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DESTINATION THAILAND
WHERE TO GO IN KRABI, THAILAND
Krabi, a province on southern Thailand’s Andaman coast, is an almost otherworldly region of labyrinthine archipelagos, where islands seem to erupt vertically out of the sea and secluded beaches are only accessible by colorfully adorned long tail boats. Krabi’s myriad of bays and coves have sheltered pirates, merchants, and sea gypsies for thousands of years and archaeological evidence indicates that Krabi was originally inhabited as early as 25,000 - 35,000 years ago! With attractions including hot springs, a wildlife sanctuary, sea caves, flourishing coral reefs and exotic marine life, limestone cliffs that draw rock climbing enthusiasts from around the world, and national parks that include the island paradises of Koh Phi Phi and Koh Lanta, one could easily spend weeks in Krabi and leave yearning for more. 


If that wasn’t enough, Krabi features some of the most photogenic sunsets in Thailand, often accompanied by spectacular displays of cloud to cloud lightning, that are best enjoyed from a beachside bar or restaurant. Meanwhile, with all the tourists spread out among various beaches and islands, life goes on in Krabi Town, the somewhat sleepy provincial capital. Surprisingly few tourists spend time in the charming riverside town, whose hilly streets feature a number of cozy cafes and inexpensive and authentic Thai cuisine is served at an outdoor, riverside evening market. “Town” to most visitors is Ao Nang, a seaside strip of guesthouses, hotels, bars, restaurants, and souvenir shops that continues to grow as tourist arrivals increase, now spreading north into Noppharat Thara, whose quiet, shady beach is part of the national park that includes the Phi Phi Islands. Ao Nang is the major launching point for boat trips to nearby islands and the isolated beaches of Phra Nang Cape, where the famous former hippie enclave of Railey Beach is located.


Krabi Province, which lies along the coast of the Andaman sea in Southern Thailand, is a top tourist destination as a result of its plentiful natural attractions including, white sandy beaches, crystal clear water, extensive coral reefs, numerous caves and waterfalls, and over 130 islands, including Koh Lanta and the jewels of the Andaman coast, the six islands of Mu Koh Phi Phi National Park. While not the top destination in and of itself, Krabi Town is a charming provincial capital located along the banks of a river that leads to the nearby Andaman Sea. Consequently, Krabi is an important port city for both local fisherman as well as boats ferrying visitors to the nearby attractions, including Koh Phi Phi, Koh Lanta, and Railey Beach, one of the premier rock climbing destinations in the world.

 


Key Tips


Visitors are advised to make early reservations (up to a year in advance) for accommodation during the peak season from late December to early January because of the popularity of the Krabi and its attractions.

When traveling by ferry to islands around Krabi, it may be preferable to purchase only a one way ticket so that your trip can be more easily altered and you can more easily arrange your departure.

 

Tourist Attraction in Krabi 

Regarded as the symbol of Krabi, Khao Khanap Nam are two mountains that are roughly 100 meters tall sit on both banks of Maenam Krabi River at the entrance to Krabi city. Prepare to be mesmerized by its amazing caves, adorned with stalactites and stalagmites. In addition to natural attractions, a large number of human skeletons have been found here and, as theory has it, there were people settling down in the area but were unfortunately cut off by a flood and finally vanished. For further trekking to Khao Khanap Nam, mangrove forests and Klang island, a fisherman village, a boat is available for rent 300 THB per trip.


Ao Nang is Kaabi tourist central. The coastline of Ao nang is twenty kilometers away from Krabi town, and six kilometers away from Noppharat Thara beach. Its scenic beach with relaxing ambiance makes it a popular attractions among global trotters with selections of accommodations, restaurants and bars. Ao Nang is also a transportation hub you can travel to nearby islands, such as:


●       To Rai Le beach: 80 THB (10 minutes) A night trip costs 100 THB.


●       To Phra Nang cave: 80 THB (15 minutes)


●       To Poda island and return: 300 THB (25 minutes)


●       To Kai island and return: 300 THB (25 minutes)


●       To Hong archipelago on a charter boat: 2,500 THB (an hour)

 

Located in Sa Kaew district, 28 km from the main city of Krabi, The Green Lake is under the Khao Thong sub-district and is filled with eight small natural ponds, which is a locals’ favourite recreational spot.


Approximately 34 km reach from Krabi’s provincial city, Pa Phru or a peat swamp forest of Tha Pom Canal is where freshwater and seawater fromnearby mangrove forests meets---the reason behind its name: Khlong Song Nam, which literally means ‘a canal that features two (kinds of) waters ’. Featuring a number of water resources originated from Chong Phra Kaeo pool, visitors can either dip into fresh clear water where the base of the pool and roots of Lumphi palms are visible underwater or simmer down on wooden chairs on natural lath-made Tha Pom. 


Blessed with untouched, lush forests, mountain ranges, Krabi’s only National Park, the 31,325-rai of far-reached Khao Phanom Pencha National Park, covers parts of the municipality, Ao Luek and Khao Phanom districts. It is also Krabi’s highest altitude at 1,397 meters above the sea level, home to natural wonders like waterfalls, streams and caves, making it’s a perfect habitat for wild animals from Asian tapirs, Sumatran serows, Asiatic black bear and fishing cat to over 218 bird species such as eagles, hornbills and woodpeckers.


Waterfalls are among the must-see attractions here, with highlights are Huay To and Huay Sad waterfalls. Huay To Waterfall, which is originated from Phanom Bencha Mountain, featuring 5 cascades, each of which has its own name: Wang Sam Hap, Wang Chong Loi, Wang Doi Prong, Wang Thewada and Wang Ton Phrio, respectively. Huay To flows into Krabi Yai Canal in Krabi’s provincial town. Next stop is Huay Sade Waterfall which is only 300 meters away from the park’s office. Slightly smaller, Huay Sade owns 3 cascades of crystal clear pool of refreshing water that eventually flows into Ton Canal and Krabi Yai Canal. Both waterfalls offer adventurous trekking trails, which can span from two to three nights (camping involved) passing through different stops in the lush, tropical forest where you’ll enjoy panoramic sceneries. The weather is comfortable and cool all year round, however, it’s best to get the needed information ahead of your travel. Rental tent for 2-8 people is offered at 150-600 THB per night and it is 30 THB per tent per night if bring your own tents. Kindly contact the National Park’s office for more information.  

 

Hong Islands: A cluster of islands that are just perfect for diving and fishing: Lao, Saka, Lao Riam, Pakka, and Lao Lading islands but Hong or Lao Pile is the biggest of all in the South. Most are limestone with glistening clear turquoise, white sandy beaches accompanied by deep and shallow coral reefs. A renowned summer paradise, Hong is as well known as an adventurous challenge for hiking, boasting hiking passage of 400 meters, and is a suitable spot for canoe too. 


There were excavations behind Khlong Thom temple and an assortment of antique artifacts from the ‘Khuan Luk Pat’ or literally translated as ‘A Mound of Beads’ was found. They include stone- and bronze-made tools, metal coins, fragments of ancient pottery and ceramic as well as stone-decorated art pieces and colored droplets, all dated back for more than 5,000 years ago.


The waterfall, located quite near to the Emerald pool, is in a shady forest area with numerous hot springs. The hot springs and cool streams converge on a slope to form lovely cascades of warm water with a temperature of 40-50 degrees Celsius. The best time to visit is from 7.00 a.m. to 8.00 a.m. and from 4.00 p.m. to 5.00 p.m. To reach the waterfall visitors should travel 45 kilometers from town to Amphoe Khlong Thom, then take Sukhaphiban 2 Road for another 12 kilometers. The admission fee is 10 baht per person.


Noppharat Thara is among Krabi’s most famous beaches. Located only 6 km away from Ao Nang Bay, Noppharat Thara Beach features a 3-km white sandy beach full of rows of casuarinas and coconut trees. The beach was formerly known as ‘Khlong Haeng Beach,’ which means a dried-canal beach in Thai. The term was taken during low tide when the water dries up and reveals long, seashells-paved seashore. Nopphrat Thara Beach is actually part of the marine national park. So it means visitors who wish to stay overnight are required to contact the office of the national park for reservations and accommodation options in advance.


As one of the most striking rock formations, Hong Archipelago is a composition of 12 islets that vertically stretching from the North to the South of Krabi sea, near Phang Nga province. The islands are blessed by its shady silhouettes and Mother Nature’s charm, though they feature only a few reachable beaches and an overnight stay is not permitted. The highlight is a large lagoon embraced by surrounding mountains at the archipelago’s main island.


The best time to pay a visit is during November-April when you can try kayaking for sightseeing nearby attractions. The kayak route usually starts on the beach close to National Park Ranger Station (rental spot), then sail by the majestic limestone cliff and head to the lagoon at the opposite end of the island. The total trip can take up to 30 minutes to one hour. 

 

 
 
 

Situated south of Ao Nang, 8 kilometres offshore, Mu Koh Poda is fringed by clear waters, and offers white sandy beaches, as well as, pristine coral reefs. This is why it is a year-round attraction and an excellent place for fishing because it is not affected so much by the monsoon.


One of Thailand's unseen highlights, this amazing natural phenomenon is set to take place at Ko Daam Kwan Island five days before and after the full moon, from December to the early May, when tides change dramatically in different hours of a day. When the tide is low, it reveals a white sand dune and limestone beach connecting two islands together. To go see the happening you need to buy a tour package or rent a boat, 

which can accommodate 8-10 passengers, and can be priced around 2,000-2,500 THB.

Accessible only by boat, this stunning, pristine beach has fine-grained white sand and crystalline waters---ideal for sunbathing and swimming so it does attract thousands of visitors all year round. This beach is the location of the luxurious Rayavadee resort, a private property that occupies 26 acres of the beach, while a more budget accommodation options are available not farway. The Inner and Outer Phra Nang Caves, and Phra Nang Lagoon, which are located nearby offer remarkable views against a stunning backdrop. Its towering karsts offer numerous hiking trails for adventurous travelers. Activities like diving, snorkeling, hiking and rock-climbing are also frequent favorites.  

Than Bok Khorani National Park, whose size counts in total of 37.5 Rai of Ao Luek Tay subdistrict, covers an abundance of natural trekking routes, waterfalls, mangrove forests, Lot Cave, Phi Hua To Cave and its prehistoric drawing and Hong archipelago, the beach paradise. Rare floras like wild gardenias, Asoka and Apocynaceae are sprinkled around the swim-able Bok Khorani Pond, a dazzling emerald pool that the park is named after. It is definitely a go-to destination for eco-tourism, perfect for aquatic activities like snorkeling, canoeing or just a day trip of sightseeing. Than Bok Khorani National Park’s headquarters are just a km away from a sub district of Ao Luek Nuea Market Intersection on Ao Luk Sak Road. 



Other attractions are all natural sights: limestone cliff caves, boat-only accessed islands and pristine mangrove forest. More attractions include:


●       Than Bokkharani: Formerly known as Than Asok due to its location where Asok trees or Asoka were previously grown, this emerald stream is just nearby the National Park office. It situates among a shady lush greens with pools of cascades. On the pond’s north end, there’s a wooden carve replica of Lord Buddha’s footprint along with a Chao Po Yuan-To Chong shrine.


●       Lot and Phi Hua To Caves: Prepared to be enthralled by stalactite and stalagmites in a tunnel beneath a limestone mountain or walk just about 500 meters to enjoy an archaeological discovery among oversized human skulls, prehistoric paintings and piles of seashells in Phi Hua To Cave or known as Hua Kalok Cave. Rental canoes at Bo Tho Pier for a mangrove trip are available for 1,200 THB per person, inclusive of lunch.


       Getting there: 6 km from the National Park. Take Ao Luek- Laem Sak Route for 2 km and take a right turn at Bo Tha Pier. Then jump on a 15-minute long tail boat ride, passing mangrove forests along Tha Prang canal.


●       Chao Le Cave: Located on western Laem Sak, the cave is embraced by the bay, mountain cliffs and groups of islands. The cave interior is an archaeological preciousness with prehistoric paintings of living creatures like humans and animals as well as obscure geometric signs dated back approximately in the following era of what happened in Phi Hua To Cave. To see the painting or its amazing stalactite and stalagmites, a 10-15 minute trip on canoes and rental boats is accessible from Laem Sak.


●       Karot/Garose island: Canoeing is available on this island, sitting on the eastern end of Laem Sak.


●       Dang Island: The 25-meter white sandy beach is home to the 70-meter wide and 20-meter high caves, and a diving heaven with multi-colored corals.

 

 
 
 
WHERE TO GO, KRABI
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