Thailand Beach Made Famous by Leonardo DiCaprio Film Reopens to Tourists

Maya Bay originally closed in 2018.

Aerial View of Maya Bay Paradise Beach from Krabi Thailand
Photo: Peerapas Mahamongkolsawas/Getty Images

Thailand's famous Maya Bay, which has been closed for three years, is finally open for beach goers and movie buffs alike.

The beach cove, made famous by the 2000 Leonardo DiCaprio movie "The Beach," was shut down in 2018 after overtourism started destroying the cove's coral reef. Scientists then set to work trying to restore it, even using superglue to regrow coral.

Thailand is finally ready to open the popular spot to tourists again, Reuters reported this week. The beach officially reopened on Jan. 3, but there are few conditions.

Only eight speed boats and 375 tourists will be able to dock by the cove at any one time with each visit limited to an hour. And the cove will only be open to visitors from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day and swimming is currently prohibited, Reuters reported.

The boats won't be able to enter the actual bay either, instead, they'll be dropping passengers off at a nearby pier.

"The sharks have come back, coral reefs are regrowing, and the water is clear again," Yuthasak Supasorn, the Governor of the Tourism Authority of Thailand, said to Reuters.

The popular cove, is one of the most Instagrammed beaches in the world, sits off the coast of Phuket, and is part of the Phi Phi islands in Krabi province of Thailand.

Patong Beach in Phuket. LILLIAN SUWANRUMPHA/AFP via Getty Images

Thailand currently has a no quarantine policy for vaccinated travelers entering from low-risk countries, including the United States, according to the Thai travel site. All visitors are required to apply for a Thailand pass to enter the country, however, as of Dec. 22 applications have been suspended. This suspension excludes the Phuket sandbox program which allows travelers to stay in one of Thailand's beach areas for 7 days before they may travel to other parts of the country.

Alison Fox is a contributing writer for Travel + Leisure. When she's not in New York City, she likes to spend her time at the beach or exploring new destinations and hopes to visit every country in the world. Follow her adventures on Instagram.

Updated by
Jamie Aranoff
Jamie Aranoff headshot
Jamie Aranoff is an assistant editor for Travel + Leisure, specializing in all things travel news. Prior to joining T+L, she worked for ABC News on the network assignment desk. Jamie is a chronic over-packer and a firm advocate for the window seat.
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