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Krabi

KRABI
DESTINATION GUIDE

The Ultimate Guide Before You Plan for your Next Trip

With innumerable sandy beaches, palm-fringed coastlines, thick rain forest cover, limestone cliffs, and cluster of beautiful islands, Krabi is most definitely one of the most beautiful and exotic holiday destination in entire Thailand. Whilst the enchanting scenic appeal sets the ideal stage for the honeymooners the crystal clean turquoise water of the surrounding ocean tempts the adventure lovers to take a dip inside and explore the marine lives. The destinations of Krabi include the heavenly islands with birds and trees which you have never seen before and some fascinating limestone caves which will offer you some haunting beauty to savor.

Attractions in Krabi

Dig your feet in the soft white sand and breathe the fresh jungle-air in this mesmerizing coastal planes of western Thailand.

Klong Thom Hot Springs

The natural wonders of Krabi will never stop to amaze you and this natural hot springs located near the Khao Phra Bang Khram Nature Reserve is something that no tourist should miss out on. Due to its proximity to the volcanic chambers the water from the falls are warm and it offers great fun and relief for the foreign tourists who visit this magical Thai coast during winter. This thermal spring is known for treating various ailments including rheumatism and it most definitely offers you a great bath and experience in the middle of the lush natural environment. After a long and tiring trek if you plan on getting wet in this hot spring then you are bound to have a great muscle relaxation.

Ao Luk Mangrove

Krabi offers its tourists a great chance to enjoy some adventures out in a natural but secured setting and the Ao Luk Mangrove is certainly one of the prominent ones. Located 40 kilometers north of the Krabi Town the lush green forest cover and limestone caves are a very peaceful and isolated destination for adventure loving tourists to explore. Then there is the Thak Bok Korani National park which also offers a nice trail down the virgin rain forest allowing you to see many waterfalls, limestone caves, and mangrove plantation. You are bound to encounter many animal and bird species in this part of Krabi as the environment will surely engulf your senses.

Khao Khanab Nam

The natural spectacles you get to see at Krabi never ends as this set of mountains lining a bay is sure to take your breath away. The dusky brownish-grey color of the mountains creates the perfect contrast against the crystal blue waters of the sea. You are sure to get goosebumps once you dive into the water as the high rising mountains with patches of greenery, scattered all across, is sure to give you a kind of out-of-the-world experience. Then once you trek up the mountains you will encounter a range of natural caves from the pre-historic era giving you a certain eerie and yet enjoyable feeling.

Koh Lanta

Koh Lanta is an island, 2 hours cruise from Krabi, which is the ultimate place to lose yourself completely and relax all day long. Just walk down the edge of the pier and view the vast blue ocean stretching for miles. There are many cozy guest houses and fabulous restaurants at this place and it is ideal for the honeymooners. The Utopian piece of land on the Gulf of Thailand is something which all lovebirds seek and if you are a couple visiting Thailand then there could not be any better place to let your hair down and relax under the warm sun with your toes dipped in the sea.

Four Islands

As a tourist you will be pampered with choices of island hopping opportunities in Krabi and you cannot certainly miss trips to the archipelago of the four islands-Poda Island, Phra Nang Cave, the Tup Islandm and the Chicken Island. The boat trip will make you stop at each of the four islands for considerable amount of time thereby allowing you to enjoy your trip to the fullest. The islands are known for their lush green environment, limestone formation, and great eating destinations. The entire trip of the four islands takes almost a day as you can indulge in many water-based activities and plenty of sun bathing in this magical islands surrounding Krabi.

When To Reach

The months between November and March are the peak seasons for traveling to Krabi as it is the coolest season and the rainfall and storm are minimal. The sea calm and the weather is perfect for trekking in the jungle and also for the various water-based sports. However, during this season Krabi remains pretty crowded. The period between Middle of March and May is the hottest season in Krabi but still there are few tourists coming on a regular basis during this season mostly for enjoying festivals like Songkran which happens mid-April. The months between June and October are the wettest season in Krabi with heavy rainfall.

Seasonality

High Season: The high season for traveling to Krabi is definitely November to March as the weather remains cool and there is no storm or rainfall during this time.


Shoulder Season:The shoulder season should be the summer months of mid-March to May as despite the hot and humid weather people come here to enjoy the sea and the festivals.


Low Season:The low season is most definitely the months between June and October as there are dangers of sea storms and heavy rainfall and very few tourists actually go during that time.

How To Reach

Krabi has its own international airport and there are many connecting flights from India which will help you reach the destination in no time. The flights are frequent and most of them are quite affordable for an Indian tourist. The flights take an average of 6 to 8 hours to reach Krabi and due to the presence of an international airport you can start your journey of Thailand directly from Krabi. The flights like Air Asia, Thai Air Asia, Bangkok Airways, Singapore Airlines, operate on a regular basis from India to Krabi. Apart from those there are also other flights in the form of Jet Airways, THAI, Thai Smile, Cathay Dragon, Cathay Pacific, Silkair, and other flights which have regular connecting flights to Krabi.

Why should you go?

From astonishing island hopping adventures to thrilling jungle treks, a holiday in Kraby will allow you to enter a world of unknown. Be it an captivating cave, hidden in the forest, or a enchanting waterfall Krabi will fill your senses with endless natural beauties. The limestone cliffs and isolated beaches hidden under them offer you the ultimate exotic holiday experience that you will never get anywhere else in Thailand. Come face-to-face with the jungle monkeys, the tamed elephants, and some rare birds in Krabi and grab the opportunity to stroll through the lazy and quaint old town by the banks of the sea.
10 Reasons to visit Krabi -
  • The coastal planes of Krabi is surrounded by as many as 154 islands and some of the archipelagos allow tourists on a tour to enjoy the scenic beauty.
  • Krabi has plenty of white sandy beaches, hidden under limestone cliffs, offering you relaxation and much needed isolation from the crowded streets.
  • Krabi has some spectacular sunset views which can be regarded as the best in entire Thailand.
  • Krabi is rich in its forest reserves and it boasts some of the most well-preserved forest lands in entire South-East Asia.
  • Due to the abundance of limestone cliffs, surrounding the beaches, Krabi is also a destination for adventure sports like Rock Climbing and they also have an annual event to celebrate the sporting activity.
  • Krabi is well-known for its marvelous Thai spas and the spectacular masseuses who will serve you even on the beach.
  • The walking streets and the night markets of Krabi are marvelous shopping opportunity for people who like to buy quality products at a bargain.
  • Krabi offers multiple choices of food and some of the food stalls in this province sell some scrumptious delicacies.
  • Krabi is also known for its many caves which are likely to give you the creeps but also at the same time it helps you to enjoy something thrilling.
  • The people of Krabi are very hospitable and you will not get a warmer welcome anywhere else in Thailand.

Getting Around

From local buses and minivans to boat taxis, songtheaws to tuk tuks, options for domestic traveling in Krabi is plenty. The transportation are cheap and it is available in both the land or the sea. You can hire a car for the day or rent a boat for 1000 to 1200 Bahts. However, if you want to travel cheap then also the options are enough in Krabi. The motorcycle taxis and ferries will take you to your destination at an affordable cost. So according to your choice and preference and your overall trip budget you can choose your mode of transportation.

Local Bus or Minivans

Krabi has an extensive network of local buses and minivans which offer very cheap mode of transportation for the locals and the tourists alike. The buses and the minivans follow the same route and they are very efficient modes of commute for going to any major destination.

Songtheaws

Songtheaws are very popular pick-up trucks found in all parts of Thailand. These trucks also carry passengers and a cheap and affordable rate. The number of songtheaws are quite high and you can avail them from all major corners of Krabi.

Motorcycle Taxis

Like all major destinations of Thailand, Krabi also has a huge network of motorcycle taxis which often carry a single or a couple of passengers at a much faster pace than any other public modes of transports. However, some argue about the overall level of safety of these rides.

Tuk-Tuk

Tuk tuks are like auto-rickshaws of India and they are aso available in plenty. If you are looking for a private ride you can hire a tuk tuk for a day. There will be plenty of tuk tuks available all around the beaches and other popular destinations.

Taxi

Taxis are also available for hire especially from the airports and near the major hotels and resorts. However, taxis in Krabi are reluctant to go for shorter trip as they will push you to hire them for the entire day.

Ferries and Speed-boats

The coastal area of Krabi is surrounded by an archipelago of beautiful islands and in order to reach them you need to hire a ferry or a speed-boat. The cruises are pretty regular and you can also hire a boat taxi if you are feeling like pampering yourself.

Weather

Krabi enjoys a tropical climate and due to its proximity to the sea the weather is never extreme. That means that Krabi is neither too hot nor too cold at any time of the year. The average daily highest temperature is around 32 degree Celsius and the average daily lowest temperature loiters around the mark of 23 degree Celsius. However, Krabi is badly affected by the south-west monsoon which enters the country from the Gulf of Thailand. That is why the months between June to October experience heavy rainfall and notorious sea storms. Apart from that the temperature remains pretty normal throughout the year. The summer months are of course humid whilst the months between November and February remains pretty dry with cool breezes coming from the sea.

What to pack in your suitcase?

  • When you are going to the ultimate beach destination of Thailand then you should pack plenty of beach-wears like loose shirts, t-shirts, shorts, and flip-flops.
  • Carry plenty of changes because you are bound to sweat during the days. Make sure that your shirts and tops are loose.
  • Carry a light jacket if you are traveling during winter and that too for the evenings. You do not need to wear sweaters or jackets in the morning, even during winters.
  • Take umbrellas and rain-coats because it might rain anytime in Krabi.
  • Carry your flip-flops for the beach and heavy trekking shoes for the jungles.
In the Spotlight

Krabi is not known as a fine dining destination unlike Bangkok or Chiang Mai. However, there are many mid-range eateries out here which will simply blow your mind. Particularly if you go to Railay Beach there you will be spoiled with options to grab a bite during the day and dine at the evening. The readily available Thai seafood in this restaurants also helps you save much time as once you are in Krabi you will need to do plenty of traveling. The old Krabi Town is also a delightful place to find a good place to eat, especially by the bay.

Gecko Cabane : Located in the old and charming Krabi Town this little eatery has a distinct European style. Complementing the laid back vibe of the town the restaurant also presents itself as a quaint little outlet with a cozy decor.
The restaurant serves fusion Asian cuisine and you will get to taste a wide range of Thai, Malay, and Chinese dishes in this eatery. Good news for Indians is that this restaurant also serves generous portion of vegetarian meals which are very affordable. There is nothing like taking a sip of your drink and having a relaxing time at Gecko Cabane, in the Krabi Town as there is no rush or hustle in this place.
Frog and Catfish : If you are looking to taste authentic seafood from the coastlines of Krabi then this eatery fits perfectly to your need.
This restaurant has the reputation of cooking with the freshest catches of the day and everything is quite tender and delicious. Starting from the stir-fried items to the spicy curries, from the dumplings to the soup, you will have plenty of options to choose from once you enter this restaurant in Krabi. Due to its freshness and quality the seafood dishes are very popular in here and do not forget to try out the fresh crab spring rolls and the pla tub tim boraan which is a whole tilapia fish deep-fried and served with sauce. The place also has a decent collection of books and you can also order beer from the bar.
Khaothong Terrace Restaurant : This Restaurant is known for its authentic food and beautiful view from above. You can literally see the Andaman Sea from this place,
along with the lush green forestation bordering the coastline of Krabi. The food, served in this place, has also gained certain attention for its inclinations towards authentic Thai recipes. However, the restaurant management has also shown eagerness on regulating the level of spiciness, according to the taste and preference of the customers. Khaothong is also known for its scrumptious vegetarian dishes and that is always a welcoming fact for any Indian traveling abroad.
Carnivore Steak and Grill : The Dutch has made their impact in the Ao Nang beach of Krabi and this restaurant has this genuine European feel adhered to it.
Opened back in the year 2003 this restaurant is very popular among the Western backpackers as the patio furniture and the dimly lit interiors make the place very appealing. As the name suggests the place is known for its grilled steaks and meat and you are bound to get a wide variety of quality pork, lamb, and beef in this place. Apart from the grills the place is also known for its varied range of soups and salads keeping its connection with the local Thai delicacies.
Krua Thara : Located in the Nopparat Thara region of Krabi this busy eatery is full of life and color. The patio sitting arrangements are not very appealing but the quality of food served in this place is beyond exceptional.
The place is known for its fresh seafood collection and once you reach there you are bound to have an authentic Thai experience which you will never get in any fine dining venue. With live fish tank (from where you can choose your dinner) to whole range of live sea basket you are bound to have thrilling time selecting your dinner and enjoying it too. The brightly lit arena complements the overall vibe of the place as according to the reviewers the food is absolutely delicious.

Being a coastal region of Thailand, Krabi is known for its love for seafood. Various kinds of marine delicacies like crab, prawn, squid, mussels and octopuses feature in the dishes of Krabi. Fish like tilapia, carp, and other big and small ones also are very popular in the region of Krabi. Apart from that the people of Krabi also are fond of their meats in the form of chicken and pork. The staples are quite similar to that of other parts of Thailand as they mostly comprise of either rice, sticky-rice, or noodles. The cuisine contains a lot of coconut milk and it is generally very spicy. Some vegetarian salads and soups also feature quite frequently in this dishes of Krabi.

Moo Ping and Khao Niao: Grilled pork served with sticky-rice is quite popular in Krabi and it is found in most of the street food stalls.

Seafood BBQ: Grilled prawns, crab, mussels, and squid with spicy dips are also very popular in most part of Krabi.

Kanom Jeen: Thin rice-noodles served with fish (mostly carp) along with spicy dips and salads.

Khao Mok Kai:Yellow rice served with chicken and cucumber and shallot salads is a very common dish in Krabi. There is another variation called the Khao Man Kai which is a bit more spicy when compared to this.

Som Tam-Gai Yang: It is basically a green papaya salad served with either chicken or sticky-rice.

The coastal markets of Krabi are always busy and full of life. From food items like the tom yum soup to delightful seaside souvenirs you can get many kinds of things in these markets. Unlike Bangkok or Phuket, Krabi is not known as a well-known shopping destination. However, if you are willing to travel a bit you can find many hidden treasures of Krabi in the form of lively wet markets to charming walking streets. From romantic night markets to bustling wet markets, held daily, the market scene of Krabi is quite vibrant. As a tourist you are bound to enjoy some walk across these markets and may be will be tempted to buy several items from them.

Maharaj Market : The name itself is suggestive of the importance and size of this marketplace and it has all the proper elements to be considered as an ideal Asian market.
This wet market of Krabi is held every day from 2 o'clock in the afternoon till mid-night at the Krabi City Center. From rice to spices, from chili paste to wide variety of vegetables and fruits you can get many kinds of items in here. There is a separate section selling varieties of tropical fish as there are other segments from you can purchase many home-ware items and t-shirts. The market is quite an active place and it is one of the two main markets where the locals go on a regular basis.
Downtown Krabi Fresh Market : Locally known by the name of Talad Sod this lively marketplace located at the heart of Krabi town attracts a lot of foreign tourists.
It is also a daily market which opens from 4 o'clock in the afternoon and remains operative till 9 o'clock at night. Though it is much smaller than the Maharaj Market but nonetheless the variety of items sold here is certainly not very less. Starting from a huge variety of street-food stalls selling all the crispy and spicy delights of Krabi this market also has colorful flower stalls and stalls selling knick-knacks and toys for children. Food items like fruits and vegetables are also available in this market.
Chao Fah Night Market : The Chao Fah Night Market is the largest night market in the entire province of Krabi. Located near the Chao Fah Pier on the Kongka Road this marketplace allows
you to literally smell the sea and enjoy a glimpse of the life of the locals of southern Thailand. The place is known for its lively food stalls selling the most famous cuisines of Krabi like in the form of grilled seafood, various curries, rice and meat items. The market starts from around 5 o'clock in the evening and it continues till half past midnight, every night. If you are looking for a cheap and yet tasty dining option in Krabi then night market is the perfect venue for it. You shop till you can and then grab a seat and enjoy hot and spicy Thai seafood.
Ao Nang Walking Street : Located near the famous Ao Nang beach of Krabi this walking street market has a very touristy vibe.
It is essentially a tourists' market here in Krabi as you will find many foreigners flocking in the streets after spending a long day in the beach. The market is open from 9 o'clock in the morning and most of the stall remains open till 11 o'clock in the night and you will get various kinds of items in this market. The Catalunya Walking Street, within this market, is certainly a shopping pradise as the paved path leads you to various kinds of stalls selling street-foods, garments, t-shirts, and shoes and flip-flops.
Talad Nad Markets: The Talad Nad Markets of Krabi have given an opportunity to the local vendors and artisans of the coastlines to display and sell their products.
The market is certainly not very high-profile as you will witness temporary stalls being held under colorful garden umbrellas. The markets are scattered at many locations throughout Krabi including places like Klong Muang beach, Ao Nang beach, Klong Hang, Nongtalay and many other places. These markets are held in certain days of the week, varying from location to location and also the size of the market differs according to the size of the neighborhood. You will mostly find garden produces and fresh catches from the local ponds being sold here as some artists will also sell handcrafted souvenirs.

Available in the denominations of 1000, 500, 100, 50 and 20 currency notes, Thai Bahts are the one and only currency acceptable in Krabi. The entire coastlines are highly dominated by small villages, towns, and beach side markets the economy of Krabi is mostly cash dependent. There are many FOREX offices in the airport and also in various other locations around the province. That is why it is important that you convert your currency adequately so that you do not have any hindrance in dining out in Krabi or sailing to a nearby island and enjoy a cozy night out.

Special Tips

  • If you are planning on having fine dining experience it will cost you around 800 to 1500 Bahts per person. However, if you choose to enjoy the local stall foods then the price goes down to 50 to 80 Bahts per person.
  • A trip on the kayak will cost you 600 Bahts per person whilst a long-tail boat will charge you around 500 Bahts per person.
  • An island hopping tour or a jungle safari will cost you around 1200 Bahts per person and same is the cost that you incur for hiring a boat or a car for an entire day.
  • The motorbike taxis and the other rides around Ao Nang will charge you around 30 to 50 Bahts whilst a Thai massage will cost you 300 to 900 Bahts depending on the location (beach or spa)
  • All the shoppers and the service providers will prefer to be paid in cash and for that reason you make sure that you carry enough for each person in your group.

Indian tourists can enjoy the benefits of Visa on Arrival at 32 international airports of Thailand, including the Krabi International Airport. Depending on the queue ahead of you, the time required for processing this kind of visa varies between 10 minutes to an hour. A Visa on Arrival will allow you to stay in Thailand for 14 consecutive days at a stretch, within which time you can travel at any location and destination within the boundaries of the country. In order to obtain this visa you need to make sure that your Indian passport is valid for at least 6 months or more and you also need to carry your airline boarding pass during the time of the visa processing. For more details check the immigration website of Kingdom of Thailand.

Special Tips

In case you want to stay in Thailand for a bit longer you can apply for a regular visa in advance. The regular visa for Indian tourists allows them to stay in Thailand for a period of 90 days. You need to fill-up the Visa Application Form and the main applicant should write a Cover Letter and deliver everything to the Royal Thai Consulate General in three major cities including New Delhi, Kolkata, and Mumbai. You need to show you bank account statement for the last 3 months and the account balance should be INR 40,000 per person. This will reflect your capability of spending once you reach Thailand as a tourist.

Krabi is generally considered to be safe for tourists as there are very less recorded crimes in this area. However, the nature itself is a bit unpredictable in this part of the country as storms and rain can break-in at any moment. That is why it is important that you take proper precautions whilst walking on forest trails or sailing on a boat or a kayak. Also for the same reason it is vital that you do not go too near to the sea or inside the forest after sunset. Whilst hiring a guide or a taxi or a boat make sure you are getting the best price offer as many people might try to cheat you. Take help from your tour operators in this regard.

  • Police and General Emergency: 191
  • Medical Emergency: 1669
  • Fire: 199
  • Tourist Police: 1155

Entertainment & Event

With lush green rain forest and exotic marine life the multi-cultural communities of Krabi will welcome you to have a nice time.

  • Flora and Fauna

    If you look around, nature and animals are everywhere in Krabi. With lush green forests and wide coastal areas flora and fauna are in abundance when it comes to Krabi. The coastline and the backwaters of Krabi has a very dense Mangrove forestation as you will also find some palm and pine trees up in the planes. Apart from those the forest land of Krabi are also covered in many shrubs, varieties of orchids and mosses are found around the lakes and waterfalls. There are in fact 120 types of plants and tropical trees in Krabi and as many as 250 types of herbal trees and ferns. Fruit plants like mangoes, coconuts, tamarinds, and gooseberries. The water-bodies have sea lilies and other aquatic plants.

    The forests of Krabi are also known for its huge habitat of insects like butterflies and moths. Beautiful birds like the Gurney's Pitta, which is the rarest bird in entire Thailand, can be seen in the national parks and forests of Krabi. Apart from that you can also see mighty horn-bills and other tropical birds. The forests of Krabi are also the home to various kinds of languors and the crab eating macaque monkeys. Reptiles like monitor lizards, snakes, and crocodiles reside in abundance in Krabi. In the coastal region you will find a great variety of sea turtle and other aquatic animals.

  • Festivals

    As the province of Krabi is quite close to the sea the festivals and events celebrated here are mostly sea-centric. The people of Krabi depend hugely on their fishing communities and that is why there are many festivals which are related to the sea and the marine lives of Krabi. Like for instance the Loi Ruea Chao Le Festival is an unique local festival of Krabi where they celebrate with the floating boats of the Sea Gypsies who reside in some villages bordering the coastal planes of Krabi. The Krabi Boek Fa Andaman Festival is also another maritime festival celebrating the opening of the Andaman Sea to the foreign tourists. The Chak Phra Festival Krabi is another local festival which attracts the Buddhist monks as they celebrate the overall maritime history and culture of the land.

    Apart from the sea inclined maritime festivals Krabi also has a very own Rock Climbing event which gathers a decent crowd every year. Then there is the Lantaa-Lanta Festival, held every March in the old Krabi Town in order to create a harmony between the locals and the visitors. The Sat Duan Sip Festival is also quite popular in Krabi which is held in the tenth lunar month. The traditional Thai festivals like Songkran and Loi Krathong are also celebrated in the province of Krabi.

  • Culture

    As it is typical for any coastal province of Thailand, Krabi is being frequented by people from all over South-East Asia and for that reason it has a very vibrant and multi-cultural vibe. Whilst Buddhism is the major religion of the place there are many Hindus, Christians, and Muslim people also staying in Krabi. The people of Krabi are mostly friendly and hospitable by nature and they are tolerant towards other religions. There are major Taoist and Mogen population in certain region of Krabi maing it an ideal melting pot of South-East Asian cultures.

    It is true that Krabi does not have an architectural heritage unlike Chiang Mai. However, the place itself is rich in history of people coming from different parts of Thailand and China. Krabi has also a long-lasting history of being recognized as the major trading hub of Thailand. The local communities of Krabi are humble and low-profile with most of them being farmers, traders, and fishermen. With the support of the local government the artistic communities are also thriving here in Krabi as there are many marketing platforms present where they can come and sell their products.