These dreadful photos show how a couple’s dream island getaway turned into a holiday from hell – filled with mountains of rubbish and half-finished buildings.
The travellers from Ealing, west London, spent £3,000 on a trip to Koh Lipe in the Andaman Sea – dubbed the ‘Maldives of Thailand’ – after falling in love with pictures of turquoise seas and golden beaches.
But the pair, who wish to remain anonymous, were stunned to find the area strewn with litter and building sites – there was even a digger on the sand at one beach.
The couple said they had a building site and green swamp at the back of their £80-a-night, three-star beachfront resort – with fires raging on the beach just 150 metres away.
Making matters worse, a digger ploughed up the white sands for four days, causing noise until midnight.
Talking about his traumatic trip, the 35-year-old man, who works as a computer programmer, said: ‘We booked the trip to Koh Lipe after seeing all the beautiful pictures online and reading reviews.
‘There were some warnings about a rubbish problem but we could never have been prepared for the reality. The litter problem is crazy. Nobody seems to care where they throw their trash and they leave building waste lying around.
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‘We thought we’d be listening to the gentle lull of the sea, but instead there was a digger ploughing up the beach from sunrise until midnight, for three days straight.
‘A building site on the beach front had fires raging, locals smoking and drinking, and hacked down trees. It was like a scene from the apocalypse.’
The holidaymakers paid £600 each for flights to the Thai capital, Bangkok. Travel to Koh Lipe, near the Malaysian border, cost a further £200 each.
They arrived at the Bundhaya Villas Resort on June 17. Seven nights beach front accommodation on the island was £560. Extra entertainment and food costs during the trip sent the total spend past £3,000.
But while they were happy with the hotel, problems began when they strolled outside. Directly behind the resort was a man-made reservoir surrounded by tin huts and a sprawling building site.
Just 150 metres away on the beach front was a large unfinished building site with trees being chopped down and industrial waste being burned round the clock.
And for four days from sunrise to midnight, a digger was driving on the beach carrying supplies and rubbish between the building site and a huge trawler docked in the sea.
They counted at least a dozen more unfinished construction sites and several huge piles of rubbish including bags of cement and empty plastic bottles.
He added: ‘The hotel was great. We can’t fault that. But we’d like to warn other people thinking of travelling to Koh Lipe that it’s not the entirely the tropical island portrayed in the magazines.
‘Walk around the outside of the hotel and you will be in for a shock.’
Bundhaya Resort admitted there was a problem with rubbish on the island and construction work was taking place behind their hotel.
A spokesman for the hotel said: ‘In the Island there are volunteers to collect the rubbish and we help them with that.
‘Every hotel on the island needs to fix the rubbish problem. We don’t deny that. We know how important it is and if there’s a lot of trash nobody will come and our business will suffer.
‘Everybody tries their best to make the island a nice place to visit. In low season there is a lot of trash and building. There is a construction site behind us which is not nice for guests but this should be finished soon.
‘The guests didn’t complain to us but if they did we would have tried to help them.’
There is no word on if the couple received any form of compensation for their trip.
Report and gallery shared by The Daily Mail