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Phi Phi is a stunning archipelago, located in the Andaman Sea between Krabi and Phuket. Only one of the six islands, Phi Phi Don, is populated.
The islands rank as some of the most naturally beautiful in the world. Despite a rapid growth in tourism, the surrounding waters are still home to a huge amount of coral and sea life. The island’s sandy beaches, the caves and tropical forest-covered limestone mountains remain wonderful sights.
The Phi Phi Islands are reached easily by ferry or speedboat from either Phuket or Krabi. It is possible to take a day trip from either Phuket or Krabi, but it is worth staying for a couple of nights at one of the hotels or resorts that have sprung up on Phi Phi Don in recent years.
Popular options for gay travellers are:
Phuket & Phi Phi. Combining the gay nightlife and gay beach in Phuket with a visit to the islands. Take a day trip to the islands or stay for a few days before returning to Phuket.
Phuket to Phi Phi to Krabi. Visit Phuket and the Phi Phi Islands, but then continue your journey on by ferry to Krabi, or vice versa. This is a great option if you have the time and don’t want to be in one place for too long.
There are no gay venues on the islands, but the relaxed, chilled-out island vibe (particularly after the day trippers leave in the late afternoon) means there is simply no need for any, either.
Ton Sai Bay is the main tourist area on Phi Phi Don. The bay and stretch of land connects the north and south of the island, and you will find a great selection of bars, restaurants, hotels and the ferry pier.
Fly to Phuket International Airport. Take a taxi to either Rassada Pier on the south coast of Phuket (about 30 km/50 minutes). Ferries depart 3-4 times a day and take around 2 hours.
Fly to Krabi Airport. Take a taxi to Krabi Town. Ferries depart 5-6 times a day and take around 2 hours.
You can book ferry tickets in advance online at Phuketferry.com
Day-trip speedboat tours are sold everywhere in Phuket, particularly Patong. These usually include transfers from your hotel to the pier, stops at various different bays, snorkels and a buffet lunch. Speedboats typically take 20-30 passengers and are not particularly comfortable.
Upmarket operators take less than 20 passengers. Shop around for the best deal. The speedboat crossing can be quite bumpy – not recommended if you have a back problem. Crossing time is about 45 minutes.
Don’t take a long-tail boat to cross from Phuket to Phi Phi, as this is not a safe or comfortable option.
Long-tail boats are readily available for hire from Ton Sai Bay pier and are a great way to explore the calm, coral-filled bays and inlets that are great for swimming and snorkelling.
There are no cars on the island and just a few motorcycles. Everything is transported by foot, in a wheelbarrow or by boat.
As with most beach destinations in Thailand, the best time for gay travellers to visit the islands is outside of peak school holiday periods, during the non-monsoon months of October through April.
Check out our recommended Phi Phi Island Hotels and Resorts. Updated for 2018.