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May 27, 2016
The best part of my trip to Thailand ties right in with the worst part. The last few days of our trip were spent in Koh Phi Phi, the party island. Koh Phi Phi was totally not my style and if I could go back, I would spend less time there and more time literally anywhere else in Thailand. But the one saving grace was Maya Bay.
Maya Bay is a small island about 20 minutes by boat from Koh Phi Phi. It’s where they filmed the movie “The Beach” with Leonardo DiCaprio, which makes total sense. Maya Bay is a very special place. There are no buildings or businesses on the island besides the bathrooms and one small snack stand. No one is allowed to spend the night on the beach – it’s only a day trip destination. But there is one exception (kind of), which is what we did: Maya Bay Sleep Aboard.
The boat holds 30 people and it’s where we all slept overnight. The trip started out with snorkeling and a boat tour. After that, we had some beach time followed by a huge picnic after the sunset. After we ate some delicious Thai food, we all got one free liquor bucket to kick off the fun. We ended up playing a HUGE game of Ring of Fire. It’s so funny how universal this game is. In our group were people from the US, Canada, Colombia, England, Portugal and more. And everyone knew the game. It was a blast!
After the game we danced, played more games (including limbo!) and all became friends. When it was time to go back to the boat and sleep, I was sad the night was over. Little did I know it was actually time for the best part of the whole trip: it was time to swim with the bioluminescent plankton!! This was the most amazing thing I’ve ever done. Sadly, it’s not something you can catch on camera, but it was like millions of little fireflies in the water. You could only see them when you move, and then they would light up like crazy. It was truly incredible!
The next morning, I was the first one to wake up on the boat. Seeing the sunrise was the most beautiful thing I’ve ever witnessed. Since no one is allowed to sleep at Maya Bay, there were no boats around and the water was completely still. I didn’t bring my camera with me, so all I had was my iPhone. When the boats started to come, I snapped some quick photos.
I really wish I could have captured the true beauty of Maya Bay, but at the same time, I’m happy that I experienced it in the moment. I’ll certainly never forget my time there.