For nearly four years, Maya Bay, Thailand’s historic beach, with its soaring cliffs and calm, crystal clear waters, where DiCaprio filmed The Beach, had no tourists.
Authorities closed it in 2018 to protect it from the effects of over-tourism. Then it was the pandemic that drove visitors away.
In the solitude, damaged coral revived, marine life thrived and blacktip reef sharks reclaimed the shallow waters near the white sand beach.
After the reopening in January 2022, a balance between nature and visitors is now being sought.
The Maya Shark Watch research team has started a pilot study. They consider Maya Bay to be an important nursery for young sharks, which must remain in shallow water or else they may fall prey to adult sharks.
In order not to reverse the progress made, the authorities have opened Maya Bay after the reopening. initiated conservation measures. In order not to disturb the baby sharks, tourists are not allowed to swim.
Boats bringing visitors to Maya Bay are now required to dock on the other side of the island to avoid damaging the reefs.
From the dock, people have to walk a wooden path to reach the bay. Only 375 visitors are allowed per hour.