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Thailand closes island over tourism damage

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Koh Tachai’s beaches attract way too many tourists
The Thai island of Koh Tachai has suffered damage from too much tourism and will be closed to visitors this year, authorities have revealed. The natural resources and environment on the island, which is popular among tourist and divers, need time to recover.
The island, off Phang Nga province, is part of the Similan National Park. Almost all of the country’s marine national parks close for monsoon season between mid-May and mid-October, but Tachai will not reopen.
“We have to close it to allow the rehabilitation of the environment both on the island and in the sea without being disturbed by tourism activities before the damage is beyond repair,” explained Tunya Netithammakul, director general of the Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plants Conservation.
One beach on Koh Tachai is able to take around 70 people but sometimes gets more than 1,000, with food stalls and tour boats cramming the area.
Bangkok Post / BBC
[image courtesy Similanstour.com]

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