After several nights in Cambodia, we flew home to spend one quick night in KL and then flew out to Krabi, Thailand. Both of us have been to Thailand before, (Chiang Mai & Phuket) but we heard that we just couldn’t miss Krabi, so we hit the road again.
We stayed at the Sofitel Krabi, which was quite beautiful, ridiculously gorgeous and very comfortable, even if a bit outrageous on food expenses. It had a beautiful open air lobby that reminded us of the Grande Floridian, which holds a special place in our hearts because, (way back in 2004) we got engaged there. Awww….
While the hotel was beautiful, it was also quite out of the way. Luckily, we found a nice man down the beach that was willing to rent us a motorbike out of the back of his house, and we were off to explore the island. Who says capitalism is dead?!
While the motorbike didn’t exactly match the ambiance of the hotel, (everyone else was rolling up with a private driver) it was a lifesaver because of the freedom it provided. The Sofitel is located on the outskirts of the less developed side of Krabi and while the view of the ocean is beautiful, it’s pretty secluded. Our wheels allowed us to explore much more of the area, gain access to more food choices and to make our way over to the more commercialized area of Ao Nang. There we found a bustling little area of shops, bars, restaurants and longboats galore.
It was interesting enough that we came back a second day to indulge in one of the longboat excursions, that whisk visitors away to a number of different secluded destinations; beautiful islands and coves draped in limestone and only reachable by boat. DiCaprio’s The Beach was filmed at one such exclusive locale called Pi Phi Island. We decided to opt for another choice because rumor has it that Pi Phi’s secret is out and it’s kind of overrun now with tourists. A friend recommended his favorite place in Asia, so with such high praise as that, we selected Rai Lai Beach as our one-day excursion. About a 10min longboat ride from Ao Nang, Rai Lai is a private little cove that is a haven for rock climbers and beach combers. Although it’s just a short beach strip encased by limestone cliffs, there are a couple small hotels there and a little sand strip of shops for food and fun. Pretty impressive considering the only way in or out for guests is that longboat. The water was clear and gorgeous and the cliffs were break taking. Quite a scene, and frankly I wish we could have stayed a night and added some rock climbing or snorkeling to our day of being beach bums.
The rest of the trip to Krabi was very similar. A lot of lounging by the pool or shore with a good book by day, and checking out some new delicious Thai food place for dinner by night. Seriously, the food was amazing. We loved the Coke bottles too. They were the old glass ones and it was cool to see the Coke logo in Thai.
Perhaps some of the best fun was simply touring the area on our own by way of the rented motorbike. Getting lost, finding our way back and stopping here and there for random photos in the countryside proved to be just as much fun as anything else we might have scheduled. Top it off with a little shopping and people watching, and Krabi was a good four nights. Highly recommend you check it out, and if you’re keen to have more of the night life scene, definitely explore Ao Nang. Regardless of your evening plans, you could easily spend a week or two there just checking out different longboat excursions everyday.
It was good thing we rested up because the next stop on our Asia tour was going to test all of our senses for the next week……….
Hanoi, Vietnam here we come!