Photo: So much to eat.

Introduction

Our rating:

Capital of one of Thailand’s most heavily touristed provinces, Krabi town is a mash up of funky bars, Western restaurants, old-school markets slinging intense curries and the same sorts of modest shophouses found in any Thai provincial capital. Somehow these pieces fit together beside mangrove-lined rivers, limestone massifs and a busy stretch of the Andaman Sea.


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Some travellers use the town for a quick pivot to the islands and mainland beaches. Others stick around to laze in the cafes, stroll the riverfront and settle into a good-value guesthouse as a base for launching day trips. The area boasts all sorts of travel possibilities, including cliff-top chedis, waterfalls, caves and crystal waters of both the fresh and salt varieties. While some of these spots have become uncomfortably crowded in recent years, the province also retains its share of lesser-known destinations that reward those willing to explore.

Out on the river near Krabi. Photo taken in or around Krabi, Thailand by David Luekens.

Out on the river near Krabi. Photo: David Luekens

Though Krabi town lacks the tourist-driven tackiness of nearby Ao Nang while retaining much of its local character, its “traveller area” has expanded to cover much of downtown in recent years. Sleek hotels, hostels and cafes have risen to join an older set of businesses geared towards backpackers who have been arriving for decades. While we find the gentrification alarming, we still like this “lively town with lovely people”, as a local motto accurately states.

Thai Muslims make up a large portion of the population: if you dig biryani rice, roti and curries laced with enough chillies to make you cry, you have come to the right place. Vendors in Talad City and elsewhere are accustomed to serving travellers from around the globe, making Krabi an easy place to sample authentic Southern Thai fare without speaking a lick of Thai. You might not know exactly what you’re eating, but most likely it ... Travelfish members only (Around 1,000 more words) ... please log in to read the rest of this story.


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What next?

 Browse our independent reviews of places to stay in and around Krabi.
 Check prices, availability & reviews on Agoda or Booking
 Read up on where to eat on Krabi.
 Check out our listings of things to do in and around Krabi.
 Read up on how to get to Krabi, or book your transport online with 12Go Asia.
 Do you have travel insurance yet? If not, find out why you need it.
 Planning on riding a scooter in Krabi? Please read this.
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