Krabi is one of the most favourite holiday destinations in Thailand; famous for craggy, sheer limestone cliffs, dense mangrove forests, and more than a hundred offshore islands.
According to locals, the best time to visit is between November and April as the weather in the Southern Thailand can be unpredictable but with many places now opening all year you will always find something to do.
#1 Island Hopping
One of the most popular tours that visitors to Krabi go on is the Four Island Tour. It takes you on a tour of four different islands, and they are Tup Island, Phra Nang Cave, Chicken Island and Poda Island.
It’s also known as Tub Island, Koh Tap or Koh Thap, one of the most popular offshore islands around Krabi for day trips on the long tail boat. The whole area is picturesque with stunning panoramic views of the Krabi coastline in the background.
At low tide a sandbar emerges from the clear waters linking the larger Chicken Island to the two smaller islands of Koh Mor and Tup. This picturesque and unique occurrence is commonly referred to as Talay Waek which means divided sea. When walking across the sandbar it is wise to take a pair of reef shoes as sharp corals and shells emerge from the water, making it quiet uncomfortable under foot.
PHRA NANG CAVE BEACH
Beautiful, but crowded.😖 Having been voted as one of the ten most beautiful beaches in the world is definitely expected to be crowded. Only twenty minutes by long boat from Ao Nang. The beach has perfect white sand and huge cliffs at each end of the beach.
But what made this trip quite interesting was the weird thing about Phra Nang Cave. The riveting legends and wooden penises are what make the PhraNang cave shrine famous. Located in a corner of the same-named beach, locals flock here to ask the resident goddess-spirit for help, especially when it comes to catching fish and having kids, while foreign travellers stand around looking bewildered. I am not so sure what’s behind the phallic frenzy??? Too many different versions/stories from locals which got me confused though.🤭
One story tells of how, many centuries ago, an Indian princess drowned in a shipwreck off the Railay coastline. Confused and desperate for dry land, her spirit took refuge in the cave, where some say it remains. Another legend claims that Nang was a sea gypsy who was abandoned in the cave by her husband. Angry at this betrayal, she became a powerful sorceress who after death morphed into a potent spirit. And not always a happy-go-lucky one either.
Chicken Island is also known as Koh Kai, Koh Gai or Koh Hua Khwan. This small and unusual looking island is situated just south of Poda and Tup Islands about 30 minutes by longtail boat from the west coast of Krabi. Obviously, this island called Chicken Island because of a large rock formation that undoubtedly resembles the head and neck of a chicken. Snorkelling around the waters is fantastic with spectacular coral reefs and an abundance of tropical fish.
Though a bit crowded, as expected for a little paradise such like this. Still, the beauty is exceptionally unique with its long white sandy beach and turquoise clear water.
A coral reef lies 20 metres offshore, and the combination of scenery, beach and excellent snorkelling make it one of our favourite places to spend a lazy day in Krabi. In this beach, we had our lunch and rest under the shady rows of pine trees.
Most of the visitors remain at the beach where the boat drops you off and just enjoy the day. A nice option, but a better one is to explore the island and walk along the beach. There you can find some nice lonely spots and if you walk to the end of the beach you can take some beautiful pictures with some of the surrounding islands like Koh Kai or Koh Tub (often referred to as Chicken and Tub Island) in the background.
#2 Dip into the Hot Springs and Crystal Pool
Also known as Thung Teao Forest National Park, is a virgin rainforest home to spectacular flora and fauna unseen elsewhere in Thailand. It’s a stunning eco-tourist spot with visually beautiful aquamarine colours surrounded by tropical rain forest and a fantastic spot for bird watchers.
The nature trek should be taken slowly so that you get a chance to see some of the very rare animals living in this ancient woodland. Actually, there are two trails of about one kilometer lead through the jungle to the Emerald Pool “Sa Morakot”.
THE HOT SPRING
Idyllically located under tropical rainforest canopies, the cascading waters of the hot springs offer a unique way of getting right back to nature and leaving the world behind with a rare treat of pure mineral salts in their natural environment.
The Jacuzzi type baths are perfect for sharing and can be filled right to the top with warm running water supplied fresh from the thermal springs. The hot springs are unusual in that they cascade forming a waterfall that pours into a stream below.
After we’ve finished taking a hydrotherapy bath at the hot spring, we hiked the jungle again to the crystal or emerald pool by just following a nature trek all located within the same park.
And there you go! It’s barely worth trekking to the Emerald Pool. 😱
#3 Temple Tour at Tiger Cave
Also known as Wat Tham Suea, one of the sacred Buddhist sites in Krabi. It is well known for the tiger paw prints in the cave, tall Buddha statues and the strenuous flight of stairs to reach the summit.
The temple has one stairway with 1,237 steps leading to the summit. Some of the stair risers are more than a foot (30 cm) high. The top of the stairs is 278 meters elevation. Elsewhere on the compound, 184 steps lead to the foothills area where monks live in the caves. Monkeys roam the lower stairs and temple grounds.
Oh well, sorry, I didn’t reach the summit though husband did for about 20 minutes. At least I made it up to 300 steps. 😂
#4 Bar Hopping
The night in Krabi was effervescent with restaurants and bars along the beach. We explore the bars along Ao Nhang. But we stayed for a couple of hours at The Beach.
We have enjoyed our evening listening to the live band. This restaurant has a nice view of the beach and offers a variety of Thai and western food.
Heavenly is the only way to describe the classic Thai dessert khao niaow ma muang. It’s the most famous of all Thai desserts, and so very scrumptious. And the best Mango Sticky rice can only be found in this restaurant – TRUST ME! Good choice for local dishes and nice ambience.
A great spot with live music at night. We enjoyed the grilled fresh seafood plus a glass of local beer in a pleasant outdoor dining atmosphere. And some fresh oysters was served on our table for free!
INN ASIA AT HOLIDAY INN RESORT
Had our romantic dinner here at Inn Asia. It is located on the roof of the resort lobby, the restaurant is blessed with panoramic views over Ao Nang Beach and the sparkling waters of the Andaman Sea, and offers a relaxing and truly chilled-out vibe.
A perfect place to watch the sun go down over Ao Nang Beach. Krabi’s most amazing sunsets can be enjoyed with your wine and beer at this cozy beachside venue.
#5 Indulge in Massage Therapy
To cap off the lovely evening we had the most relaxing spa at the hotel. It’s worth the price at Let’s Relax.
Where We Stayed
Had a lovely 3 nights stay in Holiday Inn. Perfectly located in a peaceful and relaxing area facing Ao Nhang Beach – with the most breathtaking views of the famous Thai sunsets -with hues of orange, red and pink.
We arrived early evening and were welcomed into the lobby with a refreshing cold drink. The facilities were pointed out to us along with further information about the resort. Restaurants and bars, convenience sores, massage, bars, tour and taxi/tuk-tuk services are within walking distance.
This is definitely a family friendly place to visit all year round, or perhaps to find some winter sun in Thailand. We absolutely adored the place and people, guests and crew. It was a wonderful first time staying here and definitely not our last.
You would like to buy a tour package to visit the islands. There are many agencies offering the same quote. You can book a tour in Ao Nang.
Prices:+ Phi Phi Island: from 1000 baht (29USD)+ Hong Island: from 800 baht (23USD)+ Ao Thalane kayaking tour: from 500 baht (17USD)+ Four Island: from 1000 baht (29USD)
By Songthaew / Tuk tuk / Government Bus
Songthaew and tuk tuk to the government bus terminal costs 8 bahts while a motorcycle taxi costs 30 bahts. Tuk tuks can be chartered for trips around the town for flat rates i.e. to the bus station (50 baht), What Tham Seua (100 baht) and the airport (200 baht).
By Car / Motorcycle
Alternatively, it is possible to rent a car to travel around town and to nearby provinces. Several agencies and guesthouses provide motorcycle rental for 150 baht/day while Jeep rental fees may range from 800 to 1,200 baht/day.Be noted that Thai people drive on the left side of the road.
For more convenience, it is possible to hire a taxi, rent a motorcycle or a van at travel agencies and hotels.