Thailand keeping 'The Beach' of movie fame closed for rehab

BANGKOK — Authorities in Thailand said they have decided to indefinitely extend the closure of a beautiful bay made famous by the Leonardo DiCaprio movie "The Beach" until it recovers from years of environment damage caused by too many tourists.

They had announced in March that tourists would be barred from Maya Bay from June 1 to Sept. 30.

An official announcement published Monday in the Royal Gazette said the bay, part of a national park, will now be closed "from Oct. 1, 2018, onwards until the marine natural resources return to their normal condition."

The announcement said an assessment by the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation found that after having been closed to tourists for four months, Maya Bay still had not recovered.

Maya Bay, part of the Hat Noppharat Thara-Mu Ko Phi Phi National Park, had remained open year round to cater to tourist demand since a Hollywood crew set foot there in 1999 to film the dark backpacker tale that starred DiCaprio. Many Thai marine national parks are shut annually for four months.

The beach at Maya Bay had received an average of 200 boats and 4,000 visitors each day. Recent surveys by a team led by marine biologists found a large part of the coral reefs in the area is gone and sea life has virtually disappeared.

Related News

Remembering 1963 eruption, Bali's elderly wary of...

Dec 4, 2017

Indonesia's glowering Mount Agung has seemingly quieted, but some survivors of the volcano's...

Bali volcano emits wispy plume of steam, flights...

Dec 4, 2017

Gushing ash from a Bali volcano dissipated into a wispy plume of steam, and Australian airlines...

Diphtheria deaths in Indonesia spark immunization...

Dec 11, 2017

Indonesia has begun a campaign to immunize 8 million children and teenagers against diphtheria...

Indonesia hard-line Muslims protest ban on...

Jan 12, 2018

Muslim hard-liners have protested in Indonesia's capital against Facebook's blocking of accounts...

Indonesia investigates online insults of Brunei's...

Jan 22, 2018

The Sultan of Brunei has made a complaint of defamation to the Indonesian police about an Instagram...

Groups call for shutdown of brutal Indonesia...

Jan 25, 2018

Campaigners are calling for the closure of Indonesian animal markets touted as tourist attractions...

Sign up now!