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Thailand’s bay made popular by ‘The Beach’ closes to tourists

Written by newsexaminer

(CNN) — It’s 9 a.m. on a May morning in Thailand’s Maya Bay in the Andaman Sea, a destination made famous by “The Beach” movie starring Leonardo DiCaprio.
But instead of the pristine, empty shores seen in the film directed by Danny Boyle, the scene is far more chaotic. Selfie-taking tourists line the sand, which is crammed full with speed boats.
Visitor numbers multiply by the minute as boats pour in an out of the bay, dropping off more bodies to sunbathe and snorkel.
But as of June 1, the bucket list Thailand hotspot is blocking its shores to visitors. Well, temporarily.

Part of the Hat Noppharat Thara-Mu Ko Phi Phi National Park, Maya Bay will be closed from June 1 to September 30, 2018 on the orders of Thailand’s Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation (DNP) as part of a four-month rejuvenation program.

Travelers can instead see the bay between the two cliffs that form a natural entrance to the lagoon, under the strict supervision of the DNP.
“During the four-month period, the DNP will undertake a coastal and marine environment quality evaluation study on the condition of reef and beach resources, environmental control and tourism management,” says the TAT’s statement.
“This is to properly determine measures for environmental sustainability of Maya Bay during future off-tourist seasons.”



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