When most people think of Southern Thailand, Krabi comes immediately to mind. Postcard-perfect photographs and that well-known James Bond movie tease the grand adventures that await for visitors. As I skimmed the epic blue waters by long-tail, circling its iconic limestone karst islands, I quickly understood why this province is one of the most popular in Thailand. Our Krabi itinerary includes some of the unique things to do, even if you only have 2 or 3 days in Krabi.
- Krabi is located on the west coast of Southern Thailand at the mouth of the Krabi River where it empties into the Phang Nga Bay.
- The best time to visit Krabi is between December and April.
- When planning your Krabi itinerary make sure you have your accommodation booked well in advance (up to a year). Search Krabi hotels with Tripadvisor.
- Try to spend at least 2 days in Krabi. Ideally, you can spend a week in the region to allow you time to see some of these Krabi attractions and also for spending some time by the resort pool.
Getting to Krabi
- Getting to Krabi is easy compared to some other Thai destinations which are undoubtedly another reason it is such a popular place.
- Bangkok to Krabi is a short 1 hour and 20-minute flight. I flew with Nok Air from Bangkok’s second airport, Don Muang.
- Krabi Airport (KBV) welcomes direct flights from Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Doha and many major cities in China. Search flights with Skyscanner here.
- Booking a bus or shuttle ticket offers an adventurous road trip with coastal views from start to finish. However, it can take upwards of 12 hours. Search options here.
- There are also bus and ferry combination tickets that will cut your travel time slightly if you are on a budget and can’t endure the overnight bus trip.
Where to Stay in Krabi
Krabi province offers so many diverse traveller experiences from all-inclusive island resorts to busy backpacker hubs and secluded beach hideaways. So, there are accommodation options to suit everyone. However, it is essential to book even a year out from travelling to the region as it is such a busy spot.
We stayed at the Sofitel Krabi Phokeethra Golf and Spa Resort. It was exquisite. The property is diverse and expansive and tempting for getting lost, relaxing or the many activities on offer. There are 276 luxurious rooms and suites, a large lagoon swimming pool, a spa and restaurants serving a wide variety of cuisine. This resort property is conveniently located with a beach view and offers a decadent experience in every way.
What to do in Krabi
Any Krabi itinerary has to include a lot of time spent on or near the water. Whether you visit some of the many breathtakingly beautiful Krabi beaches or take a boat trip of Krabi day trip there are so many things to do in Krabi on the water from fishing to more energetic water activities and island hopping to hikes and cultural attractions.
Klong Thom Hot Springs
One of the most famous tourist attractions in Krabi is the Klong Thom Hot Springs. We visited this natural spring and Sra Morakot on the same trip. Known as the “Emerald Pool”, this natural pool in the middle of the Krabi forest and is filled with crystal-clear spring water. The colour of the water changes from pale green to a brilliant emerald green depending on the reflection of the sunlight.
Khao Khanab Nam Mountains
The Khao Khanab Nam Mountains, standing 100 meters tall they are one of Krabi’s most famous landmarks. These majestic natural wonders act as a gateway to Krabi city with a river running between two limestone cliffs, forming a popular spot for photographs. These mountains are a historic landmark too, as the area was used as a base for Japanese troops during World War II.
Krabi Day Trips
With hundreds of islands around Krabi day trips are an essential way of exploring those near your holiday base. Long-tail boats are a lovely, authentic way to see neighbouring islands too and tours are easily organised with your hotel or other providers once you arrive. Or if you only have 2 days in Krabi you can pre-book a speed boat tour.
My very favourite activity during my visit to Krabi was the afternoon and evening I spent exploring Koh Klang (Klang Island). Klang island is home to a peaceful fishing village, maintaining its charming traditions. We took a long-tail boat ride from Chaofah Pier which only lasted about 15 minutes and we made our way through the mangrove trees, snaking along until we were welcomed by locals of this authentic community.
The island consists of three villages with a population of only 5,000 people. Koh Klang is not a paradise of sandy beaches, it is a traditional fishing village that welcomes visitors interested in experiencing what local life is like for islanders. Community members use ingenious local methods to capture fish, crab and shellfish, which we were able to taste fresh from the water. You can choose your own catch at the local restaurant on the island and it will be prepared fresh for you for lunch. The island is surrounded by pristine mangroves with incredible bird watching opportunities.
We were taken on a tour of a local community, admiring their arts and crafts. Making (and tasting) some very authentic handmade treats was also a highlight of our visit. A sunset dinner of local dishes made fresh and served to us on the dock where we arrived was an absolute dream ending to our visit.
Phra Nang Beach
We took a speed boat 15 minutes from the shore of Krabi to the islands near Phra Nang Beach, one of the top ten most beautiful beaches in the world and one of the most popular Krabi beaches for visitors. Here we visited the Phra Nang Cave, a sacred cave respected by sailors that pays homage to the community and water in this area. Prepare your camera for this trip, every single photograph will be epic and the envy of your friends.
We made our way to Koh Tub, Koh Kai, Koh Mo, Koh Si and Koh Poda with a picnic lunch and fresh coconuts along the way. Most private Krabi boat tours will provide a packed lunch. Each beach was more beautiful than the last with soft white sands and an artist’s palette of blues for water, so clear that you can see the creatures that inhabit it as you swim. The water was a perfectly intoxicating and refreshing temperature.
If you have more than 2 days in Krabi, other slightly day trip destinations that are a little further away are Phuket, Koh Samui and Phi Phi. They are also easy and accessible options for those lucky enough to extend their Krabi island hopping adventure beyond one destination.
Not on our list this time but something to put on yours are the temples of Krabi. At the Tiger Cave Temple, you can climb 1260 stairs and find yourself on this famous mountain-top shrine with a view that will take your breath away. The Tiger Cave (and bell tower) is the largest in Thailand.
Other temples include Wat Kaew Gorovaram, Klong Thom Temple, Wat Bang Riang (one of the most beautiful temples in Thailand).
Krabi is a dream destination with a movie set backdrop, and it was a beautiful surprise to find this area of Thailand full of off-the-beaten-path local and authentic experiences too. I continue to be enamoured with Thailand, with the people, the culture, the slower pace of life and the incredibly changeable scenery of this country.
The Fit Traveller was a guest of Tourism Thailand for this trip. As always, the words, opinions and images are authentically our own.
Pat Bailey is a certified Bhakti Yoga Teacher, published poet, writer and entrepreneur with a passion for exploring the globe. Pat is also the founder of The Hell Yes Life, where she has created her own branding academy helping to elevate brands and students through authentic and intuitive coaching.