Ao Nang Krabi might just be your typical beach holiday but with it’s stunning back drop and surrounding Island’s it really feels like something a bit more special. Ao Nang attracts thousands of tourists every year and you can you see why; whether you’re a back packer looking for adventure or a holiday maker wanting to relax you won’t be stuck for things to do.
Where to stay:
Green View Village Resort:
We stayed in a Deluxe double room with pool access; the morning swims were the perfect way to start the day. The room itself was modern although a little bit dark. There are 2 large pools to choose from both with adequate sun loungers. If you fancy a trip into town there is a shuttle bus every hour down to Ao Nang beach; or it’s just a short 15-minute walk with plenty of shops to browse in on the way if you’re not in any rush. Breakfast was a small continental buffet, but this might have been down to the hotel not being too busy as it was relatively new.
Overall Green View Resort was a good stay; we got a discount with Air Asia after booking our flights from Chiang Mai. It is reasonably priced, the staff were nice and friendly and the resort clean and tidy despite the small amount of building work.
Ao Nang Orchard:
We stayed in a superior double room with a balcony facing the street, the room was perfect, large, light and airy. There was one large pool wrapping around a central area with sun loungers which could be accessed by a small foot bridge. We spent plenty of time playing in the pool and sunbathing in the peaceful surroundings of the hotel. We ate breakfast at the hotel, which was a large spread with all the usual you would expect. The hotel was a 5-minute walk from the main beach and situated just off the main road; making it feel tranquil and isolated.
Krabi has some of the most sensational restaurants not all traditional Thai but never the less just as lovely. Being the foodies we are we sampled quite a few of the local restaurants, below are just some we would recommend:
At the time we went, this was Trip Advisors number one restaurant in Ao Nang and we for one could not fault it. It was one of the nicest Indians we have ever eaten. Being unsure of what we wanted the waiter recommended a few dishes for us. For two starters and two main dishes with a few drinks we paid 1,480 TBH. This was one of the more expensive meals we ate in Krabi but well worth the extra.
If you take a stroll down to the west end of Ao Nang beach there is a series of fish restaurants, overlooking the sea. If you’re a sea food lover like we are then we would recommend a fish platter where you can choose your fish from a selection chilling on a bed of ice. We paid 2000 THB and this included oysters, clams, muscles, tiger prawns, rock lobster and steamed fish, all accompanied with the usual Thai dips and cooked in a sauce of our choice.
There is a wide range of beautiful cuisine in Krabi, we sampled pizza one evening, cooked in a traditional wood burning stove. We also stumbled across an all you can eat buffet one night at Ao Nang Cliff resort, although a bit sceptical at first, the freshly cooked prawns and chicken cooked on the open BBQ sold it to us. If you fancy a pig out then this is the place for it, there was soups; curry’s; a salad bar; an open BBQ; sushi and many a selection of desserts (if you’ve still got room of course).
Explore & Discover:
7 Island’s Tour:
Let’s be honest you can’t go to Thailand and not do at least one Island hopping tour; so why not book yourself the 7 Island’s sunset tour! We recommend exploring the Islands by long boat; you will be picked up outside your hotel and transported to the harbor at around lunch time. As we arrived at the first stop on the agenda, there was a photo opportunity with the aptly named Chicken Island in the background. We then alighted the boat in Koh Si for some fantastic snorkeling in the many underwater reefs. Once we had boarded the boat again we headed off to Koh Tub where you can stroll across the sand bank to Chicken Island. Whilst here the monkeys decided to come down and say hello, and with me being the animal lover that I am, I could not resist a cheeky photo with one. After this we headed to Poda Island where for an extra 400 TBH you can disembark and explore the national park. From Poda Island you can view Koh Tan Ming where you head off to next, to do some more snorkeling by the rocks. As the day draws to a close the next stop on the agenda is the beautiful Phra nang Cave beach. Here you can venture onto the beach to watch the spectacular sunset or explore the Phra nang (Princess) Cave; where the locals leave offerings in belief that she will fulfil their wishes. It’s then back on the boat and off to Railey beach for a traditional Thai buffet meal. Once full, we headed back to the boat for one last trip out to watch the amazing plankton lighting up the sea. Here you will be able to do some last-minute snorkeling before heading back to the harbor.
If you love browsing the local Thai shops then Ao Nang has them all; it is full of small shops selling all manner of items from hand crafted ornaments and Thai clothes to handbags, purses and jewellery. You can’t resist bagging yourself a bargain or two.
Khao Phanom Bencha National Park:
Why not hire a car for a day and take off to explore the magnificent seven-level waterfall at Huay Toh. This peaceful idyllic spot is something else, we arrived early afternoon to find no-one else around. We enjoyed some quality time together exploring the different levels and were even able to some swimming; with the top levels being the best as they were the deepest.
If you fancy a long stroll or just some time to chill in the sun, then Ao Nang beach is for you! It’s a good 20-minute stroll from one end to other, and just a stone’s throw from the shops and eateries for when you fancy a drink or light snack. You can wander out into the perfectly warm waters (depending on your height of course, Thomas could walk further than me) rather far as it’s a gentle gradient.
Whilst on the 7 island tour we stopped off at Railey Beach and caught a beautiful red sunset. Although we had seen it as part of a trip it would defiantly be worth a visit, with beautiful surroundings; long boats arriving with day tripping tourists and a large beach with plenty of room for swimming.
You can enjoy a variation of night life in Ao Nang, as the bars are set back mainly in one court yard. You can avoid them if you wish and opt for a stroll along the beach to watch the sunset, or sit in one of the many beach side restaurants and have a drink. If you do fancy a night ‘on the town’ then there are plenty of places to choose from. Although if you’re not the best at holding your drink then make sure you take it easy with the strong measures, or lack of measurements; we found this out the hard way / or good way depending on how you look at it.
Overall we loved Ao Nang, Krabi and will definitely be returning in the future. There is something for everyone whether you want to take a trip, play on the beach, get a massage, hit the bars or chill by the pool of which we did all. There’s limited shopping but still enough to keep you occupied. Ao Nang has the most breath-taking views, with the large cliff at one end; the panoramic view of the ocean; and the stunning beach dotted with long boats. We fell in love with Krabi and hope you do too.