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TAT warns tour operators advance notice needed to enter Similan Islands National Park

TAT warns tour operators advance notice needed to enter Similan Islands National Park

PHUKET: The Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) has issued an announcement calling for all tour operators to give advance notice before bringing tourists on boats into the Mu Ko Similan National Park.

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By The Phuket News

Thursday 28 March 2019, 12:01PM


The popular tourist beach at Ko Paet in the Mu Ko Similan National Park. Photo: TAT

The popular tourist beach at Ko Paet in the Mu Ko Similan National Park. Photo: TAT

“The entry fee to Mu Ko Similan National Park can be paid at either of four locations, one of which is the Park’s Office on the mainland in the village of Thap Lamu. The other three are in the island archipelago itself – Park Ranger Unit 1 Ko Mieng, Park Ranger Unit 2 Ko Similan and Park Ranger Unit 3 Ko Tachai,” said the TAT in its announcement.

“The entry fee to Mu Ko Similan National Park is 500 Baht for adults and 300 Baht for children,” the TAT noted.

However, according to the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation (DNP), which operates all national parks in the country, the entry fee for Thai nationals to enter the Mu Ko Similan National Park remains at B100 for adults and B50 for children. (See here.)

“Also, in line with the recent cap put on visitor numbers to the ark, the tour operator is required to make a one-day advance notice to the park before entering during the period of March 21 to May 15, 2019,” the TAT noted.

“The cap is set at not more than 1,625 visitors per day for excursions on islands from Ko Si to Ko Paet, and not more than 1,700 visitors per day for excursions from Ko Paet to Ko Si.

“For diving, the cap is not more than 525 visitors per day,” the TAT said.

“Please note that as of June 2018, it is not possible to stay overnight in the Similan Islands,” the TAT added.

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“Unapproved boats are not permitted to enter the Mu Ko Similan National Park,” the TAT warned.

Meanwhile, an order issued by DNP Director General Thanya Netithammakun late last year will see all boats carrying 100 or more passengers banned from entering the park from June 1.

The order, issued on on Dec 20, stipulated that boats up to 25 passengers will be charged B500 per day to enter the park.

Boats carrying 26-50 passengers will be charged B1,000 per day, while boats carrying 51-100 passengers will be charged B2,000 per day.

The order was issued to “help people in the tourism business”, DNP Director Thanya said in the notice.

However, the order was initially to come into effect on Jan 1 this year, but has been now postponed to come into effect on June 1 this year.

 

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Kurt | 28 March 2019 - 14:36:19

What a hopeless happening.
Tat is a tourist promotion organisation, has no jurisdiction about anything.
Other organisations are  contradicting each other about fees. Orders postponed from 1 Jan till 1 June. What a mess. Is there nothing they can handle as '1 voice', and manage properly together?

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