Going down to Krabi march 9 and am planning on visiting koh Yao noi, tonsai, railay, lanta, rok, and kradan. Plus a bit of Phang nga bay while in koh Yao noi.
Just wanted some feedback on this best route to tack?
Krabi to koh Yao noi first then back to railay and head south to the other islands mentioned or railay first the Yao noi and south to the islands mentioned. I'm thinking the first but wanted to see what you guys thought or recommended!
#1 Arigato9 has been a member since 26/5/2011. Posts: 29
Whoa! This is tricky. Depends a lot on how you are getting to Krabi - if you have days to spare before arriving in Krabi etc.
If yes to the latter and you haven't booked transport to Krabi, this is the way I'd approach it:
Fly into Phuket .
Get taxi down to Bang Rong pier and jump on one of the frequent longtail taxi boats to Yao Noi.
Do Phang Nga Bay trip out of Yao Noi.
Go to Krabi via the longtail taxi boats to Ao Thalen (sonthaews waiting to take people into Krabi town).
After Krabi, Tonsai, Railay jump the public ferry to Lanta (if you are staying at Ton Sai, Railay or Ao Nang the ferry which leaves from that area is way better).
Do Ko Rok out of Lanta.
Okay, if you are a budget traveller and can't afford to fly:
- you can catch an overnight bus into Phuket, but tell the conductor you want to go to Bang Rong/Yao Noi. He will put you out at a big intersection way north of Phuket town bus station where you will be able to get a motorcycle taxi or songthaew across to Bang Rong, saving a lot of time.
The rest of the trip as per above.
- or preferably: catch an overnight bus into Phang Nga town, go to Mr Kean Tour in the bus station compound (Sayan Tour there is another good one) and sign on for his good value budget day-tour of the bay (maybe extend it to an overnight stay on Ko Panyi as I did for a trifling 250baht) - then get Mr Kean to take you down to the pier for the longtail ferry to Yao Noi (I think there is only one per day so this gives less flexibility).
The rest of the trip as per up page.
One last wrinkle - you can do Phang Nga Bay tours out of Krabi, advertised everywhere and popular. This confines itself to the southern bay as do many of the trips out of Yao Noi whereas Mr Kean's tour is more comprehensive in the northern and central bay areas.
- hell, just thought of another wrinkle. There is now supposed to be a high season speed boat which connects Yao Noi with Ao Nang . I think it starts in Bang Rong.
Would save a lot of time - the public longtail/songthaew via Ao Thalen and then songthaew to Ao Nang would take probably 4 hours minimum.
Of course you may already have your transport booked to Krabi on March 9 which makes a lot of #2 redundant.
If so the route you outline in your OP sounds most logical.
One slight variation:
If you have some time flexibility in your itinerary and don't want to retrace steps back thru Krabi: supposedly there is now a speedboat connects Yao Noi with Phi Phi. "Supposedly" because it definitely ran a few high seasons ago but I haven't heard if there was enough patronage to ensure its survival. Anyway Yao Noi accommodation places will know. You could jump on this, check Phi Phi out, then get the public ferry to Lanta.
Of course there are ways of not retracing your steps if you don't want to go to Phi Phi - you could go to Yao Noi from Krabi using the Ao Nang speedboat, go back on the Ao Thalen longtail taxi boat and when you arrive at Krabi bus station, jump out and catch the next Krabi-Lanta minivan which starts in Krabi town and calls by the bus station about 4km east of town before going down to Lanta via the vehicle punts. Drops to a lot of accommodation on Lanta too, which beats the circus at the ferry pier. I think you will arrive in Krabi town too late for the public ferry to Lanta - could be wrong: a lady from the small travel agency at the bus station usually meets the buses: she will know whether you can make the ferry and arrange quick transport down to the pier. She can also sell you a minivan ticket to Lanta and tell you when the next is due (they tend to run roughly hourly).
I'm in Krabi Town now, love the markets, rented a scooter - rode to tiger temple, walked up 1237 steps, went to the hot springs and today I'm going to do a day trip to Ao Nang - the nice beach, not the developed one by local bus - 50 baht each way. Long Tails to Railway are 150 baht each way. I'm paying 200 baht a night in town with shared bathroom, before that I was in Koh Jum & Koh Lanta and paying 300 baht a night with private bathroom.
Thanks man! You rock! I forgot to mention I live in Phetchaburi and will be headed on a night train to Surat thani and then taking a bus to Krabi. You are loads of help!
#5 Arigato9 has been a member since 26/5/2011. Posts: 29
If you are heading Krabi first I would do this
Take the speedboat, or if your budget allows take your own longtail to Yao Noi from Ao Nang /Krabi. If you take your own boat they will pull up right on the beach you want to stop at. We've done this before and had the boat pull in right on Pasai beach on Yao Noi right in front of our bungalow.
From Yao Noi the easiest way then is to take the speedboat back to Ao Nang and from there go to Tonsai and Railay and then pick up the Lanta ferry from Railey when you are ready to hit Lanta and go to Rok from there.
You can't really include Yao Noi in your plans in a loop unless you go from Phuket to Lanta but then you include Phuket which isnt in your plans and you still have to get round to Railey from Lanta so doubling back to Ao Nang/Krabi after Yao Noi is the easiest option..
4 Ao Nang doesn't have a nice beach. The nice beaches are at Railay/Phra Nang and over at Khlong Muang. The bike ride out to Khlong Muang is a bit of fun and the beach you mostly get to yourself save a couple of guests at the Sheraton.
Best way to visit Kradan is via a tour from Lanta. Kradan is very quiet (stuff all there and little to do. Sounds nice but you can find quiet beaches elsewhere with more things to do. I would do a tour that does the Emerald cave on Mook plus a stop at Kradan.
Thing is, it doesn't matter where you stay in the Krabi area - it is reasonably easy to get to Railay, Phra Nang etc. Well maybe not so much from Klong Muang/Tabaek which is pretty isolated (and suffers the low tide blues in many areas).
eg I'm staying next month on the north-western extension of Noppharet Thara across the klong from the National Park office, what is often called Hat Ton Son. This beach has only a few places and suffers the low tide blues but I won't be spending too much time there during the day.
Gotta dispel the idea that ALL Ao Nang beach is daggy - the far south-eastern end up against the headland is pretty nice. And if you take the wooden walkway over the headland you end up on very attractive Ao Plai Plong which is a kinda more compact West Railay.
Kanaga we are going to go koh Yao noi first as suggested and say there a couple of days and do a day tour up through phang nga bay. Then stay on Ao tonsai cheap cheap and visit the neighboring beaches of railay and phra nang. Then head down to lanta and stay a few days and take a day trip to mook and kradan.
You awesome people have any gems to recommend in that area. Thinkin koh hong? Koh Rok?
#13 Arigato9 has been a member since 26/5/2011. Posts: 29
There are two Koh Hongs. One is north of Yao Noi towards Koh Pin Gan (James Bond Island) and the other one is to the East of Yao Noi between the island and Krabi.
This picture is from Pasai beach on Yao Noi. The island under the sun is Koh Hong. http://habanero.smugmug.com/Travel/Koh-Yao-Noi-2011/27842309_8QXvZc#!i=2348596560&k=66hSnrd
Both are worth a visit and will be most easily served by a day trip from Yao Noi. If you go to the Easterly, closer one then ask them to take you to Pak Bia first. This is another uninhabited island close by which has a sand spit that reveals itself at low tide.
Good for swimming and feeding fishes.