With picturesque limestone mountains, serene islands, and amazing beaches, it’s easy to see why Krabi is such a popular destination.
Highlights of Krabi
Jump on a longtail boat to explore Krabi’s numerous beaches and islands. If you’re staying in Ao Nang, take a taxi boat around the headland to visit Railay Beach and Phra Nang Beach. Trips to islands further away, like Poda Island and the Hong Islands, are also easy to arrange directly with the boatmen or via an organised tour. Island tours usually include the option for snorkelling and time relaxing on the stunning beaches.
Krabi province is home to a mix of famous and not-so-famous islands. The best known are undoubtedly the Phi Phi Islands thanks to their appearance in the Leonardo DiCaprio movie, The Beach. Ko Lanta is a good choice for a quiet beach holiday and the same is true for nearby Ko Jum (Ko Pu). For couples seeking a romantic holiday hideaway, take a look at Ko Ngai.
Krabi Town is the amiable provincial capital and a pleasant contrast to the beach resorts and islands. Take the short boat ride across the estuary to the island of Ko Klang to see a slice of local life and enjoy fabulous freshly caught seafood. You can also combine this with a boat trip through the mangroves and the twin mountains of Khao Khanap Nam that straddle the estuary.
Just outside of town, the mountain temple of Wat Tham Seua is worth a visit. If you’re fit enough to make the tiring climb up the 1,237 steps to the shrine at the top, you will be rewarded with wonderful panoramic views. Other popular attractions near Krabi Town include The Emerald Pool (Sa Marakot) and nearby hot springs.
If you like to be active on your holidays, rent a sea kayak and explore the bay at Ao Thalane or hire a bicycle and explore Krabi’s quiet backroads.
Food and drink in Krabi
Some of the best food you will find in Krabi is in Krabi Town. The morning market near the centre of town is said to be the biggest fresh market of its kind in southern Thailand and a fascinating place to visit.
The weekend Walking Street Market is also a good place to shop and eat. Located behind the Vogue Department Store, the market opens Friday to Sunday evening from around 5pm-10pm. The small, but enjoyable night market located near Chao Fah Park is another good option for Thai food.
Many restaurants in Ao Nang tend to cater more for tourists with toned-down versions of Thai food along with venues selling burgers and pizza. However, you can still find authentic Thai food in a cluster of venues near the mosque and on the road out towards Nopparat Thara.
Where to stay in Krabi
Ao Nang is the best-known resort area on the Krabi mainland with a wide variety of accommodation and restaurants. The beach at Ao Nang isn’t as picture-perfect as that of Railay Beach, but the views are great and the sunsets are stunning.
Nopparat Thara Beach is a long beach adjacent to Ao Nang. It’s not the most beautiful beach, but is popular with Thai families and makes for a less busy alternative to nearby Ao Nang.
The peninsula at Phra Nang can only be accessed by boat and is home to some of Krabi’s most stunning beaches, including the picturesque Phra Nang Beach and Railay Beach. With its white sand, mountain backdrops, and views of the limestone karsts, it’s a wonderful place to relax. Accommodation options are available at both West Railay and East Railay with walkways connecting these beaches with Phra Nang and Tonsai Beach.
To the north of Ao Nang, the beaches of Tubkaak and Klong Muang both provide a relaxed option away from the main tourist areas. There are a number of excellent hotels here with lovely views across the Andaman Sea to the Hong Islands.
Away from the beaches, Krabi Town provides good value hotels and guest houses that are popular with solo travellers and budget travellers. This is a good location for foodies and the riverside setting adds to the ambience.
Best time to visit Krabi
Temperatures in Krabi remain warm throughout the year. The driest period with the most sunshine is usually from late November to mid-April.
The months that see the most rainfall are from May to October. The seas can be rough during the rainy season and boat services to some islands may be cancelled. However, these low-season months can still be a good time to visit Krabi. If you don’t mind the risk of seeing some rain along with the sunshine, accommodation tends to be cheaper at this time of year and the beaches are much quieter compared to the high-season months.
Travel to Krabi
Frequent flights connect Krabi with Bangkok with a flight time of around 80 minutes. Budget airline Air Asia also offers direct flights between Krabi and Chiang Mai in addition to services between Krabi and Singapore and Kuala Lumpur.
Krabi Airport is located 13 kilometres away from Krabi Town and 24 kilometres away from Ao Nang. On arrival, take a taxi to your destination or take the shuttle bus which runs from the airport to Krabi Town and continues to Ao Nang.