European travelers and beach lovers discovered Krabi quite recently, namely, after the release of the film “The Beach” with Leonardo DiCaprio in the title role (filming took place in many places in Thailand, but the best episodes were filmed here, as well as on the Phi Phi Islands). A rare case, but the filmmakers did not embellish the local landscapes at all: Krabi really has such an azure sea, such stunning cliffs, and still full of secluded places for calm and secluded relaxation. Is that on the islands of Phi-Phi, due to their cinematic fame, the people are now somewhat larger than in the cinema … Here are must-visit places in Krabi
In the province of Krabi, there are some of the cleanest beaches in Thailand. Krabi town is pretty and relaxed, surrounded by karst mountains. The beach resorts of Ao Nang and Railay attract many Australians here (planes from Australia fly to the local airport), and they know a lot about beach holidays.
Outside the city is the Tiger Cave Temple, a famous meditation center. In the middle of the forest, there is a sandstone mountain, at its foot, there is a cave and a temple in which 250 monks live. Every day, after morning meditation and prayer, columns of people in orange robes with shaved heads and pacified faces climb 1272 steps leading to the top of the mountain to a sacred stupa built on the site where the footprint of the Buddha is supposedly preserved. If you don’t find an Enlightened One’s footprint, the impressive views from the mountain make up for the long climb.
Krabi is the starting point for the islands of Phi Phi and Lanta. Boats leave from the pier in the city center. The ticket price is $ 12.
The largest and most terribly lazy island in the province of Krabi, where nothing ever happens. In fact, Ko Lanta is not even an island, but an archipelago, which consists of two large islands – Lanta Noi and Lanta Yai, and five dozen small ones. All of them, with the exception of Lanta Yai, are covered in the wild jungle and are completely uninhabited. Signs of civilization in the form of small family bungalow hotels, cane cafes, and unpretentious shops are present only on Lanta Yai.
Life on Lanta follows the traditional patriarchal order. Discos, night parties, and transvestite shows were never dreamed of by the locals. Ko Lanta is made for a lazy family vacation with hanging out in a hammock under a palm tree and leisurely dinners in beach cafes.
by the way, The small islands off the Lanta coast are considered some of the best diving spots on the entire Andaman coast.
Here you can rent a moped and go around all the beaches of the island, go for a walk in the jungle and visit the village of “sea gypsies” (Chao le) – representatives of the local indigenous people who build their villages on stilts right in the sea and are engaged in fishing.
You can get to the Ko Lanta archipelago by ferry from Krabi town, Ao Nang, or the Phi Phi islands.
Cut off from the rest of the land by cliffs, a secluded peninsula with white beaches and quiet family hotels. The only way to get on Railay is a wooden “long-tailed” boat with a smoking and rattling engine from a truck. Boats leave every few minutes from Ao Nang Pier and Krabi Town.
On the peninsula, there are a few notable beaches – a West Railay (Rai Leh West) and the beach Phra Nang (Phra Nang) with overhanging rock him with the homonymous cave. In addition to the usual pastime in the pose of a starfish on white sand, here you can snorkel at the nearby rocks, rent a kayak (get on it to isolated tiny beaches, as well as grottoes and caves) and go rock climbing.
In one of the caves of the Pra-Nang beach, there is a kind of “temple of the phallus”. The wives of fishermen have long left here the male reproductive organs carved out of wood so that their husbands would not cheat on them during the long voyage.
Beautiful mangrove forest
The provincial capital, the town of Krabi, stands on the banks of a large river – right at the mouth where it flows into the sea. It is here, in places flooded with saltwater, that mangroves are most popular.
It is worth taking a boat on the granite-lined embankment and crossing the river, and you will find yourself in the thicket of the most real mangroves. The humid, shady tunnels are home to hundreds of creatures – crabs, birds, and strange land fish called mudskippers.
by the way, A boat for an excursion to the mangroves can be easily found right on the waterfront of Krabi Town. An hour trip will cost $ 8-10.
Tiger Cave Temple
The landscape of Krabi province is formed of karst mountains, lonely sticking out of the thick green jungle. One of these mountains near Krabi town can be climbed on foot. At the foot of this mountain is the Wat Tam Seua cave temple, which, according to legend, was actually once inhabited by a tiger. However, the Buddhist monks who came here did not hesitate to drive the animal from its familiar place and take its cave.
1237 steps carved into the rock lead to the top of the mountain. In some places, the stairs become so steep that you have to cling to the railing with both hands in order not to fly down. The reward for the ascent is a breathtaking view of the mountains and the sea from the observation deck. There is an altar around a small recess in the rock – according to legend, this is the footprint of the Buddha himself.
How to get there, The Tiger Cave Temple is a 20-minute drive from Krabi town and 40 minutes from Ao Nang. You can get to it by taxi, tuk-tuk, or as part of an excursion organized by one of the travel agencies. In the midday heat, the climb turns out to be quite exhausting, so it is best to go to the Tiger Temple in the morning or at sunset.
Ao Nang is the oldest and most popular resort village on the local coast. The bay of the same name is surrounded by limestone cliffs immersed in tropical greenery, very popular with climbers. Beaches with a gentle entrance and clear water are suitable for tourists with children and for snorkelers.
Ao Nang is considered the party capital of Krabi and a staging post on the way to the pretty islands of the Andaman Sea. The embankment of the village is a pleasant shady promenade with many shops and restaurants. Tired of Thai food, you can get into the ubiquitous McDonald’s, Burger King, and Pizza Hut.
Longtail boats – “longtails” – for a couple of dollars deliver tourists from Ao Nang to the neighboring bays Railay and Ton Sai, and high-speed powerful boats – to the islands of Phi Phi and even Phuket.
Ao Nang Krabi Thai Boxing Stadium
Thai boxing (Muay Thai) is an extremely popular sport in Thailand. Right in the middle of Ao Nang is a huge stadium built specifically for fighting. It is almost impossible to miss a boxing tournament while in the town – on the day of the fight of famous fighters all over Ao Nang, advertisements and booming announcements go through the loudspeaker, and flyers appear on the tables of all cafes. During the “high season” battles are held twice a week – on Mondays and Fridays.
Each fight is subject not only to strict rules but also to mandatory traditions. The fight is preceded by a prayer and a ritual dance Ram-Muay, symbolizing the gratitude of the trainer and teacher from the side of the fighter. After the dance, the fighter walks around the ring with a raised hand, thus “protecting” it from the actions of evil spirits for the duration of the fight. The duel is held to the special music of the “fighting” orchestra of folk instruments. It is believed that such accompaniment has magical properties and allows the fighters to better focus on the fight.
Muay Thai is translated from Thai as “free flight”. The main difference from traditional boxing is the ability to hit opponents on almost any part of the body. Thai boxing training is part of the training program for all Thai military personnel and police officers. In the 17th century, the study of Muay Thai was compulsory for all military and members of the royal family, and especially gifted fighters were enlisted in the royal guard and bestowed on the nobility.
Ton Sai Beach
The village of relaxed backpackers and amateur athletes is one of the best climbing destinations in Asia. The sheer limestone cliffs surrounding the beach have over 300 climbing routes of various difficulty levels. What unites them all is a stunning bird’s-eye view of the ocean and the islands lying in the distance.
On Ton Sai Beach, a type of rock climbing was invented – Deep Water Solo. Such routes are laid on rocks overhanging the water and are passed without any insurance. At the end of the route, the climber is encouraged to practice a little diving. All the necessary equipment on Ton Sai can be purchased locally or rented. There are several agencies offering qualified guides and instructors at the service of beginners and professionals. One of the popular local schools is Wee’s Rock Climbing School, which is based in a jungle camp.
In addition to rock climbing on Ton Sai, you can go diving (the only school is the Scuba Talent DIve Center ), and rent a kayak to explore the shores rugged by tiny coves. And of course, you can just sunbathe and swim here, although you need to keep in mind that lazy rest here, among the crowds of young people and muscular athletes, is not accepted.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Krabi
Q. Is Krabi or Phuket better?
A – If you are looking for a well-developed place with all the facilities then Phuket is the place to be. On the other hand, if you want to enjoy the bucolic nature and laze around in the natural setting then Krabi is the best choice.
Q. Is Krabi town worth visiting?
A – As for Krabi town, it is a relaxed place with great food. People do treat it as a staging point. There is nothing much to keep you there but it is pleasant and a good place to visit.
Q. Is 3 days enough in Krabi?
A – Krabi Town often gets overlooked, and for good reason—well, good reason for the town itself, even if you don’t want to spend all 3 days in Town. Within the parameters of this itinerary, inland province, on the other hand, is definitely worth a day of your time.
Q. Is Krabi Thailand safe?
A – Krabi Thailand is safe in terms of low crime rate; however, like in all other famous destinations, one should be vigilant, too, from pickpockets. One can always avoid this problem by acting sensibly and exercising caution. The province has nearly 80 islands.
Q. Is Krabi Thailand expensive?
A – You should plan to spend around ฿1,486 ($48) per day on your vacation in Krabi, which is the average daily price based on the expenses of other visitors. Also, the average hotel price for a couple is ฿1,854 ($59). So, a trip for two people for one-week costs on average ฿20,808 ($667).
Q. How many days are enough to see Krabi?
A – Krabi island hopping is an absolute must while you’re in the area and will take up most of your day. There are plenty of islands to go hopping on, the four island tour in Krabi is, you guessed it, a day of visiting four islands around.
Q. Is Krabi better than Phi Phi?
A – Well Railay/Ton Sai is visually more spectacular and has fewer hassles than Phi Phi. But snorkeling off the beach is not as good (although your Phi Phi day trip from Krabi will take in the good snorkeling spots and visually spectacular areas).
Q. Is Krabi or Koh Samui better?
A – Koh Samui is one of the most expensive destinations in Thailand, and is ideal if you have a higher budget and your trip falls between January and August. If you have a standard budget and are going between November and April, Krabi is a better bet.
Q. How far is Krabi from Bangkok?
A – The distance between Bangkok and Krabi is around 800 km by road and 650 km – by air. Air service within Thailand is well-developed. That’s why it is recommended to get there by plane.
Q. Is there grab in Krabi?
A – Save money by booking your Krabi journey with Grab; the ride-sharing app offers cheaper prices than regular taxis and you’ll have an estimate of the fare before your trip even starts.
Q. How big is Krabi?
A – 4,709 km²
Q. How long is a boat ride from Phuket to Krabi?
A – The regular ferry trip takes about 90 minutes, with 2 services running daily – year-round. (Schedules are organized so you can travel from Phuket to Phi Phi to Krabi in one day).
Q. Is Krabi good for families?
A – Krabi Province is a destination made in heaven for families. There is so much to do and see that you’ll never have a dull moment as the province has at least 154 islands to explore, jungle elephant paths to trek along, exotic waterfalls, and emerald-green ponds.
Q. How much is a taxi from Krabi to Phuket?
A – The Phuket-Krabi bus is cheaper ($4.3) and its journey time is also 2.5 hours. A taxi will cost from $83 for a trip which lasts 1 hour 45 minutes. The Phuket to Krabi distance is 180 km by land, and three times less – by water.
Q. Does Krabi have good nightlife?
A – Krabi nightlife offers vacationers a good choice of entertainment opportunities after dark. Krabi, while not being in the same league as Patong or Bangkok, has its own distinctive nightlife. you have an idea of what an evening out in Koh Lanta, Krabi Town, and Ao Nang is like.
Q. How do you travel around Krabi?
A – The price from Ao Nang to Krabi Town one way is 50 baht per person and you can flag down the bus anywhere along the main road through the village and at the beach. The journey time can be anywhere from 20 up to 45 minutes. Motorcycle taxis can also be found in Krabi Town and are a fast if the hair-raising, way to get around.
Q. Is Krabi nice?
A – Krabi is the most relaxing part to be in all of Thailand, it is a province that has the most stunning scenery imaginable, beautiful white beaches that stretch on for miles, a jungle, and over 200 islands just of the coast.