Our favorite island on our Thailand adventure was most definitely Koh Phi Phi! While most people considered it really touristy, which it is, it was much nicer than Phuket and significantly more peaceful. A 2 hour boat ride from Phuket or Krabi it’s smack dab in the middle of the Andaman sea. While more isolated than other islands, it’s a super relaxing and fun place to visit!
The main “city” is just a few blocks and is located just behind the pier where you arrive. There are no cars on the island, which means no harassment from tuk-tuk drivers, though locals have their own motorbikes to get up those massive hills. The island is packed with every type of accommodation you can imagine; from really cheap hostels in the center of town to superluxe resorts on the isolated part of the island which can only be reached by longtail boat.
Where we stayed:
We chose to stay along the pathways in the “city” or the yellow brick road, as I like to call it, because it was really easy to walk to everything you wanted. Longtail boats to other parts of the island can get a bit pricey, around 150B one way per person depending on where you want to go. We stayed at the Phi Phi Andaman Legacy Resort which was in a great location, not too far from the center of town, but far enough that you don’t get all the noise from partygoers. We also had a buffet breakfast included which was nice.
The staff was friendly and really helpful; the rooms were clean and the beds were comfortable. The pool was really nice and relaxing. We were also about a 30 minute jungle walk from Long Beach which is the beach that everyone likes to go to. However, about halfway to Long Beach we stumbled upon a smaller beach that had a lot of shells and calm waters, it was so much more relaxing and people tended to stop there for just a few minutes and continue on their walk to Long Beach.
We also stayed at the Viking Nature Resort for a couple of nights. These were jungle bungalows, or jungalows, but unless you wanted to pay upwards of $60 a night you don’t get aircon. We paid $20 a night and got the standard bungalow with a fan and a mosquito net, it was good for a couple of nights but it’s so hot to be there without A/C! There is a nice deck area right outside with seating and a hammock which was nice to relax in, but at the time we went there were so many mosquitos that we just couldn’t do it. It was a really nice experience though and I would definitely recommend this hotel for the more adventurous type!
What we ate:
Since there aren’t many apartments on the island, most people stay in hotels/resorts which means you have to eat out a lot. There are no KFCs/McDonald’s/Burger Kings on Koh Phi Phi, so you get a lot of local restaurants with local cuisines. Almost all the places are the same, Thai food hovers around 100B per plate while “Western” food such as pizza and sandwiches were around 300B per plate. We got mostly Thai food because duh but we also found a decent Mexican place called Banana Bar that was fun and had a great happy hour.
Our favorite Thai restaurants on the island were Khun Va Cuisine, which was super cheap and Papaya Restaurant, which had the best papaya salad in all of Thailand!
What we did:
Since most of the stuff to do on Koh Phi Phi involved going to the beach and eating, we decided to take a day and do a snorkeling trip around the island. This was super cheap, especially because it was low season, and really fun. We went to all the main points in one day and had plenty of time to explore all the areas. We went with the company U-RIP and they used bigger longtail boats to go around the island, it wasn’t the most comfortable but still pretty fun. We stopped at Monkey Beach, Mosquito Island, Bamboo Island, various snorkeling spots and ended at Maya Bay, where Leonardo DiCaprio filmed The Beach. It was a really good trip and we were exhausted by the end! Check out my video to see the highlights!
All in all Koh Phi Phi was the most relaxing part of our trip and we really enjoyed exploring the island and getting to know some of the locals. If you want to know what paradise looks like, then look no farther than the beaches of Koh Phi Phi!