Ferry services between Ao Nang and Koh Phi Phi are quite accessible, inexpensive, and even comfortable. The luggage situations are sometimes iffy during local trips like this, especially during alight, when luggage may be thrown into a big pile. In order to avoid this, be the last in line to check in your luggage.
There are 2 operators that run from Ao Nang to Koh Phi Phi, with 2 departures per day. If you decide to take a bus-ferry, you can take the Standard option.
In the middle of the Andaman Sea, the Phi Phi Islands are some of the world’s most beautiful islands. Koh Phi Phi Don is the largest, and the only island that is inhabited. Phi Phi Leh, the second largest island, attracts hordes of tourists wanting to take photos at Maya Bay, which was used as a location in the classic Leonardo di Caprio film The Beach.
The Phi Phi Islands are gorgeous, with coral reefs, sandy beaches and incredible views. Whether you want pristine nature, or to dance the night away, you’ll have your perfect island experience here. However, it’s worth pointing out that in recent years, the islands have suffered from over-tourism and a plan is in place to make travel more sustainable. At the time of writing, you couldn’t walk on the beach at Maya Bay and had to pay a small fee when arriving on the island to contribute towards its maintenance.
Whether you’re on a day trip to the islands from the mainland or planning to stay longer and hop between the islands, you’ll arrive by boat to Koh Phi Phi Don, which is the only inhabited island. Several boats make this trip including ferries and speedboats. It’s also possible to buy a combination ticket which includes the ride from your hotel on the mainland to the pier, and to your hotel on Koh Phi Phi.
You might want to choose a boat with an outside deck for this ride. With limestone islands rising out of the clear blue sea, the scenery is pretty spectacular.
Taking a ferry
The Standard Ferry takes 90 minutes and the Tourist Ferry takes 2 hours. Both have seats in an air-conditioned cabin, and toilets on board. On the Tourist Ferry, you can also buy snacks and drinks. Combination tickets can be bought which include the ride from Ao Nang to the ferry pier, and to your island hotel or guest house on Koh Phi Phi Don.
Taking a speedboat
The speedboat is faster, with a journey time of 50 minutes. You’ll need to wear a lifejacket on board. If the sea is rough, or you’re pregnant or suffering from back problems, you might want to choose a ferry over a speedboat.
All boats leave from Nopparat Thara Pier, which is a few minutes along the coast from Ao Nang and has a handful of shops and cafes. All boats arrive on Koh Phi Phi Don at Tonsai Bay, a charming bay with several places to eat and drink, some shops and a dive center.
Be aware that when you arrive on the island, you might be asked to pay a small fee, which contributes to the upkeep of the island, so bring some small change with you.
If you have your heart set on seeing Maya Bay, be aware that at the time of writing, you couldn’t walk on the actual beach, although boats were taking passengers into the bay to admire the scenery from the water.
Bookaway's customers prefer Tourist ferry by Chao Koh Group
Speedboat ferry by Koh Yao Sun Smilewhich usually takes 1h
6 Km (Air)
Tourist ferry by Chao Koh Group starting at US$11