Are you looking for that much needed beach getaway? Longing to relax on the white sandy beach while sipping fresh coconut juice? The sound of never-ending waves lulling you to sleep as you doze off like a baby on a hammock? Aaahhh that sounds heavenly indeed.
Dream no more, I’ll be sharing some tips and tricks to enjoy a holiday in Krabi under USD270 so your dream beach getaway will become a reality! Do I get your attention now? :)
If you need more reasons to visit Krabi, we have 6 reasons why you should already be on a flight to Krabi!
1. Travelling Options
As usual, transportation fees usually take up almost half of the already puny budget.
Option 1: Flight Options
Best and easiest way to get to Krabi is of course, a direct flight to Krabi town.
*The fares shown are based on a search from 31 Oct-3 Nov 2017
#HHWT tip: Best time to purchase flight tickets is during budget airlines' promotion hours, so keep a lookout! I remember purchasing a return flight tickets for 4 pax from Kuala Lumpur for under USD120!
Option 2: By Bus
If you want to save even more, travelling by bus is the ultimate cost-saving option but the down side will be the longer travelling time (approximately 8 hours from Kuala Lumpur to Hatyai). Enjoy the scenery or put on your sleeping mask and rest assured that you are saving a whole lot more on this trip :)
Price for a return ticket from Kuala Lumpur to Hatyai: approximately USD40 (For more info, check out this site)
Credit: madhu_thegypsygirl on Instagram
Check out Groupon/ Agoda/ Booking.com or any other related websites that offer deal services. Make these websites your new bff and surf them daily for deal-of-the-day offers!
Nightly rates start from USD50 for a two-night stay (depending on whether it is peak season and location). I would personally recommend staying away from Ao Nang (tourist town where everything is at “tourist price”) and stay in the nearby town. For example, Klong Muang town is approximately 10 minutes from Ao Nang and although there is no nightlife or shopping centres, the place boasts of a quiet, calm ambience and at a cheaper rate :)
#HHWT tip: Although the offer on these deal sites might be tempting, remember to read the fine print thoroughly for travel/booking period and transportation options. Once you have selected the hotel, you might want to call the hotel directly and let them know you are considering booking a deal on XXX.com and offer to book with them directly at a lower price. They might just say yes!
Planning out your tours at Ao Nang town
Credit: Siva Dayalan on Flickr
On your first day in Krabi, head to Ao Nang beach and enjoy a nice stroll around town. This town is pretty small and many travel agencies are available for you to plan out fun activities throughout your visit. Ao Nang is where the tourists flock, which is also where you can get good rates on group tours (way cheaper than private tours of course) and since there are many travel agencies around town, their prices are quite competitive.
#HHWT tip: If you are planning to rent a bike, try asking your hotel for help! The hotel’s rates are sometimes better than others offered in town. Bike rent is approximately USD10/day
Visit the local noon markets for cheap and good food
The local market is held in different villages every day, usually from early afternoon until early evening. I would highly recommend that you visit Klong Haeng market, held just across the road from the big yellow mosque (this would make an easy landmark if you need to ask the locals ;p)
What can you find here? Expect lots of fresh fruits, vegetables and delicious authentic Thai delicacies from curries, tom yam, Pad Thai, sticky rice and everything in between. Forget the fancy restaurants in town, here is where you should go for cheap and awesome food!
Credit: Anshu on Flickr
Klong Muang Market: Not far from Baan Klong Muang School and Klong Muang Beach. Open every Friday from early afternoon till early evening.
Ao Nang Market: Near Lai Thai Resort, Ao Nang. Open every Monday, Tuesday and Friday from 15:00 – 19:30.
Ao Num Mao Market: Located at Ao Num Mao three-way junction. Open every Wednesday and Friday from early afternoon.
#HHWT tip: Klong Muang market is mainly run by the local Muslim population so it is not uncommon to see ladies with headscarves.
There are four groups of islands accessible from the mainland coast in Krabi: Phi Phi Islands, Hong Islands, 4 Islands and James Bond Island. The tour would take one day, starting from around 8 am till around 4 to 5 pm. Snorkelling equipment is available for free but just remember not to lose them or you can say bye bye to your USD50 (penalty for losing the equipment). Learnt it the hard way when I lost my goggles during the sudden downpour while snorkelling :(
Credit: Alex Xela on Flickr
If swimming is just not your thing, the scenery... My oh my, the scenery is just breathtaking! Words will not do justice.
Credit:Joan Campderrós-i-Canas on Flickr
Price: USD30 but you can easily negotiate the price to around USD25 or less depending on how many people are going on the tour.
#HHWT tip: Hats, caps and sunglasses are highly recommended along with sunscreen. Be prepared for highly unpredictable weather - sun could be scorching hot for a minute and heavy rain could hit you minutes later.
Credit: Mike Behnken on Flickr
Hot Springs & Crystal Pool
Credit: bmwrider883 on Instagram
Discover the beauty that lies in the south of Krabi province in Klong Thom district (around 70km from town and near the Khao Phra Bang Khram Nature Reserve) and get some aqua-therapy from nature’s own jacuzzis.
A visit to the hot springs would not be complete without a trip to the nearby ‘Crystal Pool’ and the other must-see site in the reserve is the brightly coloured ‘Blue Pool’, located some 600m further upstream from the Emerald Pool.
Credit: Tobdesigner on Instagram
Price: USD30 to USD40 depending on the package
4. Eat, shop and don’t forget to haggle!
Krabi Night Markets
No holiday is complete without getting a little something for those back home. Don’t be fooled by the rows of nicely lit shops by the beach to do your shopping. The secret is to visit Krabi night markets for your souvenir shopping!
Credit: lin Judy on Flickr
Keychains, t-shirts, handicrafts and all sorts of knick knacks can be found here. Quality wise, it's practically the same as anywhere in the country, it is where you buy them that makes the difference!
Credit: lin Judy on Flickr
You can also experience local delicacies while enjoying the traditional music/art performance by the students from local music schools.
Address: Krabi town at Maharat Soi 8 (behind the Vogue Department Store), Maharat Rd., Mueang, Krabi
Opening hours: Fri - Sun from 05.00 pm. - 10.00 pm
How to get there:
- From Manutboraan intersection: On Maharat Road, head to Krabi Town passing left along Vouge Department Store, where you'll find "Walking Street". On the first Soi (Maharat Soi 8) to the end of Soi, you'll find several souvenir shops along the road with activities area, dining tables and onstage shows.
- From Ao Nang: Flag down a taxi or songthaew along the main street in Ao Nang, it costs 50baht per person during the day time and when going back to Ao Nang, catch the taxi/songthaew infront of 7-Eleven or the main entrance of the market, which costs 60baht at night. Watch out for the overpriced tuk-tuk service in front of Vogue Department Store.
#HHWT tip: There is also a tour option available where you can arrange for a mini van pick-up and drop-off service from your hotel. You can easily arrange with tour operators available in Ao Nang or at your hotel.
Skip the fancy restaurants, go local!
Look for the many local halal restaurants around town and skip the fancy restaurants serving western or Middle Eastern fares!
Credit: haniaziz on Instagram
What you need to try is real home-cooked meals by Krabi’s mommas and aunties or maybe uncles? Don't forget to ask for the “sambal belacan” (sweet and sour shrimp paste with lots of bird’s eye chillies)! *drools*.
Price: Around USD5 for a decent meal for 1 pax
A visit to any foreign land is incomplete without trying out the street food. Be it sweet, savoury or something you may not be able to define, you just have to try them out!
Made fresh just like a French crepe but thinner. The white center filling tastes like meringue and is topped off with sweet grated coconut. Crispy, sweet and bite-sized, this is my all time favourite Thai sweet and the best thing is that it is so cheap and sold by the dozen!
Price: 1 box of 10 pieces or more is approximately USD 1
Say what? Pancake? Looks more like a prata but these are not the traditional ones you'll find in Singapore/Malaysia which are paired with curries and dhal. You can get them in different flavours like Nutella with bananas, plain with condensed milk or cheese and many more.
Price: Approximately USD1.40
#HHWT tip: The size is quite decent and can be shared between 2 people.
Credit: tores234 on Instagram
The Andaman offers an array of seafood and you will find them everywhere! Want them grilled, tempura style or BBQ? Just name it and you’ll find it here. You won’t go hungry in Krabi!
5. Indulge in a cheap massage
The moment you land in Thailand, one of the first things you'll notice is the spa & massage parlours everywhere! Whether you're on a budget or not, a Thai massage is something you wouldn’t want to miss. The secret is to stay away from those by the beach and in town. Where should you look for then? Along the interconnecting towns in Krabi, where you'll spot many massage houses by the road side.
Pick any one that seems to have little or no customers at all. And no, I am not kidding ;) But do make sure that you talk to the masseuse regarding the type of massage you want and agree on the price beforehand.
Credit: emmett anderson on Flickr
Price: Depending on the service you request, the price can start as low as USD10
#HHWT tip: These massage houses are sometimes an extension of their own houses, so rates are cheaper and haggling is possible unlike those at tourist spots! If you play the cards right, you might just get away with free manicures and pedicures too!
So let’s recap how much you would need to spend for 4 days 3 nights stay in Krabi.
|TRANSPORTATION (by bus)||USD 70.00|
|ACCOMMODATION (4 days, 3 nights)||USD 100.00|
|ACTIVITIES (Island hopping / hot spring + Spa)||USD 50|
Though the calculation is based on an approximate value, you know you are able to spend less than USD 270 while having a great stay in Krabi. Hope this guide will come in handy if you are planning to visit Krabi soon. Sawadee kap!
P.S. I would highly recommend going there during the off-peak season when everything is at half the normal price :)