Viking Cave Overview

Tucked at the bottom of a tall limestone cliff, the Viking Cave on the northeastern side of Koh Phi Phi Leh makes for a perfect pit stop during your cruise around Phi Phi Island. The cave is home to birds nests used in traditional Chinese soup and is most popular for the unique drawings on the eastern and southern walls.

Viking Cave is one of the most wonderful places to see in the uninhabited Phi Phi Leh island where the marvels of MotherNature can be looked upon. The cave is located at the bottom of a huge limestone cliff that soars for metres above sea level. The walls of the cave have paintings of ancient Scandinavian Viking ships which gave the cave which was originally named ‘Tham Phaya Nak’ the current name of ‘Viking Cave’. The paintings are believed to be done by pirates who took refuge in the cave during the violent monsoon downpours.

Another significant thing about the Viking cave is the swift birds' nests. The cave is home to many swiftler birds and these birds build their nests using their saliva. The birds’ nests are one of the most expensive bird products consumed by humans and the locals can be seen climbing up the Viking Cave to harvest the full nests during the months from February to April.

Tourists on their trip to Thailand can spot fragile scaffoldings at the cave’s base that are used by the locals to climb up. There is also an altar at the cave mouth where the local men offer their prayers before harvesting the swiftler birds’ nests. After harvesting the nests, they are sold for hundreds of dollars to find their place in the exotic Chinese delicacy , ‘bird's nest soup’.

The cave is located on the north eastern side of the Koh Phi Phi Island, opposite the Maya Bay. The cave can be reached by the longtail boats from the main pier of Phi Phi Le. The journey from the pier to the cave takes about 30 minutes and the views of the island, the waters of the Andaman Ocean, and the greenery clad limestone cliffs are truly enthralling.

Entry inside the cave is prohibited for tourists; however these boats take you as close as possible to the cave so that Nature's beautiful creation can be marveled upon.


• Explore this naturally formed cave located at the bottom of a tall limestone cliff on the northeastern side of Ko Phi Phi island.
• Check out the paintings on the eastern and southern walls of the cave that are believed to be done by pirates who took shelter at the caves to safeguard themselves from the torrential monsoon rains.
• Glance through the narrow entrance of the cave to get a glimpse of the expansive inside.
• Spot the swiftlet birds' nests in the Viking Caves which are actually edible and harvested by locals to be used in exotic Chinese delicacies.
• It takes about 30 minutes to reach the cave from Phi Phi pier and during this amusing boat ride, you can revel in the beauty of the engulfing azure blue water, limestone cliffs that pop out every here and there, and the bright sunny sky.

How To Reach

Viking Cave is predominantly popular for its unique and resplendent natural structure at the bottom of a huge limestone cliff. The painting of Viking ships and swift birds’ nests add additional beauty to the Viking Cave.

Other Essential Information

Places to Visit near Viking Cave 

1. Ko Phi Phi Lee: This is the second largest island in the Phi Phi archipelago that spreads for about 6.6 square kilometres and is uninhabited. This virgin paradise has beautiful limestone cliffs covered with dense foliage rising out of the waters and looks breathtakingly beautiful. The waters of the island are warm and ideal for swimming. There are many organized boat tours that take you on an amazing trip around the island for sightseeing.

2. Viking Cave: Located on the northeastern side of Koh Phi Phi Island at the button of a huge limestone cliff, this natural cave is famous for the paintings of Viking ships made by sea pirates years ago and the harvesting of swift birds’ nests.

3. Phi Le Lagoon: This small and thin water inlet on the west coast of Phi Phi Leh is one of the most picturesque places to visit in Koh Phi Phi Leh. The lagoon is surrounded by limestone cliffs and hence is covered in their shade for the day except between 11.00 AM and 1.00 PM. The lagoon is accessible only by speedboats and longtail boats. The waters of the lagoon look more green than blue and are crystal clear making them great picks for swimming and snorkeling.

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4. Ton Sai Beach: A great place to enjoy a laid back day out in Koh Phi Phi Leh, Tonsai Beach can be reached via boats. Rock climbing is the predominant activity here and there are many rock climbing routes in the engulfing cliffs. You can even enroll for rock climbing courses or rent gears for rock climbing. The beach has a rocky bed and the shallow water makes swimming impossible here. Monkeys are found thriving here and so, tourists are advised to take care of their belongings.

5. Monkey Bay: Located in Koh Phi Phi Don archipelago, Monkey bay is one of the most popular snorkeling sites. The bay is indeed a cove with a rich coral reef structure lying about 50 metres from the shore. Do not feed the monkeys here as they could chase you asking for more food and might also turn injurious. You can reach this picturesque bay with a longtail boat ride or by kayaking.

6. Ko Bida Nok: This islet lies at the southernmost part of the Phi Phi islands and is extremely popular for the thrilling diving opportunities they offer. As a general rule, divers start diving from the eastern side of the islet and proceed southwards exploring the abundant aquatic life like anemone fish, surgeonfish, butterfly fish, and Ghost Pipefish swimming their way in and out through the coral structures. Tourists can also enroll for PADI Open Water Course here and enjoy the best snorkeling experience.

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7. Ko Mai Phai: This island is located to the north of Koh Phi Phi Don and is commonly known as Bamboo Islands. The northern and eastern sides of the island have serene white-sanded beaches with flourishing coral reefs and the central part is covered with lush Casuarinas trees and Bamboo trees. There is a small bar located on the north-eastern side of the island which serves drinks and snacks.

Places to Eat near Viking Cave

1. Restaurant Knock Out: Located just behind the Outrigger Phi Phi Island Resort, this restaurant scrumptious Thai seafood and other dishes for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The bar here serves various late night drinks and alcoholic beverages.

2. P.P. Wang Ta Fu: One of the best places in the island to savour the best sushis that literally melt in your mouth, P.P.Wang Ta Fu serves exotic renditions from Japanese cuisine. Dishes like salmon sashimi, gyoza, and tuna nigiri are no-miss delicacies here.

3. Efe Mediterranean Cuisine Restaurant: Serving delicious Mediterranean, European, Turkish, Healthy, Middle Eastern cuisines, this is the only turkish restaurant on the island. The restaurant has an outdoor seating area and the interiors inside takes you to the Turkish cities.

4. Only Noodles: Famous for serving tasty pad tai along with noodles in meat, seafood or vegetables, this restaurant is open from 10.30 AM to 10.30 PM. While this humble shack has a modest seating area, it is still rated as the best place on the Koh Phi Phi Don island to savour mouth watering pad Thai.

5. Dow Restaurant: Serving various Thai, European, and Israeli menu items, this restaurant is famous amongst vegans for the plentiful choices it offers. The restaurant has outdoor seating and free Wi-Fi to keep its guests entertained.

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Places to Stay near Viking Cave 

1. Phi Phi The Beach Resort:: Featuring hillside villas with astounding views of the ocean, the resort has air conditioned rooms, a pool, poolside bar, BBQ facilities, and many posh facilities for a luxurious stay. The resort has a private beach area and arranges for various water sports like diving and canoeing.

Distance from Viking Cave: 4.7 km

2. P.P.Blue Sky Resort: Nestled by the shores of Long Beach, this resort has modest rooms that are well-kept and air-conditioned. There are also beachfront villas here that have spellbinding sunset and ocean views from the terrace. The resort also has facilities like free Wi-Fi, safes in rooms, and comfortable bedding that promise a snug stay.

Distance from Viking cave: 4.7 km

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3. HIP Seaview Resort: Offering luxurious rooms with air conditioning, a minibar, a refrigerator, and free WiFi, this hotel in Phi Phi Don gives its guests the best value for money. The restaurant here serves delicious Thai dishes and pizzas.

Distance from Viking Cave:4.7 km

4. Phi Phi Cliff Beach resort: This is a relatively new resort located in the Ton Sai Bay. The rooms are chic and the hospitality is unmatched. The buffet breakfast served at the restaurant is mouth-watering.

Distance from Viking cave: 4.8 km

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Viking Cave FAQs

What is Viking Cave famous for?

Viking Cave is predominantly popular for its unique and resplendent natural structure at the bottom of a huge limestone cliff. The painting of Viking ships and swift birds’ nests add additional beauty to the Viking Cave.

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What is the best time to visit Viking Cave?

The best time to visit Viking Cave is from November to April when the temperatures hover between 25 and 30 degrees celsius and are pleasant for sightseeing. Rainfall is also scarce and scanty during these months.

What will we see at Viking Cave?

At Viking Cave, you can see the narrow opening. As the boats stop pretty close to the cave, a peep through the entrance will give you a glimpse of the expansiveness inside the cave. You can also see the paintings of Viking kings on the walls of the cave. Then, you can watch the swiftlet birds building their nests and the matured nests being harvested by the locals. You will also see some fragile bridge-like structure made of bamboo that the locals use to climb up to the cave.

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Is it safe to visit Viking cave?

Yes, it is absolutely safe to visit Viking Cave. You can witness this natural boat from a distance as most of the long tail boats and speed boats stop close by the cave. Entry within the cave is not permitted for tourists.

Is Viking Cave worth visiting?

Yes, Viking Cave is one of the major attractions in Koh Phi Phi Lee that can be visited by an enthralling 30-minute boat ride from the Phi Phi Leh pier.

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