Główna » Koh Phi Phi with Kids

Koh Phi Phi with Kids

by Mario

We have been living on Koh Lanta for a year now – a 30-minute boat ride from Koh Phi Phi. We have often dived near this island, which is one of the most frequently visited by tourists from all over the world. In fact, even 6 years ago, we were on Koh Phi Phi with our kids. However, we still had serious doubts about whether we wanted to spend more time there. But in the end, we decided because… you keep asking us if it’s worth going there. So, we checked it out.

This time, the post was written by Mario – he went to the island with our three children.

How to get to Koh Phi Phi and how much does it cost?

First, a little clarification. When someone says they’re going to Koh Phi Phi, they’re referring to one of two islands – the inhabited Koh Phi Phi Don. The other uninhabited island, Koh Phi Phi Ley, is home to one of the most famous beaches in the world – Maya Beach (you might remember it from the movie with Leonardo DiCaprio).

So, when heading to Phi Phi, we’re always talking about the inhabited part. You can get there from almost any direction – from Phuket, from Krabi, or from Koh Lanta. We went from the latter, choosing a speedboat. During the high season, you can also take a ferry from Koh Lanta to Phi Phi, which is cheaper than a speedboat but much slower. The speedboat journey takes 35 to 45 minutes, depending on how rough the sea is. The ferry takes twice as long.

Tickets to Koh Phi Phi with Kids

The cost of tickets to Koh Phi Phi, compared to other islands, is relatively high. We paid 2,200 THB (about 240 PLN) for one adult and three children for a one-way trip. Additionally, upon arriving at the Koh Phi Phi pier, each adult has to pay an environmental fee of 20 THB (about 50 euro cents). For us, this was a bit of a surprise because, living in Thailand, we’ve adapted to the Thai value of money.

Why go to Koh Phi Phi?

The Lonely Planet guidebook perfectly sums up the idea of a trip to Koh Phi Phi with the phrase:

adjust your expectations.

In my opinion, people go to Koh Phi Phi mainly for parties and to see the famous bay and Maya Beach. Be prepared for crowds, large crowds, or wild crowds. A few years ago, the Thai government even launched an informational campaign for tourists with the main message being that Thailand is not just about Maya Beach (which, by the way, was closed to tourism in 2018 – only recently reopened), Krabi, Bangkok, Ayutthaya, or Chiang Mai. The Ministry of Tourism created a list of several hundred other equally beautiful places to visit. So, imagine what must be happening on Phi Phi.

Responsible Tourism

However, what strikes you as soon as you step onto the pier in Ton Sai is the sight of half-naked Brits and Americans, and similarly dressed women walking down the street. It’s a rare sight on the Andaman Sea side, where the vast majority of residents are Muslims, fully dressed from head to toe. So, Western tourists visiting this region typically keep their attire in check beyond the beach. There seems to be a sort of divide between the two sides of the 40 km stretch of the Andaman Sea from Koh Lanta to Phi Phi – people from one side rarely mix with those from the other. It was a very interesting but also unfortunate experience.

Life on Koh Phi Phi

If you look at the island from a bird’s-eye view, it somewhat resembles the letter “H,” and right at the junction is the center of social and tourist life – Ton Sai. Everything is within walking distance.

Interestingly, you can’t get around Phi Phi on a motorcycle or by car.

You also have the option of staying in other parts of the island, but keep in mind that you will have limited choices for food and services. Typically, you’ll only be able to leave your hotel by longtail boat. For some, this might be a limitation, while for others, it’s an opportunity to stay in one place and enjoy the beaches.

The entire area in Ton Sai is basically paved. There are beaches on both sides of the “town.” The one on the northern side (Loh Dalum) offers, in my opinion, much better beach conditions. All the social life happens right in this paved area. As soon as we left the port, our children’s eyes lit up when they saw the well-known yellow “M” symbol, which should give you a lot of insight into the character of this place.

It’s important to note that when we were on Koh Phi Phi with our kids, it was after the high season (July), and there were still quite a few people. So, it’s hard for me to imagine what it must be like during the peak season from December to April.

Attractions on Koh Phi Phi with Kids

Viewpoints on Koh Phi Phi

Again, we’ll rely on the Lonely Planet guide, and again, I might disappoint you a bit. The truth is, there aren’t many places to go on Phi Phi. There are only three viewpoints. The first two have a paved path and stairs leading to them. The path to the last one, which is, in my opinion, the most interesting, is more rugged. It’s an attraction that takes a maximum of two hours. The trail itself is not very demanding. Our children treated it like a little walk.

Kayaking on Koh Phi Phi

On the Loh Dalum Beach side, you can rent kayaks. I quickly considered the option of one kayak and three kids in it, and I thought it could be done. I also assessed that the whole beach is perfectly sheltered by parts of the island, creating a calm bay. So, we hopped into one kayak and set off on an hour-long journey around the bay. It was quite nice, although without the wow factor you might experience in other places in the Andaman Sea, like at Koh Talabeng or on the west side of Lanta in the mangrove forests.

It’s worth noting that around Phi Phi, you can kayak out to the open sea. We didn’t do that – my common sense prevailed, and I decided not to take the kids into open waters.

Diving and Snorkeling on Koh Phi Phi

We didn’t consider this activity, although it’s undoubtedly one of the better options when you’re on Koh Phi Phi. Of course, you can go diving or snorkeling from Lanta, Krabi, and other places around. However, the advantage of Phi Phi is its proximity, which also means lower costs.

With kids on Koh Phi Phi, I recommend heading to Maya Bay (you’ll get a view of the famous Maya Beach from there), and while snorkeling, you might have the chance to spot blacktip reef sharks. They swim in relatively shallow waters in the bay.

If you’re certified divers, you can visit places like Koh Bida Nai, Koh Bida Nok, or the artificial coral reef at Viking Bay, all of which are more affordable to reach from Phi Phi due to the shorter distance. These spots are absolutely stunning!

So, do we recommend Phi Phi with kids?

It depends. It depends on your expectations and whether you simply want to relax on the beach with many Western amenities readily available, such as hotels with kids’ facilities (slides, pools, etc.), McDonald’s, and beach parties. In that case, you’ll be satisfied.

However, if you’re looking for a tranquil “paradise island” with fewer people and uncrowded coral reefs for snorkeling, then we don’t recommend Phi Phi. In that case, consider islands like Koh Rock, Koh Kradang, or Koh Muk.

Certainly, it’s worth taking a day trip to Phi Phi with kids from Krabi or Koh Lanta to see the famous Maya Beach, go diving or snorkeling in the bay, as it’s simply beautiful. But on the other hand, don’t forget that Thai islands offer much, much more than just Phuket or Phi Phi.

Zostaw komentarz

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.