Island again when Koh Samet reopens in one week

One of Bangkok’s favorite getaway islands is ready to reopen July 1 with new restrictions including mandatory booking and – surprise, surprise – logging visits with the government tracking system.

Koh Samet’s July 1 reopening means tourists will have to book in advance via a yet-to-be-released application, Prayul Pongpang, head of the Khao Leam Ya and Koh Samet Islands National Park, said Tuesday. Also, there will be temperature screening prior upon departure and arrival and along with checking in and out via the Thailand Wins system.

Prayul said 3,000 tourists would be allowed onto the island per day to control the spread of COVID-19. In addition, hotels and resorts on the islands will only be allowed to book 50% of their accommodations for at least the first week.

For Khao Leam Ya National Park, 300 tourists will be allowed per day; 700 will be let onto Mae Ram Phueng Beach.

Those guests may be in for some lucky sightings. Since the area’s mid-March closure, whale sharks were spotted in the national park on Friday along with plain-pouched hornbills, which had never been recorded on the island before.

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