Touted as the next ‘rising star’ of Thailand tourism, Krabi is home to some of the best beaches in Asia. As Krabi only recently opened up to international travelers, it is one of those few beach destinations that is not massively influenced by wide-spread commercialization and aggressive peddling such as Bali or Phuket.
Travelers to Krabi will appreciate its simple and laid-back lifestyle, where the locals are friendly and helpful. If you like outdoor sports like surfing, diving, rock climbing etc., then Krabi should definitely be on your bucket list!
When to go?
The best time to visit Krabi will be between late January to March. I made this travel in February, just slightly after Valentine’s Day and it was perfect – the waters were clear and low tide. Most of all, shops were open! I was there on another occasion in June and the weather conditions weren’t so great. It rained almost every other day; the waters were murky; tides were high, plus, many shops and makeshift stalls were also closed!
It wasn’t a joyful holiday at all, and only thereafter I learned from the locals that June-November is their off-season period due to prevalent rainfall and unfavorable sea conditions.
As I wanted to get away from the touristy crowd of Ao Nang and Krabi Town for some quiet and peaceful time, I found a studio apartment at At Sea Condominium , which is located near Klong Muang, away from the bustle of downtown.
The place is clean and well-equipped. The condo also has a small cafe / mini mart near the pool where you can have your meals, or buy daily necessities.
The location of the condo is strategic. Close to two white sandy beaches just 10 minutes away, I enjoyed bringing breakfast sandwiches to the beach and picnic under the lovely morning sun.
Looking for nice Thai food and restaurants nearby? Fret not, there are food places along the small roads of Klong Muang. From local Thai cuisines to European pizza and pasta, you will be able to find something suitable here.
How about massage parlors? Starting from an affordable 250 baht for a 60-min Thai massage at a local parlour or up to a 1,000 baht (or more!) at a luxurious hotel spa, visitors to Krabi have a variety of choices. Spa abd massage parlors are as common as eating places and can be found everywhere, some are even on beach itself.
Island Hopping! Hong Island
Island hopping is one of the must-do activities when visiting Krabi. Like in Phuket, visitors can travel to the famous Koh Phi Phi and the nearby islands on a day trip. But since we are in Krabi, why not explore the other lesser-known islands? Some of the noteworthy ones will be Hong Islands, Chicken Island and Railay.
To go island hopping in Krabi, you can either pre-book a tour at one of the tour agencies located in Ao nang (or anywhere else) or simply walk up to any long-tail boat service stall at the beach. The pre-booked boat tour usually starts in the morning (with a schedule to follow) and takes you on a speedboat. For travelers who prefer a more local experience, the second option will be recommended as you will be taking the long-tail boat. Also, the amount of time you want to spend on each island is all yours to decide – without anyone whistling you to get off when time’s up.
I didn’t get to go Railay and the other islands this time as I ran out of time by spending too much time here (opps), but since Krabi is such a lovely place, I am sure I will be back soon since I haven’t even try rock-climbing yet!
Top 10 activities you should do in Krabi:
1. Kayaking (Hong Island is a favourite spot)
2. Learn how to cook Thai dishes (there’s a Thai cooking school in Krabi)
3. Learn Muay Thai (Thai Boxing) – I did this on my second day, it was fun!
4. Or if you are a fan of Thai Boxing, watch a match at the nearby stadium.
5. Rock climbing at Railay (I am so doing this next time!)
6. Snorkeling & Diving (With clear waters like that, duh!)
7. Visit the Klong Thom hot springs
8. Go for a beach massage (Have your body relax while facing the open sea, awesome feeling).
9. Elephant ride (for that exotic riding experience)
10. Island-hopping (need I say more?!)
ps, If you have more activity ideas for Krabi, please let me know!