When one thinks of Krabi, most people will think of alluring beaches and breathtaking islands. However, Krabi has so much more to offer than just pristine islands and turquoise water.
Apart from spending your day relaxing on the beach, you can also experience life on Krabi as a local, sampling the local delicacies, and exploring the heart of the island at a leisurely pace.. Here are seven things you can do on this gem of an island in Thailand, away from the beaches.
1. Visit the Tiger Cave Temple
Located about 3 km from Krabi Town, Tiger Cave Temple is one of the must-visit locations in Krabi. The temple gets its name from a legend that says a large tiger used to live in the enigmatic cave. You can even find tiger paw prints on the cave walls! Outside, you can roam around the temple complex and soak in the beautiful architecture and the peaceful surroundings.
If you are up for the challenge, you can consider climbing 1237 steps of stairs to reach the top of the summit of the temple, about 278 meters in elevation. What makes it more challenging is the average height of each step is about knee level so you’ll need to be physically fit if you wish to reach the top and climb back down. However, the view at the top is definitely rewarding! On clear days, you can see far into the Andaman Sea and the many hills around Krabi, truly a sight to behold!
Note: There can be quite a lot of monkeys around. Though they are generally harmless, it is a good measure to take good care of your belongings and backpacks.
Pro tip: Try to make the climb early in the morning. Not only can you avoid the crowd, you can also avoid the heat. More importantly. you might even be able to catch the sunrise! Just remember to bring some water. You’ll need it!
2. Hunt for local delights at Krabi Town Night Market
As Malaysians, we love to eat. At Krabi Town Night Market (Fridays to Sundays), you can find all sorts of street food, from banana chocolate pancakes, coconut ice cream, spicy squid salad, to my personal favourite, khanom buang ( a small crispy crepe with sweet cream and fillings)! If the stalls are not enough to fill you up, there are bars and restaurants surrounding the market.
This is also the perfect opportunity for you to shop for souvenirs and quirky T-shirts. What makes this market even more lively is that there is a stage at the center of the market so you can enjoy your food while watching the local talents perform!
Pro tip: The market can get incredibly crowded, so it’s best to get there early, maybe around 5:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
3. Take a stroll around Chaofa Park
After filling up your stomach with all the amazing food from the night market, you can spend the rest of your evening alongside the river at Chaofa Park. Here you can enjoy the cool breeze and snap some photos of interesting sculptures.
You could also choose to take a walk early in the morning to catch the sunrise. On clear days, you can even see the beautiful Khao Khanab Nam Mountains from the park!
4. Take a short trip to Tha Pom Klong Song Nam
Located about less than an hour away from Krabi Town is a tranquil mangrove swamp called Tha Pom Klong Song Nam. It is a well protected reserve and a hidden gem that not many tourists are aware of.
Within the swamp reserve, there are elevated walkways so you can easily walk in the shade and enjoy the cooling atmosphere. The streams are crystal clear, and you can see small fish and crabs hiding in the submerged roots.You can also go kayaking and swimming in the waters if you’re feeling up to it!
Right outside the entrance, you can find small vendors selling T-shirts, refreshments and khanom buang. Tha Pom is a great place for you to take some time off and just relax.
5. Appreciate the beauty of Wak Kaew
Wak Kaew is a majestic white temple located on a small hill in the centre of Krabi Town that’s difficult to miss. What makes this temple even more Insta-worthy are the golden dragon sculptures slithering down the stairway.
You can even find some peacocks around the area if you’re lucky. Inside, you will find that the walls and ceiling are beautifully decorated with murals. It’s a small temple, but a very peaceful one. Definitely drop by when you’re in town!
6. Soak in the Emerald Pool
This one is a bit far from the centre of town, about one hour and a half by car. Despite the distance, it’s surely worth a visit. As the name implies, the pool is emerald in colour! It’s also a little warm, due to the hot springs nearby, but it’s really nice to swim in it. You will need to pay an entrance fee (THB200 – RM27), and will have to pass through a tranquil mangrove to get to the area.
Since you’ve travelled far to come here, might as well take your time to soak in the environment. A bit of exploring will also lead you to other pretty pools like the Glass Pool and the Blue Pool. Time to up your Instagram game!
Pro tip: Emerald Pool is a popular spot among tourists, so try to visit early during the day, maybe in the morning to avoid the crowd.
7. Explore the town as it is
Last but not least, you can simply explore Krabi Town, and enjoy whatever the town has to offer. It is not a big town, sure, but that is what makes it more charming in its own way. Try out some random restaurants, taste new food you’ve never tasted before, try out the aromatic deep fried chicken with glutinous rice (another one of my personal favourites), and live out the local life!
So what are you waiting for? Just a short flight (or drive, depending on where you are) away, it’s easy to spend a short getaway in this unique little town. Krabi awaits!
Also read: 18 Top Things To Do In Bangkok In 2019