Tham Pya Nak

Tham Phaya Nak - Viking Cave

Useful Information

Location: Ko Phi Phi National Marine Park. On Ko Phi Phi Le Island, in the Adaman Sea.
Tour operators in both Phuket and Krabi provide transport and tour packages to Ko Phi Phi Le. Regular boat service is available form Jao Fah pier in Krabi.
Open: Only after permission by the concessioner.
Classification: SpeleologyKarst cave
Guided tours:  
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.


1972 visited by H.M. Rama IX.


Tham Pya Nak is a famous tourist destination on the east side of the northern peninsula of Ko Phi Phi Le. The cave has an entrance at sea level and is entered by boat from the sea in kayaks. The name Tham Pya Nak was given to the cave by H.M. Rama IX when he visited the cave in 1972. He named it because of the shape of a particular boulder, which resembles the head of the great serpent of Buddhist legend, the Naga.

This cave is rather famous under its other name Viking Cave. Of course there have never been Vikings, but the cave has numerous cave paintings of vessels, resembling Viking longboats. The colored drawings are located on the eastern and southern walls of the cave. There are pictures of elephants and also of various boats: European, Arab and Chinese sailing ships, baroques, motorboats, and steamships. They were probably drawn by pirates, who paused in the cave on their travels from west to east, sheltering from the monsoon winds, transfering cargo, or making repairs.

The cave is revered by the local people. They come here to collect the swift's nests, used to make Bird's Nest Soup, a Chinese delicacy. The season for the nests is between February and April. A bids' nest company has the concession for the cave, and they must be asked if you want to visit the cave.