There are times I feel terrible being a human being.
I don’t know if we all imagine being Leonardo diCaprio in the movie “the Beach” discovering paradise, sitting on this deserted beach in the Phi Phi islands thinking WOW when watching how beautiful nature is.
We, WE people destroy this nature. I felt ashamed. Ashamed of even being there, ashamed of just seeing people and speedboats on that beach, ashamed of some tourists touching everything, of sitting anywhere taking selfies, going into that water probably full of sunscreen, ashamed of uncontrolled tourism. I watched this under that rock, waiting for the time for the boat to leave. The beach is now closed. CLOSED. Until 2021, at least. Thanks to the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation (DNP).
Maya Bay has been seeing from 3 to 4 thousand tourists per day since that movie in 2000. The marine ecological system has been severely damaged by over tourism. A coral rehabilitation project called “Toh Wai Wai” has been implemented to restore the ecosystem. It consists of collecting broken coral fragments and using superglue to bond them to rocks. The glue dissolves in a couple of weeks and the corals begin to grow by a few centimeters per month.
Be kind, be gentle, be responsible, anywhere you go.
A few pictures of Maya Bay in November 2017 a few months before the beach was closed: