Photo: Can get busy.

Emerald Pool and Khlong Thom hot springs

Our rating:

Sra Morakot, or “Emerald Pool”, is the main draw in a distinctively beautiful forest protected as part of a wildlife sanctuary in Khlong Thom district, 60 kilometres southeast of Krabi town. Most visitors hit this natural travertine pool in conjunction with Nam Tok Ron, a hot-spring waterfall that flows nearby.

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The experience begins at a set of shops and eateries slinging grilled chicken and noodle soup near the entrance to Emerald Pool. After buying tickets (200 baht for foreign adults) you can stroll down an 800-metre gravel lane straight to the pool, or take a concrete walkway that winds for 1.4 kilometres through a forest of crystal-clear ponds and stone striking shades of beige and turquoise. We suggest opting for the long way.

Just follow the people. Photo taken in or around Emerald Pool and Khlong Thom hot springs, Krabi, Thailand by David Luekens.

Just follow the people. Photo: David Luekens

Rimmed by banyan tree roots and a slope of rock on one side, the actual Emerald Pool looks and feels like a busy public swimming pool even though you’ll find no concrete or other artificial additions. Most of it is shallow enough for adults to stand with head above water, deepening to around two metres at some points. On one side flows a clear stream that was shallow and calm enough for small children to frolic during our June 2018 visit.

We shared the pool with perhaps 200 others, which felt crowded but not to the point that we weren’t able to swim around without colliding into people. Expect the pool to be busier during high season, especially on weekends when locals join the many foreign visitors. Arriving early in the morning or after 15:00 would give you a chance of averting the crowds. While the pool is refreshing and the landscape striking, we wouldn’t say that it ranks among the best mainland attractions in Krabi province, especially when considering the crowds.

The pools are popular with locals and foreigners alike. Photo taken in or around Emerald Pool and Khlong Thom hot springs, Krabi, Thailand by David Luekens.

The pools are popular with locals and foreigners alike. Photo: David Luekens

Another walkway cuts 600 metres deeper into the jungle to the Blue Pool—it’s closed to visitors from May through October so we couldn’t take a look. In photos the colour of the water is almost neon, resembling sports drinks with names like “blue crush.” When the Blue Pool is open, visitors are forbidden from swimming or straying from the trail due to quicksand and a fragile ... Travelfish members only (Around 600 more words) ... please log in to read the rest of this story.

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How to get there
There is no public transport to Emerald Pool or Nam Tok Ron, both of which are located 10 or more kilometres east of Phetkasem Road (Route 4) and are clearly marked by signs the whole way.

Emerald Pool and Khlong Thom hot springs
60 kilometres southeast of Krabi town
Mo–Su: 08:00–17:00
Admission: 200 baht

Location map for Emerald Pool and Khlong Thom hot springs

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