Standing tall, undeterred
Alongside the crashing waves
Those majestic mounts
Blue or was it green,
The colour of grand vastness
It was heavenly calm
On the shores of Krabi…
Krabi, a province on Southern Thailand’s Andaman coast constitutes of archipelagos offering stunning seascape, numerous adventurous activities and tranquility in abundance. The islands offer secluded beaches, some of them we have seen in movies. James Bond Island or Koh Khao Ping Gan is one such.
Koh in Thai means ‘an island’. Koh Khao Ping Gan served as Scaramanga’s hideout in the bond movie, The Man with The Golden Gun , filmed way back in 1974 with Roger Moore as 007. Koh Phi Phi was where Leonardo DiCaprio filmed a movie called The Beach in the year 2000. Now, you can visit any of these islands via an organised boat rides, offered by local travel agents.
We were headed to the Railay Beach. Charming sights awaited us here. Cut from the mainland Krabi town, Railay is a tiny island that can be approached only on a boat. The boat ride roughly took about 15-20 minutes to reach us to our resort. All that was on mind during our three days at Railay / Rai-leh, was sleep, food and rest. And, Railay totally pandered to that wish of ours. Bang on Railay Beach, there are few lovely resorts. We were booked at Sand Sea resort.
Contrary to what few people have mentioned on tripadvisor, we found the staff at Sand Sea resort quite pleasing. The deluxe room was big and very comfortable. Food at the sea facing restaurant was great too. However, for food, we preferred walking into the ally close to the Railay Beach Village Resort. This cozy narrow ally is dotted with numerous restaurants and shops selling varied items ranging from clothes, to souvenirs.
Food options are also varied. Having people visiting from all quarters of the world, the restaurants here offer continental cuisine in addition to the local Thai delicacies.
Somewhere in the centre of the ally is a family run restaurant with a very basic setup. We had our lunch here all three days of our stay in Krabi. Food is exceptionally good. My favorite has to be the papaya salad, Kale salad and tom yum goong (Spicy and tangy Thai soup cooked with shrimps). Bamboo is an ingredient used in various Thai curries. Just like lemongrass, bamboo is an acquired taste. The smell hits your senses way before the food reaches your palette. May be the reason, why I didn’t enjoy the bamboo salad as much as I enjoyed raw papaya and raw mango salad.
Sand Sea Resort has a pool on its premises; so if you had enough of sea and sand, you can relax in the Jacuzzi designed within the pool or just swim. Within the resort you have the option to walk upto the beach / restaurant / pool etc. or call for a buggy.
On one of the days I ditched the kettle in my room and head to Railay Coffee house for my early morning beverage. While am traveling, I always end up settling for coffee instead of my favorite tea for plain reason – am yet to find a place which offers aromatic lovely tea like we get in India. My most relaxed and peaceful moments on the beach have to be those two hours I spent at Railay Coffee House, all by myself. From reading a book, to instagraming ( the cafe has superb wifi connectivity) and enjoying my hot coffee. The coffee house is smallish but attractively done. Something about the place was warm and cozy.
For a different experience, we moved into the next door Railay Beach Resort for one night. Bad idea when it came to porting the luggage. Good idea since the resort was nice. The private deluxe rooms, though small were neatly done with surroundings green and lovely. There are monkeys one needs to be wary of. There are instructions to keep door to your room, closed at all times; other than that it’s safe to walk around. There is supermarket, restaurant, ATM, pool etc. within this self-sufficient resort complex.
For an upscale experience, check out Rayavadee beachfront hotel with a spa. With around 100 rooms, the resort is located at West Railay Beach and at a distance of about 1.4 kms to Ao Phra Nang Beach.
After three restful days, we head to capital city Bangkok, where next three days replete with fun, food and shopping awaited us.
Airlines we flew: Air Asia
Activities: You can partake in various activities during your stay here. From kayaking to rock climbing to island visiting; there is something to do for everyone. There are half day and full day elephant treks that gives you a chance to explore an island perched up, from the elephant’s back.
Pay and book for airport transfer from the resort you are staying with. All the resorts have their own ferry service. So your travel from the airport to the resort is taken care of. This was really helpful in our case, as it was raining in Krabi when we landed. People whom we saw at the airport, who took private taxi to the resort reached much later (couple of hours actually. We saw them as we progressed to our room for a nap, post our lunch.
If you plan to stay in the Krabi town area, you can still do a day trip to the Railay beach / or other beaches, via boat that plies everyday from main land, for such day visitors.
The three places on my bucketist , next time I visit Thailand are Chiang Mai, Koh Samui and Phuket.