Widely known as the location where cult classic film “The Beach,” starring Leonardo Dicaprio, was filmed. Ko Phi Phi is the land of buckets and babes. Being a small island, the layout is very condensed and homely, an attribute I grew to be quite fond of. The locals are friendly, the girls are beautiful, the nights are exciting, and the scenery is great. Ko Phi Phi has everything you could need within close range. It’s not only parties though, so if you aren’t a big drinker, there’s still reasons to make the trip.
Most people come to Ko Phi Phi by way of ferry via two routes: Krabi and Phuket. The length of the trip from each is about two hours. Most lodging accommodations can book your ticket for you, and trips are available at a number of different times. While you can book a ferry in advance, unless there is a big event, such as a Full Moon Party at your departure port, it’s not really necessary. Typically you’re told to show up about an hour before departure, but you just end up waiting around at the docks. After this happened a few times we would show up around 15 minutes early to book and board.
TIP: If you know you’ll be heading to other locations via ferry you can book a multi-trip ticket for a discounted rate!
There are two main islands to Ko Phi Phi: Phi Phi Don, and Phi Phi Leh. Ko Phi Phi Don is the mainland, essentially. Koh Phi Phi Leh is the famed located where The Beach was filmed, and is mostly untouched by civilization. Granted there are a few buildings on the small island, and a cat. More on that in a later post! As soon as you walk off the pier at Ko Phi Phi Don you’re greeted by the small shops, bars, and restaurants that line the paved walkways throughout the entire island. There are no roads. If you don’t know where you’re going, or need help finding your lodging, any of the store owners are happy to help, and some even have maps ready to draw you a route to your place, and show you what they deem as the best restaurants on the island. Many of the shop owners are laid back, sun bronzed expats, and speak English very well. I just might be one of them someday, as I loved Ko Phi Phi! Seriously though.
Depending on when you got there your day could start out one of two ways. You could be one of the people who barely make it out of bed by 4pm due to the previous nights activities, or you could be one of the people headed off in the morning to scuba dive, explore, or snorkel. As you wind your way through the streets you’ll notice there are plenty of places to shop, drink, eat, and relax. There are some fantastic art galleries on Ko Phi Phi! I ended up spending a good amount on a few paintings, and wished I could have got more. I got a tattoo there as well to encourage a friend to get his first. What a fun night! Almost all of the establishments sport an open air environment, no doors needed. Oh, and if you run in to William (See below), say hi for me!
If you enjoy your peace and quiet there are several resorts that are on the edges of the Island, about a 20 or 30 minute walk, where you can enjoy a toned down version of Koh Phi Phi. The noise and high activity fade, and you’re left with beautiful views, and coconut dreams.
As you can imagine, there are a lot of places to get a drink. Sure, you can buy drinks by the glass or bottle if you want; but for less than a single drink you could buy yourself a bucket and party, Thailand style. You can grab a beer and watch a Thai Boxing match, where YOU can also earn a free bucket by agreeing to fight a fellow traveler! Don’t worry, there’s head protection involved. What could possibly go wrong!? You could do a bar crawl for a small fee, that includes all the alcohol you’ll need and a t-shirt! Everyone usually makes their way out to the beach at some point to end out the night. You can get your dance on at Slinkys, a beach front bar that boasts all the club favorites, as well as hookah with unlimited refills. They even let you partake in the fire shows! Which I’ll go ahead and put out there, is a little crazy. Just keep your head up if you’re nearby. That brings me to my next point: There aren’t any rules as far as having a good time goes. Just don’t fight anyone and you’re golden. By the end of the night there were people openly having sex right at/in the water. No one seemed to notice.
That’s about it for Ko Phi Phi Don. By the end of my time here I preferred to walk around barefoot, and buying a drink in an actual glass was laughable. This laid back island in beautiful Thailand has life figured out. I highly recommend you join them sometime. My post on Ko Phi Phi Leh will be up next, hope to see you then!