SERENA GONZALEZ WRITES – After a 4-year closure to permit its marine ecosystem to replenish itself, Thailand’s Maya Bay, one of many nation’s most well-known seashores is again, however with some stringent guidelines in place.
Surrounded by towering limestone cliffs on an uninhabited island in Thailand’s Phi Phi archipelago, the secluded cove with its white sand and turquoise water is the very image of paradise. Maya Bay is simply one in every of dozens of idyllic seashores in Thailand, but it surely has turn out to be world-famous because the place the place the 2000 movie “The Seashore,” starring Leonardo DiCaprio, was shot. Vacationers flocked to the bay after the movie’s launch – at the price of the marine setting. On the peak of its reputation, there have been greater than 5,000 folks visiting a day. In mid-2018, the overcrowding acquired so dangerous that authorities shut down the seashore and simply re-opened it in January 2022.
Earlier than the bay was shut for the primary time because of ecological restoration, hordes of vacationers visited through boat, and the harm carried out by tourism dirty this paradise. About 80% of the coral on this pristine bay had been destroyed by air pollution and careless anchoring; and the sand on the seashore itself had been severely eroded by the hundreds of holiday makers every day. At first, the bay was placed on a 4-month closure; the Division of Nationwide Parks (DNP) began a tree and coral planting program and devised a sustainable visiting plan for when the bay ultimately reopens. Some concepts that had been being thought-about had been pre-booking, staggered visiting slots with restricted numbers and restricted entry from the rear of the bay solely, with boats docking at floating pontoons and guests strolling alongside a path to entry the seashore.
Maya Bay, nonetheless, is exclusive in its fame and the variety of vacationers it attracts, and this was maybe one of many causes the choice to shut it was so lengthy in coming. As anticipated, the information of the prolonged closure was acquired with protests from native tour operators. It was claimed enterprise would undergo as Maya Bay is a “bucket listing” merchandise for a lot of guests, who had already booked packages pondering the seashore can be open once more this excessive season.
There may be some excellent news, although. There may be already proof that the absence of vacationers has had a optimistic impact. There are indicators of regrowth on corals and a college of blacktop reef sharks has already been noticed swimming near shore.
If all of the inspirational and delightful locations on this planet are devastated by over-tourism, wildlife and marine life relocate, or worse, die off – what are we going to go away for others? On the fee the bay had been declining, there wouldn’t be an excessive amount of left for even the following era.
Collectively as vacationers, we must always really feel disgusted once we go to a pure habitat with trash littering the sands and waters. We must be desirous to make a optimistic influence. With one other few years of care, this as soon as pristine bay might quickly return to its former glory.