This is why we can't have nice things.

We reported back in February that Koh Phi Phi Leh’s iconic Maya Bay was set to close for a few months to give authorities the chance to reverse two decades of damage caused by rampant tourism.

Well, that temporary closure has now become indefinite, as the period proved too short for to the local marine environment to return to normal, Thailand's Department of National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation (DNP) announced this week.

The Thai bay known as the setting for Danny Boyle’s 2000 film The Beach, starring heartthrob Leonardo DiCaprio, had become one of the world’s most popular beaches and one of Thailand’s most-visited tourist spots.

Once a bucket-list destination thanks to its Hollywood history, white sands, striking limestone cliffs and clear blue waters, estimates of up to 5,000 visitors per day arriving by boat from Phuket and Phi Phi proved too much for the reefs, beach and plant life to bear.

Pollution in the form of litter, boats and sun cream has resulted in an estimated destruction of over 80 percent of the bay’s coral, although the authorities had in the past been reluctant to close the tourist hot spot—a source of around B400 million in yearly revenue—The Guardian reports.

With tourist numbers to Thailand exceeding 35 million in 2017, authorities have been forced to step up measures to protect local ecosystems, but what does this mean for Thailand’s tourism industry?

Well, the latest tourism stats suggest that the number of Chinese visitors to Thailand has dropped by 12 percent since August 2018. While these figures probably have more to do with headlines like “47 Dead in Tour Boat Tragedy,” “Tour Operator Leaves Chinese Visitors Stranded” and “Don Muang Security Guard Throws Punch at Chinese Tourist,” this could just be another item to add to the list of deterrents.

While most of us can agree that the overrun beach deserves a well-earned rest from the flag-waving hordes, no doubt many tourists will be met with disappointment.