By THE NATION
The Department of National Parks (DNP) had announced the closure of Similan Islands in Phang Nga province since March due to the Covid-19 outbreak. The shutdown has prolonged for seven months this year compared to other years when the islands close during the monsoon season from May-October.
The group of visitors were taken to Island 8 (Ko Similan), Island 4 (Ko Miang), the Kuerk Bay, the Lan Kha Luang scenic point and the Nah Beach or Princess Beach, which is Phang Nga’s longest white beach with crystal clear water.
The park also said that when the islands open on October 15, all visitors would have to maintain social distancing to prevent the spread of Covid-19.
“Traveling in the new normal could provide a better experience for Thai tourists, as the islands’ natural beauty is now fully restored after seven months' closure, while there are no foreign tourists allowed, resulting in the areas becoming less crowded,” said the park officials.
A representative of Love Andaman Tour agency, who participated in the trip, said that this year the company would focus on eco-friendly tourism by urging tourists to conserve natural resources and aquatic wildlife. “We will start dispatching our tour-guided boats from October 15. Currently customers are starting to call in to make reservations,” he added.