in Thailand.

Stay connected with an eSIM

Instantly connect to the internet on your arrival in Thailand by buying an eSIM package in advance.

Book trusted tours

You can explore Phi Phi Islands to some degree on your own, but for the guided experiences, we recommend booking the top-rated ones on Viator or GetYourGuide.

Get travel insurance

While Phi Phi Islands are a safe destination, we recommend getting travel insurance for any trip outside your country. We highly recommend an insurance package from Heymondo. And as our reader, you get 5% off the price.

Travel map

We have compiled a Phi Phi Islands Travel Map, which you can refer to when exploring.

Top things to do in Phi Phi Islands

The crystal clear waters and stunning scenery of Phi Phi Islands make it the perfect place to relax and unwind while also offering plenty of exciting activities for adventure seekers.

Whether you want to explore the many beaches, go snorkeling, or take a boat tour, Phi Phi Islands offer something for everyone.

Enjoying an iced coffee on the Tonsai Beach in Phi Phi Islands

Let’s dive into the top things to see on your Phi Phi Islands visit!

1. Visit the iconic Maya Bay

Visiting Maya Bay is THE top thing to do in Phi Phi Islands, and it is a bucket list experience for most travelers to Thailand

Maya Bay became extremely popular after its appearance in the movie The Beach, starring Leonardo Di Caprio. But while its appearance in a famous movie helped popularize it, it became so well-known and visited primarily due to its natural beauty.

And rightfully so. It’s genuinely one of the most beautiful sceneries we’ve ever seen due to its fascinating beach in a protected bay. With its crystal-clear turquoise waters, breathtaking limestone cliffs, and gorgeous white sand beach, it’s also the most unique bay in Thailand.

Maya Bay is open for visitors in 2024 after being closed between 2018 and 2022 to restore its delicate ecosystem that mass tourism severely impacted in the years prior.

After the reopening of Maya Bay at the end of 2022, there were significant changes to how you can access and enjoy this now-protected environment. For example, swimming in Maya Bay is forbidden; you can only walk in water up to the knee depth.

Visiting Maya Bay in Phi Phi Islands, Thailand - top thing to do

The easiest and most affordable way to visit Maya Bay is by a traditional long-tail boat from Phi Phi Don, which will take about 20 minutes to reach Maya Bay.

Most tours include visiting the stunning Pi Leh Lagoon, Viking Cave, and some snorkeling spots.

Best Maya Bay tours from Phi Phi Don:

OPENING HOURS AND TICKETS

The entrance fee for Maya Bay is 400 Thai baht (12 USD) for adults and 200 Thai baht for children.

Maya Bay is open daily from 7 am until 6 pm, with the last entry at 5 pm.

Staying overnight in Phi Phi Don will give you a unique opportunity to visit Maya Bay for sunset or sunrise. So you will have fewer crowds on the beach since group tours from Phuket or Krabi can’t arrive that early or stay that late.

Unique Maya Bay tours:

2. Enjoy the beautiful beaches

Phi Phi Islands are home to some of the most stunning beaches in the world, with white sand and crystal-clear waters perfect for swimming, sunbathing, and snorkeling. With so many amazing beaches to choose from, a visit to Phi Phi Islands is a beach lover’s paradise.

Keep in mind that you need to use a boat taxi, kayak, or hike to get to some beaches.

Best beaches in Phi Phi Islands, Thailand - top thing to do

[ ALSO READ ]

Best Phi Phi Islands Beaches

Best beaches in Phi Phi Islands:

  • Loh Dalum Beach
  • Long Beach
  • Nui Beach
  • Maya Bay
  • Tonsai Beach
  • Monkey Beach

Long Beach is a great place to relax and enjoy the sunset, plus Shark Point, a great snorkeling spot, is right there. Long Beach is quieter than some other beaches in Phi Phi, yet still easily accessible as it’s only a short boat ride from Tonsai Pier. It’s one of our favorite beaches in Phi Phi Don!

Enjoying the beaches, the best thing to do in Phi Phi Islands - Long Beach

Loh Dalum Beach is the most accessible beach in Phi Phi Don, where you can enjoy snorkeling, kayaking, and stand-up paddleboarding. The bay is surrounded by limestone cliffs, which protect it from strong waves and make it very calm. Loh Dalum also boasts a lively beach party scene, with numerous bars and restaurants lining the shore.

Enjoying the beaches, the best thing to do in Phi Phi Islands - Loh Dalum Beach

Nui Beach is a picturesque beach in the northern part of Phi Phi Don, popular for snorkeling, as the underwater world is teeming with colorful marine life. However, Nui Beach is quite affected by the weather, so we only recommend visiting in the high season when the weather is the best.

Tonsai Beach is the main beach in Phi Phi Don, where the main pier is, so longtail boats will always be anchored along this beach. That’s why we don’t recommend Tonsai Beach for a pleasant beach experience, as being surrounded by boats is not enjoyable.

However, it can still be okay if you’re there mid-day when most boats are out on daily tours.

Tonsai Beach in Phi Phi Islands, Thailand

Monkey Beach is a beautiful beach known for the many monkeys that inhabit the area around the beach. We recommend skipping Monkey Beach on your visit to Phi Phi, as it’s known for its aggressive monkeys. If you go, please don’t try to touch or feed the monkeys.

They are wild animals, and they can bite! You do not want to visit a hospital on your Phi Phi Islands visit. Read more about it here.

BEST SEASON

Depending on the season, you can have a better (or worse!) experience at the beaches in Phi Phi and Thailand.

The best time to visit the beaches in Phi Phi Islands is between November and April. Outside these months, the waves can be stronger, and more storms are possible.

During stormy weather, more trash will likely wash up on the shores. However, some beaches are more affected than others. Unfortunately, this is a worldwide problem!

3. Admire the view from Phi Phi Viewpoints

Enjoying the view from Phi Phi Islands’ viewpoints is a must as they offer awe-inspiring, panoramic views of Phi Phi Don and nearby islands. 

Visiting viewpoints in Phi Phi Don, the top thing to do on every visit to Phi Phi Islands

There are three main viewpoints in Phi Phi Don, and there is a small entrance fee to visit them. 

TICKETS

Viewpoints 1 and 2 have a 30 baht entrance fee (about 1 USD), while viewpoint number 3 costs 20 baht ($0.60).

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The hike to Phi Phi viewpoint starts in Tonsai Village, and there are signs you can follow to get to the steep stairs, which then lead to the ticket office and the viewpoints. It should take about 20-30 minutes to reach Viewpoint 1 from Tonsai Village.

There are many stairs at the beginning of the trail to the Phi Phi Don Viewpoints, and they are steep, so it can get tiring with heat and humidity. Don’t underestimate this part like we did!

From the ticket office, it takes 5 minutes to walk to Viewpoint 1 and then about 5 minutes to walk to Viewpoint 2.

Viewpoint 2 has the best view of Phi Phi, where you see the Tonsai and Loh Dalum bays with the surrounding area.

If you continue walking for an additional 10 minutes, you’ll reach Phi Phi Viewpoint 3, which also has a fantastic view of Phi Phi Don.

While many visitors flock to the viewpoint to catch a stunning sunset, it’s worth noting that sunrise can be equally mesmerizing. So, if you prefer a quieter experience with fewer crowds, consider visiting in the morning.

We personally decided to skip visiting Viewpoint 3, but it’s probably a great choice for a less crowded sunset experience.

Sunset at Phi Phi Don viewpoints, the top thing to do on every visit to Phi Phi Islands

4. Go snorkeling

Snorkeling is one of the most fun things to do in Phi Phi Islands. 

Some of the animals found in the rich underwater world of Phi Phi Islands are blacktip reef sharks, lionfish, butterflyfish, sea snakes, clownfish, and much more. And if you’re lucky, you may also see leopard sharks! Sometimes, you can spot them at Shark Point.

Finding Nemo clownfish among corals - snorkeling, best thing to do in Phi Phi Islands

You can rent snorkeling gear and go snorkeling yourself or join one of the Phi Phi Islands Snorkeling Tours that take you to the best snorkeling spots around the islands.

The best snorkeling spots in Phi Phi Islands you can reach yourself are Shark Point, Loh Samah Bay, Loh Moo Dee Beach, and Nui Beach.

Organized snorkeling tours are great as you can cover more spots in one day and get to some less accessible areas where it’s hard to go snorkeling alone. We also highly recommend a Private Longtail Boat Charter, which you can fully customize to fit your needs.

Best snorkeling tours around Phi Phi Islands:

5. Go diving

Diving in Phi Phi Islands is one of the most thrilling things to do, as there are many diverse species and coral reefs to explore in the rich marine life around the islands.

Phi Phi Islands offer some of the top diving sites in Thailand, with over 20 dive sites in the Phi Phi Marine Park suitable for Scuba Divers of all skill levels. Some of the most popular diving spots in Phi Phi Islands are Shark Point, Anemone Reef, King Cruiser Wreck, and the Bida Islands (Bida Nok and Bida Nai).

Scuba Diving in Phi Phi Islands, the best thing to do

The best thing about diving in Phi Phi Islands is that you can dive all year round, as even off-season diving in Phi Phi Islands is still great and offers much less crowded dive sites.

Even though many parts of Phi Phi Islands suffer from overtourism, there are luckily still places where you can find rich marine life, and you can see species like the moray eel, octopus, eagle rays, and if you get lucky, leopard sharks.

Scuba Diving in Phi Phi Islands, the best thing to do

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5.1. Discover Scuba Diving

If you’re not yet sure if you want to pursue diving, you can go on a so-called Discover Scuba Diving Experience and enjoy one to two amazing dives under the supervision of professionals.

5.2. Get scuba diving certified in Phi Phi

While the islands of Koh Tao and Koh Phangan are the most famous places to get your diving certificate in Thailand, you can also do the Open Water Diving Course in Phi Phi.

If you want to dive deeper and expand your limits and knowledge, you can take the Advanced Open Water Diving Course or the Enriched Air (Nitrox) Dive Course.

5.3. Fun dives from Phi Phi Don

As a certified diver in Phi Phi Islands, you have plenty of fun dives available.

Phi Phi Islands fun dives:

Klook.com

6. Watch a fire show

Another great thing besides sunbathing and swimming on the beaches of Phi Phi Islands is to watch a fire show at one of the beach bars. You can observe the skillful fire performances accompanied by enchanting music. It’s a real fusion of artistry, danger, and creativity.

There are many locations on Phi Phi Don where you can watch the fire shows at different bars and restaurants. But the best places to watch fire shows are on Loh Dalum and Tonsai beaches, and the most famous bars hosting fire shows are Slinky Bar and Carlito’s Bar.

At Slinky Bar, you can even participate in the fire show, as they set up some fire activities for the audience, like a fire limbo or fire jumping rope.

ATTENTION FIRE 🔥

As these are fire shows we are talking about, please be careful if you intend to participate, as the danger of getting burned is real. Be careful!

Night at the beach in Phi Phi Islands
Waiting for a show that didn’t happen due to a holiday. 😀

7. Go kayaking

Kayaking is one the best water activities in Phi Phi Islands, allowing you to explore secluded beaches, secret cave entrances, and turquoise waters at your own pace. 

The most popular kayaking route in Phi Phi Islands is from Loh Dalum Beach to Monkey Beach, which takes around 20 minutes one way. The second most popular kayaking route is from Loh Dalum Beach to Nui Beach, which can take from 45 minutes to 1 hour one way.

Kayaking in Phi Phi Islands - best water activity

A really rewarding kayaking route in Phi Phi Don is from Tonsai Beach to Viking Beach and Long Beach. You can go and enjoy Long Beach and then snorkel at the Shark Point.

However, we recommend kayaking longer routes on Phi Phi Islands only on calm days, as on windy days, due to bigger waves, it can be dangerous. Before you go, check the weather prognosis and tidal charts before going on a kayaking adventure.

You can rent kayaks in many places in Phi Phi Don, especially on Loh Dalum and Tonsai Beach. The price of renting a kayak on Phi Phi Islands usually costs around 200 baht ($6) per hour for a one-person kayak and 300 baht ($8.5) for a two-person kayak or about 600 baht ($17) for a full-day rent.

8. Go hiking

If you’re looking for a jungle adventure, hiking in Phi Phi Islands is the best thing to do, as you can hike to almost all the famous (and less famous) spots on Phi Phi Don.

Phi Phi Don offers several popular hiking routes with stunning views. One of the most popular routes is the hike to the Phi Phi Viewpoint, which offers panoramic views of the islands and the Andaman Sea, especially the furthest away viewpoint.

Hiking in Phi Phi Islands
View from the cafe at Viewpoint 2

Another popular route is the hike to Loh Lana Bay, from which you can then hike to the stunning Nui Beach and Loh Ba Kao Bay, home to the luxurious SAii Phi Phi Island Village Resort.

You can do a 7-kilometer loop that includes all of these spots (plus we’d add Nui Beach).

Hiking in Phi Phi Islands to Loh Lana Bay and Loh Ba Kao Bay
Loh Lana Bay with Loh Ba Kao Bay seen behind.

From Tonsai or Loh Dalum, you can also hike to Long Beach (with Shark Point for snorkeling), Viking Beach, and Loh Mo Dee Beach.

Hiking in Phi Phi Islands jungle, Thailand

If you’re feeling super adventurous, you can do the Extended Phi Phi Islands Hiking Loop, which covers almost the whole island of Phi Phi Don in a 30 km round loop that takes about 8.5 hours to finish. 

Hiking in Phi Phi Islands, Thailand - Nui Beach

For guided hiking in Phi Phi, you can join the Trek in Phi Phi Islands Jungle Tour, which includes a hike to the viewpoints, visits a secret bay and cave where you’ll enjoy the sunset, and finishes with a swim with bioluminescent plankton.

If you’re planning on hiking in Phi Phi Islands, it’s important to wear comfortable shoes and bring plenty of water, sunscreen, and mosquito spray. It’s also a good idea to hike early in the morning or late in the afternoon to avoid the day’s heat. 

We took a short walk in the forest from Loh Lana Bay to Nui Beach and almost got eaten alive by mosquitos and giant ants.

9. Visit the Bamboo Island

Ko Mai Phai, known as Bamboo Island, is a stunning destination in Phi Phi Islands with a beautiful white sand beach and crystal clear waters full of rich marine life. 

Bamboo Island tour from Phi Phi Islands

To set foot on Bamboo Island in Phi Phi, you must pay a national park fee of 400 baht ($11.3) per person for adults and 200 baht for kids.

However, you can use the same ticket from Bamboo Island to enter Maya Bay, so combining Bamboo Island with Maya Bay is a great idea, and many organized trips do exactly that.

You can also choose not to enter the island and just enjoy snorkeling around; in that case, you don’t need to pay anything.

Snorkeling around Phi Phi Islands, Thailand

Bamboo Island is reachable by hiring a longtail boat from Phi Phi Don for approximately 1,800 baht ($51) for a round trip for two people or by joining an organized tour that also visits some other nearby spots.

Best tours in Phi Phi Islands that go to Bamboo Island:

Bamboo Island is part of the itineraries of organized day trips from Phuket and day trips from Krabi. And depending on the starting point, it’s either the first or last spot of the day. If you’re coming from Phuket, you usually visit it in the afternoon when it can be a bit more crowded.

Bonus: Visit nearby Mosquito Island

Ko Yung, or Mosquito Island, is a small, uninhabited island very close to Bamboo Island that you can’t actually visit directly. You can only observe it from the boat or snorkel and dive nearby. It’s also part of many tours combing to Bamboo Island.

Bamboo Island and Mosquito Island seen from north of Phi Phi Don in the Phi Phi Islands
Mosquito (left) and Bamboo Island (right) seen in the distance from north of Phi Phi Don

10. Go freediving

The crystal-clear waters in Phi Phi Islands provide the perfect environment for freediving, where you dive down to depths of up to 30 meters in a single breath.

It’s an excellent option for diving down to explore marine life and swim alongside colorful schools of fish and coral reefs.

With newly opened Freediving Schools on Phi Phi Islands, freediving is becoming one of the best ways to explore underwater life there.

If you haven’t done freediving before, you can book an Intro to Freediving or get certified on a Freediver Course or an advanced freediving course.

11. Watch or participate in a Muay Thai fight

Another thing Phi Phi Islands are famous for is the nightly amateur Muay Thai boxing matches, where anyone can participate in a fight.

One of the most famous places to watch the Muay Thai boxing fights in Phi Phi Islands is the Reggae Bar.

Entry to the Reggae Bar is a drink at the bar, which is a bit more pricey, but this is one of the only places in Thailand where you get to enjoy a Muay Thai match for (almost) free.

Keep in mind that many drunk tourists take part in these fights, so make sure to read the reviews on Google and set your expectations before you visit.

If you don’t know what to do in the evening in Phi Phi Don, it’s definitely worth checking out, as it’s a unique thing you can’t see anywhere else.

Muay Thai fight, Phi Phi Islands

Phi Phi Don doesn’t have any actual Muay Thai gyms where you can train Muay Thai. So, if you’re interested in actually learning it you have to do it in Phuket or Krabi. We had our lesson in Krabi, and it was a great learning experience.

Check out this Muay Thai Class in Krabi or the Muay Thai Class by Titan Fight Club in Patong, Phuket.

12. Visit the Viking Cave

Viking Cave, a historic limestone cave on the east side of Phi Phi Leh Island, is a popular attraction in Phi Phi Islands, known for its ancient wall paintings and swiftlet bird nests used in traditional Chinese medicine.

Viking Cave, swiflet birds nest, Phi Phi Islands

The Viking Cave is a privately owned cave, so the only way to see it is to observe it from the outside. And that’s the way you do it on most tours in Phi Phi Islands, as it’s on the way between Maya Bay and Phi Phi Don.

The swiftlet bird nests cost a lot of money and are used in bird’s nest soup in China and many SEA countries like Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Malaysia. Moreover, bird’s nests have been consumed by royalty for centuries as the most luxurious and nutritious food.

13. Visit the Pi Leh Lagoon

Pi Leh Lagoon, located on the uninhabited Phi Phi Leh island close to Maya Bay, is a stunning natural lagoon surrounded by towering limestone cliffs. It is a must-see attraction for any visitor to Phi Phi Islands.

Pi Leh Lagoon - most beautiful bay in Phi Phi Islands - top thing to do

The crystal-clear waters and beautiful scenery make it a gorgeous spot for swimming (one of our favorites). However, the lagoon gets pretty crowded as all the Phuket, Krabi, and Phi Phi Don tours stop there before or after visiting Maya Bay. So, if you want a more peaceful experience, you should visit early in the day or late afternoon (possible with a private longtail boat charter).

Pi Leh Lagoon - most beautiful bay in Phi Phi Islands - top thing to do

Otherwise, Pi Leh Lagoon is easily reachable by a long-tail boat ride from Tonsai Pier on Phi Phi Don in about 20 minutes.

Much like the Viking Cave and Monkey Beach, visiting Pi Leh Lagoon is usually part of an organized tour that visits Phi Phi Islands’ top attractions. 

14. Witness bioluminescence

One of the most magical experiences in Phi Phi Islands is witnessing the plankton glowing at night. The bioluminescence phenomenon occurs when certain types of plankton emit light in response to movement in the water.

It’s a truly unforgettable experience that will leave you in awe of nature’s wonders.

Bioluminescent Plankton, Phi Phi Islands - fascinating phenomenon
This is how it looks like when it’s seen on the beach.

However, keep in mind that it won’t be on the beach. You will have to jump in the water during the night to see it. 🙂

Best tours with a bioluminescence experience:

We witnessed this on the 5 Islands Sunset Snorkeling Cruise sunset boat tour in Krabi while jumping in the sea during the night and on our Phang Nga kayaking tour. It was an absolutely amazing experience!

15. Enjoy the nighttime in Phi Phi Islands

Phi Phi Don offers a variety of bars and clubs for those looking for a lively nightlife scene. And you can also find live music at various places on the island. 

Bars and music in Phi Phi Islands

When the sun goes down in Phi Phi Islands, the Tonsai village market comes alive with vibrant colors and smells. Food stalls and vendors offer lots of delicious Thai cuisine, from fresh seafood to spicy curries, and plenty of international dishes. 

We’re usually not fans of going out on the islands, but we liked strolling through Tonsai village at night.

16. Go rock climbing

One of the top sports activities in Phi Phi Islands is rock climbing, an exciting way to experience the stunning natural beauty of the islands.

Rock climbing in Phi Phi Islands was very popular a decade or two ago, but it’s not anymore due to bans and safety issues. There are currently no climbing schools or gear rental places on the island. Nowadays, it is only for experienced climbers who can go climbing independently.

Phi Phi Islands Rock Climbing Updates

However, be careful if you decide to go rock climbing as, according to our detailed research, the climbing walls might not be completely safe anymore as nobody has done any recorded rebolting or maintenance in a long time (5 to 10 years already on some spots).

You can check some more information here: Railay.com Climbing Phi Phi Update. And the best way to get more information about rock climbing in Thailand is on the Thailand Find a Rock Climbing Partner and Climbing Gear Facebook group.

If you get any newer updates, please contact us so we can update this guide accordingly for other future climbers in Phi Phi.

Rock Climbing alternative: Krabi

We first tried rock climbing in Krabi on the Half-Day Railay Beach Rock Climbing. Check out that tour if you really want to go rock climbing in this area but aren’t experienced. The scenery in Krabi is also incredible, so it’s a great option if Phi Phi doesn’t sound like a good idea.

Where to stay in Phi Phi Islands

While booking your stay in Phi Phi Don, it’s important to consider location proximity to attractions you want to visit.

Going from one area to another in Phi Phi Don might be possible only by taxi boats. And this can be pricey, depending on the location of your stay.

The main and most accessible area to stay in Phi Phi Don is around Tonsai Village. However, be warned that this area can also be very loud due to parties. And most accommodations aren’t the best, but they are the cheapest here.

Night view of the Tonsai and Loh Dalum bays from high up at the viewpoints, Phi Phi Islands
Tonsai and Loh Dalum seen from Phi Phi Viewpoint 2

A quieter place in Tonsai/Loh Dalum with a beach, beachside pool, and a pool bar is the Phi Phi CoCo Beach Resort.

And staying on Long Beach or Viking Beach is an excellent alternative as it’s still close to the main pier and town but a bit secluded from it all.

A great place that’s away from the crowds is SAii Phi Phi Island Village in Loh Ba Kao Bay which offers traditional Thai-style bungalows and Hillside Pool Villas with stunning sea views and luxurious spa facilities. 

Best areas to stay in Phi Phi Islands:

  • Tonsai Village and Loh Dalum – the heart of Phi Phi Don, packed with restaurants, bars, and shops
  • Long Beach – the southern end of the island, a quieter, stunning beach
  • Loh Ba Kao and Laem Tong – ideal for a luxurious and peaceful getaway

Luxury Stays in Phi Phi Islands

Popular luxury resorts in Phi Phi Islands include Zeavola Resort, Phi Phi Island Village Beach Resort, and Phi Phi Holiday Resort. These stays offer a getaway experience a bit further away from the busy part of Phi Phi Don.

Budget-Friendly Resorts in Phi Phi Islands

For a budget-friendly resort in Phi Phi Islands, consider the Viking Nature Resort, a charming and locally-run accommodation accessible by a short longtail boat ride from Tonsai, with access to three different beautiful beaches.

Alternatively, PP Princess Resort on Loh Dalum offers deluxe rooms, pool villas, and a big pool with an amazing view of the Loh Dalum Bay.

Beautiful Viking Beach in Phi Phi Islands - crystal clear waters, white sand beach
Viking Beach (left and right)

How to get to Phi Phi Islands

Phi Phi Islands are easily accessible from Phuket, Krabi, Koh Lanta, and Koh Yao, with frequent ferry and speedboat trips.

You can find affordable domestic flights from Bangkok to these destinations. 

Top things to do in Phi Phi Islands - Phi Phi Don
Ferry and speedboat pier in Phi Phi Don.

IMPORTANT: When arriving in Phi Phi Islands, there is a charge of 20 THB ($0.6) for the maintenance of the pier and Phi Phi Infrastructure. It is advisable to have the exact change to expedite the process.

Phi Phi Islands maintenance and environment protection fee

In addition to plenty of options for visiting Phi Phi Islands by yourself, there are also plenty of daily tours from Phuket and tours from Krabi that can take you exploring Phi Phi Islands in a day.

Watch what our day trip from Phuket looked like.

Getting to Phi Phi Islands from Phuket

Getting from Phuket to Phi Phi Islands is easy with frequent ferries and speedboats.

The ferry ride to Phi Phi Islands from Phuket takes approximately two hours. Multiple ferry departures throughout the day make the islands easily accessible. 

The speedboat ride to Phi Phi Islands from Phuket takes about one hour and is the fastest way to get to the islands. Although the speedboat does cost a bit more than the ferry.

Phi Phi & Maya Bay day tours from Phuket include top spots like Maya Bay, Pi Leh Lagoon, and Bamboo Island, with snorkeling stops in between.

For bigger groups or those traveling with a higher budget, doing a private Phi Phi Islands and Maya Bay tour makes much more sense. You can customize your itinerary, have a more relaxed schedule, and enjoy the places you want more.

Best tours from Phuket:

Getting to Phi Phi Islands from Krabi

Getting from Krabi to Phi Phi Islands is even easier than from Phuket, with ferries and speedboats departing Krabi town, Ao Nang, and Railay Beach.

The ferry from Ao Nang’s Nopparat Thara Pier takes 2 hours and is the best way of getting from Ao Nang to Phi Phi Islands.

The ferry from Krabi Town’s Klong Jilad Pier takes 2 hours, and the speedboat takes 1 hour to reach Phi Phi Islands.

The speedboat from Railay Beach takes just 30 minutes to reach Phi Phi Islands.

Best tours from Krabi:

Getting to Phi Phi Islands from Koh Lanta

Phi Phi Islands is easy to reach from Koh Lanta by frequent ferries and speedboats.

The speedboat from Koh Lanta takes just 30 minutes, and the ferry takes 1 hour to reach the Phi Phi Islands.

You can also book a Koh Lanta transfer to Phi Phi Islands, which also includes a van transfer from your hotel.

Koh Lanta is not the most common starting location for tours to Phi Phi Islands, so there are limited day trips from Koh Lanta you can book online.

Best tours from Koh Lanta:

Getting to Phi Phi Islands from Bangkok 

To get to Phi Phi Islands from Bangkok, you can either fly into Phuket or Krabi and then take a ferry or speedboat ride from there or book a combo bus + ferry transfer from Bangkok

Getting to Phi Phi Islands by bus from Bangkok will involve about 13 hours on the bus to Phuket and then another transfer to the pier in Phuket before hopping aboard a ferry or speedboat for 1 or 2 hours.

The flight from Bangkok to Phuket takes only 1.5 hours and is affordable. And once you’re in Phuket, you just need to hop on a ferry or speedboat, and you’re in Phi Phi Islands in 1 to two hours. And the same goes for flying into Krabi and transferring from there.

We recommend taking a flight for a quicker and more comfortable journey unless you’re on a super tight budget.

Getting around Phi Phi Islands

There are no cars or scooters available for rent on Phi Phi Islands, so the only way to go around is by walking and hiring longtail boats or taxi boats for further away areas.

Alternatively, you can hike, kayak, or go on organized tours to visit desirable spots on the Phi Phi Islands.

Getting around Phi Phi Islands by longtail boat

A longtail boat from Tonsai Pier to Long Beach or Viking Beach will cost around 100 baht ($3) per person one way. A longtail boat return ride from Loh Dalum Beach to Nui Beach costs around 1000 baht ($29) for two people. 

Usually, the longtail boat drivers on Phi Phi Islands have fixed prices, but you can always try to negotiate a bit depending on your needs, the time of day, the number of people, etc.

Taking a longtail boat ride in Phi Phi Islands
On our private longtail boat ride to Nui Beach.

TRAVEL TIP

If you’re organizing a return boat trip (taxi service, not tour), pay your driver at the end, not upfront. And don’t forget to take their number to text/call them. That’s why we always recommend having a Thailand SIM Card – we highly recommend the Thailand e-SIM package (get 5% off with code SHIPPEDAWAY).

Best time to visit Phi Phi Islands

The best time to visit Phi Phi Islands is between December and March, when the weather is the best.

The best time to visit Phi Phi Islands - stunning beach drone view

The hottest months in Phi Phi Islands are mid-March to May, with high humidity.

GOOD TO KNOW

Songkran Festival (Thai New Year) takes place in April. It’s when water fights are organized all over the country.

From May onwards, the weather slowly worsens in Phi Phi Islands as the monsoon approaches. The monsoon season with heavy rainfall in Phi Phi Islands is from June to October

However, this doesn’t mean it’s raining the whole day every day, as there can still be nice sunny days. But expect the sea conditions to be a bit more rough during this time, so activities like snorkeling and diving may be limited at certain spots due to weather conditions. 

NOTE

Maya Bay will be closed from the 1st of August 2024 until the 1st of October 2024 (exact dates to be confirmed).

[ ALSO READ ]

Beautiful beach at Maya Bay, Phi Phi Islands, Krabi

Maya Bay Travel Guide

Peak Season in Phi Phi Islands

The peak season in Phi Phi Islands is from November to April/May, with ideal weather conditions for beach activities, water sports, and exploring top attractions. It draws a large number of tourists, which means there will be crowds everywhere, and the prices will be at their highest. 

Beautiful beaches in Phi Phi Islands

TRAVEL TIP

Book your accommodation, transportation, and tours in advance to guarantee your spot during the peak season.

Off-Season in Phi Phi Islands

Phi Phi Islands off-season lasts from May to October, and it’s a time when you can enjoy a quieter time on the islands. It’s also when everything costs less, including discounted accommodations and tour packages.

So, the off-season is a great time to travel to Phi Phi Islands more economically. And if you’re lucky and come on really nice sunny days, it’s a fantastic experience.

Traveling to Phi Phi Islands in the off season

Weather in Phi Phi Islands can be unpredictable

For example, we visited Maya Bay and other spots in Phi Phi Islands in January and had a mix of beautiful clear blue skies, clouds, and rain later in the day.

And then, on another visit at the end of May, we mostly had beautiful weather, even though it was closer to the monsoon season.

So don’t let this discourage you from visiting! 🙂

Beautiful sunny day at Viking Beach in Phi Phi Islands

How long to stay in Phi Phi Islands? 

If you’re short on time, you can visit the highlights of Phi Phi Islands on a day trip from Phuket or a day trip from Krabi. That’s what we did on our first visit, where we visited Maya Bay, Pileh Lagoon, Viking Cave, and Monkey Bay.

For a better experience, we recommend staying in Phi Phi Islands for at least 2 or 3 nights to fully enjoy it. So you can do a day trip to see the highlights in one day and also relax on the beautiful beaches.

Staying in Phi Phi Islands - tropical island paradise

Anything more than that will give you more time to relax and do more water activities. We highly recommend going for a snorkeling trip, trying out scuba diving, or similar if you have more time. It’s so worth it!

On one of our visits, we went to Phi Phi Don from Krabi for just one night, so we had one and a half days to explore, and we managed to visit quite a few of the main spots. You can, of course, do that or a day trip, but a day or two more makes a lot of sense.

Getting to Phi Phi Islands - Getting around Phi Phi Islands - speedboat, ferry, longtail boat

Prices in Phi Phi Islands

Whether you want to save money or splurge on the perfect vacation, Phi Phi Islands offer something for everyone.

AccommodationFoodTour
Hotel: $25 – $150 / nightInexpensive meal: $3 – $5Half-day: $50
Hostel: $7 – $12 / nightMid-range meal: $8 – $12Full-day: $100
Phi Phi Islands budget overview

Where to eat

Phi Phi Don on Phi Phi Islands is full of restaurants and bars serving Thai and international cuisine. While the food is definitely more expensive than on some other islands and the mainland, it’s still somewhat affordable.

Vendors with street food in Tonsai, Phi Phi Islands - night time

Best-reviewed restaurants in Phi Phi Islands:

A highlight from our trip to Phi Phi Islands was the amazing food at Long Beach’s Paradise Pearl Restaurant, which is part of the Paradise Pearl Bungalows, but you can eat there as a visitor. We had some of the best pasta in Thailand right there, as well as a super tasty and filling Massaman Curry. It still brings back memories just writing about it!

Beachside restaurant in Phi Phi Islands

Another highlight is the super delicious and well-made pizza from the Pizza Corner. It doesn’t really have reviews, but it’s very close to another great pizza place, Pizzeria Phi Phi. It’s at the corner of the road that goes to the Pizzeria. Also, it seems like some people review the pizza from Pizza Corner on the Pizzeria listing. 😀

Funnily enough, the first restaurant you will see on your arrival to Phi Phi Don will be Burger King, which is right there as you exit the pier. And right next door is a McDonalds.

That makes it pretty clear that Phi Phi Islands are not some off-the-beaten-path remote island destination. But rather a fully-developed, booming top tourist destination.

Drone aerial view of Tonsai Beach in Phi Phi Islands

Internet in Phi Phi

Internet in Phi Phi Islands is available in resorts, hotels, hostels, bars, cafes, and restaurants.

And the mobile coverage is great, so no need to worry about being offline!

Loopy in Ha Giang, Vietnam

Need a reliable Thailand mobile package to stay online?

We recommend affordable eSIM packages from Thailandesim, where you also get a local number for ride-hailing and other services.

Tip: Shipped Away readers get 5% off with the code SHIPPEDAWAY

Also read:
Best Thailand SIM Cards

Are Phi Phi Islands safe?

Phi Phi Islands are generally safe for tourists, like all of Thailand, with a low crime rate and friendly locals.

However, be cautious when swimming in the ocean, as strong currents and undertows can be dangerous. So follow any warnings or advisories posted by local authorities. And if locals say it’s unsafe to go to some area, trust them.

Stunning limestone cliffs and beaches in Phi Phi Islands

Need reliable Thailand Travel Insurance?

With 24/7 worldwide assistance, Heymondo insurance includes comprehensive coverage for medical expenses, trip cancellations, and baggage loss or delay.

Tip: Shipped Away readers get 5% off.

For digital nomads or full-time travelers, we recommend SafetyWing, which includes brief visits to your home country every 3 months abroad.

Is it worth visiting Phi Phi Islands?

We were positively surprised by Phi Phi Islands and can say that they are definitely worth visiting on your trip to Thailand.

Phi Phi Islands have mixed reviews from tourists, but their beauty is undeniable. Just make sure to set your expectations before visiting, and don’t stay too long if you’re not a fan of crowds. Although you can completely avoid crowds on a vacation in one of the more remote areas.

We personally liked Phi Phi Islands and will happily visit again.


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