Better than Maya Bay? | PILEH LAGOON | KO PHI PHI

When we planned our trip to Koh Phi Phi all we knew was that we had to visit Maya Bay.  Everyone has heard of Maya Bay or at least knows it’s the beach from the movie ‘The Beach’ starring Leonardo DiCaprio.  We were so hung up on going to Maya Bay we were not even aware that Ko Phi Phi Lee had another gem worth visiting.

We were on a half day tour of Ko Phi Phi Lee with our two young boys.  It took us about 30 minutes on our long tail boat from Ko Phi Phi Don to get to Maya Bay where we spent an hour exploring the beach and sandy paths on the island.

Elisa with Joaquin and Javi exploring Maya Bay

Even though we would have loved to stay at Maya Bay all day long, we were quite happy with our short visit and were ready to head back to Ko Phi Phi Don.  Plus we didn’t want to keep the boys out in the sun for too much longer so we asked our driver to start heading back.

Not long after leaving Maya Bay we approached the small inlet for Pileh Lagoon and our driver strongly recommended that we make a quick detour to check it out.  Even if it was for just 10 minutes.  The boys seemed to be handling the boat ride pretty well at this stage so we thought why not.

Our long tail boat entering Pileh Lagoon

As we entered Pileh Lagoon we were immediately captivated by the incredible limestone cliffs surrounding the gorgeous clear turquoise water.  It was absolutely stunning!  Our driver pulled up a few meters away from one of the cliffs, dropped the anchor, and without even thinking I was in the water with our 2 year old Javier.  The temperature of the water was perfect!  It was just like a nice warm bath.  I could easily walk around the shallow water with Javi and get right up beside the sheer cliffs where there is a small over hang from the eroded limestone.

Javi and I having a quick dip in Pileh Lagoon

Unfortunately we only spent about 10 minutes in the water because we did have to head back to the main island.   I really wish we could have stayed longer but Joaquin was only about 3 months old at the time so we didn’t want to keep him out much longer.

Now I’m not saying I wished we had skipped Maya Bay and just went to Pileh Lagoon.  Maya Bay is a definite must see and an hour is still not enough time if you ask me.  But Maya Bay is very crowded and this seems to take away from it’s natural beauty.

The crowded beach of Maya Bay

Pileh Lagoon does have many boats but they were very spread out so it didn’t feel as hectic as Maya Bay.  In fact is seemed to have a more relaxed vibe too it and swimming right up beside the cliffs was amazing.

The turquoise waters of Pileh Lagoon

If we could do it again we would either try to make time for a longer tour or perhaps another visit dedicated to Pileh Lagoon.  A picnic on a long tail boat surrounded by the sheer limestone cliffs would be amazing!

Check out this video of our quick visit to Pileh Lagoon.

Have you visited Ko Phi Phi Lee?  Tell us what you thought of Pileh Lagoon and Maya Bay in the comments below.

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